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After determining that she had no grounds under state law, a judge sentenced a woman to 20 years in prison after she fired warning shots to scare off her abusive husband.

Marissa Alexander tried to use “stand your ground” law to her defense, but the jury convicted her of “aggravated assault” after just 12 minutes of deliberation.

This case has grabbed the public’s attention since it was prosecuted by the same attorney that handled the Trayvon Martin case. Civil rights leaders have used this case to say that she was convicted and given such a harsh sentence because of her race.

Alexander stated that she was attempting to escape from her husband, Rico Gray, when she picked up a handgun and fired a shot into the wall. According to her, he had read text messages she had written  to her ex-husband, got angry, and tried to kill her.

She stated that she had escaped and made it to the garage, with the intent to flee the house via car. But she said that she  forgot her keys, so she picked up her gun and went back into the house. She said her husband threatened to kill her, so she fired one shot.

Alexander’s attorneys tried to use the state law that allows people to use potentially deadly force anywhere they feel reasonably threatened with serious harm or death (stand your ground).

However, a previous judge in the case rejected the request, stating that Alexander’s decision to reenter the house was not consistent with someone in fear for her safety, according to a report from the Florida Times Union newspaper.

Rep. Corrine Brown, the Jacksonville congresswoman, told reporters after the sentencing that the case was a result of “institutional racism.”

“She was overcharged by the prosecutor. Period,” Brown said. “She never should have been charged.”

The incident occurred on August 1, 2010. A jury convicted Alexander in March 2013 and Judge James Daniel denied her request for a new trial in April.