PDA

View Full Version : The Killing of Trayvon Martin



Pages : [1] 2 3

ZippyTheChimp
March 26th, 2012, 12:47 PM
I've put together a few articles which may be at the heart of the furor - and the dilemma - of the shooting death of Trayvon Martin.



Trayvon Martin killing in Florida puts 'Stand Your Ground' law on trial


The shooting of Trayvon Martin, an unarmed black teenager, in a gated Florida community has raised allegations
of racial injustice and highlighted the burden that 'Stand Your Ground' laws impose on law enforcement officers.

By Patrik Jonsson, Staff writer / March 16, 2012

ATLANTA

For many tuning in across the nation, the shooting late last month in Florida of an unarmed black teenager by a suspicious neighborhood watch captain looks like a racially motivated murder.

That's why the decision by the police not to arrest George Zimmerman for getting out of his car and shooting Trayvon Martin in the middle of a gated neighborhood in Sanford, Fla., on Feb. 26 has raised allegations of racial injustice and profiling.

The shooting has sparked a nationwide protest petition, the involvement of a black militia group, and, on Friday, a call by the parents of the slain teenager for the FBI to investigate the handling of the case, which police have handed off to state investigators.

The shooting also presents a tragic snapshot of so-called "Stand Your Ground" laws, what critics call “license-to-murder.”

Such laws eliminate the English Law concept of a “duty to retreat” from dangerous situations outside the home. Without that, an armed citizen has no obligation to stand down in the face of a threat.

The problem, as the Martin case highlights, is that making the duty to retreat "totally irrelevant," as Stetson University law professor Robert Batey has said, means the law gives prosecutors fewer factors to consider when determining self-defense, including, potentially, the extent to which a person claiming self-defense may have aggravated the situation.

Florida became the first state to pass a specific Stand Your Ground law in 2005, essentially expanding self-defense zones from the home to most public places. Seventeen states now have such laws.

“It's hard to imagine that this couldn't have been resolved by [Mr. Zimmerman] leaving, so that no one would've gotten hurt, so this is a case where the Stand Your Ground law can actually make a legal difference,” says former federal prosecutor Jeffrey Bellin, a law professor at Southern Methodist University, in Dallas.

“Even if you have suspicions about what motivated this, and you think there was a racial element and no justification for this shooting, the fact is he had no obligation to retreat under the law,” he notes. “If prosecutors don't have the evidence to disprove the claim of self-defense, they won't be able to win.”

But for the parents of the victim, and some 240,000 people who have signed a petition for a federal investigation on the Change.org website, the bare facts of the case suggest that Zimmerman was the aggressor and that the failure to arrest him points to covert racism and an abdication of authority by the local police department.

In a press conference Friday, Trayvon Martin's parents said they no longer had any faith in the Sanford Police Department and called on the FBI to take over the investigation.

"We're not getting any closure, any answers, and it's very disturbing,” Tracy Martin, Trayvon's father, said. “As a father, I'm hurt. I feel betrayed by the Sanford Police Department."

Meanwhile, tensions are roiling in the area as several large rallies and protests are being planned and a black militia group has vowed to place the shooter under citizen's arrest. The state has said it may take several weeks to complete its review of the case.

On Feb. 26, Zimmerman, 28, a self-appointed block watch captain in The Retreat at Twin Lakes, a gated community in Sanford, just outside Orlando, called 911 from his car to report a suspicious person – a black man wearing a hoodie – walking slowly through the neighborhood. The 911 operator, according to police, told Zimmerman to wait for police to arrive. The man in the hoodie was Trayvon, returning to his family's house from buying Skittles and an iced tea at a local convenience store.

Instead of waiting for police, Zimmerman exited the car and shot Trayvon after a brief altercation. Trayvon, 17, had no previous criminal record, while Zimmerman recently had a 2005 felony arrest for assault on a police officer expunged by the courts.

"Had Trayvon Martin been the triggerman, they would have arrested him day one, hour one and he would be in jail with no bail,” Ben Crump, a Tallahassee lawyer representing the family, told the Florida Courier.

"We have a murderer on the streets, walking around," Natalie Jackson, another lawyer representing the family, said on Friday.

Sanford Police Chief Bill Lee told the Orlando Sentinel that he had no grounds to arrest Zimmerman, and told reporters Thursday that that he has invited the US Department of Justice and the Florida Department of Law Enforcement to review the investigation. Florida officials confirmed they began an investigation on March 13.

"It's an open book," Mr. Lee said. "If they want to look at what we did and how we did it and what information we have, they're welcome to it."

Police have released little information, including the 911 tapes, about what happened that night and no details about how Trayvon and Zimmerman ended up grappling. What has been revealed is that before an officer arrived, Trayvon and Zimmerman got into a fight, according to police, witnesses heard one or both calling for help, and Zimmerman shot Trayvon once in the chest with a 9 mm handgun.

One witness said he came upon the scene and saw Zimmerman on his back on the ground, which jibes with statements by the police that he was covered in grass and blood. Another witness has said in a TV interview that “there was no punching, no hitting going on at the time, no wrestling,” but police say that witness gave an official account to them that jibed with Zimmerman's story.

In a letter to the Orlando Sentinel on Friday, Zimmerman's father, Robert Zimmerman, wrote that his son is part-Hispanic “with many black family members and friends.” He also pushed back at the idea that Zimmerman was the aggressor who instigated the altercation.

"At no time did George follow or confront Mr. Martin," he wrote. "When the true details of the event become public, and I hope that will be soon, everyone should be outraged by the treatment of George Zimmerman in the media."

The emotional stakes, racial backdrop, and the awkward position of the police department suggest how state laws broadening self-defense rights can backfire. But whether it's a prosecutor or a jury deciding the outcome of a case, self-defense arguments are often powerful and difficult to disprove beyond a reasonable doubt, even in jurisdictions without Stand Your Ground laws.

“This is a tragedy, and to the extent the law plays a role in encouraging this type of situation to happen, it calls into question the law,” says Professor Bellin. “At the same time, it's not clear that if this happens in a jurisdiction where there isn't a Stand Your Ground law, that you necessarily get a different result.”

© The Christian Science Monitor



Trayvon Martin: Zimmerman was not following Neighborhood Watch 'rules'

'There's no reason to carry a gun' director says

By Susan Jacobson, Orlando Sentinel March 24, 2012

Neighborhood Watch evokes scenes of get-to-know-you barbecues and folks keeping an eye on neighbors' homes while they're out of town or working late.

Until last month, it did not conjure images of teenagers being shot to death by the people who run a program designed to help keep communities safe.

Then George Zimmerman, who coordinated the Neighborhood Watch at a town-house community in Sanford, shot and killed unarmed Miami Gardens high-school student Trayvon Martin on Feb. 26, sparking a collective rage that has spread nationwide and beyond.

Chris Tutko, director of Neighborhood Watch for the National Sheriffs' Association, said Zimmerman broke some cardinal rules.

First, he approached a stranger he suspected of wrongdoing.

"If you see something suspicious, you report it, you step aside and you let law enforcement do their job," Tutko said. "This guy went way beyond the call of duty. At the least, he's overzealous."

Second, Zimmerman carried a handgun. Police departments and sheriff's offices that train volunteers advise them never to carry weapons — though Zimmerman broke no laws by doing so because he has a concealed-weapons permit.

"There's no reason to carry a gun," Tutko said.

Police said Zimmerman was running an errand in his SUV — with his gun — when he first spotted Trayvon walking back from 7-Eleven about 7:15 p.m. Zimmerman called police to report Trayvon as suspicious, and although a dispatcher said he didn't need to follow the teen, the two got into a scuffle.

Zimmerman shot Trayvon once in the chest with a 9 mm handgun, officers said. The 17-year-old died steps from the home of his father's fiancée, where he had been visiting. Zimmerman claimed self-defense and was not arrested. Because of public outrage, a special prosecutor, the U.S. Department of Justice and the FBI are investigating.

What it is — and what it's not

Now, with Neighborhood Watch in the spotlight, organizers want people to know what it is — and what it is not.

"I'm disappointed that people are trying to put blame onto the program when it's not the program's fault," said Wendy Dorival, who coordinates volunteer programs, including Neighborhood Watch, for the Sanford police. "Neighborhood Watch is not what took his life away."

The program was created in 1972 by the National Sheriffs' Association to help prevent crime as people relocated more often and more women entered the work force, loosening community ties. After the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, the initiative expanded to include emergency response, terrorism awareness and disaster preparedness.

Its core mission has not changed, however: to build a sense of togetherness so people care enough to look after one another.

Some Neighborhood Watch groups patrol their communities. Others simply observe in the course of their daily routine and report anything out of the ordinary to law enforcement.

