Even though the he said he didn't want to do it, a judge in Seminole County, Florida, was forced to return a Glock pistol and a rifle to a blind man who won immunity for killing another man under the state's "stand your ground" law.
The surreal hearing took place in the Seminole County Courthouse in Sanford—the city where Trayvon Martin was killed and his shooter set free under the same self-defense statute.
John Wayne Rogers had stood accused of premeditated first degree murder for shooting a "drinking buddy" in March 2012 "after a long drinking session," according to the Orlando Sentinel. The killing was done "once in the chest with a .308 Remington assault rifle from a distance of 18 inches or less."
But amid differing eyewitness accounts at his trial last month, a judge dismissed the jury and awarded Rogers immunity under Florida's "stand your ground" law.
That led to Thursday's hearing, in which Judge John Galluzo reluctantly admitted he'd have to give Rogers his rifle and a Glock 10 mm handgun. "I have to return property that was taken under the circumstance," the judge said. "I have researched and haven't found case law to say otherwise."
Rogers—who has done probation for firing 15 rounds at a cousin and was jailed for pushing and punching a woman in a domestic disturbance three years ago—will have to buy new ammunition, however, since the state considered his cache "too old and dangerous."
In the interview above, when asked why a blind man should be armed, Rogers tells WESH-TV: "It's my constitutional right." He later adds, "I have been through enough, and I would like to retire."