University of South Carolina Student Killed in Possible Castle Doctrine Case

A terrible tragedy has befallen the University of South Carolina after sophomore  Nicholas Anthony Donofrio, 20, was shot and killed on the front porch of a house in Columbia. He was reportedly trying to enter the wrong home near the campus around 2 am. Donofrio lived at a house on the same street. It is an all-too-familiar pattern that we often discuss in my torts class where people are confused and try to enter the wrong home.

This is an unimaginable tragedy for the Donofrio family as well as the USC community. Donofrio had just transferred to the school and was a popular student who played on the basketball team. It is also a loss for friends and faculty at the University of New England where he spent his freshman year. His parents had just helped him move into the Phi Kappa Sigma fraternity house one week earlier. He was studying kinesiology and exercise science.

The original “academy” created in Athens involved students and faculty meeting in a grove. They would form a circle, a safe space for the exchange of ideas and viewpoints. That special sense of protection is shattered in these tragic moments.

Legally, the family may be faced with few options. South Carolina is a Castle Doctrine state as well as a Stand Your Ground state. That can factor heavily into the criminal investigation.

The common law has long offered protections even for reasonable mistakes. Castle doctrine states codified and, in some states, expanded on those common law protections. They have resulted in some highly controversial cases like that of Tom Horn in Texas.

I have included the South Carolina Castle Doctrine provision. Note that the law allows the use of deadly force against anyone who “is in the process of unlawfully and forcefully entering, or has unlawfully and forcibly entered a dwelling, residence.” It does not limit the use of lethal force only for intentionally unlawful entries.

Moreover, the required showing is not a reasonable fear of death or serious bodily injury, but a showing that the home owner “knows or has reason to believe that an unlawful and forcible entry or unlawful and forcible act is occurring or has occurred.”

Critics of these laws have long maintained that they encourage the use of deadly force when the common law offers ample protections.

The case is reminiscent of the shooting of a Japanese student in Baton Rouge. The 16-year-old Japanese exchange student, Yoshihiro Hattori, was looking for a Halloween party and scared the wife of Rodney Peairs when he spoke a strange language and approached the house. Peairs shot him in the chest with a .44 Magnum handgun and was later cleared under a Make My Day law as mistaken defense of his home and self. We also discussed a tragic case involving the killing of a law student.

While the investigation is ongoing, criminal and civil liability could prove challenging in light of these laws.

Here is the statutory provision:

(A) A person is presumed to have a reasonable fear of imminent peril of death or great bodily injury to himself or another person when using deadly force that is intended or likely to cause death or great bodily injury to another person if the person:

(1) against whom the deadly force is used is in the process of unlawfully and forcefully entering, or has unlawfully and forcibly entered a dwelling, residence, or occupied vehicle, or if he removes or is attempting to remove another person against his will from the dwelling, residence, or occupied vehicle; and

(2) who uses deadly force knows or has reason to believe that an unlawful and forcible entry or unlawful and forcible act is occurring or has occurred.

(B) The presumption provided in subsection (A) does not apply if the person:

(1) against whom the deadly force is used has the right to be in or is a lawful resident of the dwelling, residence, or occupied vehicle including, but not limited to, an owner, lessee, or titleholder; or

(2) sought to be removed is a child or grandchild, or is otherwise in the lawful custody or under the lawful guardianship, of the person against whom the deadly force is used; or

(3) who uses deadly force is engaged in an unlawful activity or is using the dwelling, residence, or occupied vehicle to further an unlawful activity; or

(4) against whom the deadly force is used is a law enforcement officer who enters or attempts to enter a dwelling, residence, or occupied vehicle in the performance of his official duties, and he identifies himself in accordance with applicable law or the person using force knows or reasonably should have known that the person entering or attempting to enter is a law enforcement officer.

(C) A person who is not engaged in an unlawful activity and who is attacked in another place where he has a right to be, including, but not limited to, his place of business, has no duty to retreat and has the right to stand his ground and meet force with force, including deadly force, if he reasonably believes it is necessary to prevent death or great bodily injury to himself or another person or to prevent the commission of a violent crime as defined in Section 16-1-60.

(D) A person who unlawfully and by force enters or attempts to enter a person’s dwelling, residence, or occupied vehicle is presumed to be doing so with the intent to commit an unlawful act involving force or a violent crime as defined in Section 16-1-60.

(E) A person who by force enters or attempts to enter a dwelling, residence, or occupied vehicle in violation of an order of protection, restraining order, or condition of bond is presumed to be doing so with the intent to commit an unlawful act regardless of whether the person is a resident of the dwelling, residence, or occupied vehicle including, but not limited to, an owner, lessee, or titleholder.

