A stand your ground immunity hearing will be held on May 16th, in front of Judge James Daniel. The hearing could potential grant Marissa Alexander immunity from prosecution under the controversial Florida law. Alexander is charged with three counts of aggravated assault stemming from a 2010 incident in which she fired a warning shot in the direction of her estranged husband and two of his children. No one was injured.
Alexander was denied immunity, then was convicted at trial in 2012, but a new trial was ordered a few months ago because the jury instructions in her first trial were incorrect.
State Attorney Angela Corey has decided to request a 60 year sentence if Alexander is convicted again. According to another controversial law, mandatory minimums (Florida’s “10-20-Life”, gun crime sentencing laws), Alexander received a 20 year sentence after her original trial.
Alexander’s lawyer Bruce Zimet filed motions last month indicating his plan to seek immunity. If successful, the case will not go to trial. Judge Daniel has already indicated that he agreed with the denial of Alexander’s immunity the first time, but Zimet contends that the original immunity hearing “suffered from an incomplete evidentiary record.”
“When the full evidentiary record is analyzed under the correct statute, Alexander’s right to immunity will be clear,” Zimet wrote in pretrial motions. He also outlined key witness testimony provided by her estranged husband’s son regarding whether or not he had threatened Alexander. Zimet noted in his filings that the son “subsequently recanted his devastating, but fictitious testimony’ and admitted that his father “started toward” Alexander and said, “Bitch, I’ll kill you.”
If immunity is not granted, the retrial is set to begin in July. Reportedly, jury selection will begin on July 21st.
Alexander had previously rejected a 3-year sentence plea deal offered by State Attorney Angela Corey.