The Neighborhood Watch at Retreat at Twin Lakes, where Zimmerman lived and was chosen as coordinator by his neighbors, was formed in September, Dorival said. It is not registered with the national group, but there is no registration requirement. The Sanford Police Department provides training and community signs, and informs residents about crime trends and prevention.

Zimmerman raised no red flags during an organizational meeting Sept. 22, and no one had complained about him before the shooting, Dorival said.

Sanford and the Volusia County Sheriff's Office have another volunteer program called Citizens on Patrol. In Volusia, those volunteers ride two to a Sheriff's Office-issued car. They undergo background and driver checks, an hourlong interview and 60 hours of training.

"We don't want any cop wannabes or people thinking they're going out and acting like cops and making arrests," sheriff's spokesman Gary Davidson said. "If we think that's the motivation, we're going to weed them out."

Neighborhood Watch, by contrast, is less formal and is run by residents — although volunteers in both programs are told not to confront anyone. Their job is to observe and describe suspicious people or cars to law officers and help make their neighbors aware of problems.

"We tell people, 'Don't be a hero,'" Dorival said. "Don't risk it."

Watch group improved other Sanford neighborhood

Sherry Davis, coordinator of Lordland Neighborhood Watch near Sanford, credits the group with ridding her community of prostitution and drugs.

"The Neighborhood Watch around here has been a really good thing because it has slowed the drug activity," said Davis, 48, a grandmother of 13. "If it's here, it's not as open as it was."

Some Neighborhood Watches meet monthly. Others meet every six months, for occasional social gatherings or not at all, Dorival said.

The Orlando Police Department and the Orange County Sheriff's Office require groups to meet twice a year and have participation from 40 percent of the homes in a watch area. The annual National Night Out anticrime block party counts as one meeting.

Coordinators such as Zimmerman assign block captains, act as liaisons to their law-enforcement agency's crime-prevention specialist and disseminate information to residents. They often are described as an extra set of eyes and ears for officers who can't be everywhere at once.

"The police can't do it all," said Tutko, who has spent four decades in law enforcement. "They need the people to be involved. As tragic as this situation is, I still think Neighborhood Watch is the best way for citizens to get involved in their communities."

sjacobson@tribune.com

Copyright © 2012, Orlando Sentinel



Trayvon Martin's killing shatters safety within Retreat at Twin Lakes in Sanford

By Lane DeGregory, Times Staff Writer: Sunday, March 25, 2012

http://www.tampabay.com/multimedia/archive/00215/A4S_trayvon032512a_215872c.jpg
Cheryl Brown, with the family’s boxer, Sake, says she and her family are rattled by the fatal shooting inside their gated community.

SANFORD

These days, Cheryl Brown has to walk the dog. • For a month — ever since her son heard someone screaming for help and her daughter called 911 and everyone heard the loud snap of a gunshot — Brown's children have been afraid to go outside. • Her youngest daughter, who is 9, won't even look out the window. She keeps seeing the dead teen's body. • "That could have so easily been my son," said Brown. "He wears hoodies all the time."

Brown, a 40-year-old single mom who says she is "mostly black," moved into the Retreat at Twin Lakes last year. She chose the gated subdivision of identical townhomes because it is racially diverse, lots of children live there and, she said, "it seemed so safe."

Then, on Feb. 26, neighborhood watch captain George Zimmerman shot and killed Trayvon Martin, 17, as he walked from a 7-Eleven with iced tea and a bag of Skittles. Now, Brown's children linger inside. And she does dog duty.

On Wednesday, her white boxer, Sake, led her along the sidewalk, then turned onto a manicured path stretching between two rows of townhouses. Brown stopped and pointed to a patch of shade beneath a scrawny maple tree.

"This is where Trayvon was killed," she said. "He was almost home."

No blood stains the grass where he lay. No flowers or football or Skittles have been placed there to remember the teenager whose death has sparked a national outcry.

A memorial of balloons, teddy bears and cans of Arizona Iced Tea is growing outside the front gate.

Inside the fence, everything still looks the same. Except it's not.

The building of the Retreat at Twin Lakes is a classic Florida story.

Developers saw potential in the sandy acres east of Orlando and determined to turn them into an oasis. They planned a gated subdivision just 10 minutes from downtown — a cloistered community near the interstate, close to good schools, outlet malls and the magic of Disney World.

The idea, as always, was that people could live peacefully in a paradise where nobody could park a car on the street or paint the house an odd color.

In 2004, Engle Homes began construction on 263 two-story townhouses, with upstairs porches and covered back patios and plenty of green space. Inside, the townhomes boasted granite countertops, hardwood floors, master suites and walk-in closets. Outside, there was a pond, a clubhouse and a community pool.

Everything was walled in, to keep out the unknown.

"With its modern Florida architecture, this secluded, gated community is like living in a resort," a spokesmodel says in a promotional video posted on YouTube. "It's the perfect choice for those looking for space and comfort."

The initial cost of a 1,400-square-foot townhome and the pass code to that front gate: $250,000. Today, post-boom, the price has dipped below $100,000.

• • •

George Zimmerman, 28, moved into the Retreat in the summer of 2009 with his wife, Shellie. Records show he worked at a pressure-washing company, though neighbors said they never saw a truck.

Right away, he started calling the police. The 911 operators translated his complaints into the bloodless shorthand of law enforcement.

Aug. 26, 2009: "Male driving with no headlights on."

Sept. 22, 2009: "Yellow speed bike doing wheelies."

Oct. 23, 2009: "Aggressive white and brown pit bull."

The transcripts of Zimmerman's 911 calls during the more than two years he lived on Retreat View Circle fill 28 pages. His concerns include everything from the driver of a pickup cutting off people to a neighbor leaving his garage door open.

He kept a close watch for outsiders, but it couldn't have been easy to tell who belonged and who didn't. When the housing market crashed, many townhomes were foreclosed on and the owners evicted. Dozens of investors, unable to unload the two- and three-bedroom properties, rented them to cover their upside-down mortgages.

The developers had envisioned a stable neighborhood with home*owners planting long-term roots, but now townhouses were turning over all the time. Insiders moved out. Outsiders moved in.

By the time Zimmerman shot Trayvon Martin, 40 properties inside the gate were empty and more than half of the residents were renters.

Including Brandy Green, who was dating Martin's dad. And Zimmerman himself.

Trayvon Martin lived with his dad, who resides in the Miami area, and had visited his dad's girlfriend at the Retreat several times before. The kids in the neighborhood always looked forward to playing football with him. But to George Zimmerman, he was a stranger.

• • •

Last summer, residents reported three burglaries at the Retreat, said Sanford police volunteer coordinator Wendy Dorival. At the time, workers were repairing cracks in some of the buildings. Some residents worried they were leaving their ladders up — and teenagers in the Retreat were using them to break into upstairs windows. Others feared outsiders were sneaking in.

Gated communities aren't really any safer than other neighborhoods, said David Morgenstern, spokesman for the Sanford Police Department. "Crime is comparable no matter where you go. All that gate does is make the people who live in that community feel better.

"If a criminal wants to get in, they can."

It's not hard. Drivers draft behind residents with remote control passes, following them before the gates swing closed. Old renters retain the pass code and share it. Landscapers, pizza delivery people and repairmen all have access.

After the break-ins, Zimmerman's calls to 911 seemed to shift, zeroing in on black males. Were black males actually responsible for any of the crimes reported in the Retreat? Impossible to say. Morgenstern, the police spokesman, said last week that he was too overwhelmed with media requests to get the arrest records on individual cases.

In police argot, anyone Zimmerman called about was a "suspicious person," but of course it was Zimmerman who was suspicious.

Aug. 3, 2011: "Black male with white tank top and black shorts … (Zimmerman) believes subject is involved in recent (burglaries) in the neighborhood."

Aug. 6, 2011: "Two black males, one wearing black tank top … are near the back gate of the neighborhood."

In September, the Sanford police helped the Retreat start a neighborhood watch program.

"Some residents called me wanting to do a startup," said Dorival, a civilian police employee. About 30 people came to the clubhouse for that first session, she said. "Everyone was enthusiastic." Zimmerman volunteered to be captain.

"I told them, this is not about being a vigilante police force," Dorival said. "You're not even supposed to patrol on neighborhood watch. And you're certainly not supposed to carry a gun."

For the first two months of this year, at the Retreat at Twin Lakes, the Sanford police logged 51 calls for service. Half were just people requesting information. The others included eight burglaries, two bike thefts and three simple assaults.

Zimmerman's last 911 call came on Feb. 26, at 7:11 p.m. "Black male, late teens, dark gray hoodie, jeans or sweatpants walking around area," the dispatcher recorded. A minute later: "Subject now running towards back entrance of complex."

On a recording of the call, you can hear Zimmerman say, "He's got his hand in his waistband. Something is wrong with him." Then, "He's running toward the back entrance."

The dispatcher told Zimmerman not to follow him. A patrol officer was on the way.

