SALT LAKE CITY — Utahns would be free to stand their ground in self-defense situations under a bill that passed the House on Monday.
HB129 modifies self-defense law to say in no uncertain terms that failure to retreat from an aggressor "is not a relevant factor in determining whether the individual who used or threatened force acted reasonably."
The bill's sponsor, Rep. Cory Maloy, R-Lehi, described the bill as "good for all of the people of Utah."
The only objection on the floor during debate came from House Minority Assistant Whip Angela Romero, D-Salt Lake City, who said she did not understand what the bill was changing in the law and could not support it.5 comments on this story
Earlier in committee, the opposition's discontent with the bill was more vocal.
“I am outraged. This bill opens a floodgate for the unnecessary escalation of dangerous situations," said House Minority Caucus Manager Sandra Hollins, D-Salt Lake City.
“A perceived threat is not always a threat. In this country, there is a culture of fear, and this bill empowers people to act on that fear,” said Rep. Elizabeth Weight, D-West Valley City
The bill passed 58-11 and now goes to the Senate for consideration.