Skip to comments.Florida's self-defense law complicates shooting of teenager (Trayvon Martin)
Posted on 03/21/2012 6:01:38 PM PDT by Navy Patriot
Florida's controversial 2005 "Stand-Your-Ground" self-defense law could make it difficult to charge a Sanford man who shot an unarmed Miami Gardens teenager to death, legal experts say.
An arrest could hinge on whether prosecutors believe that neighborhood-watch volunteer George Zimmerman acted unreasonably when he encountered Trayvon Martin, 17, whom he suspected was a prowler. A 911 dispatcher told Zimmerman that he didn't need to follow Martin.
"If he was attacked, he can stand his ground," said retired Miami-Dade prosecutor David Waksman, who is not involved in the case. "But if police say back off and we'll take care of it, he's not covered by the law."
The state self-defense law eliminated a citizen's duty to retreat before using deadly force to confront an attacker. Police and prosecutors statewide have said the the law fosters a shoot-first, ask-questions-later mentality.
(Excerpt) Read more at kansascity.com ...
(1) An "assault" is an intentional, unlawful threat by word or act to do violence to the person of another, coupled with an apparent ability to do so, and doing some act which creates a well-founded fear in such other person that such violence is imminent.
(2) Whoever commits an assault shall be guilty of a misdemeanor of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.
784.021 Aggravated assault.--
(1) An "aggravated assault" is an assault:
(a) With a deadly weapon without intent to kill; or
(b) With an intent to commit a felony.
(2) Whoever commits an aggravated assault shall be guilty of a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.
784.03 Battery; felony battery.--
(1)(a) The offense of battery occurs when a person:
1. Actually and intentionally touches or strikes another person against the will of the other; or
2. Intentionally causes bodily harm to another person.
(b) Except as provided in subsection (2), a person who commits battery commits a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.
(2) A person who has one prior conviction for battery, aggravated battery, or felony battery and who commits any second or subsequent battery commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084. For purposes of this subsection, "conviction" means a determination of guilt that is the result of a plea or a trial, regardless of whether adjudication is withheld or a plea of nolo contendere is entered.
784.041 Felony battery.--
(1) A person commits felony battery if he or she:
(a) Actually and intentionally touches or strikes another person against the will of the other; and
(b) Causes great bodily harm, permanent disability, or permanent disfigurement.
(2) A person who commits felony battery commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.
nothing at all is complicated about our law, unless the writer is a left wing thick idiot, which I bet they are.
It’;s simple when ones life is felt in danger then you can shoot to protect yourself.
The only reason this is news is because yet again a black kid was shot by a non white guy and the NAACP etc are kicking up a fuss.
How about the white kid who was attacked on his way home, has gas poured on him and set alight, while racist name calling was going on?
What’s that MSM the victim is white, oh quick cover that up then.
Some time ago a white guy shot two illegals and the black groups yet again came out to protest and the sheep of the MSM went to cover this as national news.
NO ONE I have seen in the Miami media is reporting the injuries apparently suffered by Mr. Zimmerman. Instead, they are playing the race card, as dictated by the NAALCP and their Obama worshipping colleagues.
There's no way that can be called "standing your ground".
From what I have heard, the guy stalked the teenager and when the boy reacted in some way, shot him.
It's not just Miami. The criminal media is at it again, not reporting ANY of the information that has been readily available to them from the beginning.
There's a reason he's not being charged - he was getting the s*** beat out of him by a "kid" who was over 6 feet tall and 200 lbs.
A man who witnessed part of the altercation contacted authorities.
"The guy on the bottom, who had a red sweater on, was yelling to me, 'Help! Help!' and I told him to stop, and I was calling 911," said the witness, who asked to be identified only by his first name, John.
John said he locked his patio door, ran upstairs and heard at least one gun shot.
"And then, when I got upstairs and looked down, the guy who was on the top beating up the other guy, was the one laying in the grass, and I believe he was dead at that point."
