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FL:Reform of Stand Your Ground Law Passes House
Gun Watch ^ | 24 March, 2013 | Dean Weingarten

Posted on 03/23/2014 5:55:57 PM PDT by marktwain


HB 89, a reform of the "Stand Your Ground" law, passed the Florida House on 20 March with a vote of 93-24.  The law extends the same immunity given to people who actually shoot someone in self defense to those who only threaten force or fire warning shots in self defense.

The bill was given impetus by the Marissa Alexander case where the defendant claimed to have fired a warning shot, but was sentenced to 20 years in prison under Florida's mandatory sentencing laws.

The bill has brought together a coalition of diverse supporters, including the  Florida Public Defender Association and the NRA.

 “We see, routinely, clients that we believe shouldn’t be prosecuted because they did act in lawful self-defense,” said Stacy Scott, the Gainesville-based public defender for the 8th Judicial Circuit. “We’re fighting those cases in court every day.”
The reform bill also provides for the expungement of records in self defense cases.  From bradenton.com, Representative Matt Gaetz:
“The point is to make sure that someone who appropriately uses the ‘stand your ground’ defense doesn’t have their life ruined by the use of that defense,” Gaetz said.
This site shows the recorded vote of 93 to 24.  The bill passed with strong bipartisan support.


©2014 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice is included.
Link to Gun Watch


TOPICS: Government; Politics; Society
KEYWORDS: banglist; florida; guncontrol; standyourground
The old media called for reform. They got reform. If may not be exactly the reform they wanted...
1 posted on 03/23/2014 5:55:57 PM PDT by marktwain
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To: marktwain

Sounds good. Good for Florida.


2 posted on 03/23/2014 6:00:58 PM PDT by Georgia Girl 2 (The only purpose o f a pistol is to fight your way back to the rifle you should never have dropped.)
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To: marktwain
Now THIS is what I call Common Sense Gun Law Reform.

3 posted on 03/23/2014 6:17:12 PM PDT by BitWielder1 (Corporate Profits are better than Government Waste)
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To: Georgia Girl 2

Trayvon’s parents aren’t going to be happy about it.


4 posted on 03/23/2014 6:17:27 PM PDT by Jack Hydrazine (Pubbies = national collectivists; Dems = international collectivists; We need a second party!)
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To: marktwain

“Warning Shots” are usually a bad idea.

If you should have a situation where you believe a “warning shot” is appropriate.....NEVER ADMIT TO COPS THAT IT WAS A “WARNING SHOT”!!!

You “feared for your life” and just happened to miss!!!!!


5 posted on 03/23/2014 6:17:38 PM PDT by G Larry (There's the Beef!)
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To: marktwain
Warning shots are usually a bad idea, but this is a definite improvement in the law.
6 posted on 03/23/2014 6:18:34 PM PDT by JoeFromSidney (Book: Resistance to Tyranny. Buy from Amazon.)
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To: Jack Hydrazine

The perpetually outraged are impossible to placate. :-)


7 posted on 03/23/2014 6:28:00 PM PDT by Georgia Girl 2 (The only purpose o f a pistol is to fight your way back to the rifle you should never have dropped.)
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To: marktwain

The Rev. jacksonnnnnnnnnnnnnnn will be complaint about racism is 5...4...


8 posted on 03/23/2014 6:41:41 PM PDT by matt04
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To: marktwain

Bad cases make good law? IIRC, Alexander’s “innocence” was highly questionable.


9 posted on 03/23/2014 6:43:22 PM PDT by NonValueAdded (Screw the farmers. I can get everything I need at the grocery store.)
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To: marktwain

I am completely and totally thankful this article did not include the words

Travon
George
Martin
Zimmerman

Hopefully we’ve gotten beyond that.


10 posted on 03/23/2014 6:54:51 PM PDT by upchuck (South Carolina Representative Trey Gowdy for Speaker of the House!!!)
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To: G Larry

“Warning Shots” are usually a bad idea.

I think so to... with emphasis on the “usually”.

I simply see many instances where they seem to work to convince the aggressor that the defender is serious.

The real danger is the bullet hitting someone not intended.


11 posted on 03/23/2014 7:10:52 PM PDT by marktwain (The old media must die for the Republic to live. Long live the new media!)
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To: marktwain
The bill was given impetus by the Marissa Alexander case where the defendant claimed to have fired a warning shot, but was sentenced to 20 years in prison under Florida's mandatory sentencing laws.

1. This wouldn't be a story if Alexander wasn't black.
2. She left, got the gun, and then returned in order to fire here "warning shot". The DA viewed it as intimidation with a firearm.
3. 20 years was a stupidly long sentence for the offense, but that is the M.O. of our DA, Angela Corey, who over charges everthing she touches.

