A Florida woman was sentenced to 20 years in prison for firing a warning shot at her husband.
Yeah, you heard that right — Florida. This went down in the same state as the messy Treyvon Martin case, but the messy coincidences don’t end there. Marissa Alexander, the defendant, also tried to use the “stand your ground” law against state attorney Angela Corey, who also happens to be handling the Treyvon Martin case. If this case is foreshadowing things to come, Zimmerman is in for a harsh sentence.
Alexander claimed that her husband read text messages that she had sent to her ex and threatened to strangle her. She grabbed a gun and fired a warning shot into a wall to keep him at bay. That single round earned her two decades in the slammer.
The judge stated that Alexander exercised no discretion when she fired the shot because two children were in the room just beyond the wall that she hit. Corey tried to get Alexander to accept a plea bargain that would have whittled down the sentence to three years, but Alexander turned it down. According to Florida state law, a conviction would automatically include a sentence known as “10-20-life” (10 for pulling a gun, 25 for shooting it, and life for shooting someone).
Florida Representative Corrine Brown confronted Corey after the sentencing and accused her of being far too harsh, “All the community was asking for was mercy and justice.” We’re not exactly sure how Corey could have been both merciful and just, as the two are mutually exclusive, but we get where she was coming from. Twenty years for a warning shot? That’s just ludicrous. What’s the point of having a gun to defend yourself if the courts crucify you for using it the way it was meant to be used?