ST. CLOUD, Fla. - A jury must decide if a gunman was trying to defend himself in a bar fight that resulted in two brothers being killed in Osceola County in June 2011
Jason Clair claimed he killed James and Joel Kun outside an Osceola County bar in self-defense.
WFTV found out that Jason Clair's "stand your ground" hearing will happen at the same time as his murder trial. Jury selection began in the case on Monday.
The jury will
decide whether Clair is innocent or guilty in the killing of the two brothers in St. Cloud, and at the same time, the judge will be listening to decide if the state's stand your ground law applies to the case.
The stand your ground hearings are typically separate, but in this case, the judge will consider the statute during the trial and make a decision at the end. It could lead to an appeal, depending on the verdict, Alvarez said.
Prosecutors are expected to argue the murder was premeditated, that Clair flew into a rage, left the bar where he had fought with the Kuns and returned with a gun.
Clair's mother, Judy Schubert, told WFTV the Kun brothers were beating her son and he had no choice but to defend himself, so he got his gun and shot them both.
"They beat him that bad. Four times he's running away crying, 'No, no don't beat me no more,'" described Schubert.
"So you don't feel he had a choice?" WFTV reporter Nancy Alvarez asked.
"No," she replied.
"My son is the most perfect human being that walks the earth," said Schubert. "He has the biggest heart, and I know in my heart he wouldn't hurt anybody."
A brawl broke out between members of Clair's family and the victims' family outside of the courthouse a few months ago. Because of that fight, some family members have been banned from the trial and the courthouse.
The judge said he hopes to have a jury seated and testimony under way by late Monday afternoon.