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IPFS News Link • Arizona's Top News

Arizona Advances Bill to Allow Property Owners to Use Deadly Force on Trespassing Illegal Immigrants

•, by James Murphy

The new bill would be an expansion of Arizona's existing "Castle Doctrine" law, which allows citizens the right to defend themselves from home intrusion.

As currently written, Arizona's version of the "Stand Your Ground" law is only applicable should an intruder enter a citizen's dwelling. The new bill, HB2843, would expand the law to include a person's property. Some ranches in Arizona are well over 10,000 acres, meaning that trespassing illegals could face the wrath of angry land owners.

One Arizona landowner, 75-year-old George Kelly, is facing second-degree murder and aggravated assault charges for a January 2023 incident in which he fired on a group of illegal immigrants who were trespassing on his property. One illegal migrant, Gabriel Buitimea, was killed in the incident.

It's a situation that wouldn't occur again if Representative Justin Heap (R) has his way. Heap, one of the authors and sponsors of the new legislation, says the new language fixes a loophole in the existing law.

"Language like 'and' 'or' 'either' … that one word can completely change the meaning of how this law is then applied," Heap explained. "If a farmer owns 10,000 acres of farmland, his home may be a half a mile away from where he is, and if he sees someone on his land, can he approach them and (remove) them from his property? This is an amendment to fix that."

Opponents of the legislation believe the new bill is tantamount to legalizing murder, as long as it's on your own property.

"HB2843 expands the [Castle Doctrine] law in a way that I think is very dangerous, as guns continue to wreak havoc upon our communities. I do not think there is any sense in giving a green light to more extrajudicial killings," said Representative Analise Ortiz, a Democrat.