Victim: Elias Nazario (killed)
The accused: Samer Hasan


Elias Nazario

Hispanic male

Age at time: 26

Weapon: unarmed

Victim photo: Collier County Sheriff's Office, 2005


Samer Hasan

White male

Age at time: 28

Weapon: gun



Case type:
Citizen enforcing the law

Defendant's Property



Case year:

Location details: Sam's Food Mart, owned by defendant in Fort Myers, Lee County, on July 15, 2005

What happened: After sending employees outside twice to tell a man to leave the parking lot of his grocery store, Samer Hasan grabbed a handgun and went outside himself. He told the man he believed was trying to buy drugs to leave or he would call police. Hasan told investigators that's when Elias Nazario hit or slapped his face and backed him against the side of his store. Hasan responded by fatally shooting Nazario in the chest with the Glock. Hasan previously had been threatened by local government officials with the closure of his store if he did not take steps to reduce drug activity near his address. Hasan was charged with manslaughter after an investigation.

The outcome: Hasan's attorney said he argued his client was "standing his ground." The judge at the bench trial agreed and acquitted Hasan even though Florida's self-defense law had not yet changed.

Investigating agency: Fort Myers Police

Case decision made by: Judge

Trayvon Martin’s death became controversial because circumstances leading up to the shooting cast doubt on who was to blame. The Tampa Bay Times reviewed other “stand your ground” cases for similar circumstances. The Times relied on available information, some of which may not tell the whole story. When the situation was unclear, that was noted.

Yes No Unclear/

Did the victim initiate the confrontation?


Was the victim armed?


Was the victim committing a crime that led to the confrontation?


Did the defendant pursue the victim?


Could the defendant have retreated to avoid the conflict?


Was the defendant on his or her property?


Did someone witness the attack?


Was there physical evidence?


Source: Collier County Sheriff's Office, March 9, 2005.

Source: Fort Myers News-Press, July 15, 2005.

Source: Lee County Clerk of Court, May 22, 2007.

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Case last updated: Aug. 10, 2013