Minutes later, other residents at the Retreat started calling:

"A guy's yelling for help."

"I just heard a gunshot right outside our house."

"I don't hear any more screaming."

"I'm pretty sure the guy's dead out here."

"This is, like, a nice neighborhood. Oh my god! Why would someone just kill someone like that?"

• • •

Cheryl Brown was at a Walmart that night when her daughter called, crying. She hurried home to find police blocking the gates to her subdivision. She parked her car across the street and ran to her kids.

Her son, Austin, was hysterical. He had been right there, walking the dog, when he heard the cry for help. But then Sake had pulled off the leash. As her son chased the boxer, he had heard the gunshot.

"What if the dog hadn't gotten loose? What if he had tried to help? My son is 13," Brown said. "He looks a lot like Trayvon."

For her son's whole life, Brown said, she has told him: If someone's chasing you, run. "What if it's a kidnapper? Or someone trying to beat or rob you?" she asked.

She stopped walking the dog and shook her head. "But if he runs, does that make him even more suspicious?" Brown wiped her eyes. "What makes someone suspicious? That's what worries me the most."

• • •

Every building at the Retreat at Twin Lakes is painted some shade of brown: taupe, terra cotta, khaki. Every townhome has a garage out front and a keypad on the door handle — so if someone steals your keys they can't get inside. Dozens of yards have signs alerting would-be intruders of alarm systems.

"It is a peaceful place. We don't have problems here," Tito Ortiz, 62, said the other day beside his mailbox. A former minister, Ortiz remarried five years ago and bought a house in the Retreat for his new bride. Somewhere they would be safe to grow old together.

"I don't know what happened with that boy. I'm so surprised that happened here," he said. But he doesn't worry about staying in the neighborhood and has no intention of moving. "We are still going to find our peace here."

Many residents of the gated community declined to talk to reporters. Others were eager to give their opinions, but not their names. Several said they had started carrying guns.

No one had seen Zimmerman. Or Trayvon Martin's dad. Except on the news.

Jamie Meyers, 26, and her two preschoolers walked through the neighborhood to place silk violets on the teenager's memorial. She and her husband moved here two years ago to be behind a gate, to be surrounded by other families with kids. "We're thinking about moving now," said Meyers, who teaches middle school. "We don't want to stay here, in a place something like this could happen."

The next day, on the other side of the complex, Thomas Ransburg, 20, was outside talking to his girlfriend. Ransburg has lived behind the gate since January, he said, and sees no reason to move now.

A few months ago, he was hanging out with a friend who lives in another townhouse. "But that day, he forgot his key," said Ransburg. So they walked around to the back patio and opened the sliding glass door. Someone saw them and called the police. They spent four hours at the station, trying to convince investigators his friend really lived there. "They thought we were trying to rob it or something," he said.

Ransburg, who is black and wears long dreadlocks, laughed at the memory, swore it didn't make him angry, and said he understood. "I don't think it was racial," he said. "I guess we just looked suspicious. Everyone's always been real friendly back here. People smile and wave. All the little kids run around. There's always laughter."

Just then, three teenage males walked through the unlocked side gate, down the walkway toward Ransburg. T.J. Jones and his twin brother, T.Y., 14, and their cousin James Young, 13, have lived in the complex for two years. Their moms moved here from apartments to give the boys more room and a safe place to play.

The boys, who are black, used to play football with Trayvon Martin "right there on that grass where he died," said T.Y.

He told Ransburg that their mom won't let them outside after dark anymore. She is worried someone might think they are "suspicious or something," said T.J. "She keeps telling us to be careful."

Ransburg nodded, and pointed at the townhouse across the street. "You see that door? That's my door," he told the boys. "If anyone is ever bothering you or following you, if you ever feel scared, that's my door. Knock on it. I'll be there to get your back."

• • •

The community pool was empty that afternoon. So was the clubhouse. On the bulletin board, there were two fliers. One was a notice from the homeowners' association: "All residents are part of the Neighborhood Watch program and are encouraged to get to know your neighbors and look out for one another! … There is also a neighborhood watch meeting with Officer Wendy on Thursday, March 29th, 7 p.m."

The other flier said simply, "Neighborhood Watch meeting canceled."

Lane DeGregory can be reached at degregory@tampabay.com or (727) 893-8825. Times researcher Caryn Baird contributed to this report.

© 2012 Tampa Bay Times

ZippyTheChimp
March 26th, 2012, 12:52 PM
A more recent photograph of George Zimmerman
http://thegraph.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/03/zimmerman.png

BBMW
March 26th, 2012, 04:03 PM
Since he got out of his car, ran the kid down, likely started the fight, and then shot him, it's kind of likely "stand your ground" wouldn't apply.

eddhead
March 26th, 2012, 04:14 PM
..and yet somehow it does (he has not been arrested, charged or is even under suspicion by the local authorities)

mariab
March 26th, 2012, 04:24 PM
The Stand Your Ground law is fundamentally flawed if officers even can not or will not further investigate when something like this happens. While Stand Your Ground was implemented to protect victims, it wasn't implemented to circumvent all procedures involved in a shooting death. That Zimmerman still hasn't been arrested indicates to me anyway that it has.

I read another article the other day on this guy. Basically the sinister Paul Blart. The three 911 calls by him as shown in the above article were just three of many calls made because of his overzealousness. He also had an unfulfilled desire to be a police officer & was taking courses in 2008 with the sherrif's department. The latest article is that witnesses say they found Zimmerman on his back with a bloody nose, which apparently jibes with his attack defense.

lofter1
March 26th, 2012, 04:39 PM
One witness says she first saw Zimmerman standing & straddling above Trayvon's outstretched body.

Zimmerman's father states that "At no time did George follow or confront Mr. Martin" which is belied by Zimmerman's own statements and actions and also by statements relayed by Trayvon's girlfriend, who apparently was on the phone with Trayvon when the altercation began.

Reportedly, afterwards Trayvon's corpse was tested for drugs & alcohol, but Zimmerman was not tested for anything and allowed to leave the scene -- with his gun in hand.

Today it's reported by Zimmerman's lawyer that the self-appointed patrolman suffered a broken nose. Yet he didn't ask for medical aid on the day of the incident, and didn't seek medical inspection until the following day.

Ninjahedge
March 26th, 2012, 05:06 PM
It may "jibe", but how can you blame a man for hitting someone else when they come up and start asking questions/try to "apprehend" you?

If anything, TREVOR had the right to "stand his ground" and this guy deserved more than a broken nose.


(BTW, you get a broken nose, you are not going to "forget" to put that little detail down in your report. Those things gush like there was no tomorrow.)

ZippyTheChimp
March 26th, 2012, 05:09 PM
Since he got out of his car, ran the kid down, likely started the fight, and then shot him, it's kind of likely "stand your ground" wouldn't apply."Likely started the fight" is what makes Stand Your Ground the big issue in whether charges can be brought.

The law differs in the various states that have enacted it. In some, the Ground is your own property, which would make it easier to determine the aggressor. In Florida, the Ground is wherever you happen to be. Since both parties have the right to be there, who is really standing his ground?

ZippyTheChimp
March 26th, 2012, 09:21 PM
Today it's reported by Zimmerman's lawyer that the self-appointed patrolman suffered a broken nose. Yet he didn't ask for medical aid on the day of the incident, and didn't seek medical inspection until the following day.

There's more...

March 26, 2012 6:43 PM


Investigator: Martin family "will get answers"

By
Mark Strassmann

(CBS News) There was another huge rally Monday night in Sanford, Florida, where a neighborhood watch captain shot and killed an unarmed teenager one month ago.

Thousands have gathered outside a city commission meeting to demand an arrest in the case.

CBS News correspondent Mark Strassmann reports that the civic center room where the city commission met holds 600 people, but it was not big enough. So the city set up a jumbotron outside for the overflow crowd, who showed up to demand answers in the shooting that set off a national firestorm.

Trayvon Martin's parents met for the first time on Monday with investigators working with the special prosecutor appointed by Florida's governor.

Angela Corey is a Florida state attorney with a reputation being a tough prosecutor and an expert in homicide cases. She's charged with reviewing what critics complain was a botched, racist investigation by the Sanford Police Department.

"This is what we're experienced in and this is what we do," Corey said.

Her investigation mandate "includes the power to arrest, to empanel the grand jury to hear evidence and the power to handle this case in all of its relevant aspects."

George Zimmerman, a crime watch captain, says he fatally shot Martin in self-defense. He remains free.

No witness actually saw their deadly confrontation. Carey told CBS News her team plans to hire a voice recognition expert to figure out whether Zimmerman or Martin was yelling for help on a 911 tape.

"We intend to do everything we possibly can. The family will get answers," Corey said.

Zimmerman has hired a defense lawyer and authorized friends to speak on his behalf. One of them is Joe Oliver, who says Zimmerman told him this weekend he has cried repeatedly about taking Martin's life.

