Skip to comments.WAS IT REALLY 2D MURDER?
Posted on 04/12/2012 6:43:08 AM PDT by shortstop
George Zimmerman is guilty.
But Im not sure its second-degree murder.
Unless there is some bit of evidence we dont know about, unless there is some smoking gun out there, there is nothing in the Florida statute on second-degree murder that sounds like what happened that night.
The special prosecutor got to strut for the cameras last night, but if she cant deliver the goods, and there is an acquittal, there is going to be hell to pay and riot police are probably going to get called out.
In a case that has turned out to be more about race politics than the events on the sidewalk of a Florida subdivision, you wonder what last nights announcement was really about. Was it mollification? Was it the considered opinion of a veteran prosecutor? Was it the first step in a political lynching?
Time will tell.
But heres what the law book says.
In Florida, there are two ways a person can be guilty of second-degree murder.
In the first, someone has to be killed by someone showing a depraved mind. There must also be the perpetration of an act imminently dangerous to another. If those two factors exist, without premeditation, in Florida, thats second-degree murder.
In the second, someone has to be killed by someone who is committing another felony crime. That list of specified felony crimes runs from arson and kidnapping to aircraft piracy and aggravated stalking. But none of the specified crimes including terrorism is anything like what George Zimmerman did that night. Specifically, he has not been accused of any other felony crime, so he could not be charged under this part of Floridas second-degree murder law.
Which gets back to the first part.
Did George Zimmerman commit an act imminently dangerous to another and did he do so with a depraved mind.
It is clear that shooting a gun at someone is an act that is imminently dangerous. But did George Zimmerman fire the gun with a depraved mind?
Thats harder to say, and maybe impossible to prove.
Was it depraved for a Neighborhood Watch guy to follow a young man down the street? Unwise and ultimately tragic, yes, but depraved?
Not in most dictionaries.
And then there is the aspect of self-defense. If George Zimmerman makes the argument that he was repelling an attack he thought endangered his life or limb, the whole situation changes. The prosecution would have to not only show that George Zimmerman was not in danger, and that no reasonable person would consider themselves endangered in that situation, but that he had a depraved mind.
Unless theres evidence that we dont know about, that goes to Zimmermans state of mind, thats a very high standard for the prosecution to meet.
That phrase beyond a reasonable doubt is a purposefully difficult level of evidence.
In this case, we only have one version of events George Zimmermans. We cant presume he is being truthful, but the prosecution will have to affirmatively prove that he is being untruthful. And that will be hard, largely because Trayvon Martin is not here to tell his side of the story.
According to press accounts, a witness verifies Zimmermans claim that Trayvon was on top of him hitting him. The enhanced video from the police station shows an injury on the back of his head.
Those things, though not conclusive, are supportive of George Zimmermans version of events.
And in the absence of another theory, and evidence to support that theory, youre not getting to beyond a reasonable doubt.
There are practical aspects of trying this charge that will be difficult and disruptive.
How, for example, do you seat a jury?
And what will the racial makeup of that jury be and will that ratio be satisfactory to the people and activists who have been shouting for justice? In the blood lust that is masquerading as justice, how does a trial on this charge lead to anything but chaos?
If George Zimmerman is acquitted, as there seems to be a fair chance he will be, is there a possibility of racial upset or riot? Its happened before, more than once.
Have we just found this generations OJ trial? Have we just found this generations Rodney King?
I will trust that this prosecution is not political. But I will have my doubts.
Dont get me wrong.
Its George Zimmermans fault that Trayvon Martin is dead. If Zimmerman had stayed home or in his vehicle, none of this would have happened.
There is clearly reckless endangerment here, and maybe there is some species of criminally negligent homicide or maybe even a manslaughter. But murder, thats unlikely, and even less likely of being proven.
So we got headlines last night.
And a show trial sometime down the road.
But after that we may have uncorked hell.
His crime is “Self defense but white.”
[[the kid could reasonably have feared for his safety.]]
George didn’t threaten the kid so the kid had no reason to fear for his safety- plus geoege was on his way back to his truck when the kid attacked him- doesn’t sound liek someone who was afraid for his own life
[[That is,Zimmerman may have had a “Rambo” kind of mentality which would cause a reasonable person to be fearful]]
There was absolutely NO evidence of that on the taped conversations- none- we never hear zimmerman issuing htreats to trayvon and we infact only hear george trying to keep sight of trayvon- suggeswting that trayvon was far enough away that he could have easily eluded george had he wanted to- and again- trayvon did NOT have the right to criminally assault george simpyl because george was following him- it is NOT agaisnt hte law to follow someone nor to even confront htem and question them- it IS however agaisnt hte law for someone to criminally assault someone
We also know from martin’s phone calls to his girlfriend that she peladed with him NOT to confront zimmerman to just leave hte situation alone- but martin didn’t listen to her- He WANTED a onfrontation to occure, and HE initiated hte confrontation and the criminal act of assault
First of all I wasn't saying that Zimmerman did this or that...I was saying *if* he did a certain thing,then...
And I forgot all about the call with the girlfriend.One thing we can all count on is that regardless of what she might have said so far *everything* she says in court will paint Zimmerman as the aggressor...even if it means she perjures herself.You can bet you bottom dollar on *that*.
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