HISTORY: 2006 Act No. 379, Section 1, eff June 9, 2006.


212 thoughts on “University of South Carolina Student Killed in Possible Castle Doctrine Case”

  1. Haven’t read the comments.

    Short version. Spend more time on legal training than gun training.
    Know the law.

  2. Jonathan: BREAKING NEWS! DC federal judge Tanya Chutkan in the case brought by Jack Smith against DJT over Jan. 6 has set a trial date of 3/4/24–right in the middle of the GOP primaries. John Lauro, DJT’s attorney louding complained at the hearing. He had previous asked for a trial date sometime after April 2026. He heatedly argued his client was involved in a political campaign and should not be burdened with having to prepare for a trial date in March. Judge Chutkan was having none of Lauro’s arguments. She said:

      1. If Biden is still president, it will boost Trump’s poll numbers through the roof, I suspect.

    1. LMAO

      Looks like Dennis either posted as anonymous accidentally or the bug boy and Dennis cut and pasted from the same DNC email.


  3. The only things protecting us from absolute tyranny at this point are our first and second amendments. Nobody attacks the fifth amendment. Nope, just these two – the ability to speak freely, and the right to shoot if our representatives begin to too much resemble their British forebears. I don’t pack, but you’d better believe I know how to load and shoot every single modern, legal, firearm. Done with this nonsense, there actually ARE issues we need to address, but the modern DNC thugs/aristocrats will just keep thuggin’. Seriously: if you support the modern democratic party, you are pretty much advocating that, filling the coffers of the already rich beyond belief, who will continue to do such fab things as wait until you die to acquire your property in a sweet spot for them, and heaven help you when your utterly blind ignorance shows up on your doorstep, crippled, addicted people pooping on your sidewalk, in spite of your six figure ‘education’ receipt. Did you buy arugula too, with that ‘Master’s’? ‘Cause I can get that at Sprout’s every Monday, with none of the propaganda. This is not the way. We are well and truly f***** if it is. Wake up. Wake the eff up. Idjits advocating for the likes of AOC are just exactly as described, and there are far too many in that group that are old enough to know better. Come on. Social media didn’t do THAT much damage to your brains, the formerly intelligent, I hope. Was that ‘comfort’ and popularity all along? You are all cowards when rubber meets the road.

  4. Usually, if someone tries to break into your house, at 2 AM, when you would reasonably be at home, you would be in fear of your life.

    It is inexpressibly tragic that Donofrio not only went to the wrong house, but that he apparently tried to break in. There wasn’t much information in the linked news story. It remarked that two calls were made, one for an attempted break-in at 2 AM, and then a second call for shots fired. What we don’t know is if any words were exchanged between the homeowners and Donofrio, or if Donofrio was inebriated.

    As a mother myself, I’m heartbroken for this young man’s family. As someone whose father stopped a break-in by chambering a round by the door, and who years later was robbed while I was home, I do not blame the homeowners. You’re not required to engage in hand-to-hand combat with an intruder to ascertain their intentions. Most people breaking in to your house when you’re in bed are there to harm you, or they would have broken in while you were away.

    I suspect that when out at 2 AM, a college student is unlikely to be sober. How did he get there? Did he drive? Walk? Was he with friends?

    Whether or not Donofrio was inebriated, this is a good time to reflect that alcohol or drugs can cause impairment, that you might not survive.

    1. Fair and reasonable assessment for the most part, although I would quibble over your requirements to ‘ascertain their intentions’. We don’t know if ‘hand-to-hand’ was required, much less deadly force, or even if the young man was an ‘intruder’.

      In general, SC Code § 16-11-440 (2013) seems over-kill to me .. . especially in Turley’s ‘age of rage’.

      S.C Police/law enforcement are not authorized to use deadly force on unarmed drunken strangers stumbling around on your porch e.g. and neither should the homeowner.

      *imho, only clear, unambiguous imminent life-threatening circumstances will ever justify the use of deadly force and I’ve read nothing, so far, to indicate that was the case here .. . although I realize that’s a judgement call.

      1. This is true.

        The Secret Service would not be legally allowed to shoot someone for merely stumbling around the Rose Garden.

        Whether the decedent was only stumbling around someone’s front porch remains to be seen, as of this writing.

      2. In what world completely free of context and nuance are trained police, wide awake while on shift, the equivalent of homeowners woken up early in the morning by the noise of somebody forcibly breaking into their house? In order to play the game “what would police have done if they’d been outside the home watching, instead of inside just out of bed, responding to sounds of somebody breaking into their house”?

