House Bill 228, which has been dubbed the ‘Kill at Will’ bill for allowing a person to use a gun to shoot to kill in response to any perceived threat, in any place where the person has a lawful right to be, be it a movie theater, parking lot or a mall, has passed in the Ohio State House today.
Reacting to the House passage, Victoria Coy, End Gun Violence Campaign Manager with Amnesty International USA, stated:
“By passing the bill, the House has sanctioned an irresponsible proposition that would seriously endanger public safety by encouraging a shoot-first, ask questions later mentality.
“Under the bill, a person would be allowed to shoot to kill in practically any circumstance if they feel scared.
“The subjective and potentially racially biased discrimination that can factor into such split second decisions could have devastating disproportionate effects on Black communities in Ohio, that already bear the brunt of biased policies. The Senate must not allow the bill to pass.”
Evidence has shown that Stand Your Ground laws endanger lives and public safety, including by leading to an increase in homicides. Amnesty International is calling for all states to repeal Stand Your Ground laws, as they undermine international human rights laws and standards. The use of lethal force is lawful only if, at the time of its use, it is strictly unavoidable in response to an imminent threat of death or serious injury.