Jordan Davis: Will Things Be Different?

Discussion in 'Too Hot for Swamp Gas' started by gator996, Aug 13, 2013.

  1. MichiGator2002
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    MichiGator2002 VIP Member

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    Without probable cause to believe he was acting unlawfully prior to firing, i.e. that the use of force statute wouldn't protect him, they could not legally arrest him. It became a big deal in large part because the choice not to arrest was made out to be this really provincial, really discretionary thing that the police did to sweep the thing under a rug.

    Yet, here we are, a year and a half later, and not once has anyone proven that the Sanford PD's initial determination was made in bad faith or against the weight of the evidence. It got nearly the attention, as it were, because of legal ignorance and various political agendas reaching in and foisting attention on it.
  2. gator996
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    gator996 New Member

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    Prosecutors did find that determination wrong since he was charged once they were assigned.

    Jurors also found Zimmerman to have acted illegally but said they were confused by the SYG language.

    That's from their own mouths in post-verdict interviews
  3. MichiGator2002
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    MichiGator2002 VIP Member

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    And got peckerslapped by the jury for their trouble, and frankly should have lost the JOA motion.

    I'll be blunt -- anybody confused by that language in any way that can't be resolved by their own careful reading is pretty freaking dense for my money. Yes, there is a stereo-instructions quality to them, but it's not like they were reading a bad English translation from a statute written in cantonese.
  4. gator996
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    gator996 New Member

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    And those dense people came up with a "not guilty" verdict

    Not from weighing the evidence correctly but from an incorrect reading of the jury instruction
  5. MichiGator2002
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    MichiGator2002 VIP Member

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    The only one I'd call dense is the one that didn't understand that the defense applied to manslaughter as well. The ones who weren't confused and knew it did weren't having much of a problem.

    The verdict was the only legitimate one sustainable under the law and the facts. The Zimmerman case was a multiple choice question, not an essay -- there was one right answer, and it's the one that we got.

    An incorrect reading of the jury instruction would have allowed a conviction on manslaughter. They obviously ended up getting it straight.
  6. gator996
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    gator996 New Member

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    There were two jurors who believed intent was required to charge manslaughter
  7. MichiGator2002
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    MichiGator2002 VIP Member

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    I'm really not sure how to respond to that, since you saying it this way seems to suggest that you think, or where you get your ranting points thinks, that there is no intent component to manslaughter at all. Sigh. You don't even know how little you know, which is worse than just not knowing it. It's like, there are two kinds of people who don't know how to build a bridge -- the people who realize they don't know they don't know how to build a bridge, and the people who don't realize that.
  8. gator996
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    gator996 New Member

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    Which one are you?

    http://thinkprogress.org/justice/2013/07/26/2363181/how-one-zimmerman-juror-went-from-second-degree-murder-to-acquittal/

    How One Zimmerman Juror Went From Second-Degree Murder To Acquittal

    In interviews aired Thursday night and Friday morning, a juror who identified herself as “Maddy” from the six-person panel that acquitted George Zimmerman said she changed her vote from second-degree murder to acquittal after reconsidering the law as described to her in the jury instructions.

    Maddy, who was Juror B29, said that while Zimmerman “got away with murder” as far as her heart was concerned, she felt the law as described to her did not allow her to convict him. In an exchange with ABC’s Robin Roberts, she suggested that in order to find Zimmerman guilty even of manslaughter, he had to have intent to kill Trayvon Martin when he left his home:


    ROBERTS: When you all sent that note to the judge asking for an explanation on manslaughter, what was that about?

    MADDY: What we were trying to figure out was, manslaughter, in order to be charged, we had to prove that when he left home, he said, I’m gonna go kill Trayvon Martin.

    The note referenced by Roberts was a question from the jury to the judge asking that she clarify the definition of manslaughter. The judge said she could only respond to more specific questions, and the jury never followed up with another question.