        So you confess you don’t know what was required for force. While at the same time, comfortably awake and securely seated at your keyboard, you issue demands that homeowners must be required to have a clear, unambiguous knowledge of the identity and mindset of any person who wakes them up forcibly breaking into their home.

        Sometimes tragedies do happen. Including when police respond and shoot a kid pointing what turns out to be a toy gun in the dark. That happens because we do not burden police with your requirement that they must have clear, unambiguous certainty that a person poses a life-threatening danger before using force.

        The perfect law to prevent such tragedies has yet to be written. But we have produced masses of Monday Morning quarterbacks to tell us what police and citizens should be burdened with.

  5. Tanya Chutkan, aka Barack Hussein Obama, set Real President Donald J. Trump’s “fake” trial date for Super Tuesday, 2024.

    Oh, Hell No!

    Hillary Clinton, Al Gore, Stacy Abrams, Jimmy Carter et al. have claimed that elections were stolen, called republican winners illegitimate, challenged totals, committed perjury, destroyed evidence, obstructed justice, etc., without being subjected to “fake” charges of any sort.

    2020 wasn’t “rigged.”

    2024 isn’t being rigged as we speak.

    This is what Comrade General Secretary “Crazy Abe” Lincoln had in mind.

    This is Obama’s “Fundamentally Transformed” Banana Republic of America without a Supreme Court or an impartial and constitutional judicial branch.

    The Constitution burns.

    The illegal invasion rages on.

    The American Founders are rolling over in their graves.

    Karl Marx, Vladimir Lenin and Joseph Stalin are partying heartily!

  6. Jonathan: Castles have existed all the way back to the middle ages, in case you didn’t know. Aren’t I brilliant? Now let me quote a study by the NIH, as if they are a bastion of reliable info all of a sudden. The links can be drawn between increased violence and CD laws, trust me on that.

    Now let me do what I do best, and conflate. Concealed carry and “acquiring a gun” are the same thing, don’t ya know? It could be I am too ignorant to know the difference or it could be that I am just a disingenuous jacka$$, spewing garbage to see if it sticks. You decide.

    The white Racist in FL, shot 3 black people with a gun he bought, in spite of past mental health issues, proving once again that “common sense gun laws” don’t stop psychopathic criminals from killing people. But I’m too stupid to see the irony in my argument.

    Now I’m going to virtue signal and act like I give a rats a$$ about those 3 black people in FL. I should take my concern to Chicago or Baltimore, where 3 dead black people in an hour is no big deal, and help with that situation. But criticising you and DeSantis with my keyboard diarrhea is soooo much easier.

    Now for the important stuff
    Trump Trump Trump Trump Trump Trump Trump Trump Trump Trump Trump Trump
    Trump Trump Trump Trump Trump Trump Trump Trump Trump Trump Trump Trump
    Trump Trump Trump Trump Trump Trump Trump Trump Trump Trump Trump Trump

    Theres a red under my bed
    And there’s a little ORANGE man in my head
    And he said, “you’re not going crazy, you’re just a bit sad”
    “‘Cause there’s a man in ya, gnawing ya, tearing ya into two”

    1. Hey thats not fair. I’m sure Dennis thinks its a tragedy! I’m equally sure he’s already contributed to the GoFundMe for the funeral costs. No?? Well, he was gonna get to it right after he finished whiffyoga for today.

  7. Sad and tragic as this incident is but going back to the 50’s, 60’s, 70’s and 80’s do you recall many/any accidental shootings of students mistakenly trying to enter residential homes? The wackiest thing they were doing was trying to get as many students in a public phone booth or VW Beetle or consuming gold fish. Simpler times, smarter people.

    1. Margot
      Fair enough.
      Back then, a car battery came with a caution about how to properly jump it off. Instead, now it has a label that says, do not drink the contents.

  8. Not enough info here. Was he standing outside pounding loudly to be let in, or was he trying to force the door? If it’s the latter I can see the justification, even though shooting through a door makes me uncomfortable unless he is knocking it off the hinges at which point all bets are off.

    1. That’s the thing.
      We don’t know all the details and unless there’s a ring doorbell video… the default is to side with the homeowner due to the fact you can’t know what’s in their mind at the time.

      Shooting through the door is not a good idea. But if there’s a reasonable question of fear… that’s it. End of story.
      The real issue though… why would a rational person be afraid of someone busting into their house late at night?

      That’s where we have a problem. Lax enforcement of the laws and you have an increase in home invasions …
      I blame Joe Biden and the libtards.

  9. Whether wielding a bat, a scalpel, a vacuum, a fist, a gun, an suv, or any other weapon, risk assessment and judicial use is an imperative.

