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Stand Your Ground and Self Defense in Florida by Charnele Tate: Florida Jurisprudence

Decedent's Criminal Conduct; Defendant's Self-Defense

§ 28. Decedent's criminal conduct; defendant's self-defense

By statute, it is a defense to a wrongful death action to show, by a preponderance of the evidence, that such action arose from an injury sustained during the commission or attempted commission of a forcible felony by the decedent. Another statute provides immunity from a civil action for the use of deadly force as permitted by specified statutes, unless the person against whom force was used is a law enforcement officer in performance of official duties who acts in the manner described.

Source: Westlaw

Statutory Abolishment of the Common Law Duty to Retreat

§523--Statutory Abolishment of the Common Law Duty to Retreat
 The statute expanding the right of self-defense by abolishing the common-law duty to retreat before using deadly force was a substantive, rather than a procedural/remedial change in the law, and, thus, a presumption existed against retroactive application to cases pending on the effective date; the statute established a "no duty to retreat" rule in a broad context that had not previously existed and altered the circumstances criminalizing use of deadly force.
Prior to the enactment of the statute, a person could not use deadly force in self-defense without first using every reasonable means within his or her power to avoid the danger, including retreat.As was sometimes said, a combatant had to "retreat to the wall" before using deadly force. The duty to retreat before using self-defense emanated from the common law, rather than from statute.
Further, prior to the enactment of the statute, deadly force was justifiable if retreat would have been futile.Thus, where the defendant's testimony demonstrated that, under the doctrine of retreat, he or she had done all that he or she could reasonably have done to avoid the taking of the victim's life in defense of his or her person, self-defense may have justified the killing.
Source: Westlaw

Deadly Force

§266. Deadly Force
A person who uses force as permitted in the statutes is justified in using such force and is immune from criminal prosecution and civil action for the use of such force, unless the victim is a law enforcement officer who was acting in the performance of his or her official duties, and the officer identified himself or herself in accordance with any applicable law or the person using force knew or reasonably should have known that the victim was a law enforcement officer.
A defendant is engaged in the use of deadly force where the natural, probable, and foreseeable consequences of the defendant's acts are death. The proper focus is on the nature of the force used by the defendant and not the end result. Thus, even a deadly weapon, such as a knife, can be used without deadly force. Further, the mere display of a gun without more does not constitute "deadly force," for purposes of determining whether the display of a gun is justified.
Source: Westlaw

Nature and Foundation of defense

§ 508. Generally; nature and foundation of defense

By statute, a person is justified in the use of deadly force if the person reasonably believes that such force is necessary to prevent imminent death or great bodily harm to himself or herself or another or to prevent the imminent commission of a forcible felony. The statute is declaratory of the common law, under which a person attacked under certain circumstances could, to protect himself or herself, take the life of the assailant and excuse himself or herself on the ground of self-defense. The question of justifiable self-defense is ordinarily a question for the jury. 

Source: Westlaw

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