"We don't know what happened from the time George got out of his vehicle and the time the gun went off, but I can tell you race had nothing to do with it," Oliver said.

Right before his death, Martin's Miami-area high school had suspended him for two weeks. His family reluctantly confirmed the reason: a baggie, found in his book bag, had marijuana residue. Martin's parents say it's irrelevant and blame Sanford Police for leaking the information.

"They've killed my son and now they're trying to kill his reputation," Trayvon's mother said.

The same leak reported that in their fight, Martin knocked Zimmerman to the ground with one punch, and began bashing his head against the sidewalk. That's when Zimmerman fired his nine-millimeter.

Sanford Police say the leak was unauthorized, and have started an internal investigation.

© 2012 CBS Interactive Inc.


Unbelievable that in a homicide investigation, the police take a statement that describes his head being pounded into concrete, and there is no hospital report. Was EMS at the scene; did anyone even check out Zimmerman to see if he was OK?

lofter1
March 26th, 2012, 09:54 PM
One "up-dated" news report (http://articles.orlandosentinel.com/2012-03-26/news/os-trayvon-martin-zimmerman-account-20120326_1_miami-schools-punch-unarmed-black-teenager) from the Orlando Sentinel states that Zimmerman was checked out on the scene by paramedics, and then left unaided.

Another news account from the Orlando Sentinel (http://articles.orlandosentinel.com/2012-03-23/news/os-trayvon-martin-questions-20120323_1_sanford-cops-sanford-police-investigator-suspicious-death) that states that the cops took his gun: "a black Kel Tec 9 mm PF9, a semiautomatic. The gun is now in the possession of authorities"

Hof
March 27th, 2012, 12:15 AM
All the local news outlets on my cable feed are Orlando stations, so just hours after George Zimmerman shot Trayvon Martin there were a few moments devoted to it on the 11 o'clock shows--with a reporter "on scene" just outside the security gates--and the next day it was mentioned that Zimmerman remains free because of Florida's "stand your ground" law. To me, it was a local story, just like the sleazy Casey Anthony saga was last year.
Sanford is only 90 minutes away ( if I make all the traffic lights), and I used to have to go there often for Home-Office stuff, so I know the neighborhood. A former farm-and-trailer-park town, now just another I-4 Orlando suburb. I flew out of there once, on JetBlue.

The end of the Zimmerman/Martin story came very soon for news junkies, like by the next day's news cycle. After a couple days it just went away, supplanted by fresh shootings and other sensational happenings and around Orlando.
The story rose again about ten days ago with a ferocity and it had become a national story, headlining every network and cable news show and absorbing hours of speculation and wild ideas among the talking heads about what really happened. The Sunday "Tampa Bay Times", my "local" paper, had a BIG Headline front-page story (reproduced above), the Orlando TV stations held an all-day feed of the big rally in Sanford last week (starring Al Sharpton) -- I watched Sanford's police chief resign--LIVE!!!--and Jesse Jackson mumbled his way through a half-hour speech, carried live on all four local channels the other day. I'm overwhelmed by endless stories about the incident.

The only inforrmation I have about the shooting is what I'm being told by the media, and the media keeps on telling me pretty much the same things, endlessly.
Frankly, I'm already tired of the story.

Fabrizio
March 27th, 2012, 04:02 AM
If you are carrying a gun and patrolling a neighborhood and are not a cop... well, we call those vigilantes.

And I love the term "gated community".... it's a cute way of saying "an enclave surrounded by a wall designed to keep out undesirables".

-----

Some questions: From what I understand, the victim was inside of the "gated community". Did he have a key or pass or whatever to get in? If not, how did he get in and what was he doing there? If you are in the gated community without being a resident or guest, are you breaking the law?

ZippyTheChimp
March 27th, 2012, 08:42 AM
To me, it was a local story, just like the sleazy Casey Anthony saga was last year.At least 20 states have some form of a Stand Your Ground law. That a possible murder or manslaughter has gone uncharged because of the existence of the law in Florida has national implications.

Alaska:
Neuman's bill, tapping into Alaska's deep-rooted sense of gun rights, was moving in relative obscurity until the Florida case burst onto the national scene last week with the release of 911 tapes and the announcement of a Justice Department civil rights investigation. While the facts of how George Zimmerman came to kill Trayvon Martin are still in dispute, the swiftness of the Sanford, Fla., police department's acceptance of Zimmerman's claim of self-defense has put Florida's stand-your-ground law under national scrutiny.http://www.kansascity.com/2012/03/27/3516248/alaskas-stand-your-ground-bill.html

Justice Department involvement?
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/03/25/chuck-schumer-stand-your-ground_n_1378125.html?ref=mostpopular


The end of the Zimmerman/Martin story came very soon for news junkies, like by the next day's news cycle. After a couple days it just went away, supplanted by fresh shootings and other sensational happenings and around Orlando.The story should have stayed buried because of all the other crime in the area?

ZippyTheChimp
March 27th, 2012, 09:11 AM
Even within Florida, there doesn't seem to be a standard code regulating how neighborhood patrol groups should operate.


WEST PALM BEACH — On a day when thousands marched in Sanford to protest the shooting of teenager Trayvon Martin by a volunteer neighborhood watchman, West Palm Beach acting police co-chief Bryan Kummerlen assured commissioners that a similar incident won't happen here.

"Citizen observers have no authority and will not carry any type of weapon while working in a citizen observer patrol program, even if they are licensed to do so," Kummerlen said at a commission workshop on Monday. "Even if they have a license to carry a firearm, they still can't. They can't carry knives." http://www.palmbeachpost.com/news/state/west-palm-police-co-chief-citizen-patrols-here-2263049.html

In NYC, the unpaid Auxiliary Police, who are attached to the NYPD and uniformed, don't carry handguns.

Merry
March 27th, 2012, 12:23 PM
George Zimmerman, a crime watch captain, says he fatally shot Martin in self-defense.

Sorry, I may have missed this somewhere, but in self-defence of what exactly? What did Trayvon Martin do to Zimmerman to justify self-defence?

Not to mention what the hell people in Zimmerman's position are doing with a gun. That's not to say shooting one's neighbours is not tempting at times.


“If prosecutors don't have the evidence to disprove the claim of self-defense, they won't be able to win.”

What about evidence from the defence to prove it? Goddess help us.


“Even if you have suspicions about what motivated this, and you think there was a racial element and no justification for this shooting, the fact is he had no obligation to retreat under the law,”

If he was genuinely afraid for his safety, common sense should've dictated retreat, which he was clearly able to do. There was a different agenda here.

"Stand your ground", "Duty to retreat" :confused:. The law is an (obstructive) ass.

ZippyTheChimp
March 27th, 2012, 12:43 PM
The Colbert Report (http://www.colbertnation.com/the-colbert-report-videos/411137/march-26-2012/the-word---dressed-to-kill)

Hof
March 27th, 2012, 01:10 PM
Zippy

"The story, [which} should have been buried..?", as you pointed out in a lightly sarcastic manner, was really smothered by the passage of time and the endless creation of ever newer stories that TV news depends upon to remain contemporary. Like the leaves from a tree, NEW stories about atrocities, gang violence, shootings, DUI killings, c-store robberies and the like, fell daily from the news tree and simply buried the Zimmerman/ Martin leaf from sunlight. Each of those stories had their moment on the ground before new newsleaves fell, and each had some major importance to someone, somewhere. Perhaps some of them should be dragged out of the pile and looked at again. Maybe there are dozens of Zimmerman/Martin-like stories still buried, forever obscure after only a few moments exposure to the light.
But, if we are going to do this we should hurry. New leaves are falling, endlessly falling.
And Casey Anthony had nothing to do with "stand your ground". She employed the "lie like a rug" defense and won her case, despite overwhelming evidence suggesting that she murdered her kid.

When yesterday's news stories one day arise from the leaf pile and make their ghosts known again, like OJ or Osama--and now the Z/M story-- then THAT is the real news.

BBMW
March 27th, 2012, 04:50 PM
A couple of interesting tidbits. Just as background, what's been coming out is that after Zimmerman left his car, he got into an altercation with Martin. In the altercation, Martin punched Zimmerman hard enough to slam him to the ground, then got on top if him, and started slamming Zimmerman's head into the sidewalk. Somewhere in this, Zimmerman is able to pull his gun and shoot Martin.

Now here are a couple of applicable parts of FL self defense statutes. First the "Stand Your Ground" part of the law:

776.013 Home protection; use of deadly force; presumption of fear of death or great bodily harm.—

(3) 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.

Personally I don't think this is so applicable. It's not so much as Zimmerman didn't retreat as much as he advanced. But he did have a right to be in the location where the fight took place.

Okay, the next one.

