Skip to comments.Mark O’Mara redefines ‘Stand your ground’
Posted on 02/24/2013 5:38:51 AM PST by Uncle Chip
Last August, OMara announced that he would not argue a stand your ground defense, using the same curious logic he used with me earlier this week. Whats problematic is that OMara is engaging in semantic gymnastics to avoid using the words stand your ground while availing himself of the laws most generous provision, the immunity hearing. No such thing existed for self-defense cases before SYG became law in 2005.
With a major push from the National Rifle Association (NRA), Florida amended its self-defense statute to allow potential victims to stand their ground against an assailant by removing the duty to retreat and permitting them to meet force with force, including deadly force, if they reasonably believe it is necessary to save their life. It also granted immunity from prosecution.
Stop calling it a stand your ground statute, OMara told me. We are never going to say that [this] is a stand your ground case. ...
Yet, he gave his own definition of SYG that doesnt exactly mesh with what the law says. I define stand your ground as having an opportunity to retreat and you affirmatively decide not to, he told me.
Heres what the law says:
Florida statute 776.013(3) says: (a) person who is not engaged in an unlawful activity and who is attacked in any other place where he or she has a right to be has no duty to retreat and has the right to stand his or her ground and meet force with force, including deadly force if he or she reasonably believes it is necessary to do so to prevent death or great bodily harm to himself or herself or another or to prevent the commission of a forcible felony.
(Excerpt) Read more at washingtonpost.com ...
Since Mark O'Mara is not defending his client under the "SYG" law, but under traditional self defense, then how can he be filing for an immunity hearing prior to trial???
He and his media buddies have conflated a number of separate principles under the moniker of "stand your ground." They use the phrase "stand your ground" to include statutory immunity, but statutory immunity could exist even if the law had a duty to retreat before resorting to force.
O'Mara is just saying that the phrase "and has no duty to retreat" has no play in the Zimmerman case.
If shooting is justified, retreat is not a viable option.
SYG just codifies this.
I don't find O'Mara's interpretation in the words of the Florida SYG law at all.
Opportunity to retreat or no opportunity to retreat, the Florida law gives one the right to use deadly force followed by immunity from prosecution.
AFAIK traditional self defense does not however provide immunity from prosecution.
Who's right and who's wrong here???
But if you are not defending your client under Florida’s SYG law, and it is that law that provides for an immunity from prosecution, then how can Mark O’Mara be filing for an immunity from prosecution hearing in April.
That is not exactly the message that O'Mara has been giving.
He has been saying all along that he is defending his client under the umbrella of traditional self defense -- not the "Justifiable Use of Force" Law.
But under traditional self defense there is no provision for an immunity hearing for immunity from civil suits.
Is he playing some sort of game here???
I expect Tray's telephone girlfriend to blow the whole thing in the end. The state lied from the beginning...first about her age...and now it seems the calls from that fateful day have disappeared. Imagine that!!
Immunity is a very broad subject. There must be a million cases of precedence. Let's see how it works in this case.
I think of Richard Jewell and the boys accused of rape. LE can be just plain dirty sometimes and this is one of them.
Remember....The drummer is/was Daddy Obama.
I don't read into that (assuming this is exactly what he's said), an intention to skip the remedy available under 776.032, the statutory immunity law.
I hope you are right because this court and this judge are not going to give him any slack on anything.
O'Mara would open himself up to a malpractice suit if he didn't obtain an immunity hearing.
That said, I think he's been too deferential, especially at the start, and especially relating to the state's duty to produce evidence. He missed arguing the 15 day deadline that the state was under, where the 15 days starts on the day he files a motion agreeing to open-book discovery. He pushed that out a good month or two, when he should have been a thorn in Bernie's side.
Likewise, he didn't argue much when Zimmerman was illegally incarcerated.
The immunity is what is really on trial here.
the law was passed as a TORT REFORM.
the trial lawyers, like the martin family lawyers, are salivating at the prospect of the return of self defense lawsuits of criminals/families of criminals suing the self defenders out of hearth and home.
And yet he's already busily making plans with the judge for the June party as if there will be no meaningful immunity hearing in April.
And yet O'Mara at this point appears to be just tossing it away.
He and the judge are already making plans for the June trial -- picking out the guest list, the number of chairs, the color of the napkins, the party favors, etc.
He should instead be laying the grounds for an appeal of the judge's unfavorable immunity hearing decision which is coming down the rail.
Capehart is correct. FL SYG law does not require retreat or backing away
As some on THC website have mentioned.....O’Mara is doing a horrible job defending Zimmerman. GZ is innocent.....but it seems the only one who does not think so is his own attorney
As for the SYG hearing.....O’Mara better do one or he should be disbarred . Even if he feels he cannot win on SYG .....the state will be forced to reveal their case.....which helps in the crim trial
GZ is being lynched....and his own attorney is bringing the rope
In the court of public opinion of reasonable people -- yes -- but not in this judge's courtroom.
The second that she gets in trouble on the stand, Angie's list will object and the judge will sustain.
The judge already ordered a mini deposition for this girlfriend for the sole purpose of finding out her address -- but the girlfriend refused to give it.
What does that tell you???
A year later and the defense still can't get the address and identity of the state's star witness from the court, the prosecution, or the witness herself.
Where is Perry Mason when you really need him???
Florida judges are reelected.
This judge is going to be subject to the alsharpton court of drama diva bullhorns.
Is there provision for self defense followed by an immunity hearing in Florida Law outside of 776.012 ... 776.032???