    If the jury did decide that Zimmerman had to have the intent to kill Martin when he left his home, that is an incorrect assessment of the law. What Maddy describes in this exchange is equivalent to “premeditation,” and while such premeditation is required for some murder charges, it is not an element of manslaughter. In fact, the definition of “manslaughter” as described in the jury instructions makes explicit that no intent to kill is required — even at the time the gun was fired:


    In order to convict of manslaughter by act, it is not necessary for the State to prove that George Zimmerman had an intent to cause death, only an intent to commit an act that was not merely negligent, justified, or excusable and which caused death.
  9. MichiGator2002
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    MichiGator2002 VIP Member

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    The law "as described to her" is the law "as it exists", so not sure what the complaint is. It was the actual law that precluded a murder conviction, not any misrepresentation thereof. Six attorneys on that jury who might not have even needed the instructions to know the law would have had no choice within the law other than to acquit either.
  10. gator996
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    gator996 New Member

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    Not discussing a murder conviction....manslaughter.

    At least 2 jurors have publically admitted they had no clue

    "intent" not needed
    "premeditation" not needed
  11. MichiGator2002
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    MichiGator2002 VIP Member

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    There is an intent element to the manslaughter statute, which is why I kinda backed away slowly from your earlier post.

    From the instructions --

    Emphasis added. The next section of the instructions explain how to differentiate a merely negligent act as well as the justification defense. Neither (1) nor (2) were even in dispute at trial. The defense explicitly claimed that Zimmerman did intentionally committed an act or acts that caused the death... and that he was legally justified in doing so.
  12. Lawdog88
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    You are correct. That was part of the jury instructions given to the Z jury.

    So what is so hard to understand ?
  13. gator996
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    gator996 New Member

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    Yes, and 2 jurors have gone on record saying that they believed "intent" needed to be shown....

    That they believed Zimmerman's actions were wrongful but without "intent' they couldn't convict him of even manslaughter...

    That's ridiculous and a 100% incorrect reading of the law
  14. gator996
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    gator996 New Member

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    I don't have a problem reading the juror's instructions...


    Mich stated that SYG played no part in this case.


    It most certainly did.



    This is SYG language:

    "In deciding whether George Zimmerman was justified in the use of deadly force, you must judge him by the circumstances by which he was surrounded at the time the force was used. The danger facing George Zimmerman need not have been actual; however, to justify the use of deadly force, the appearance of danger must have been so real that a reasonably cautious and prudent person under the same circumstances would have believed that the danger could be avoided only through the use of that force. Based upon appearances, George Zimmerman must have actually believed that the danger was real."
  15. MichiGator2002
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    MichiGator2002 VIP Member

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    But a 100% irrelevant error, in any case. Because, again, you could have grabbed six criminal law professors that were members of the Florida Bar, and they'd have had no choice but to acquit or ignore the law, either, because it was just that cut and dry.
  16. gator996
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    gator996 New Member

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    Irrelevant?

    It kept his ass outta jail...


    If the jurors can't comprehend the law we should think their decision was correct?

    Oh, I see that works when you like the decision....

    But what if the case of OJ or Casey Anthony?




    Here's a nice article on the "mysteries" of Florida jurisprudence


    Decisions are rendered all of the time....that alone doesn't make them correct.

    http://www.slate.com/articles/life/florida/features/2013/oh_florida/zimmerman_reaction_in_florida_history_of_shameful_jury_decisions.html

    Oh, #Florida!
    Entry 11: What is wrong with Florida juries?
    By Craig Pittman|Posted Sunday, July 14, 2013, at 3:34 PM

    I spent four years covering criminal courts in Florida. I covered every kind of case, from misdemeanors to murder. One thing I learned is that you can never predict what a jury might do once it’s locked away to deliberate. I covered one trial where the defendant was accused of bigamy, and his defense was: Sorry, I forgot I was married already. He walked.

    Prosecutors around the state boast of their high conviction rates, but those stellar records tend to be built primarily on successful plea deals, not trials. And frankly, some of their trial successes turn out to be the result of flimsy or faulty evidence—Florida leads the nation in the number of death row inmates who were subsequently exonerated.