    1. See below for more keyboard diarrhea from our resident gun law expert, Dennis. Now he claims that concealed carry laws allow phychopaths to purchase a gun. Yikes! Do at least a little research, eh Dennis? Or keep getting your info from Salon and The Atlantic, LMAO

        1. But you might want to make an equal contribution to the Donofrio family fund, just so no one can claim you’re a virtue signaling attention whore.

  10. Jonathan: The “Castle Doctrine” has a long history going back to English common law. 45 states have some form of CD or “Stand Your Ground” laws. Only 11 states us the “Duty to Retreat” doctrine. There has been a lot of debate over CD/SYD defenses. Studies have shown that expanding these defenses outside the home have actually increased violence, especially involving racial minorities. (Se NIH study, 4/2021)

    Under Gov. DeSantis’ new liberalized gun laws, a Floridian can have a concealed weapon without getting a license. That means all sorts of people with mental health issues can now acquire weapons without any background checks. We saw this play on Saturday when a white racist, Ryan Christopher Palmeter, shot and killed 3 Black people in front of a Dollar General store in Jacksonville. Palmeter used guns he bought legally despite a past involuntary commitment for mental health issues. When Palmeter planned his attack he tried to enter the Edward Waters University where he thought he could find a lot of Black students. He was refused entry and then went to the nearby Dollar General. Yesterday, there was a prayer vigil by local residents near Dollar General. In a political stunt to gain public attention, DeSantis showed up and was booed.

    Now you lament the killing of a white 20 yr. old sophomore at USC. What about the killing of the 3 Black people by a white racist? No “tragedy” there I guess.

    1. Were the heinous murders of Channon Christian and Christopher Newsom by four savage animals “racist?” Hard to tell since reporting on the incident was covered up to protect the guilty and their race.

      Murders of Channon Christian and Christopher Newsom

      Murders – On Saturday, January 6, 2007, Christian and Newsom planned to go for dinner together and attend a friend’s party. That afternoon, Christian went to a friend’s apartment to get ready. At around 8:00 pm, Christian’s friend went to the party, and Christian stayed behind and waited for Newsom to pick her up. Newsom arrived, and he and Christian went to the apartment complex parking lot.[citation needed] The assailants observed Christian and Newsom standing close to Christian’s vehicle in an embrace.[37] They then decided to attack the couple. Both were forced into the backseat of Christian’s SUV at gunpoint, had their hands tied behind their backs, and were taken to Davidson’s house at 2316 Chipman Street. Both Christian and Newsom were raped. Newsom is believed to have been raped inside Davidson’s house. According to the testimony of the Knox County Acting Medical Examiner, Newsom was sodomized with an object and raped by a minimum of one of the perpetrators. He was then taken to a set of railroad tracks where he was forced to walk barefoot to the location where he was murdered. Prosecutors believe a mangled dog leash found on a hillside leading up to the railroad tracks was used to force Newsom to walk to his death.[47] When Newsom was murdered, his hands were bound behind his back, and his feet were bound together. He was blindfolded with a bandana and gagged with a sock. He wore only a shirt and underwear. Newsom was shot in his neck and the back. Newsom survived this shooting initially, but later was shot again in the head. The fatal shot was fired with the gun’s muzzle against his head above his right ear, and it severed his brain stem. After killing Newsom, the assailants poured gasoline on the comforter and Newsom then set his body on fire. Christian was held prisoner inside Davidson’s house, mostly in the north bedroom. Prosecutors believe that Coleman held Christian captive while the male offenders were murdering Newsom. After murdering Newsom, the assailants returned to Davidson’s house where they beat and repeatedly raped Christian. The medical examiner testified that Christian died after hours of sexual torture, sustaining severe head injuries and suffering severe injuries to her vagina, anus, and mouth due to sexual assaults. Her injuries were consistent with being raped with an object.[53][58] According to the medical examiner, the sexual attack Christian endured was “extreme” and “much more than a simple sexual assault.”[53] Prosecutors believe that Christian was tied to a chair and orally raped by Davidson and Cobbins. Christian was also anally and vaginally raped. She was also beaten, kicked in her groin, and beaten on the head. Christian suffered extensive hemorrhaging to her head and groin. Additionally, Christian suffered bruises and carpet burns on much of her body. According to Davidson’s confession, during Christian’s captivity, she said she “didn’t want to die.” While Christian was still alive, in order to remove DNA evidence, Christian’s attackers poured bleach down her throat and scrubbed her body, including her bleeding and battered genital area with it. Christian was bound in a hog-tied fashion with curtains and strips of bedding. Her face was tightly covered with a small trash bag, and her body was stashed in five large trash bags. Christian, who was naked except for her camisole and sweater, was tied in a fetal position, placed inside a residential waste disposal unit inside the kitchen of the home, and covered with sheets. The medical examiner testified at trial that there was evidence that Christian slowly suffocated to death. Christian died between the afternoon of January 7 and the afternoon of January 8. As Christian was suffocating to death, Davidson left to spend time with his girlfriend and gave her Christian’s personal items. Davidson also used Newsom’s cellphone and was seen wearing Newsom’s shoes.