I’m not aware of just where the case of the boy being doused with gas and set afire stands but I don’t see what it has to do with this case. Each case should stand on it’s own merits. The argument often raised by black Americans, “My ancestors were slaves and lynched so you gotta cut me some slack for killing this cracker.” is totally bogus as well. Injustice in one case doesn’t justify injustice in another. Also, the lynch mobs of Al Sharpton and crew are as bad as was the KKK.
IMO the prosecutor in this instance should take what he has before a grand jury.
Well, that makes a great deal of difference!
Obviously, we will see such photos of evidence that the police took of Mr. Zimmerman, not only that, the EMT would have treated him for such injuries incurred by his fight with Mr. Martin?
As Zimmerman narrated, the dispatcher asked: Are you following him?
Yeah, Zimmerman replied.
We dont need you to do that, the dispatcher said. An interpretation of that exchange could be key in deciding whether Zimmerman acted recklessly in pursuing Martin. Sanford Police Chief Bill Lee, in an interview last week, suggested that Zimmerman did not.
Thats another question we get quite often: He was told not to follow him. Lee said in an interview last week. Well thats a recommendation or a suggestion. Its not a lawful order.
Zimmermans responsibility to stay in his truck and keep out of it was a moral responsibility, Lee said. Zimmerman told police that he was headed back to his truck when Martin jumped him from behind, Lee said.
When you roll all this together, Mr Zimmerman is only guilty if he struck Mr. Martin with serious force or illegally in possession of a firearm. A push or shove that does not cause a fall or injury has bee ruled insufficient in Florida to satisfy self defense.
""But if police say back off and we'll take care of it when we finally wipe the powdered sugar off our mouths, get off our asses, and actually respond when we decide to get 'round to it, he's not covered by the law."
It;s simple when ones life is felt in danger then you can shoot to protect yourself.
The author of the law says it doesn't protect someone who stalks someone else and initiates a confrontation. Zimmerman was under no obligation to run away, but he had no legal authority to pursue and confront this child.
Zimmerman was an idiot, wreckless and careless. I expect there to be civil suits about this case. That said, and I do blame Zimmerman for this, that said, he might not have technically committed a crime.
As a lifetime NRA member,CCW permit holder, and overall strong supporter of gun rights including castel doctrine, it isn't that simple.
Maybe there is more to this story, and I hope their is. But the events as being portrayed in the media are suspicious. What happened at another place at another time doesn't matter. It is what happened here that has the potential to impact our rights.
Make no mistake, regarldess of what actually happened, this event has set back stand your ground laws across the board. THis event, regardless of what actually happened, means that it will be all that more difficult to have the law defer to using lethal force inside your house or in your car if attached putting the onus of criminal and civil legal liability of needing to use lethal force on the victim instead of the criminal.
A young kid, regarldess of race, weight, height, etc., is dead. A 911 call exists telling the guy they didn't need him to follow the kid. But he did anyway. Whatever trouble he got himself into looking for trouble is his own fault. Unless something comes out that says the kid he killed was looking for trouble my blame goes on the moron wannabe robocop that has given intelligent gun owners a strike. Worst of all, there is a dead kid and grieving family that from everything I have seen so far shouldn't have had to happen.
However it shakes out I hope justice is done.
Your comment has merit. I would like to add that in fact, a 911 operator or police dispatcher has no authority to order anyone to back off. Only a police officer in person, on the scene, has that authority. Mr. Zimmerman was not in violation of the law when he followed Mr. Martin.
In my opinion it was unwise of him to get close.
I have seen that Trayvon was 6 ft, 3 inches tall, but his weight has been portrayed as 140 pounds. If it really was over 200 pounds, it makes a big difference in the narrative.
Martin is no "child". He made the decision to attack Zimmerman when he was leaving the scene.
Oh, you can be CERTAIN the media will work hard to get those photos and that information apparently on the police report out to the public....