    People who work in the court system can blame the legislature for the way our laws are worded. For instance, Florida's “Stand Your Ground” law was based on a distortion of a single anecdote, and it has subsequently allowed drug dealers to avoid murder charges and gang members to walk free. The law has proven especially effective in providing legal cover if the victim is black. In 2005, for instance, Derrick Hansberry shot a romantic rival five times—four as the man tried to run away—but after he claimed a “Stand Your Ground” defense, a jury acquitted him of attempted murder.

    Florida juries have proven to be very lenient even in cases that don't involve “Stand Your Ground.” Two years ago, as you probably heard, a Florida jury found Casey Anthony not guilty of murdering her daughter. Two months ago, a Florida jury acquitted 70-year-old Ralph Wald of murder for gunning down his 41-year-old wife’s 32-year-old lover, whom Wald caught with his pants around his knees. In 2007, despite seeing a videotape of seven guards kicking and beating a 14-year-old boy named Martin Lee Anderson to death at a juvenile boot camp, an all-white jury acquitted them and a nurse who'd failed to stop the killing of manslaughter charges. The guards and nurse said they were just following normal boot camp rules and procedures.

    Afterward, the family's attorney told reporters, “You kill a dog, you go to jail—you kill a little black boy and nothing happens.”

    Some Florida jury verdicts can make your head hurt. A Florida jury acquitted World Series hero Jim Leyritz of DUI-manslaughter in connection with a wreck in which a 30-year-old mother died—but they did convict him of drunk driving in connection with that same wreck. A criminal court jury acquitted a Clearwater police officer named Robert Milliron of a manslaughter charge for shooting an unarmed man. Then a civil court jury said Milliron was to blame for the death after all—but not the city that employed him, and thus the dead man’s family was not entitled to any monetary damages.

    The most forgiving jury in Florida history was probably the one that heard the case of four white Miami police officers charged with murder in the death of a black insurance executive named Arthur McDuffie. A Marine Corps veteran, McDuffie died in 1979 four days after he went out riding on his motorcycle and wound up in a coma. The officers said he sustained his injuries when he crashed while trying to avoid being arrested for reckless driving. The truth was that the cops had caught up to McDuffie and then beaten and kicked him mercilessly, cracking his skull like an egg. A medical examiner testified that the fatal blow was “equivalent to falling four stories and landing between your eyes.” The cops phonied up the crime scene to hide what they'd done. It all came out anyway.

    "My child is dead, they beat him to death like a dog,” McDuffie’s mother Eula said.

    Because of pretrial publicity, the case was moved to Tampa, where an all-white jury voted to acquit the cops on all charges. Miami’s Liberty City erupted in three days of riots that left 18 people—eight white, 10 black—just as dead as Arthur McDuffie.

    This blog has been largely devoted to pointing out the weird stuff that happens in Florida, most of it worth at least a chuckle or a gasp of astonishment. Thousands of people follow the Twitter feed called @_FloridaMan for the same reason—it highlights a host of strange and funny stories from the Sunshine State. After the Zimmerman verdict came out Saturday night, he tweeted: “Florida Man Not Guilty Of Killing Unarmed Teen Who Beat Him In Fight.” That one didn’t seem funny at all—and given the history of Florida juries, it wasn't all that strange, either.
  17. Lawdog88
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    That is the classic expression of the proper use of deadly force under the Justifiable Use of Deadly Force Instruction, 3.6(f), that was unchanged by the "SYG" additions in 2005.

    It's been around in that iteration a long, long time.
  18. 108
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    many whites fear blacks with or without confrontation

    is this fear enough to SYG?
  19. gator85jd
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    gator85jd New Member

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    Two questions: Why do they fear them? Doesn't Jesse Jackson fear them, too?
  20. MichiGator2002
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    It didn't keep his ass out of jail, 996, because even if the instructions were read to people intimately versed in them, they too would have had no lawful verdict to return beside acquittal.

    Kinda like if you ask a kid a word problem in math and he manages to land on the right answer but used all kinds of flawed math and for it by accident -- it is still the actual, factual, correct answer. The Zimmerman verdict is like that, the only legally correct answer was not guilty. It is actually pretty unsurprising that a civilian jury struggled with some legal concepts along the way, but they still arrived at the only answer genuine legal experts could have arrived at.

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