      Investigation – After Christian and Newsom did not show up at the party, the couple’s friends began calling and texting them and received no response. Later, at around 11:00 pm, two of Newsom’s friends went to the apartment where the couple had been kidnapped and found Newsom’s truck in the parking lot. They were unable to locate Christian’s SUV. A witness, who worked as a driver for Waste Connections, arrived at work on Chipman Street at around 12:30 am on January 7. He noticed that the lights in 2316 Chipman Street were on and that the house seemed busy for the time of night. He saw a 4Runner in front of the house with its porch lights on. The witness later observed the 4Runner drive slowly by him. The car slowed down for about 20 seconds as if the occupants were “checking him out”. He saw four black men in the car. Another witness who lived around one block from 2316 Chipman Street heard three pops from the direction of the train tracks at about 1:45 am. Newsom’s body was discovered near a set of nearby railroad tracks on January 7 at 12:20 pm by a Norfolk Southern Railroad employee.[10][51] Though there was semen inside of Newsom’s body, DNA in the semen had been destroyed by the fire. A comforter was wrapped around Newsom’s body, and a sweatshirt was wrapped around his head. His bare and muddy feet indicated that he had walked barefoot to the area where he was killed. On January 7, Christian failed to answer calls from her mother and friend. Christian also did not attend work. The couple’s friends and families tried to find them, checking local hospitals and filing missing person reports. Christian’s parents requested help from law enforcement but were told that they would have to search themselves. They then sought help from Christian’s mobile phone provider and learned that her phone had last pinged at a Cherry Street phone tower. Christian and Newsom’s families and friends searched the Cherry Street area and found Christian’s abandoned Toyota 4Runner between 1:30 am and 2:00 am on Monday, January 8. Several items were missing from Christian’s vehicle, including a teddy bear and photographs Christian kept there and her phone charger and iPod. The front seats were pushed back, and Christian could not have reached the pedals. The floorboard was covered with mud, inconsistent with how Christian maintained her vehicle. Stickers Christian kept on the outside windows had been removed. Inside the vehicle was a pack of Newport cigarettes, even though neither Christian nor Newsom smoked them. Police also recovered an envelope from the vehicle that yielded fingerprint evidence leading them to LeMaricus Davidson of 2316 Chipman Street, an address two blocks from Christian’s car. When police went to 2316 Chipman Street on Tuesday, January 9, they found the house unoccupied and Christian’s body in a trash can in the kitchen.[71][72] Christian’s body was stashed in five large trash bags. The bags had Davidson’s prints. Davidson’s prints were also found on a box of garbage bags. Davidson’s sperm was found in Christian’s vagina and anus while Cobbins’ sperm was found in her mouth. Also inside the house were several items that belonged to Christian and Newsom, including Christian’s purse, clothing she had in her vehicle, Christian’s shoes, camera, photographs (which were ripped and burned), and iPod and Newsom’s baseball caps and driver’s license. Several of the victims’ belongings had Davidson’s prints. The items from Christian’s SUV were shoved into trash bags.[46][47][72] In addition to the sperm found on Christian’s body, Davidson’s sperm was found on Christian’s jeans while Cobbins’ sperm was found on her camisole, sweater, and jeans.[72] Shell casings found at Davidson’s house matched the bullets used to kill Newsom. After finding Christian’s body and discovering the presence of Davidson’s semen on her clothing and in her body cavities, police undertook a manhunt for Davidson. After receiving phone calls between Davidson and Boyd, they asked Boyd for information regarding Davidson’s whereabouts. Boyd directed them to a vacant house. On January 11, Davidson was arrested in the vacant house. There, police found Newsom’s size 9½ Nike Shox athletic shoes and a .22-caliber High Standard revolver. Davidson was then interrogated about the murders. He told five different stories, first claiming that he had left the house on Friday and knew nothing of the crimes.[74] He later told police that Cobbins and Thomas arrived at his house at around 10:00 pm on Friday or Saturday and informed him that they had carjacked some people who were in the vehicle. Davidson claimed he saw the victims tied up in the back seat, did not want any part of it, and left to smoke marijuana. He said he returned to the house about 20 minutes later to find Christian, who told him she did not want to die. He then used Christian’s vehicle to deal drugs and wiped it clean. Davidson claimed that he did not go past the living room and that he never raped Christian. On January 11, Thomas, Cobbins, and Coleman were arrested in Lebanon, Kentucky. Police seized a computer on which Thomas and Cobbins had been viewing news coverage of the murders. Police also seized a purse that contained several of Christian’s belongings, including her cosmetic bag and change purse. Additionally, police found Christian’s overnight bag.[61][75] Cobbins gave a statement to investigators claiming that he, Davidson, and Boyd drove to an apartment complex for someone to meet a girl. When they arrived, they saw an SUV with a female in the driver’s seat. She was speaking to a male. Davidson and Boyd “basically carjacked them” and ordered Cobbins to drive back to Chipman Street. According to Cobbins, Davidson took the woman into a bedroom once they arrived at the residence, and Boyd drove away with the man. Boyd later returned without the male victim. Cobbins denied having any sexual intercourse with the female victim.[76] Coleman admitted to being present in the house during the crimes, claiming that she had been held hostage by the other defendants.[77]

