COLUMBUS- Today, on May 22, at 4p.m. the House Federalism and Interstate Relations Committee is scheduled for a possible vote on HB 228, a bill that would expand Ohio’s “Stand Your Ground” law to require prosecutors to prove that a person was not acting in self-defense. The ACLU of Ohio opposes this legislation due to racial justice implications and urges lawmakers to reject the bill.  A 2013 study by the Urban Institute that examined FBI crime data concluded that in states with “Stand Your Ground” laws, a white shooter is 350% more likely to have their homicide ruled “justified” when the victim is black. The following statement is attributed to Chief Lobbyist Gary Daniels:

“Ohio legislators and supporters of this bill need to be fully aware when they expand a “Stand Your Ground” law in this way that people of color will disproportionately and unfairly bear the consequences. Across the country, people of color are more likely to be stopped, searched, ticketed, arrested, convicted, imprisoned, imprisoned for longer sentences, sentenced to death and actually executed than their white counterparts. Additionally, when looking at national crime data, we know of the gigantic racial disparities when it comes to justifiable homicides. HB 228 will lead to more race-based injustice and inequality.”