Judge says no to Florida man's "stand your ground" defense for killing an iguana

In Lake Worth, Florida, PJ Nilaja Patterson, charged with animal cruelty for "beating, dragging, and kicking" a 3-foot iguana that died due to its injuries, attempted to have his case dismissed under the "stand your ground law," arguing that he was defending himself against the reptile. The judge said nope. From CNN:

In their motion, Patterson's attorneys Frank Vasconcelos and Carey Haughwout said their client was trying to save an iguana from getting run over by cars. When he brought it to safety, a crowd agitated the animal and it bit his right arm when he tried to move it, according to the motion. It says he then "kicked the iguana as far as he could." Patterson had to get 22 staples in his arm because of the bite, according to the motion.

"In this case, Patterson acted in a reasonable manner under all the circumstances because the wild iguana was first to engage with physical violence, during the encounter," his attorneys wrote.

[Assistant State Attorney Alexandra Dorman wrote that surveillance] video shows how Patterson tormented the iguana, which "was not bothering anyone and did not pose a threat to anyone." She said there was no provocation or no justification for the actions.

image: crop of original by Hugoesteban14 (CC BY-SA 4.0)