      A journal was recovered after the arrests of Thomas, Cobbins, and Coleman. An entry from January 9 read:

      Last night was one of a kind. We stayed w/a crackhead that is cool as hell. It snowed a lil bit but it’s already melted. Let’s talk about adventures! I had one HELL OF AN ADVENTURE since I’ve been in the big T.N. [I]t’s a crazy world these days! But I love the fun adventures [and] lessons that I’ve learned. It[‘]s going to be a long interesting year![78]

      A forensic document examiner verified that the handwriting in the entry matched Coleman’s handwriting.[78]

      – Wikipedia

    2. Not true.

      Everyone purchasing a gun in ANY State must LEGALLY must pass a Federal NICS check before taking possession. It includes swearing to not being addicted to or being a “habitual user” of mind altering drugs like cannabis. See Hunter Biden for details.

      Obviously, any criminal can buy, trade or steal a firearm without a background check and carry it at will, where ever and whenever they want, which has been the case since weapons were invented. This includes underage and felonious gang bangers who as criminals, don’t care about gun, or any other laws about robbery, extortion, murder, etc.

      1. Funny, I don’t read any of the ——— in the 2nd Amendment of the Bill of Rights.

        All I read is that the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.

        This stands without qualification.

        A citizen qualifies as one of the people.

        No person, office, judge or court has any power to amend the Constitution and 2nd Amendment or infringe the right to keep and bear arms.

        You can read, right?

        You have no power to second guess or amend fundamental law.

        You just don’t get it.

        Americans are free.

        It’s the government that is severely limited and restricted by the Constitution.

        Please do read it with me:

        2nd Amendment

        A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

    3. Another one proves Lincoln right by removing all doubt. There is nothing in the laws you cited that facilitates mass murder.
      Instead of barking like well trained seals the residents of the area should be outraged that law enforcement was aware of this man and did nothing to interdict his murderous rampage.
      But I forgot that the Chief of police (Duval County Sheriff) is of the right race and is immunized from accountability.
      Every time people mention mental health checks for firearms the same people who want to restrict my rights, oppose restrictions for mental health reasons.
      Btw more than half the states (28) in the union allow permitless carry.

    4. Dennis: Regarding the Nazi Nut, if he had past commitment for mental issues, and bought a gun later, he did not acquire it legally. He lied on the Federal form about his past issues. In that case the failure is with the process, which failed to flag him for mental issues. There are a number of faults with the background check process and the data that is fed into it. Being legally able to carry a weapon concealed or otherwise is a separate issue from legal purchase or legal possession.

    5. ” That means all sorts of people with mental health issues can now acquire weapons without any background checks.”

      I don’t think in Florida you would be permitted to own a gun.

    6. “No “tragedy” there I guess.”

      I’m sure you think it’s tragic, Dennis. I’m equally sure you already contributed to their GoFundMe for the funeral costs. No? Well blow me down.

    7. You could not be more wrong.
      Everyone who is making a firearm purchase has to fill out a ATF form 4473. On that form it asks you if you have ever been,
      “h. Have you ever been adjudicated as a mental defective OR have you ever been committed to a mental institution?”
      Clearly he lied.
      Had he check the Yes, box, he would of been disqualified, the purchase denied and he could be charged with Federal criminal charges.
      This is where I do agree about the reporting of mental health issues need to be reported to the NICS. The National Shooting Sports Foundation has addressed this issue.