12 posted on 03/23/2014 7:11:34 PM PDT by SampleMan (Feral Humans are the refuse of socialism.)
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To: SampleMan

You make good points. I agree that the major impetus for the law is the insanity of the inflexible sentencing law.


13 posted on 03/23/2014 7:36:10 PM PDT by marktwain (The old media must die for the Republic to live. Long live the new media!)
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To: JoeFromSidney

Always shoot to stop. Warning shots are for the movies.


14 posted on 03/23/2014 7:49:23 PM PDT by Theoria (End Socialism : No more GOP and Dem candidates)
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To: marktwain

Bwaaahaha


15 posted on 03/23/2014 8:25:54 PM PDT by TigersEye (Stupid is a Progressive disease.)
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To: SampleMan
3. 20 years was a stupidly long sentence for the offense, but that is the M.O. of our DA, Angela Corey, who over charges everthing she touches.

That is true and it is probably because of her overreach that this case was usable as leverage for an expansion of FL's SYG law. She pushed the pendulum too far for her personal gain and it swung back in favor of all Floridians. Lemons made into lemonade.

16 posted on 03/23/2014 8:33:31 PM PDT by TigersEye (Stupid is a Progressive disease.)
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To: Georgia Girl 2; All
No way! Innocent people are going to suffer and it will be used to attack the very idea of armed self defense.

This is Trojan Horse legislation!

17 posted on 03/23/2014 9:38:06 PM PDT by SWAMPSNIPER (The Second Amendment, a Matter of Fact, Not a Matter of Opinion)
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To: SampleMan
"...The DA viewed it as intimidation with a firearm."

It was aggravated assault. I doubt the DA viewed it as intimidation. It was probably viewed as missed shot.

"3. 20 years was a stupidly long sentence for the offense, but that is the M.O. of our DA, Angela Corey, who over charges everthing she touches."

In this case the fault is the Florida minimum sentencing laws. It is a stupidly long sentence, but it's also mandated by the law. The DA had nothing to do with it. In fact, Alexander was offered a plea deal for 3 years, but turned it down.

18 posted on 03/23/2014 9:43:26 PM PDT by mlo
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To: SWAMPSNIPER

“This is Trojan Horse legislation!”

How so? I’m not saying you are wrong I just am not seeing it.


19 posted on 03/23/2014 10:05:06 PM PDT by Georgia Girl 2 (The only purpose o f a pistol is to fight your way back to the rifle you should never have dropped.)
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To: BitWielder1

something about “mills grinding extremely fine”
comes to mind... but it’s us who have to do the
grinding. and remember: if “they” get the upper hand
all the gains will be erased.


20 posted on 03/24/2014 12:34:59 AM PDT by cycjec
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To: SampleMan

Save


21 posted on 03/24/2014 1:13:56 AM PDT by Eagles6 (Valley Forge Redux)
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To: mlo
It was aggravated assault. I doubt the DA viewed it as intimidation. It was probably viewed as missed shot.

No, from the DA's words, she viewed it at intimidation. Yes, the charge was aggravated assault, and as I said, Corey is renowned for over-charging.

In this case the fault is the Florida minimum sentencing laws. It is a stupidly long sentence, but it's also mandated by the law. The DA had nothing to do with it. In fact, Alexander was offered a plea deal for 3 years, but turned it down.

Goes back to overcharging, which Corey specifically does in her own attempt at intimidation. i.e. "Think you are innocent of murder? Well then, you had better plea to manslaughter." Whether Alexander should have taken the plea deal or not, is non sequitur to whether she was guilty of the greater charge. A person should be charged with the crime you think they committed, not with some greater crime with the desire of intimidating them into a plea deal.

22 posted on 03/24/2014 4:04:57 AM PDT by SampleMan (Feral Humans are the refuse of socialism.)
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To: Jack Hydrazine

Good!


23 posted on 03/24/2014 5:00:48 AM PDT by Red in Blue PA (When Injustice becomes Law, Resistance Becomes Duty.-Thomas Jefferson)
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To: Theoria

Oops! my warning shot went right between his eye’s sorry about that.


24 posted on 03/24/2014 5:01:45 AM PDT by bikerman
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To: AdmSmith; AnonymousConservative; Berosus; bigheadfred; Bockscar; cardinal4; ColdOne; ...

> The law extends the same immunity given to people who actually shoot someone in self defense to those who only threaten force or fire warning shots in self defense.

Thanks marktwain.