Oh, wait a minute....it is THE MEDIA. Never mind.
Please note that I post under the exact title, I do not necessarily agree with that title.
In this case, I necessarily agree with you, and I fully support the Florida SYG law.
Additionally I propose that the secondary purpose for this MSM hate whitey propaganda is laying a foundation for gun grabbers to attack all stand your ground laws.
But, but, but....THAT ISN'T WHAT THE MEDIA ARE IMPLYING! THEY AND EMMANUEL CLEAVER, SOME GUY UP IN MISSOURI, HAVE ALREADY DETERMINED THIS IS A HATE CRIME AND ZIMMERMAN IS GUILTY!
Don't you get it, man?! We need to try the case with mobs who weren't there and don't know all the facts, along with a brainless bunch of media children who are eager to please their liberal gods!
I expect that we will see them eventually, after the decision is made to prosecute or not. If a decision is made to prosecute, then it might not be until after a trial.
George Zimmerman is under a legal impediment in this trial by public opinion. He is almost certainly under orders not to say anything, and the police are not releasing evidence while the investigation is underway.
The injuries were reported quite early. At least some reports said that he required stitches to the wounds in the back of the head.
But, this does not fit the frenzy the media and the race/grievance activists are feeding and want, so that information is pretty much being ignored.
The civil suits will be heard or not, as the judge(s) decide.
Plus they keep posting a picture of the kid when he was ten years old.
You mean that same media that showed over and over again only the video of the police beating Rodney King, while never showing King attacking the cops?
er one is covered by the MSM , and one is not
Everybody lies, especially the shooters of unarmed children.
Another thread here today had the stat:
blacks attacks whites 18 times more often than whites attack blacks. fbi stat.
and there is more being reported here and of course the writer would take say this
Seems lIke Zimmerman has already been tried and convicted by the media and the race agitators
I wish the media would wait until all the facts play out before they pass judgment....
Seems to me Zimmerman is an idiot.....and lacked judgement....and put himself into this precarious position ....Not a well written law...
Firing your weapon at someone is the absolute last course of action one should take....
Per one of the comments at the article:
Eventually, Martin the 6’3 140lb football player (tall, fast, and lean) got the upperhand on the 5’2 250lb (short, slow, and overweight) Zimmerman. So much so that he is actually on top of Zimmerman on the ground beating the crap out of his face (he broke his nose) and slammed Zimmerman’s head into the concrete causing it to bleed.
Zimmerman cries for help, as a result of this fight domination by Martin, went unanswered and as a last resort he shot Martin to save his own life. If you have never had someone on top of you beating your face and banging your head into concrete then you don’t know how deadly that can be.
That is a serious and likely possibility, and if it is the case, Mr. Zimmerman is entirely protected by all Florida self defense laws including SYG.
I posted the disproof of the "requirement to back off" because I tired of the FReepers that had Zimmerman guilty of murder when he got out of the truck, they are the best useful idiots the MSM has, currently.
thank you, at least you understood my point.
Why some do not understand this is beyond me.
I would have thought that at least on our side they would understand that the MSM would report only certain facts to back their agenda up but no it seems many sit down to watch their evening news and think that is the truth.
Boy are we in trouble
Correct me if I’m wrong, cause I know as little as everyone else:
Zimmerman is a hothead with multiple past 911 calls regarding blacks. Zimmerman followed the victim, even though he was told by the 911 operator to stop. Zimmerman’s life was not in danger from a 140 lb punk whom he outweighed by a 100lbs.
please note to all for crying out loud that the photo’s displayed by this corrupt MSM is him at aged 14 years old.
Why oh why does our side not understand that the MSM is biased and that they tell lies and we wonder why we are in a mess when we are dictated to by this corrupt media
Nope, everybody lies, just some lie more than others.
It's who you will believe when you have knowledge of their record and agenda that counts.
