Gov. Hutchinson signs “Stand Your Ground Bill”

Gov. Hutchinson signs “Stand Your Ground Bill”
The bill, sponsored by Sen. Bob Ballinger (R-Ozark) and Rep. Aaron Pilkington (R-Knoxville) received overwhelming support in the legislature by a 72-23 margin in the House and 27-7 in the Senate. (Source: ABC/NBC)

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KAIT & AP) - Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson has signed into law a measure that eases the state’s restrictions on the use of deadly force in self-defense.

The Republican governor signed the measure Wednesday that removes the duty to retreat before deadly force can be used, despite past concerns he’s raised about changing the state’s self-defense law.

A similar measure stalled in the Legislature two years ago, but the bill this year moved more easily after groups such as the state’s sheriffs’ and prosecutors’ associations that previously opposed it said they’re neutral to the latest version.

The bill, sponsored by Sen. Bob Ballinger (R-Ozark) and Rep. Aaron Pilkington (R-Knoxville) received overwhelming support in the legislature by a 72-23 margin in the House and 27-7 in the Senate.

Supporters of the bill say it will help people protect themselves in a dangerous situation, while opponents said it would create a dangerous precedent.

Voter ID bill to be signed into law

Gov. Hutchinson also said Wednesday that he plans to sign HB1112.

The bill, sponsored by Rep. Mark Lowery (R-Maumelle), was approved by both the House and Senate.

According to content partner KATV, the bill would require a photo ID for a provisional ballot and would eliminate a signature verification for a provisional ballot.

Gov. Hutchinson told KATV that he supported a voter ID requirement as long as there is state assistance for a person who does not have an ID. He also said the law will need to be monitored and if there is a problem, the legislature will need to review the law.

Region 8 News will have more details as they become available.

Copyright 2021 KAIT. All rights reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this story.