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Eye On Boise

Otter lets ‘stand your ground’ bill become law without his signature, while saying it would allow mischievous kids to be shot

Gov. Butch Otter has allowed SB 1313, the “stand your ground” bill, to become law without his signature; you can read my full story here at “I commend those portions of SB 1313 that codify existing case law and recognize the sanctity of private property,” Otter wrote in a letter to Lt. Gov. Brad Little, in Little’s capacity as president of the Senate. “However, a thorough review of this bill reveals some concerns that warrant further review during the next legislative session. Among my biggest concerns are the potential unintended consequences on our children.”

Otter offered two examples: He said a juvenile who broke into an RV to steal a soda and was discovered by the RV’s owner could legally be shot to death under the bill. And he said rural teenagers who snuck into a corn field in the middle of the night could be legally killed under the bill, “simply because the teenagers used stealth to sneak onto the property and are unlawfully trespassing.”

The bill as written, he said, “will exonerate killings that otherwise would be considered unreasonable.”

You can read Otter’s full letter here.

Betsy Z. Russell
Betsy Z. Russell joined The Spokesman-Review in 1991. She currently is a reporter in the Boise Bureau covering Idaho state government and politics, and other news from Idaho's state capital.

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