776.041 Use of force by aggressor. —The justification described in the preceding sections of this chapter is not available to a person who:

(2) Initially provokes the use of force against himself or herself, unless:

(a) Such force is so great that the person reasonably believes that he or she is in imminent danger of death or great bodily harm and that he or she has exhausted every reasonable means to escape such danger other than the use of force which is likely to cause death or great bodily harm to the assailant;
I think what Zimmerman did qualifed as prevoking the use of force. However, the law gives him an out here. If he had been knocked to the ground, and, as has been suggested, Martin was on top of him, slamming head against the sidewalk, it could very well satisfy the second clause.

This may be why the police/prosecutors haven't acted. But if that is the case, the need to explain this.

BBMW
March 27th, 2012, 05:01 PM
A news report about Zimmerman's claims about the events:

http://articles.orlandosentinel.com/2012-03-26/news/os-trayvon-martin-zimmerman-account-20120326_1_miami-schools-punch-unarmed-black-teenager

Police: Zimmerman says Trayvon decked him with one blow then began hammering his head7:36 p.m. EST, March 26, 2012| By Rene Stutzman (http://bio.tribune.com/ReneStutzman), Orlando Sentinel



With a single punch, Trayvon Martin (http://www.orlandosentinel.com/topic/PEOCVC000188.topic) decked the Neighborhood Watch volunteer who eventually shot and killed the unarmed 17-year-old, then Trayvon climbed on top of George Zimmerman and slammed his head into the sidewalk, leaving him bloody and battered, law-enforcement authorities told the Orlando Sentinel.
That is the account Zimmerman gave police, and much of it has been corroborated by witnesses, authorities say. There have been no reports that a witness saw the initial punch Zimmerman told police about.
Zimmerman has not spoken publicly about what happened Feb. 26. But that night, and in later meetings, he described and re-enacted for police what he says took place.
In his version of events, Zimmerman had turned around and was walking back to his SUV when Trayvon approached him from behind, the two exchanged words and then Trayvon punched him in the nose, sending him to the ground, and began beating him.
(http://googleads.g.doubleclick.net/aclk?sa=L&ai=BbxaIISlyT-_NNszG8APO3eXgCMXux7MD1cnjpELAjbcBwJM4EAIYAiDzh5EU KAI4AFDGkpe0A2DJxqmLwKTYD7IBHGFydGljbGVzLm9ybGFuZG 9zZW50aW5lbC5jb226AQozMDB4MjUwX2pzyAEB2gGNAWh0dHA6 Ly9hcnRpY2xlcy5vcmxhbmRvc2VudGluZWwuY29tLzIwMTItMD MtMjYvbmV3cy9vcy10cmF5dm9uLW1hcnRpbi16aW1tZXJtYW4t YWNjb3VudC0yMDEyMDMyNl8xX21pYW1pLXNjaG9vbHMtcHVuY2 gtdW5hcm1lZC1ibGFjay10ZWVuYWdlcoACAagDAegDEOgDmAPo A6UB6AOVBvUDAAAARPUDIACAAQ&num=2&sig=AOD64_3tbzYQFWLEhRwrEY57MLjRWzw_vA&client=ca-pub-8065581269528142&adurl=http://www.swiftytravel.com/go.php%3Fquery%3Dlas%2Bvegas%2Btrips%2Bpackages%26 swid%3Dsw-4d827f48d4b0c%26sws%3Dadwc%26swbk%3Dlas%2520vegas% 2520deals%26swcid%3D17724712173%26swp%3Darticles.o rlandosentinel.com%26swnw%3Dd)




Zimmerman told police he shot the teenager in self-defense.
Civil-rights leaders and more than a million other people have demanded Zimmerman's arrest, calling Trayvon a victim of racial profiling and suggesting Zimmerman is a vigilante.
Trayvon was an unarmed black teenager who had committed no crime, they say, who was gunned down while walking back from a 7-Eleven with nothing more sinister than a package of Skittles and can of Arizona iced tea.
Zimmerman's account
This is what the Sentinel has learned about Zimmerman's account to investigators:
He said he was on his way to the grocery store when he spotted Trayvon walking through his gated community.



Trayvon was visiting his father's fiancée, who lived there. He had been suspended from school in Miami after being found with an empty marijuana baggie. Miami schools have a zero-tolerance policy for drug possession.
Police have been reluctant to provide details about their evidence.
But after the Sentinel story appeared online Monday morning, City Manager Norton Bonaparte Jr. issued a news release, saying there would be an internal-affairs investigation into the source of the leak and, if identified, the person or people involved would be disciplined.
He did not challenge the accuracy of the information.
At a Monday news conference, Trayvon's mother, father and their lawyers called the report that their son was suspended from school because of a marijuana baggie irrelevant and needlessly hurtful.
Trayvon's father, Tracy Martin, said "even in death, they are still disrespecting my son, and I feel that that's a sin."
His mother, Sybrina Fulton, said, "They killed my son, and now they're trying to kill his reputation."
Supporters have held rallies in Sanford, Miami, New York and Tallahassee, calling the case a tragic miscarriage of justice.
Civil-rights activist the Rev. Al Sharpton headlined a rally in Sanford on Thursday that drew an estimated 8,000 people. The Rev. Jesse Jackson on Sunday spoke at an Eatonville (http://www.orlandosentinel.com/topic/PLGEO100100410060000.topic) church, where he called Trayvon a martyr.
Zimmerman has gone into hiding. A fringe group, the New Black Panther Party, has offered a $10,000 reward for his "capture."
One-minute gap
On Feb. 26, when Zimmerman first spotted Trayvon, he called police and reported a suspicious person, describing Trayvon as black, acting strangely and perhaps on drugs.
Zimmerman got out of his SUV to follow Trayvon on foot. When a dispatch employee asked Zimmerman if he was following the 17-year-old, Zimmerman said yes. The dispatcher told Zimmerman he did not need to do that.
There is about a one-minute gap during which police say they're not sure what happened.
Zimmerman told them he lost sight of Trayvon and was walking back to his SUV when Trayvon approached him from the left rear, and they exchanged words.
Trayvon asked Zimmerman if he had a problem. Zimmerman said no and reached for his cell phone, he told police. Trayvon then said, "Well, you do now" or something similar and punched Zimmerman in the nose, according to the account he gave police.
Zimmerman fell to the ground and Trayvon got on top of him and began slamming his head into the sidewalk, he told police.
Zimmerman began yelling for help.
Several witnesses heard those cries, and there has been a dispute about whether they came from Zimmerman or Trayvon.
Lawyers for Trayvon's family say it was Trayvon, but police say their evidence indicates it was Zimmerman.
One witness, who has since talked to local television news reporters, told police he saw Zimmerman on the ground with Trayvon on top, pounding him — and was unequivocal that it was Zimmerman who was crying for help.
Zimmerman then shot Trayvon once in the chest at very close range, according to authorities.
When police arrived less than two minutes later, Zimmerman was bleeding from the nose, had a swollen lip and had bloody lacerations to the back of his head.
Paramedics gave him first aid (http://www.orlandosentinel.com/topic/0700300027.topic) but he said he did not need to go to the hospital. He got medical care the next day.
Copyright © 2012, Orlando Sentinel

ZippyTheChimp
March 27th, 2012, 05:07 PM
Like the leaves from a tree, NEW stories about atrocities, gang violence, shootings, DUI killings, c-store robberies and the like, fell daily from the news tree and simply buried the Zimmerman/ Martin leaf from sunlight. Each of those stories had their moment on the ground before new newsleaves fell, and each had some major importance to someone, somewhere. Perhaps some of them should be dragged out of the pile and looked at again.It's been one whole month.


But, if we are going to do this we should hurry. New leaves are falling, endlessly falling.A disturbing rationalization for an possible unsolved crime. Would you want the leaves to cover the body of your own son?


And Casey Anthony had nothing to do with "stand your ground". She employed the "lie like a rug" defense and won her case, despite overwhelming evidence suggesting that she murdered her kid.I don't know why you're telling me about Casey Anthony. I never mentioned her, nor did anyone else; you brought her up. Why?

stache
March 27th, 2012, 05:33 PM
Because she's Floridian.

Fabrizio
March 27th, 2012, 06:28 PM
But, if we are going to do this we should hurry. New leaves are falling, endlessly falling.


A disturbing rationalization for an possible unsolved crime. Would you want the leaves to cover the body of your own son?

What?? Hof is saying nothing of the kind. You are completely misinterpreting his statement.

ZippyTheChimp
March 27th, 2012, 06:55 PM
^
Maybe you should let people explain themselves, instead of doing it for them.

I took the entirety of two posts to figure out what I think he is saying, and from the first, he said:


Frankly, I'm already tired of the story.

We still haven't figured out why Casey Anthony was mentioned, other than as Stache said, she's Floridian.

