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Fla. Appeals Court Throws Out Murder Conviction

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File photo of a courtroom. (Photo by Spencer Weiner-Pool/Getty Images)

File photo of a courtroom. (Photo by Spencer Weiner-Pool/Getty Images)

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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — A Florida appeals court is throwing out a second-degree murder conviction against a Panhandle man who asserted he shot someone in self-defense.

The 1st District Court of Appeal ruled Friday that a Santa Rosa County jury was given conflicting instructions about the state’s self-defense and controversial “stand your ground” law.

The court stated it was wrong to tell jurors that Robert Franklin Floyd needed to use “reasonable means” to escape danger in order to avoid a conviction.

Floyd was convicted after investigators said he shot and killed 18-year-old GeTyron Lopez Benjamin. The Brewton, Ala., teen and three others attended a bonfire party at Floyd’s house.

Prosecutors maintained that Floyd grabbed his rifle and shot first as the group were leaving. Floyd maintained he was returning fire.

(© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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