Change in Florida's 'stand your ground' law heading to Gov. Scott's desk

Change in Florida's 'stand your ground' law heading to Gov. Scott's desk

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — The Legislature passed a bill that would place the burden of proof in "stand your ground" pretrial hearings on the prosecution rather than the defendant.

The Senate passed the bill Friday on a 22-14 vote, just hours before it would have died on the last day lawmakers considered non-budget related bills.

The Senate had earlier refused to consider changes the House made to the bill, then accepted them when the House stood its ground on its position.

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The Senate bill originally said prosecutors have to prove "beyond a reasonable doubt" that a defendant wasn't acting in self-defense. The House changed that language to the lower threshold of presenting "clear and convincing evidence."

Defendants now have to prove they were acting in self-defense to avoid a trial.

The bill now heads to Gov. Rick Scott's desk. If signed, the law goes into effect immediately.

Associated Press contributed to this article.