Jacksonville Teen Appeals Conviction After Denied Immunity Under “Stand Your Ground” Law

Jacksonville’s teens get into fights, like any other adolescent children do. However, when one of those teens has a gun, the situation becomes more than mere child’s play. When a deadly weapon is brought to the stage, the penalties for the crime committed becomes much more costly as well. Many times, it seems there is no way out; fortunately, if one obtains an experienced attorney to fight for one’s case, one’s will have the best defense to fight one’s charges and move on back to the life one had before the situation ever occurred.

According to the Florida Times-Union, Quintavis Seay is appealing his 2011 conviction of second-degree murder, under which conviction he was denied immunity on Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” Law. His original conviction was based on Seay shooting in the air at three brothers who jumped Seay and his friend in retaliation for an earlier fight. Seay claimed he feared for his life, pulled a gun and shot in the air to scare his attackers, though one of the brothers was killed.

Jacksonville murder crimes typically involve some intent on the part of the accused to harm the victim, or an intent to kill, typically without regard to human life. However, the issue of self-defense arises in crimes where a person has been attacked violently and fears for their lives. Unfortunately for many though, the State as well as Judges draw a very fine line as to what meets the criteria for self-defense.

Under Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” law, a person who is not in the commission of an unlawful activity and has a right to be at the place that they are has a right to meet force with force and not back down from a fight. The law also states that a person has the right to use deadly force if that person reasonably fears and believes it necessary to use deadly force to prevent imminent death. However, this defense is narrowly viewed and is only allowed to be used very rarely.

In this case, Seay was jumped by three men that were bigger than he was, mauled and back into the foot of a tree, where he allegedly pulled a gun and shot at the three men. However, eye-witnesses say that the fighting had ceased by the time that the gun was pulled. No matter what the actuality of the situation is, the main issue that would cause a problem with Seay’s defense is the presence of a weapon.

At the time that the incident was said to occur, Seay was 16 years old. At that age, a minor is not allowed to have a handgun, which he was said to kill the victim with. A state attorney would use this handgun possession to find the defense invalid. However, if one obtains an experienced Jacksonville murder crimes defense attorney to fight for one’s case, one can ensure that all of one’s defenses will be known and fought for. The rigidity of the law should not make one unable to keep one’s self alive.

One should not suffer because the law does not make concessions for specific circumstances that, though technically illegal, protect one’s right to live. Had Seay not had a weapon, he might have died at the hands of three individuals who planned to harm and possible kill him and his friend. No one should have to go to prison for trying to save one’s own life.


The Forbess Law Firm has been aiding clients who face criminal charges in Jacksonville for more than a decade and are here to provide aggressive criminal defense to anyone accused of a crime. If you or a loved one require a Jacksonville criminal defense lawyer, contact our firm today. We are available through our website or by calling us at 904-634-0900.
Additional Source:A fine line keeps Jacksonville teen jailed despite ‘Stand Your Ground’ law, Dana Treen, The Florida Times-Union