ZippyTheChimp
March 27th, 2012, 07:27 PM
A news report about Zimmerman's claims about the events:There is another version of events, which involve Martin's cellphone, and records from T-Mobile of a conversation between he and his girlfriend at the time of the incident:

ABC News was there exclusively as the 16-year-old girl told Crump about the last moments of the teenager's life. Martin had been talking to his girlfriend all the way to the store where he bought Skittles and a tea. The phone was in his pocket and the earphone in his ear, Crump said.

"He said this man was watching him, so he put his hoodie on. He said he lost the man," Martin's friend said. "I asked Trayvon to run, and he said he was going to walk fast. I told him to run, but he said he was not going to run."

Eventually, he would run, said the girl, thinking that he'd managed to escape. But suddenly the strange man was back, cornering Martin.

"Trayvon said, 'What are you following me for,' and the man said, 'What are you doing here.' Next thing I hear is somebody pushing, and somebody pushed Trayvon because the head set just fell. I called him again, and he didn't answer the phone."

http://abcnews.go.com/US/trayvon-martin-death-friend-phone-teen-death-recounts/story?id=15959017#.T3JLvNXvyWh

lofter1
March 27th, 2012, 09:00 PM
The unexplained missing minute = BS

Clearly Zimmerman pursued TM. How could the cops not have pressed Zimmerman for details about what happened once Z encountered TM? How did the earpiece get knocked out of TM's ear?

So in Florida if you aggressively approach a stranger, and possibly / likely assault that person for whatever reason (any physical interaction is an assault under the law) and the assaultee pushes back in defense, then that gives the assaulter the right to shoot and kill?

BBMW
March 27th, 2012, 11:18 PM
i wouldn't have a problem is they charged this guy with manslaugter, and let a judge and jury sort it out. However, given the law as posted above, an aquittal is a real possibility. DAs are notoriously unwilling to go to trial with cases the arn't sure they can win.

ZippyTheChimp
March 27th, 2012, 11:42 PM
That's true.


Tue, Mar. 27, 2012


Sanford cops wanted to charge Zimmerman in Trayvon Martin case

By Frances Robles
frobles@MiamiHerald.com

Despite public claims that there wasn’t enough probable cause to make a criminal case in the Trayvon Martin killing, early in the investigation the Sanford Police Department requested an arrest warrant from the Seminole County State Attorney’s office, the special prosecutor in the case told The Miami Herald on Tuesday.

A Sanford Police incident report shows the case was categorized as “homicide/negligent manslaughter.”

The state attorney’s office held off pending further review, The Miami Herald has learned.

The Miami Gardens high school junior was killed Feb. 26 by George Zimmerman, a neighborhood watch volunteer. The 28-year-old insurance underwriter and college student was never charged, triggering a nationwide crusade on the dead teen’s behalf.

Asked to confirm that the police recommended a manslaughter charge, special prosecutor Angela Corey said: “I don’t know about that, but as far as the process I can tell you that the police went to the state attorney with a capias request, meaning: ‘We’re through with our investigation and here it is for you.’ The state attorney impaneled a grand jury, but before anything else could be done, the governor stepped in and asked us to pick it up in mid-stream.”

A capias is a request for charges to be filed.

The Seminole County State Attorney’s Office declined to comment on whether its prosecutors ever recommended against filing charges.

“If you go with what was reported in the press the first night, there would have been an arrest right away, but obviously something gave investigators pause,” said a source in the Seminole State Attorney’s office who did not want to speak publicly, because the case is now assigned to a different prosecutor. “We get capias warrants all the time. That doesn’t mean we file charges right away. We investigate to see if it’s appropriate. That’s the responsible thing to do.’’

The Seminole County State Attorney’s Office was consulted the night of Trayvon’s killing, but no prosecutor ever visited the scene. As the controversy intensified, Gov. Rick Scott replaced Seminole State Attorney Norm Wolfinger with Corey, the state attorney for Duval, Nassau and Clay counties, based in Jacksonville.

“The case now has a new state attorney, and they didn’t file charges the first day they got it, either,” the Seminole prosecutor who asked to remain anonymous said.

The development is in stark contrast to the statements repeatedly made by Bill Lee, the Sanford police chief who has since stepped aside and was lambasted for his handling of the case. Lee publicly insisted that there was no probable cause to arrest Zimmerman, leading many critics to say he came across more like a defense attorney for the security buff.

“Zimmerman provided a statement claiming he acted in self defense which at the time was supported by physical evidence and testimony,” Lee wrote in a memo posted on the city’s website. “By Florida Statute, law enforcement was PROHIBITED from making an arrest based of the facts and circumstances they had at the time.”

He cited the statute number for Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” law, which provides immunity to people who kill someone in self defense.

Lee’s was criticized for his explanations, because many people thought he was bending over backward to protect the shooter based on the results of a shoddy investigation.

A spokeswoman for the city said the police department would make no further comments on the ongoing investigation.

The FBI and Florida Department of Law Enforcement took over the case. An FDLE investigator and the new prosecutor were spotted in Zimmerman’s neighborhood Tuesday interviewing witnesses.

Many of the facts of what happened at the Retreat at Twin Lakes that night remain murky.

What’s clear is that Trayvon was staying at his father’s girlfriend’s house in a gated community in Sanford while serving out a 10-day suspension for getting caught with an empty baggie of marijuana at Dr. Michael M. Krop Senior High School.

He went for a walk shortly before the start of the NBA All Stars game to buy Skittles and iced tea. Zimmerman, who had a history of reporting “suspicious characters,” spotted Trayvon when he was on his way back from 7-Eleven and called police saying he saw someone who looked high, walked too slowly in the rain and appeared to be looking at people’s houses.

The neighborhood watch volunteer, who was licensed to carry a 9 mm semiautomatic handgun in a holster, was recorded on the police line muttering profanities and a possible racial slur. He tailed Trayvon until the boy took off running.

Trayvon’s attorneys say the dead teen’s cell phone records show he was on the phone with his girlfriend, who told lawyers that Trayvon was alarmed that someone was following him. She heard him ask Zimmerman why he was pursuing him, then heard a scuffle before the line went dead.

Zimmerman told police that Trayvon approached him from behind and attacked him. An unnamed police source told the Orlando Sentinel that Zimmerman said Trayvon decked him with one punch and slammed his head on the concrete.

The two tussled on the ground, and Zimmerman took the gun from his waist and shot Trayvon once in the chest.

Zimmerman, Lee told The Herald two weeks ago, was able to articulate that he was in “reasonable fear” of great bodily harm or death. Witness statements and a doctor’s report corroborated his injuries, Lee said. A police report said he had a bloody nose and a grass-stained shirt.

Miami Herald staff writer Toluse Olonnuripa contributed to this story.

© 2012 Miami Herald Media Company

Merry
March 28th, 2012, 07:17 AM
The Colbert Report (http://www.colbertnation.com/the-colbert-report-videos/411137/march-26-2012/the-word---dressed-to-kill)

"This content is unavailable from your location."

Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr :mad:.

ZippyTheChimp
March 28th, 2012, 08:08 AM
Can we still keep the Geico gekko.

stache
March 28th, 2012, 11:08 AM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ztc-JPzSefs

ZippyTheChimp
March 28th, 2012, 05:02 PM
At least it has the best part about Geraldo Rivera.

Merry, you might be able to get the video as posted on the TV Guide site.

http://video.tvguide.com/Colbert+Report/The+Word+-+Dressed+to+Kill/9595593

Hof
March 28th, 2012, 07:42 PM
Zippy--

Again, thanks for your vague, misdirected comments.
MY comments had everything to do with the local--and ultimately, national-- news outlets endlessly drumming the same alleged facts about the Zimmerman/Martin encounter over their airwaves and into my skull. The local news team's failure to pick up and run with the Z/M story is not something that I was concerned about when I initially posted, because the story, when it emerged, was nothing more than a routine shooting, something reported almost daily. Orlando has quite a serious violent crime problem and those kinds of stories are rather common.
Also, Zippy, I forgot that you don't have access to Orlando news reporting way up there in New York, so there is no possible way you could have followed the story, from the very beginning, as I have.

Because the story eminated from the Orlando area ( like--wait for it--the Casey Anthony story) and rose to national prominence, I consider it a local piece of news that has gone Big Time. I was initially surprised when-- after about TWO WEEKS--the local folks once again began reporting about it. I seem to recall a reporter on one of the local stations saying..."Remember the story about the security guard shooting a teenager that we reported on a couple weeks ago? Well, here are some new developments..." Almost instantly, the story went viral and I began hearing MY LOCAL NEWS reported from New York by the likes of CNN, FOX,CBS and NBC.
"Interesting", I thought;.. "its just like the Casey Anthony story" (which began as a missing child story , then sort of went away until the national networks began their endless dissection of the case). I hope that clears up the mystery of Casey Anthony appearing in a post about Zimmerman/ Martin.
Also, I hope that THIS post does not lead you to more confusion and missing-of-the-point. If it does, I suggest that, when you read my posts, you read them slower. That way, you may even get my metaphors.