      A few points you seemingly choose to omit,
      “The story is always about guns — people are bad — this guy’s a bad guy. If I could take my gun off right now, and I lay it on this counter, nothing will happen. It’ll sit there — but as soon as wicked person grabs ahold of that handgun and starts shooting people with it — there’s the problem.

      The problem is the individual.”

      — Jacksonville, Florida Sheriff T.K. Waters

      Councilwoman Ju’Coby Pittman responded to those who booed FL governor DeSantis, said, “It ain’t about parties today. A bullet don’t know a party.”
      She then asked the crowed to be quiet and allow the governor to speak.
      And they did.

    8. About 1,500 homicides a year in FL, why you bringing this tragedy up?

      Desantis shows up – it’s a stunt, desantis doesn’t show up – he doesn’t care – F’ off with your mindless DNC playbook crap. Take it to X or wherever the low hanging fruits buy that divisive, obama-era racist crap. You should be ashamed of yourself.

    9. dennis, is there gonna be some riots? are they gonna burn down jacksonville because a white guy killed 3 blacks, when clearly in FL and most of the world, killing blacks is only acceptable to the left if its done by blacks or Federal agents or the military. Crocodile tears, riots, and reverend Bacon on the horizon!

    10. The permitless carry laws have NOTHING to do with the ability to get a gun. The same background check is required and the same waiting period. The only difference is that if you have a concealed carry permit your background check comes back quicker and you don’t have to observe a waiting period.
      Please try to have the facts before leaping to conclusions.

    11. “]A]ll sorts of people with mental health issues can now acquire weapons . . .”

      And because of 1A, lots of them can make comments on blogs.

    12. Now you lament the killing of a white 20 yr. old sophomore at USC. What about the killing of the 3 Black people by a white racist? No “tragedy” there I guess.

      There is no plausible self-defense claim in the latter. The suspect is not even claiming self-defense.

  11. What in the world are you thinking? Ashley Babbitt trespassed on public property – something protesters have been doing since we were colonies. Ashley Babbitt’s killer was not permitted to kill her because she trespassed. Ashley Babbitt’s killer was required to have a reasonable belief that use of deadly force was necessary to prevent death or serious bodily injury. Under the Castle Doctrine, the homeowner is presumed to have a reasonable belief, given the special circumstances. That’s how those laws are written. Very different. You suffer from a common modern myopia – you endorse rules so long as they are only applied to your political enemies. If they were universalized and applied to your friends – BLM, Antifa, etc. – you would be mortified. That’s the authoritarian mindset behind so much of what we see in the news. I pray you reflect on it.

  12. Nobody is addressing the major contributing factor here – college students and excessive drinking. There are many young adults who want to live the “college experience” of easy majors which allow for 4 years of partying and getting sloshed every night. There are inevitable tragedies as a result and it’s not happening to the engineering majors. It’s well past time for the Greek System and campus authorities to do whatever they can, through a combination of education and law enforcement, to crack down on under-age drinking.

      1. >>”OT: Trump’s J6 trial date has been set. Jury selection will start on March 4, 2024.
        >Dream on.”

        Instead of counting sheep, Bug is counting jurors.

    1. Maximum election interference. The NY case is scheduled to start in late March and the Florida case in May. There could of course be delays but this shows the intent.

      1. It’s interesting that you interpret both as “election interference.” Cannon is a Trump apppointee who previously interfered on Trump’s behalf and was put in her place by the 11th Circuit. As Chutkan said, Trump’s election concerns have no effect on her rulings. You see intent. I don’t.

        1. I disagree with Turley that the ‘boxes of papers’ case is the most likely to succeed. Classified information of great public importance is disclosed everyday in NYT, WaPo, WSJ and other news outlets that have the ear of ‘anonymous officials’ and other ‘people familiar with the matter’.

          Evidently, H. Clinton ran the State Department on private server.

          *and I absolutely believe that SC Hur, investigating Joe Biden’s possession of classified docs, ‘has not asked for an interview [with president Biden] nor has one been scheduled.’

        2. I don’t think there is any chance of the Florida case going forward when scheduled given the complexities around getting clearances to access classified documents. And I believe Cannon will make decisions objectively, unlike Chutkan.

          1. Cannon didn’t make decisions objectively the last time she had a Trump case in front of her, as the 11th Circuit’s ruling made entirely clear.

      2. Daniel,
        Well said.
        Be interesting to see if Trump wins, despite all the election interference and Biden campaigns from the basement again.

      3. Daniel

        I just read report from NBC that claimed that the trials need to be “speedy” in keeping with the “best interests of the people”.

