Debate swirls around castle doctrine-type laws

By The Associated Press

COLUMBUS, Miss. (AP) — A north Mississippi prosecutor and a defense attorney are warning Mississippi residents to be careful when considering when and how to defend themselves and their property.

The comments come in the wake of the debate over Florida’s “Stand Your Ground Law,” which gives people wide latitude to use deadly force rather than retreat during a fight. The self-defense law helps explain why a neighborhood watch captain has not been arrested in the shooting death of an unarmed teenager.

Lowndes County, Miss., District Attorney Forrest Allgood tells WCBI-TV Mississippi law recognizes two types of homicides that aren’t crimes. One is excusable homicide and the other is justifiable homicide. They fall under the state’s “Castle Doctrine” but they include strict tests that must be met.