By the way, I have still not arrived at any viable opinion about the Z/M situation, aside from thinking how unfortunate is was for a young man to die early. The story is still developing, but with the absence of any new information, it has become a repetitious rehash of a local incident, and no bad guys seem to have emerged. That could change, and I depend upon my local news outlets to keep me up-to-date.

ZippyTheChimp
March 28th, 2012, 08:34 PM
I became aware of this story on the weekend of March 18th, when news came out that the case was headed for the Justice Department. That's what made it national - which you described as "going viral." I waited until a coherent story developed before posting this thread, devoid of all the hysteria - eight days. On March 26th, this was a national story; we don't typically post local news from other areas. The topic also dovetails with other issues many of us discuss here, such as concealed-carry laws and gun-control.

Your post #11 seems to be more about you and your fatigue at having to hear this over and over. Some people with that mindset might choose to just ignore this thread, but to each his own.

Still wondering though, why you believe they have to rush.
But, if we are going to do this we should hurryThe special prosecutor assigned to the case has advised an opposite approach:


The special prosecutor investigating the fatal shooting of an unarmed teenager by a neighborhood watch volunteer pleaded with the public Tuesday to give her team the time it needs to uncover the truth.

http://www.latimes.com/news/nation/nationnow/la-na-nn-trayvon-martin-case-special-prosecutor-pleads-for-patience-20120327,0,1949206.story?track=rss

ZippyTheChimp
March 28th, 2012, 10:30 PM
A police surveillance video has emerged showing George Zimmerman arriving at a police station in handcuffs.

http://www.suntimes.com/news/nation/11588272-418/video-shows-no-blood-or-bruises-on-george-zimmerman.html

scumonkey
March 28th, 2012, 11:01 PM
Something is rotten in the state of Denmark.

ZippyTheChimp
March 28th, 2012, 11:08 PM
Is that a metaphor?

I'm not too good with them.

scumonkey
March 28th, 2012, 11:22 PM
yes

(as you probably know)
Shakespeare - Hamlet.
"Hamlet." Act I, Scene 4: Marcellus (an officer) says "Something is rotten in the state of Denmark," having just seen the ghost of Hamlet's father, the late king of Denmark.

meaning "things are unsatisfactory; there is something wrong."

stache
March 28th, 2012, 11:32 PM
Thank God I heeded a warning to read these posts more slowly. Otherwise that metaphor might have escaped me as well.

lofter1
March 28th, 2012, 11:53 PM
That vid sheds a much needed light on things. Uncovering the real truth here is going to be difficult, given what appears to be a whole mass of folks trying to cover their asses after the fact.

lofter1
March 29th, 2012, 12:34 AM
Sanford Police Department "Partial Report (http://www.sanfordfl.gov/investigation/docs/Twin%20Lakes%20Shooting%20Initial%20Report.pdf)" filed by an officer who responded to the scene of the killing.

lofter1
March 29th, 2012, 01:03 AM
Notice at the top of Page 2 of that police report, which shows it was filed in the early morning hours of February 27 (shooting took place early evening of February 26), that this is written:

Name: MARTIN, TRAYVON BENJAMIN DOB: 2/5/1995

Person Type: VICTIM / JUVENILE



So if they knew who he was and ID'd him then why did it take them 3 days to contact TM's father?

lofter1
March 29th, 2012, 01:36 AM
Zimmerman's father has legal connections:

Zimmerman: Dad worked as magistrate

ABC Action News (http://www.abcactionnews.com/dpp/news/crime/zimmerman-dad-worked-as-magistrate)
Tampa, FL
March 28, 2012

TAMPA, Fla. - Some viewers on the ABC Action News facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/#!/tampabaynews) have asked whether George Zimmerman’s father served as a judge.
Some have speculated Zimmerman’s father may have used that position to get a 2005 charge against his son thrown out (although, while the charge of assaulting a law enforcement officer was dropped, there is no proof Zimmerman’s father played any role in making that happen).

On Wednesday, we decided to answer your questions about what was truth and what was fiction.

We obtained a copy of George Zimmerman’s application (http://www.scribd.com/heidi_vries/d/87064208-George-Zimmerman’s-application-for-the-Citizens-Police-Academy-in-2008) to join the Seminole County Sheriff’s Office Citizens Law Enforcement Academy.

In it, Zimmerman writes that his “father is a retired Magistrate Judge for the supreme court (sic) of Virginia.”

George Zimmerman’s father is Robert Zimmerman. Robert Zimmerman gave a statement to the ‘Orlando Sentinel’ (http://articles.orlandosentinel.com/2012-03-15/news/os-trayvon-martin-shooting-zimmerman-letter-20120315_1_robert-zimmerman-letter-unarmed-black-teenager) defending his son’s role in the shooting death of teenager Trayvon Martin.

We then contacted the Virginia Supreme Court to confirm Robert Zimmerman’s employment.

Kristi Wright with the Department of Legislative and Public Relations wrote us this email in response:

“Robert J. Zimmerman served as a full-time magistrate from 2000-2006. Please be advised that in Virginia magistrates are judicial officers, but they are not considered "judges" and do not possess trial jurisdiction. More detailed information on the role of the magistrate in Virginia is available on Virginia's Judicial System (http://www.courts.state.va.us/courtadmin/aoc/djs/programs/mag/home.html) Website (http://www.courts.state.va.us/courtadmin/aoc/djs/programs/mag/home.html) .”

***

From that ^ Virginia Judicial System link (maybe the code of conduct expires upon retirement):

CANONS OF CONDUCT FOR VIRGINIA MAGISTRATES (http://www.courts.state.va.us/courtadmin/aoc/djs/programs/mag/resources/canons.pdf)

Magistrates are independent judicial officers. They make decisions that directly impact the liberty, reputation and economic interests of people. Therefore, magistrates should exercise a high degree of circumspection, professionalism, dignity, and conscientiousness in performing their magisterial duties.

Canon 1

A MAGISTRATE SHOULD UPHOLD THE INTEGRITY AND INDEPENDENCE OF THE JUDICIARY.

Canon 2

A MAGISTRATE SHALL AVOID IMPROPRIETY AND THE APPEARANCE OF IMPROPRIETY IN ALL OF THE MAGISTRATE'S ACTIVITIES.

Merry
March 29th, 2012, 07:25 AM
Thanks for the video links, Zippy and stache :).

Very entertaining exchange above, too. You're absolutely right, SM :cool:.

The video is hilarious and 100% spot-on.


Just saw this on the news :rolleyes::

Congressman dons hoodie in protest (http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/breaking/2012/0329/breaking3.html)

PS: If looking suspicious is measured by one's appearance alone, I'd judge Zimmerman far more suspicious than Trayvon Martin no matter what either of them was wearing.

ZippyTheChimp
March 29th, 2012, 08:43 AM
From what I've been reading, there may be some sort of connection between...

Robert Zimmerman - the retired magistrate, who lives in a more upscale community near that of his son.
State Attorney Norman Wolfinger - who recused himself from the case.
Sanford Chief of Police Bill Lee - suspended.
Detective Chris Serino - the head homicide detective, who was not called to the shooting scene (a narcotics detective was called instead), but was present at the police station when George Zimmerman was brought in.

Robert Zimmerman gave an videotaped interview in which he stated:

Trayvon Martin got on top of him, and just started beating him. In his face, on his nose, hitting his face on the concrete.

After nearly a minute of being beaten, George was trying to get his head off the concrete, trying to move with Trayvon on him, in the grass. In doing so, his firearm was shown. Trayvon Martin said something to the effect of, 'You're going to die now,' or 'You're going to die tonight' or something to that effect.Then this supposedly happened:
Robert Zimmerman said Martin continued to beat his son, and George Zimmerman at some point pulled out his gun and "did what he did."

http://www.foxnews.com/us/2012/03/29/george-zimmermans-father-claims-trayvon-martin-beat-his-son-threatened-his-life/

A few problems with this account.

According to George Zimmerman, Martin was on top of him, his knees pinning down Zimmerman's arms. The handgun was in a belt holster; it would have been behind Martin. How did it come into view? And if it did come into view and Martin was at this point determined to kill Zimmerman, why didn't Martin reach for the gun?

Also, Martin stating "You're going to die tonight" would be an important piece of evidence. I've found no information that Zimmerman told this to the Sanford police when he was interviewed.


On the night of the incident, Norman Wolfinger was either at the shooting scene or the police station, and spoke in person with Bill Lee. It was reported that it's highly unusual for the State Attorney to initially appear at the crime scene; it's generally an assistant. There have been other violent crimes in the Sanford area. Why did he go to this one?

