FL Man Charged In Hate Crime Murder Files 'Stand Your Ground' Motion

posted by Jessi Minneci - 

A Palm Beach County man accused of killing a neighbor is asking a judge to dismiss the case under Florida’s revised Stand Your Ground law.

David Harris was arrested along with his brother, Jesse, and another man, Austin Taggart, for the April 2015 death of Onesimo Lopez-Ramos outside a home in Jupiter. 

David Harris allegedly hit and beat the victim with a rock and ax handle.

Authorities say he Harris claimed he was targeting Guatemalan citizens in the area.

Harris’ attorney said he was using self-defense in protecting himself and his brother. 

Police say that Lopez-Ramos’ brother, Elmer, saw the men approaching their home and went to a shed to get an ax handle in case he had to defend himself.

One of the defendants allegedly attacked him, striking Elmer Lopez-Ramos before he fled.

Under the revised law, the burden of proof shifts from the defense proving self-defense under the previous language to the prosecution proving the defendant was not in danger.

A November trial date for the three men, who will be tried separately, was canceled and the judge is expected to rule on Harris’ motion in December. 

Both Jesse Harris and Austin Taggart are expected not to file a Stand Your Ground motion in the case.


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