        Yea, cuz thats what the 6th Amendment clause is for, to protect the state.


  13. The discussion of ‘criminal intent’ is stupid. The homeowner can’t read the mind of the person breaking into their home. To a homeowner at 2 am it looks like a home invasion and they will respond accordingly. He didn’t chase the guy down the street and execute him, he defended his home and family. We need to stop blaming homeowners for the actions of drunken strangers.

    1. That’s right. The law in SC removes that mind-reading requirement:

      “A person who unlawfully and by force enters or attempts to enter a person’s dwelling, residence, or occupied vehicle is presumed to be doing so with the intent to commit an unlawful act involving force or a violent crime as defined in Section 16-1-60.”

      1. I can see presuming unlawfulness but what force was used by drunk kid trying to enter house he thought was his house? He was shot on the front porch. The law says “unlawfully and by force . . .” Sounds like he tried to use his key, and home owner opened door or otherwise shot him from inside house.

        1. Thats why it’s not wise to make any assumptions without knowing the full story. You don’t know any of the details, yet you are assuming he wanted to use his key and was not at all at fault. If the student was drunk, you don’t know how his behavior was affected. He could have been loud and obnoxious. I don’t know what the shooter is like. Is the shooter 120 lb. old man or a big dude? I give the shooter the benefit of the doubt without knowing all the details. He was at his own home, minding his own business. We all would do well sticking to this.

          1. Wait. What? “it’s not wise to make any assumptions without knowing the full story.” I give the shooter the benefit of the doubt without knowing all the details.” WTH?!

            1. Innocent until proven guilty. We were not there and the facts that we know are: the student was trying to enter someone else’s home late at night and was shot in the process. The home owner was at his own place, minding his own business. Why wouldn’t I give him the benefit of the doubt?

        2. I agree! When you are trying to enter your own house, you try the key or maybe bang on the door and yell. Neither of those acts are “forceful.” We need to stop encouraging people to be scared little stupid rabbits. Personal responsibility applies to all – – especially the one holding the gun. What was the hurry in killing this kid? SMH!

        3. Good point. Another story indicates that the owner called 911 (or the cops) and then called again later, after shots were fired. I haven’t seen the times of those calls or any other details than those.

          IANAL, so I do not know the difference between ‘dwelling’ and ‘residence,’ They sound the same to me, but I would, as a homeowner, think that an unlawful by force attempt to enter my house at 2am means multiple attempts to enter without my permission. Seems very likely because of the time necessary to place the call that multiple attempts (or one prolonged one, ymmv) were made.

          Now, if the owner is the local drug dealer and the shootee was trying to get back into the house after being screwed on a deal, or some other such ‘factor,’ this appears pretty cut and dry, but until we see it all, it’s just speculation.

  14. Ashley Babbitt was not killed in a home invasion. She was murdered by Michael Byrd and if one moves up the chain of responsibility one can blame Nancy Pelosi for her early death. This need not have happened.

  15. It’s interesting how a case of a homeowner defending his property turned into a discussion about gun ownership. The man didn’t have to use a gun, he could have used a baseball bat and clubbed the kid to death. The issue is home defense, not guns.

    1. True, but we can’t ignore the tendency in some reactionary states to allow gun owners to escape all responsibility for their actions. This person – whether old and frail, or another drunk college student – should have felt the need to act responsibly as he or she was in control of the situation by virtue of carrying a loaded firearm.

      1. This person, you don’t know, and whose circumstances are also unknown to you, should have gone through the mental gymnastics of figuring out the odds of being killed before protecting himself. I agree, but with limited time, he figured pressing the trigger was preferable to being killed.

        The lefties out there scare the living daylights out of me because they are always rioting and killing people. That is what makes the trigger finger so sloppy.

      2. True, but we can’t ignore the tendency in some reactionary states to allow gun owners to escape all responsibility for their actions.

        A prime example are those Soros-funded prosecutors going soft on crime.

  16. This story is terribly tragic and sad and I am sure all of us wish the family didn’t have to go through such an awful ordeal. I do think that the reason so many people are worried, scared and maybe trigger happy is because there is so much crime happening that they are afraid they will be next. The first thought is always self protection and people feel that it would be the ultimate nightmare to hold of on a response and pay the price through robbery, rape or murder.

    You cannot blame people for being leery when they see every day that criminals are released again and again as they continue to commit crimes. The same people commit crimes over and over again. How many times have you seen a guy get arrested for rape or murder only to read that he has been arrested 40-50 times already? THREE STRIKES AND YOU ARE OUT may be the greatest safety device ever established.

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