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Florida Man Claims Self-Defense After Hopping A Fence To Shoot, Kill 21-Year-Old In A Hoodie

Society & Culture  (tags: abuse, americans, corruption, culture, death, dishonesty, education, freedoms, Guns, government, law, media, politics, rights, safety, society )

- 1609 days ago -
On Thursday, an Orlando man shot and killed a 21-year-old who was fleeing his yard. He didn't appear to be stealing anything, according to witness accounts.

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Kit B (276)
Wednesday January 22, 2014, 7:45 am
Photo Credit: Shutterstock

On Thursday, an Orlando man shot and killed a 21-year-old who was fleeing his yard. He didn’t appear to be stealing anything, according to witness accounts. He didn’t appear to be threatening anybody. But Claudius Smith said he feared he was a burglar, followed him over the fence to a neighboring apartment complex, where he shot him after he said he felt threatened, according to a confession documented in an Orlando Police Department report. Smith even said he feared victim Ricardo Sanes was armed “because his pants were falling down” and his hands were in his hoodie pockets, according to a report obtained by the Orlando Sentinel.

Now, questions are emerging about whether Smith will also invoke the state’s Stand Your Ground law, which gained notoriety over the shooting of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin, shot in a Florida residential development while wearing a hoodie. Law enforcement officials don’t seem to believe Stand Your Ground applies. Smith has already been charged with second-degree murder. But that doesn’t stop a judge from granting Stand Your Ground immunity later. In one of the most recent Florida court decisions on Stand Your Ground, an appeals court granted Stand Your Ground immunity to a man who went to his car to get a gun before the fatal incident.

According to statements by Smith’s girlfriend, Angela Kemraj, to police, the incident started when she saw a man in the yard on surveillance cameras and reported it to Smith. She said they saw the individual in dark clothes and a hoodie leaving their yard without anything in his hands, and climbing over the fence to a neighboring apartment complex. Smith then left the apartment and climbed over the fence. Two minutes later, Kemraj said she heard gunshots. Soon after, Smith came back to the apartment and said Sanes tried to rob him, without mentioning the shooting. During initial police questioning, Smith later denied knowledge about the shooting, and only later confessed, claiming he shot in self-defense.

By: Nicole Flatow | Think Progress |

Nicole Flatow is the Deputy Editor of ThinkProgress Justice. Previously, she was Associate Director of Communications for the American Constitution Society

Kit B (276)
Wednesday January 22, 2014, 7:48 am

And.... of course a school shooting at Purdue University. Children disappearing, more women murdered, it's only January, this is going to be a very long, sad year.

Kit B (276)
Wednesday January 22, 2014, 7:50 am

Purdue Shooting Suspect surrenders after allegedly killing fellow student
(CNN) -- A gunman shot and killed another man Tuesday inside Purdue University's electrical engineering building, spurring worried students to scramble into the bitter cold outside for safety.

The Indiana school's police chief said that the suspect appeared to have had just one target in mind. He left the building right after the shooting, and a city police officer arrested him.

Read article at:

Arielle S (313)
Wednesday January 22, 2014, 8:22 am
So many incidents this past week and where is the media, where is the outrage? Apparently, throwing popcorn or wearing a hoodie is good enough to get someone shot these days -

Nancy M (169)
Wednesday January 22, 2014, 2:04 pm
The Stand your Ground shotting will be an interesting one to follow, after seeing what has happened with Geroge Zimmerman.

As for Purdue- well, a little close. That six degrees of sepaartion thing.

Terry King (113)
Wednesday January 22, 2014, 2:12 pm
If I ever travel to Florida... "Not likely"... I'll leave my hoodies at home!

Past Member (0)
Wednesday January 22, 2014, 2:27 pm
So many shootings at schools & colleges too.

Deb E (63)
Wednesday January 22, 2014, 2:37 pm
Florida has some major problems with their laws. Hope his charges stand

Walter F (129)
Wednesday January 22, 2014, 3:04 pm
Americans may have a right to bear arms but not the right to murder..This man is a murderer.

JL A (281)
Wednesday January 22, 2014, 5:15 pm
Very scary scenario. I can remember neighborhood youths hopping fences looking for errant pets in my youth.

Barbara K (60)
Wednesday January 22, 2014, 6:40 pm
Florida seems to be after the Murder Capital of America reputation. It is not Stand Your Ground, when you jump a fence and chase a person down to kill him. That is plain old Murder. They need to stop legalized murder in that state, and any other state that has that stupid license to excuse murder.

Vivian B (169)
Wednesday January 22, 2014, 7:39 pm
The "Stand Your Ground" law is Unfrigginbelievablely the worst law that was ever written by man! It's just a license to kill and be able to get off with a slap on the wrist!

Rose Becke (141)
Wednesday January 22, 2014, 11:59 pm
It makes me sick

Kit B (276)
Thursday January 23, 2014, 10:58 am

There Has Been An Average Of One School Shooting Every Other School Day So Far This Year

Sheryl G (360)
Thursday January 23, 2014, 6:05 pm
Smith has already been charged with second-degree murder. Oh great, so he gets to do it again and has another chance to get away with it.

This is exactly what advocates had feared before the Stand Your Ground came into being. This law so needs to change, even gang members are using it to get out of killing each other.

lee e (114)
Friday January 24, 2014, 7:06 am
Florida's trying to vie for murder state of the year - Texas had better start shooting up, or they'll come in 2nd this year!

Arielle S (313)
Friday January 24, 2014, 7:40 am
I heard this man shot the kid 6 times in the back.... hard to prove self-defense if that's true, altho this is Flori-Duh.

More and more shootings and yet it seems less and less outrage - what is wrong with us?
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