25 posted on 03/24/2014 6:42:03 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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To: SampleMan
She left, got the gun, and then returned in order to fire here "warning shot". The DA viewed it as intimidation with a firearm.

From my reading of the story, I viewed it as she missed, and then claimed it was a warning shot.

26 posted on 03/24/2014 7:14:06 AM PDT by PapaBear3625 (You don't notice it's a police state until the police come for you.)
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To: Georgia Girl 2
It pretends to strengthen self defense but in the long run it will be used to discredit self defense rights.

Warning shots, legal or not, are a dangerous, foolish and irresponsible act. Innocent bystanders are going to get hurt, exactly as the anti gun forces pushing this law want, and this will be used against 2nd amendment rights.

27 posted on 03/24/2014 9:05:09 AM PDT by SWAMPSNIPER (The Second Amendment, a Matter of Fact, Not a Matter of Opinion)
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To: SWAMPSNIPER

I agree!


28 posted on 03/24/2014 9:10:01 AM PDT by apocalypto
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To: SampleMan
"Goes back to overcharging, which Corey specifically does in her own attempt at intimidation. i.e. "Think you are innocent of murder? Well then, you had better plea to manslaughter." Whether Alexander should have taken the plea deal or not, is non sequitur to whether she was guilty of the greater charge. A person should be charged with the crime you think they committed, not with some greater crime with the desire of intimidating them into a plea deal."

Aggravated assault is the crime she committed. This isn't over charged.

29 posted on 03/24/2014 9:14:04 AM PDT by mlo
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To: upchuck

Also no reference to Je$$e Jerka$$ or Albert the Rotund ...


30 posted on 03/24/2014 9:18:22 AM PDT by NorthMountain
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To: SWAMPSNIPER

I agree warning shots are foolish. Never draw a gun on anyone unless you are prepared to shoot them. Words to live by. Hopefully your fears about this law will turn out to be unfounded.


31 posted on 03/24/2014 9:20:05 AM PDT by Georgia Girl 2 (The only purpose o f a pistol is to fight your way back to the rifle you should never have dropped.)
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To: PapaBear3625
From my reading of the story, I viewed it as she missed, and then claimed it was a warning shot.

She is either a horrible shot or the reports I read were badly in error, as I read that she shot into the ceiling, when her ex-husband was less than 10' away.

32 posted on 03/24/2014 10:38:26 AM PDT by SampleMan (Feral Humans are the refuse of socialism.)
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To: SampleMan
CNN says: "Alexander said she was attempting to flee her husband, Rico Gray, on August 1, 2010, when she picked up a handgun and fired a shot into a wall."

LegalInsurrection.com, which covered the trial, included the following prosecutor's statement:

STATE OF FLORIDA VS. MARISSA ALEXANDER

Marissa Alexander to her husband: “I’ve got something for your ass.”

The FACTS :

In August 2010, Marissa Alexander was arrested by the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office (JSO) after she shot at her husband and two step-children (ages 10 and 13) in the couple’s Jacksonville home. It has been erroneously reported that Alexander fired a warning shot into the ceiling in order to escape her abusive husband. That information is inaccurate. The facts of this case, from the actual trial testimony, are as follows: Alexander and her then-husband, Rico Gray, were living together in their home. The two had a verbal argument over text messages Gray found on his wife’s phone. The messages were to and from Alexander’s ex-husband, Lincoln Alexander. The verbal argument started in the couple’s bathroom and moved to the living room. Gray decided to leave the home during the verbal argument and told his children to put on their shoes and that it was time to go.

In the process of Gray leaving the home, Alexander told her husband, “I’ve got something for your ass” and left the living room. Ms. Alexander then walked through the kitchen, through the laundry room, and then into the garage, where she retrieved her 9mm handgun from the glove compartment of her car. Ms. Alexander had ample time and opportunity to leave the home. (Rico Gray never left the living room area where he and his sons were about to exit via the front door.) Alexander then walked back through the laundry room and into the kitchen. When Gray saw her put a round in the chamber, he yelled “no” and tried to scoop his two boys under his arm to protect them, at which time she fired a shot into the wall, at head level – 5’8”, where Gray and his two sons were still standing. The bullet passed through the kitchen wall – bullet hole photo - exited the other side, and then entered the ceiling of the living room. Gray and his two sons then ran for their lives from their home and called 911 – Aug. 2010 call. Alexander then locked herself inside the home. [NOTE: I have enlarged bullet hole photo--the bullet hole can be seen directly in middle of photograph, at head height. -- AFB]

So, yes the bullet ultimately ended up in the ceiling, but she fired in the direction of her husband's head, and missed (deliberately or thru incompetent marksmanship, was never established).

