It was a night for clarification over Alaska's new "Stand Your Ground" law. At Clark Middle School Thursday evening, more than 50 people listened to the State's Criminal Division director John Skidmore explain the main difference between the past and current self defense law.
"I no longer get to argue that the defendant cannot have been able to retreat with complete safety," Skidmore said. "Because pretty much if you're in a place you get to be you get to claim self defense."
The UAA's Justice Center says the revision expanded Alaska's former self defense law, the Castle Doctrine, to out of the home and to where anyone has the right to be.
"You have no duty to retreat at any place where a person has a right to be," Skidmore said. "That's it. That's the full extent of what they added."
But some still don't disagree with the new law, like the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People Alaska's President Wanda Laws.
"Quite frankly we find there's room for vigilantism in this law," Law said. "We feel like people misinterpret the law and we actually feel that people who are victims of this law are African American."
Others like Senator Hollis French are concerned people like gangs may take advantage of the law.
"Now every citizen in Alaska has extremely powerful self defense rights," French said. "Every person has those rights but as you expand the self defense doctrine many people get concerned that it will be used in situations that it shouldn't."