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Prosecutors To Decide Charges in Shooting Death of Brandon Teen

Nineteen-year-old Daniel Oliver of Brandon is dead after a Sunday afternoon shooting in the Providence Lakes area, according to the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office. No one has yet been charged with his murder. Officers were dispatched to a home at 1409 Scotch Pine Drive in Brandon after a 911 caller reported a fight and shots fired at the residence.

When they arrived, shortly after 3:30 a.m., they discovered Oliver dead inside the home. He had been shot once in the upper body, the sheriff’s office said.

The sheriff’s department has not released the identity of the man identified by witnesses as the shooter. The man identified as the shooter surrendered to deputies without incident. He also lived at the home, officials said. They have apparently questioned him and are continuing their investigation. Law enforcement has indicated that the Hillsborough County State Attorney’s Office will decide whether to file any charges. The sheriff’s investigators will turn over all interviews and forensic evidenced to the prosecutors for review.

A sheriff’s spokesman told the media that prosecutors “will make the final decision if the suspect will face any criminal charges or rule the case justifiable homicide.”

It has been reported that the parties had a argument just prior to the shooting. Based solely on the sheriff’s department’s reference to justifiable homicide, it appears that there may be a self-defense or “stand your ground” argument that could be made in this case.

Florida’s “stand your ground” law was highly publicized after Trayvon Martin’s February 2012 death in Sanford, Florida. The law, passed in 2005, says anyone not committing a crime can use deadly force if he feels threatened with death or great bodily harm. Legal precedent indicates that someone is allowed to use that force even if the threatening person is unarmed. “Stand your ground” expands on an earlier law that allowed people to use deadly force to defend themselves in their own homes. The newer law allows for the defense in any place.

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