Age at time: 34
Madelyn A. Aaron
Age at time: 18
Weapon: letter opener
Location details: Outside an apartment complex where the victim and defendant lived. in Tampa, Hillsborough County, on Nov. 02, 2011
What happened: The defendant, Madelyn Aaron, and the victim, Zinashwork Haile, were neighbors who got into a fight one day while their boyfriends were arguing. According to statements given to police, while the two men were talking, the women began screaming and Aaron shouted a racial slur, then pushed Haile to the ground and tried to stab her with a letter opener. She was not stabbed but had a cut on her head when police arrived. Aaron claimed self defense.
The outcome: Aaron filed a "stand your ground" motion and prosecutors decided not to pursue the charges before the hearing was held.
Investigating agency: Tampa Police
Case decision made by: Prosecutor
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.
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: Hillsborough County Clerk of Court, Nov. 4, 2011.
Source: Tampa Police Department, Nov. 2, 2011.
Case last updated: July 3, 2012