Pics and diagrams at the second link.

33 posted on 03/24/2014 11:05:58 AM PDT by PapaBear3625 (You don't notice it's a police state until the police come for you.)
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To: mlo
Aggravated assault is the crime she committed. This isn't over charged.

Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon was the highest charge that could be made. Reckless Endangerment and Improper Exhibition of a Firearm would have been lesser charges that most prosecutors would have chosen in this case.

Like the Zimmerman and Dunn cases, where Corey went for 1st degree murder, the Alexander case should have raised some questions concerning going for a 20 year sentence. Alexander did not have a criminal record. The dispute was with a spouse known to have been physically abusive in the past. It is most likely that she was making a demonstration of her unwillingness to back down, versus intending actual harm.

In retaliation for the negative press, Corey has since doubled down and is attempting to increase Alexanders prison time to 60 years.

Say a sixty year old man confronts teenagers on his property and fires his shotgun in the air to impress upon them that he is armed. He could be charged with Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon, but should he be so charged? Is the man really such a menace that he must be put away for 20 or 60 years?

Prosecuters have a great deal of leeway in what they charge and should look at what each case warrants, not just automatically go with the highest possible charge. For example, Bob goes on a camping trip with some friends. They open up a bottle of booze and all get lit. During the night Bob gets cold and climbs into the back seat of his vehicle to get warm. If the police roll up at that point, Bob is chargeable with a DUI, but its a miscarriage to charge him at all.

34 posted on 03/24/2014 11:24:04 AM PDT by SampleMan (Feral Humans are the refuse of socialism.)
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To: PapaBear3625

I stand corrected.


35 posted on 03/24/2014 11:31:42 AM PDT by SampleMan (Feral Humans are the refuse of socialism.)
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To: SampleMan

Thinking about it, for the bullet to have hit the wall at about head height, and then the ceiling in the next room implies that it was fired at an upward angle from below her head height. This would imply that she fired with the gun at waist to chest level, and was not using the sights. This would make it more likely that the only reason she didn’t hit him was because she was an incompetent shooter.


36 posted on 03/24/2014 11:39:35 AM PDT by PapaBear3625 (You don't notice it's a police state until the police come for you.)
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To: PapaBear3625
Well, you've stated the prosecutions version.

The "victim", who had put her in the hospital before, said the following at his deposition:
He claims that the text messages put him “in a rage,” and that he told Alexander, “If I can’t have you nobody going to have you.” As for her trying to flee the house, Gray “knew that she couldn’t leave out the garage because the garage door was locked.” He also tells a markedly different story about the events surrounding the gunshot: “She came back through the doors and she had a gun. And she said, ‘You need to leave.’ I told her, ‘I ain’t leaving until you talk to me’ . . . and I started walking towards her and she shot in the air.”

Frankly, neither one of them are winners, but he is less so. In a case of what is "he said, she said", a charge to get 20 years (and now 60) seems like way too much to me.

37 posted on 03/24/2014 12:57:43 PM PDT by SampleMan (Feral Humans are the refuse of socialism.)
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To: SampleMan
The problem with the Zimmerman case was not overcharging, but that she prosecuted such an obvious self-defense case at all. She deserves all the scorn she got for that.

In the Dunn case an argument can be made for 1st degree murder, but even if it doesn't convince the jury, it includes lesser charges. They jury could have convicted on 2nd degree or manslaughter. Overcharging is not the reason they didn't.

In Alexander's case, like the Zimmerman case, the popular narrative of what happened that day is wrong. Alexander was not defending herself. There was no threat to her. The abusiveness of her spouse is debatable, although they clearly had a mutually abusive relationship. Marissa herself was the only one actually ever arrested and for physical abuse, in a separate case that happened after the shooting.

Her trial showed that she clearly acted out of anger. She walked out of the room and came back with a gun, said "I've got something for your ass", and fired a shot that struck the wall near his head. One might speculate she didn't mean to shoot him but what difference does that make? If she had hit him, would it have changed anything if she said she didn't mean to?

This is not overcharged.

"In retaliation for the negative press, Corey has since doubled down and is attempting to increase Alexanders prison time to 60 years."

Not true. Corey doesn't decide what sentence to persue. The charges being retried are exactly the same ones from the first trial, and the sentence is a mandatory minimum defined in the law.

What's happened is that since the first trial an appeals court in another case has ruled that these sentences must run consequtively instead of concurrently. That's how it gets to be 60 this time around. Corey had nothing to do with that.

Alexander deserves to be convicted and no doubt would be again. I do agree that 60 years or even 20 years is harsh, but that's a common result of mandatory minimum sentences. They should be done away with.

