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On October 12, a mobile phone video showed a Black man being followed and harassed by a white man in Las Vegas. As the Black man is walking away, a voice on the recording says “why can’t you handle it like a … man?” The white man then throws a punch, and the Black man turns and shoots the white man. The white man survived, according to the sparse news coverage I found online. As of October 12, the shooter had not been found. The video spurred discussion, though: would the Black shooter succeed on a stand-your-ground claim? The answer seems to be maybe, but probably not.

What happens, though, when the person “standing his ground,” defending his “castle,” is Black? We don’t know the circumstances leading to the recent Las Vegas shooting, but it’s possible that he met all of the elements of a stand-your-ground shooting. Does race matter, when bringing a stand-your-ground claim?


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