final until disposition of any timely and authorized motion
under Fla. R. App. P. 9.330 or 9.331.
Petition for Writ of Prohibition-Original Jurisdiction.
Joseph Carbone III, St. Augustine; Sonya Rudenstine,
Gainesville; for Petitioner.
Moody, Attorney General, Steven Edward Woods, Assistant
Attorney General, Tallahassee; Sheena H. Rickerson, Assistant
State Attorney, Live Oak; for Respondent.
seeks a writ of prohibition to reverse the trial court's
order denying his motion for immunity from prosecution under
sections 776.032(1), 776.012, and 776.013, Florida Statutes,
arguing that Petitioner was justified in using force against
the victim because he reasonably believed such force was
necessary to defend his wife against the victim's
imminent use of unlawful force. We affirm.
trial court conducted a hearing where witnesses testified as
to what occurred and security footage of the incident was
played. The incident occurred at a country music festival
that the victim, Petitioner, and Petitioner's wife
attended. The victim knew Petitioner and his wife prior to
the night of the altercation. Petitioner's wife and the
victim got into an altercation over something the victim said
to the Petitioner's wife. Petitioner's wife shattered
a beer bottle she was holding and began striking the victim.
the altercation, Petitioner came up behind the victim,
grabbed her, and threw her to the ground, laid on top of her
and said, "You f---ing b----, you'll never hit my
wife again." Petitioner's wife then began striking
the victim in her face. Petitioner stopped hitting the victim
when a woman told him to stop; Petitioner's wife then
began to walk away, saying "We got to go. She's
bleeding real bad."
result of the altercation, the victim spent four days in the
hospital. Hospital employees told her that she lost four or
five liters of blood. She had plastic surgery to repair her
face, ear, and throat. Some of her facial nerves had been
cut. She had two surgeries to repair her vocal cords, and one
still does not work. She has scars on her face, ear, neck,
chest, and shoulder.
trial court entered an order denying Petitioner's
"Motion for Determination of Immunity from
Prosecution." The trial court found, based on witness
testimony and the security footage, that Petitioner was not
entitled to use force against the victim; the court found
that the evidence did not support Petitioner's argument
that he was entitled to use force to prevent injury to his
Stand Your Ground law confers immunity from prosecution if an
individual uses deadly force in accordance with section
776.012(2), Florida Statutes." Fletcher v.
State, 273 So.3d 1187, 1189 (Fla. 1st DCA 2019); §
776.032(1), Fla. Stat. (2018). Section 776.012(2), allows an
individual to use or threaten to use deadly force "if he
or she reasonably believes that using or threatening to use
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."
defendant files a motion to dismiss under section 776.012(2),
the trial court must conduct an evidentiary hearing and weigh
the factual evidence presented. Dennis v. State, 51
So.3d 456, 458 (Fla. 2010). "[O]nce a criminal defendant
raises 'a prima facie claim of self-defense
immunity,' then 'the burden of proof by clear and
convincing evidence is on the party seeking to overcome the
immunity.'" Hicks v. State, 277 So.3d 153,
154 (Fla. 1st DCA 2019) (quoting § 776.032(4), Fla.
Stat. (2018)).[*] Under the appellate court's
standard of review, the trial court's factual findings
are "presumed correct and can be reversed only if they
are not ...