Hopefully Corey will go ahead and offer Alexander a plea deal again for something more reasonable and it doesn't go that far.

38 posted on 03/24/2014 1:17:41 PM PDT by mlo
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To: marktwain

Good for Florida, I guess. Likewise, I think “warning shots” are a bad idea. And from what I’ve read of the Marissa Alexander case, what she did actually was aggravated assault.


39 posted on 03/24/2014 1:22:05 PM PDT by Jack of all Trades (Hold your face to the light, even though for the moment you do not see.)
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To: mlo

See post 37.


40 posted on 03/24/2014 1:38:18 PM PDT by SampleMan (Feral Humans are the refuse of socialism.)
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To: SampleMan
One big thing, from the LegalInsurrection link, was that she also violated a restraining order against her ex, and committed violence against him:
In December 2010, while out on bail for the shooting, Alexander went to Gray’s new home and beat him in the face – Gray’s injuries and arrest report. Gray called 911 to report the crime – Dec. 2010 call and arrest report. A judge revoked Alexander’s bond because she violated the judge’s order. Alexander pled and was adjudicated guilty of the Domestic Battery she committed against Rico Gray in that case.
I'm guessing the jurors decided that this lady was crazy, and didn't want her walking the same streets they did.
41 posted on 03/24/2014 2:29:56 PM PDT by PapaBear3625 (You don't notice it's a police state until the police come for you.)
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To: PapaBear3625

As I said, neither her nor her baby daddy are a prize.

However, of all the problem people here in Jacksonville, I’d put her well below most.


42 posted on 03/24/2014 3:01:26 PM PDT by SampleMan (Feral Humans are the refuse of socialism.)
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To: SampleMan

That deposition did not agree with what he originally told police, or what he later testified. He lied in his deposition to try to get her off. He recanted it later and said that they had agreed he would say those things because they thought it would get her out of trouble. While in jail Alexander was recorded attempting to conspire with him on a story to justify her act.

It isn’t just he said, she said. There were two children there too, and physical evidence. It wasn’t a shot in the air or in the ceiling, it was near his head. The garage door worked fine. She didn’t attempt to leave the house, she went to get the gun and come back.


43 posted on 03/24/2014 8:20:55 PM PDT by mlo
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To: SampleMan

http://mediatrackers.org/florida/2013/07/16/no-marissa-alexanders-conviction-was-not-a-reverse-trayvon-martin-case-in-florida


44 posted on 03/24/2014 8:21:57 PM PDT by mlo
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To: mlo

You’re opting to go with the version of his perjury that justifies the charge on a presumption that you know which version is closest to the truth (and I seriously doubt any of them are the real truth).

As a jurorist I would have had an issue convicting on one of three or four contradictory stories that a witness has provided.

As I’ve stated, Alexander is not a model citizen, but he is a real POS too.


45 posted on 03/25/2014 3:20:57 AM PDT by SampleMan (Feral Humans are the refuse of socialism.)
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To: G Larry
NEVER ADMIT TO COPS THAT IT WAS A “WARNING SHOT”!!!

Good against remotes is one thing...

46 posted on 03/25/2014 3:31:05 AM PDT by Jim Noble (When strong, avoid them. Attack their weaknesses. Emerge to their surprise. H)
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To: SampleMan

He’s not on trial. It’s not a matter of simply picking one version over the other. In the whole context it’s obvious he lied in his deposition. There are verifiable lies in it. It does not match physical and other witness evidence. So when he says he concocted that story with her, and they were actually caught at one point doing that very thing, it’s far more than just picking one over the other.

There’s a reason the jury took 12 minutes to deliberate in this case. It’s not that hard. She’s guilty. The only real issues here have to do with the mandatory sentences.

It’s a juror, not a jurorist.


47 posted on 03/25/2014 10:59:51 AM PDT by mlo
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To: mlo

Better unbunch those panties.

I’m starting to think that Corey is a Freeper.


48 posted on 03/25/2014 11:55:20 AM PDT by SampleMan (Feral Humans are the refuse of socialism.)
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To: SampleMan

Ah, insults now. That’s equivalent to conceding the argument. I’ll take that.


49 posted on 03/25/2014 2:27:05 PM PDT by mlo
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To: mlo

Sometimes you’ve gotta take what you can get, so latch onto it and don’t let go.
When you opted for as nauseum rejection of the issue and started thinking you should correct my English, I knew what the real issue was.
I’m guessing I was right about the professional connection too.
So inward and bask in your glory.


50 posted on 03/25/2014 3:58:56 PM PDT by SampleMan (Feral Humans are the refuse of socialism.)
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