Once the fight started, zimmerman may have been justified, but the fact is, he caused the fight, he holds at least some responsibility and should answer for it.
Now ALL that said, I would not be surprised if more info comes out that casts a different light on the confrontation, as I have seen here already in this thread. The MSM is going to milk this and slant this for as long as they can, and if they could get a trial or something around October, they would be jumping for joy...
We dont know that, and that's part of the main problem with the initial handling of the 'investigation'. I'm unaware of any reliable reports that Mr. Zimmerman was treated by the local EMT or went to the hospital to fix his 'wounds'.
Also, I would hope a proper investigation would have photographed Mr.Zimmerman and surrounding areas to conduct a proper investigation, for all we know the blood found on Mr.Zimmerman, could have come from Mr. Martin.
That’s fair enough, except we don’t know much about the agendas of the involved parties in this case, except the obvious agenda of Mr Zimmerman to get away with it whether he was at fault or not.
Not a criminal act.
Zimmerman followed the victim, even though he was told by the 911 operator to stop.
Not a criminal act.
Zimmermans life was not in danger from a 140 lb punk whom he outweighed by a 100lbs.
Not provable in court both physically and mentally speaking.
You would have to prove Zimmerman knew his life was not in danger in his thoughts, and the testimony would have to come from Mr. Zimmerman, what other people thought is not relevant.
Zero for three, care to try again?
Zimmerman your hero then?
To me a scumbag, even if his acts were, as you the legal expert pronounce, “not criminal”!
Try again justifying the murder of an unarmed even just like the murderer hotblooded teenager.
Are you alleging that the MSM, US "gun control" organizations, the DemoRat party, and now Justice, Eric Holder and Obama have no agenda or bias?
Or are you alleging they are not involved?
Or are you saying you don't know anything about any entity in this group?
Yes, I have been followed and then approched by someone, and that does not equal an assault in any way shape or form.
If the thug responded to someone following and approaching him by smashing his face, taking him down, mounting him and then slamming his head into concrete, then he got what he deserved.
Had he done that to me he would have found out what a Harpy is real fast.
You’ve brought new pieces onto thge board to insinuate I support the agendas (that you know so well) of Holder, MSM, and the like. Sorry, game over.
“Im not aware of just where the case of the boy being doused with gas and set afire stands but I dont see what it has to do with this case.” What he is saying is that in this case the media are immediately calling racism and fanning the flames, calling Zimmerman white when he is hispanic, calling for an arrest etc. Whereas in the other case, they downplayed the attackers race (black) as well as the victims race (white) and took a wait and see attitude instead of immediately claiming racism even though the attackers are making racial slurs during the attack.
Nope, and find a post where I say that, if you can.
To me a scumbag, even if his acts were, as you the legal expert pronounce, not criminal!
You are entitled to the opinion the MSM has given you.
Try again justifying the murder of an unarmed even just like the murderer hotblooded teenager.
There is little justice in law, and I have not justified anything, nor have I tried.
The preponderance of law in America is what the closest leftist DemoRat says it is, but they don't always get their way.
In this case, Florida patriots wrote, promoted and passed a necessary Stand Your Ground self defense addition to existing Florida law, and the leftist Rats hate it because it takes power from leftist lawyers and politicians.
When the law doesn't go the way the leftist Rats want, the MSM uses a few lies and they easily get a hate whitey lynch mob of useful idiots demanding the law be ignored.
And there you are.
Then you should argue your case against the representatives of the MSM, not against me, who doesn’t follow the MSM, doesn’t watch the idiot box (DO YOU?!) and gets his news from all over the place mostly via Free Republic, which is to say through MSM, unfortunately, as you do, only to a lesser degree, since as I said, I don’t turn on the idiot box (wanna buy it cheap?) or read the MSM rags on paper or online.
Admit, that like it or not all your info about the universe comes thanks to the hard work of the dedicated employees of the cursed MSM!