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Is the second-degree murder charge against George Zimmerman fair?
Crain's New York Business.com ^ | 4/11/2012

Posted on 04/12/2012 3:03:37 PM PDT by South40

Is the charge of murder in the Trayvon Martin case justified?

Yes. The charge allows the judicial process to move forward. A jury will determine whether Mr. Zimmerman acted in self-defense.

No. The special prosecutor didn’t cite any new evidence to justify sidestepping state law. This is a response to political pressure.

Poll Here

(Excerpt) Read more at mycrains.crainsnewyork.com ...


TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Culture/Society; Miscellaneous; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: trayvonmartin
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To: Aunt Polgara

This may be paradoxical. That is, the stand your ground hearing is almost unique to that law; but in this case, it is not a stand your ground situation, it is pure self defense.

http://www.leg.state.fl.us/statutes/index.cfm?App_mode=Display_Statute&Search_String=&URL=0700-0799/0776/Sections/0776.013.html

The pertinent law is in section (3). It assumes that a person is attacked in a public place, that they have no duty to retreat, but can stand their ground. But a problem arises when they couldn’t retreat if they wanted to.

George Zimmerman was allegedly punched in the face that knocked him down. Then Martin apparently straddled him and continued to punch his face, then smash his head on the asphalt. Only then did Zimmerman’s shirt get pulled up, exposing his gun. Then he and Martin struggled for the gun, which eventually Zimmerman got control over and used to shoot Martin.

Thus it can be said that stand your ground did not apply, but instead regular self defense. And if *that* is the case, then there is no stand your ground hearing.

And thus Zimmerman might be exposed to a lawsuit, after the fact.


51 posted on 04/12/2012 8:35:54 PM PDT by yefragetuwrabrumuy ("It is already like a government job," he said, "but with goats." -- Iranian goat smuggler)
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To: dynachrome; South40

FReeped.

Even Starsky & Hutch didn’t do U turns that spectacular.


52 posted on 04/12/2012 8:49:48 PM PDT by AZ .44 MAG (Repeal Obama)
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To: yefragetuwrabrumuy

Even if the stand your ground law doesn’t seem to apply, is there any downside for Zimmerman seeking to have the SYG hearing?


53 posted on 04/12/2012 8:55:05 PM PDT by Aunt Polgara
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To: AZ .44 MAG
Even Starsky & Hutch didn’t do U turns that spectacular.

Yes, my FRiend. Damn the media and their attempts to justify the public lynching they've been engaged in.

54 posted on 04/12/2012 11:42:06 PM PDT by South40 (Mitt is full of Shtt)
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To: yefragetuwrabrumuy
Thus it can be said that stand your ground did not apply, but instead regular self defense. And if *that* is the case, then there is no stand your ground hearing.

Well, it's my impression that the stand your ground law has more parts to it than just the removal of the duty to retreat. If successful, it would make Z, the homeowners' assoc., etc. immune from civil suits by Trayvon's family. I don't believe Z has much in the way of assets, but there are other deep pockets. Even the city might get pulled in if they trained Z.

55 posted on 04/13/2012 7:05:38 AM PDT by Aunt Polgara
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To: South40
Maybe - What does the prosecution know that we don't know? There's always other facts in the equation that aren't released to the public.

I will state that from what I have seen, I don't think there's a case for 2nd degree murder.

56 posted on 04/13/2012 7:29:08 AM PDT by Darren McCarty (Time for brokered convention)
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To: Aunt Polgara

That’s a good question, but I suspect that it is a Catch-22.

That is, “Stand Your Ground” is a peculiarity as a law, because it is not describing a crime, but a defense to what could be described as a crime, but shouldn’t be.

But the only way you might be able to use this defense is under the situations written into the law itself.

SYG was created not as a stand-alone law, but to fill a loophole in the much more comprehensive laws of “self defense.”

That loophole was that “if you could retreat, you should retreat, and can be punished if you defend instead of retreat”. So SYG says, “if you could retreat, you don’t have to retreat, and can defend yourself where you stand.”

But in Zimmerman’s case, he could *not* retreat, because he was punched, knocked down, pinned to the ground, and in a life or death struggle. Thus, it was purely self defense, and would have been legal even before SYG was written, going back to long before the United States existed.

That is, it would never have come under the SYG loophole, so it would have never needed the SYG defense.

*But*, because of that, and this is the zinger, he may not have the SYG hearing *available* to him! That is, the SYG hearing may only be available to those who are caught in an SYG situation.

Had he shot Martin as Martin was charging him, he could invoke the SYG hearing. But after Martin punched him, knocked him down, and was straddling him trying to kill him, any SYG argument was superfluous. He was desperately trying to save his life in pure self-defense, long recognized by the courts as legitimate.

And because of this, he might not be permitted an SYG hearing. And likewise, he may be vulnerable to a wrongful death lawsuit.


57 posted on 04/13/2012 8:04:58 AM PDT by yefragetuwrabrumuy ("It is already like a government job," he said, "but with goats." -- Iranian goat smuggler)
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To: yefragetuwrabrumuy; Cboldt
The Florida stand your ground defense is part of a larger section of FL law entitled Justifiable Use of Force, found here

Even though Zimmerman was unable to retreat, the law still says that

"(1) A person who uses force as permitted in s. 776.012, s. 776.013, or s. 776.031 is justified in using such force and is immune from criminal prosecution and civil action for the use of such force, unless the person against whom force was used is a law enforcement officer...."

So, it would appear to me that Zimmerman should be able to have that hearing; and in fact, if he is successful, he should have a cause of action against the state for unlawful imprisonment; and he would also be immune from civil suits.

Do I think he is likely to be successful in such a hearing? In a just world, yes, but not bloody likely unless the prosecution has a whole lot more evidence than the public has seen.

58 posted on 04/13/2012 10:12:06 AM PDT by Aunt Polgara
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To: ObamaMustGo2012

WILL the truth “come out”? Depends on whether the Prosecutor will do her job fairly, outside of politics or thuggish threats. And according to Alan Dershowitz (certainly no conservative but a decent man), she’s not.

He blasted her, saying she’s not doing her duty as evidenced by her brief, which ignores anything about an altercation and makes no mention of any eyewitnesses, although two have spoken out supporting GZ’s story, or the audio of him agreeing not to follow Martin but to meet the officers at the mailboxes.

Dershowitz said she’s duty-bound to include any facts or evidence favorable to Zimmerman. He also said if she did her job fairly, the preliminary hearing would show insufficient evidence to support a charge of second degree murder.

I just want a fair process, but thus far it’s not looking good.


59 posted on 04/13/2012 8:15:22 PM PDT by llandres (Forget the "New America" - restore the original one!!)
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To: South40

Yes. The charge allows the judicial process to move forward. A jury will determine whether Mr. Zimmerman acted in self-defense. (32%, 243 Votes)
No. The special prosecutor didn’t cite any new evidence to justify sidestepping state law. This is a response to political pressure. (68%, 517 Votes)

Total Voters: 761


60 posted on 04/14/2012 3:28:55 PM PDT by Munz (All tyranny needs to gain a foothold is for people of good conscience to remain silent.)
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