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The ruling follows a two-week hearing during which the defense argued Reeves was within the bounds of Florida's controversial stand your ground law when he pulled out his gun in the Cobb Grove 16 cinemas on January 13, 2014.

The argument, which started because Oulson was texting his daughter's daycase during previews, escalated and ended with Reeves shooting and killing Oulson.

This matter came before the court during evidentiary hearing upon defendant's motion commencing on February 20, 2017, and heard through March 3, 2017.

Reeves faces second-degree murder and aggravated battery charges. He is now free on bond.

Some details of the interaction between Reeves and Oulson are in dispute.

Turner told the court she heard Oulson say, 'I'm texting my daughter, ' seconds before a shot was sacked by Reeves. Oulson refused, prompting Reeves to seek out theater staff for assistance.

Curtis Reeves testified during the hearing that it was either "his life or mine". Surveillance video shows Oulson throwing popcorn at Reeves.

Oulson later died in hospital.

"Because the defendant's testimony was significantly at odds with the physical evidence and other witness testimony, this court has considerable doubts about his credibility", Barthle ruled Friday. The gunfire followed an escalating argument between Reeves and another theater-goer, Chad Oulson, who had been sitting nearby.

Then-U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder renounced the Florida law after Zimmerman's acquittal and said it undermines public safety and likely encourages violence.

She found that while Reeves testified he was hit in the outside corner of his left eye with a cellphone or a fist, that "common sense and the credible testimony of the medical examiner" casts doubt that he was hit in the eye beneath his glasses. While Florida's "stand your ground" law has been used successfully in many instances, the available evidence in this incident did support Reeves's claim that Oulson constituted an imminent deadly force threat at the time he was shot.