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To: supercat
I wasn't privvy to the original trial, but my understanding of involuntary manslaughter laws is that the prosecution must show that a reasonable person would have been able to foresee that the defendant's actions could cause death in roughly the same fashion that death actually occurred. I would have argued (I don't know if the defense did) that while a reasonable person would have expected that the fireworks could cause a fire, a reasonable person would not have foreseen that such a fire could within three seconds grow beyond the abilities of fire extinguishers to deal with.

There was no trial; this was a plea bargain: he agreed to plead guilty to 100 counts of involuntary manslaughter, the DA agreed that his sentence couldn't be higher than 10 years.

35 posted on 05/10/2006 4:46:14 PM PDT by Lurking Libertarian (Non sub homine, sed sub Deo et lege)
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To: Lurking Libertarian
There was no trial; this was a plea bargain: he agreed to plead guilty to 100 counts of involuntary manslaughter, the DA agreed that his sentence couldn't be higher than 10 years.

Guess I can't really fault the guy for accepting the plea, though I would expect that with a good defense he could have escaped the manslaughter charges. The argument should have been that no reasonable building material would have gone up in flames as the stage wall did; although gerbs can start fires, in the absense of highly-inflammable materials such fires would not pose an excessive danger to human life.

36 posted on 05/10/2006 10:06:01 PM PDT by supercat (Sony delenda est.)
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