Guilty Verdict Returned in Florida’s First-Ever ‘Red Flag’ Trial

In Florida’s first trial under the “red flag” law implemented in 2018, the defendant was found guilty by a jury, Fox News reports.

The case involved 33-year-old Jerron Smith of Broward County, who was accused of “firing six shots at a vehicle being driven by his best friend,” using a Glock handgun. Smith was also in possession of both an AR-15 and a .22-caliber rifle, both of which were also confiscated upon his arrest in March 2018.

Having been found guilty after just one hour of jury deliberation, Smith now faces up to five years in prison. Smith’s defense was that he “did not fully understand the new law.”

Florida is one of 15 states that has such “red flag” laws, aimed at preventing mass shootings by flagging individuals in possession of firearms who may pose a threat to themselves or others. Florida’s law was passed almost immediately after the Parkland school shooting in February 2018, where the gunman had nearly 40 prior encounters with law enforcement but saw no action taken against him.