‘Stand your ground’ law expanded as DeWine signs bill into law

COLUMBUS — Ohio’s ‘stand your ground’ gun law has been signed into law, which will expand the situations where a person can use deadly force in self-defense.

Previously, the law allowed a person to use deadly force in self-defense, so long as they aren’t the aggressor, believe they are in imminent danger of death or great bodily harm and are in their home or vehicle.


Now, the law has dropped the home and vehicle parameters, which could potentially allow a person to use deadly force in public areas if they felt they were in danger.

“I have always believed that it is vital that law-abiding citizens have the right to legally protect themselves when confronted with a life-threatening situation,” DeWine said in a statement this afternoon.

DeWine said he supported removing the ambiguity of the law and said this law accomplishes that, so he decided to sign it. However, he also was not fully-satisfied with what was passed.

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““I am very disappointed, however, that the legislature did not include in this bill the essential provisions that I proposed to make it harder for dangerous criminals to illegally possess and use guns,” the Governor said. ““Right now, the national and state background check systems are sometimes missing vital information – things such as convictions, active protection orders, and open warrants – that alert law enforcement if they’re dealing with a wanted or potentially dangerous individual.”

The bill was passed by state lawmakers, with the support from the National Rifle Association.

“This bill ensures that victims are protected should they ever need to defend themselves or others,” said John Weber, Ohio state director for NRA-ILA. “The NRA also thanks the sponsor of SB 175, Sen. Tim Schaffer and the state legislature for ensuring this fundamental protection is codified by law.”

Former Sen. Peggy Lehner, of Kettering, became one of the bill’s biggest critics. She pointed back to the aftermath of Oregon District shooting in August 2019.

“Following the Oregon District shooting, the people in Dayton pleaded with the Governor to pass common sense gun laws,” Lehner said.

DeWine is asking the new Ohio General Assembly, which began its term today, to consider legislation that will strengthen penalties for criminals who possess, purchase and sell guns illegally.