Last year was a big year for the Florida Stand Your Ground Law. The George Zimmerman and Trayvon Martin case drew the most attention to Florida’s self defense laws. Although this case did not occur in Jacksonville, Duval County became involved. Angela Corey is Duval County’s State Attorney. She also heads the state attorney’s offices in Clay County and Nassau County. She was appointed by Governor Rick Scott to the Zimmerman investigation. She appointed Bernie De La Rionda to prosecute Zimmerman’s murder case. De La Rionda is a seasoned prosecutor from the Jacksonville office that works for Corey.
It is not unusual for the head of the state attorney offices in Florida to delegate cases to the attorneys in their offices. The same is true for the Office of the Public Defender. The elected official will delegate cases to other attorneys that work for the office. It is unusual to see the elected official try cases. However, Corey will be trying a high-profile case in Jacksonville FL. She will prosecute Michael Dunn herself. Dunn was charged with killing Jordan Davis in a gas station parking lot on the south side of Jacksonville FL. You may read Southside Jacksonville Florida Shooting Murder Charges for more details about the Dunn and Davis shooting case.
Dunn was in court today for a pretrial hearing. This is when the public learned that Corey would be prosecuting the case. “She’s trying to get a list from Gate Petroleum of the customers at the Southside convenience store within two hours of the shooting of Davis to find out what they may have seen…. Both of Davis’ parents were at the hearing.” (News4jax.com)
Susan Bass is a newly elected circuit court judge in Duval County. She is presiding over this Florida firearm case. At this time, a trial date has not been set. In the beginning of this case, it appeared that the defense would centered around a self-defense argument. However, “the defense said nothing about filing a ‘stand your ground’ petition.” This is probably because they are in the middle of discovery. They are still investigating the case. Dunn will go back to court on March 19 for anther pretrial date. In the meantime, the parties will likely exchange evidence and take any outstanding depositions.
The next pretrial hearing for Dunn is March 19. Jacksonville criminal lawyers will be following this case. Florida criminal attorneys all over the state will be interested in hearing the stand your ground arguments applied to the facts of this case and the Zimmerman case.