Trayvon Martin Case Sparks Debate Over Law

"Stand your ground" laws in question after death of unarmed 17-year-old.
1:54 | 03/21/12

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Transcript for Trayvon Martin Case Sparks Debate Over Law
That tragedy in Florida the seventeen year old shot dead by a self proclaimed soldier in the neighborhood crime watch. The shooting has ignited a national debate about new laws allowing citizens and more than twenty states a lot of latitude. In deploying deadly force NBC's Matt tuchman is in Florida tonight. -- -- -- -- -- -- -- Where the chief his -- here to answer questions tonight after ten days of silent city leaders. Forced to talk there have been allegations of misconduct in the investigation. By the police department in their room. -- -- -- We're gonna handled. And intensifying after the death of an unarmed black seventeen world. Trade bond Martin shot by crime watch volunteer George Zimmermann. Yeah yeah. It didn't -- until. That moment caught on this call to police. Who accepted -- shooters claim of self defense. Triggering the anger Sanford mayor Jeff Tripplett -- -- don't -- the allegations of misconduct are often. -- didn't get to answer. It's not just the mayor and police that are being questioned tonight. But also -- seven year old Florida law called stand your ground giving enormous leeway to people like Zimmerman use deadly force if they feel threatened. Since the law justified homicides in Florida have jumped. Three -- twenty other states have similar laws but Florida's is seen as the most extreme the courts you're challenged by some of these cases. Including one in which a man was shot dead after a playground argument over a skate -- The author of Florida's law now says it's being misused. This gentleman is all very thin ice -- this as a defense. When he's actively out they're pursuing. And confronting. Another individual. The law he says was made to protect law abiding citizens not vigilantes. Matt Gutman ABC news Sanford Florida.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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