The Orlando Sentinel reported that a legally blind man who was acquitted in fatally shooting his friend fought in court to have his guns returned to him.
John Rogers, a former Marine, had his weapons seized by law enforcement officers after being arrested for the death of James DeWitt, 34.
Despite Judge John Galluzzo not wanting to hand over the guns, he said it was Rogers’ constitutional right to own them. Galluzzo had no choice but to return his 10mm Glock and the rifle that was used to kill DeWitt.
“I have to return property that was taken under the circumstance,” Galluzzo said. “I have researched and haven’t found case law to say otherwise.”
The fatal shooting occurred at Rogers’ home in Geneva during a dispute in March 2012. After spending some time in jail and going to trial in January, Rogers was granted immunity under the “stand your ground” law.
“It’s my constitutional right. I wasn’t carrying these firearms around. I was in my house on a private road in Geneva out of the way,” Rogers said.
Rogers became blind after a construction accident and said he needs his guns for protection, regardless of the fact that four years ago, he was accused of shooting at his cousin.
Upon leaving the Seminole County Courthouse, the former Marine hopes to put an end to all the controversy and move on with his life.
“The family has been through enough, and I have been through enough, and I would like to retire, put this behind me and move forward,” Rogers said.