Detective Chris Serino is the one who found problems with Zimmerman's account, and stated in an affidavit on Feb 26th that Zimmerman should be charged. He was overruled by the prosecutors office. On or about March 5th, Serino and another detective interviewed the 13 year old boy who was walking his dog, heard the gunshot, and spoke to the 911 dispatcher.



I wondered how ABC obtained the police video. The reporter, Matt Gutman said in an interview that he just asked the police, and they gave it to him.

There might be conflict between the Sanford police, who are taking most of the criticism for a decision they didn't make, and the prosecutor's office.

Ninjahedge
March 29th, 2012, 10:02 AM
Amazing how a guy that had his "nose broken" had no blood on his face or clothes. Amazing his his head was "smashed against the sidewalk" yet there are no visible marks.

At the VERY LEAST, he is exaggerating things quite obviously.

And his father is full of crap. he was not on the phone with him, he was not a witness, he should STFU and let them (law enforcement) do their job.

Ninjahedge
March 29th, 2012, 10:05 AM
Zip, Sanford may just be trying to keep their hands off this as much as they can.

It is odd that that tape was gotten so quickly and so easily (w/o a warrant or court order?). I smell politics.

Hof
March 29th, 2012, 10:14 AM
Here's another little tidbit--the movie director Spike Lee, in an effort to utilize social media and stir up a few flames, created a tweet disclosing the home address of George Zimmerman and sent it out to his many friends. Silly Spike. He gave out THE WRONG ADDRESS--and an elderly couple, who, I presume, had zero to do with the shooting or the characters involved, found themselves the unwitting target of the angry mobs. The old folks, who suddenly were stunned to find themselves neck-deep in this ugly controversy, had to abandon their home and go stay in a motel. They were interviewed by a local reporter at their undisclosed motel room last night ( by one of the Orlando stations, as it happened) and it was evident that they were really scared by this happening to them and they feared returning to their home.
What motivated Mr Lee to inject such fear into this neighborhood and upon these people? Was he merely sharing some information or did his action have deeper meaning? Where did he find this ( incorrect) information, and can he or his sources now be trusted to have any credibility? Why has he decided to inject himself into the Zimmerman/ Martin incident? He doesn't live in Orlando, nor, I assume, does he know any of the people involved. I think he lives in New York, right?
He has since done a re-tweet, apologizing for his rush to judgement and advising his followers to avoid the home of the old folks. Classy move, Spike. You may have just dodged a lawsuit.

Recently, like during my last few visits to "WNY", I decided to shed my lassitude about the Z/M situation and pay closer attention. I'm on the cusp of interest, de-bored and forming some opinions, and I plan to watch every news blurb about the case that I'm capable of. I also plan to use fewer metaphors and to type a little slower, so anyone can clearly understand what I write.

--Would it be inappropriate to disclose Spike Lee's home address at this time?
Just wondering...

ZippyTheChimp
March 29th, 2012, 10:31 AM
Zip, Sanford may just be trying to keep their hands off this as much as they can.

It is odd that that tape was gotten so quickly and so easily (w/o a warrant or court order?). I smell politics.My guess is that the police want charges to be filed, or at least don't want to be the ones blamed if charges aren't filed. There was an earlier "unauthorized leek" of information about Martin.

BTW, the last person who had contact with Martin, other than Zimmerman, was his 16 year-old girlfriend, who has remained anonymous. Martin was talking to her on his cell during the incident. As of last night, she still has not been interviewed by police, although reporters have interviewed her several times.


Spike Lee, Geraldo Rivera, Jesse Jackson, the Rep on the House floor in a hoodie, etc - have nothing to do with whether or not Zimmerman should be charged with a crime.

Ninjahedge
March 29th, 2012, 10:45 AM
People like to be angry about something, even if it has nothing to do with them.

I am not saying that this story does not deserve attention, but I also do not think it deserves this kind of emotion. Angry mobs are never the best juries.

Fabrizio
March 29th, 2012, 10:47 AM
Silly Spike.

And speaking of silliness.... re: Representative Bobby Rush's protest hoodie (Merry's post above):

It is interesting how the story seems to change with the telling. In the 911 call, Zimmerman opens by saying the following:

"We’ve had some break-ins in my neighborhood and there’s a real suspicious guy. It’s Retreat View Circle. The best address I can give you is 111 Retreat View Circle. This guy looks like he’s up to no good or he’s on drugs or something. It’s raining and he’s just walking around looking about."

Actually it is the 911 dispatcher that brings up race by asking: "OK, is he White, Black, or Hispanic?"

Zimmerman says: "He looks black."

The dispatcher then asks "Did you see what he was wearing?"

Zimmerman "Yeah, a dark hoodie like a gray hoodie. He wore jeans or sweat pants and white tennis shoes."

A bit later Zimmerman qualifies what the dispatcher asked him by saying: "he’s a black male"

ZippyTheChimp
March 29th, 2012, 11:06 AM
Amazing how a guy that had his "nose broken" had no blood on his face or clothes. Amazing his his head was "smashed against the sidewalk" yet there are no visible marks.Photos are usually taken at a crime scene. Clothing is impounded - at least in this case Zimmerman's shirt and jacket should have been taken. Without a homicide detective on the scene, you have to wonder about the quality of the evidence that was gathered.


And his father is full of crap. he was not on the phone with him, he was not a witness, he should STFU and let them (law enforcement) do their job.Fathers do what fathers do. I still think there's a connection between him and Wolfinger. The prosecutor was very quick to recuse himself when the shit hit the fan. Now, because the case is being handled by another office, his office will not comment at all.

ZippyTheChimp
March 29th, 2012, 11:17 AM
From post #1:

George Zimmerman, 28, moved into the Retreat in the summer of 2009 with his wife, Shellie. Records show he worked at a pressure-washing company, though neighbors said they never saw a truck.

Right away, he started calling the police. The 911 operators translated his complaints into the bloodless shorthand of law enforcement.

Aug. 26, 2009: "Male driving with no headlights on."

Sept. 22, 2009: "Yellow speed bike doing wheelies."

Oct. 23, 2009: "Aggressive white and brown pit bull."

The transcripts of Zimmerman's 911 calls during the more than two years he lived on Retreat View Circle fill 28 pages. His concerns include everything from the driver of a pickup cutting off people to a neighbor leaving his garage door open.

He kept a close watch for outsiders, but it couldn't have been easy to tell who belonged and who didn't. When the housing market crashed, many townhomes were foreclosed on and the owners evicted. Dozens of investors, unable to unload the two- and three-bedroom properties, rented them to cover their upside-down mortgages.

The developers had envisioned a stable neighborhood with home*owners planting long-term roots, but now townhouses were turning over all the time. Insiders moved out. Outsiders moved in.

By the time Zimmerman shot Trayvon Martin, 40 properties inside the gate were empty and more than half of the residents were renters.

Including Brandy Green, who was dating Martin's dad. And Zimmerman himself.

Trayvon Martin lived with his dad, who resides in the Miami area, and had visited his dad's girlfriend at the Retreat several times before. The kids in the neighborhood always looked forward to playing football with him. But to George Zimmerman, he was a stranger.

The Retreat at Twin Lakes
http://www.trbimg.com/img-4f6bc1b9/turbine/la-141625500.jpg-20120322/600

BBMW
March 29th, 2012, 11:19 AM
Given the now enormous profile of this case, the fact that charges still haven't been filed says something, probably about the quality of the case. This is now well beyond the point where the good ole' boy network could protect Zimmerman, if that was ever the case. Bunglement by the local PD is a real possibility.


Photos are usually taken at a crime scene. Clothing is impounded - at least in this case Zimmerman's shirt and jacket should have been taken. Without a homicide detective on the scene, you have to wonder about the quality of the evidence that was gathered.

Fathers do what fathers do. I still think there's a connection between him and Wolfinger. The prosecutor was very quick to recuse himself when the shit hit the fan. Now, because the case is being handled by another office, his office will not comment at all.

Fabrizio
March 29th, 2012, 11:24 AM
How did Trayvon enter the gated compound? If you are in one of these places with out an invitation... is your being there breaking the law?

Hof
March 29th, 2012, 11:36 AM
He probably had a security code or maybe an electronic card. The security in that subdivision has been described as "poor" by some of the residents I saw interviewed, and that is not all that unusual. Security codes get passed around liberally in gated communities.
Trayvon was visiting his father's girlfriend, so she probably gave him the info he needed to pass through security. If it was a card, it's probably listed among his belongings. If it was a code, it died with him. Or, there could have been a gap in the fence. Either way, Trayvon was a guest, so he was permitted on the property.

eddhead
March 29th, 2012, 11:41 AM
Given the now enormous profile of this case, the fact that charges still haven't been filed says something, probably about the quality of the case. This is now well beyond the point where the good ole' boy network could protect Zimmerman, if that was ever the case. Bunglement by the local PD is a real possibility.
Maybe that is because the only non-shooting witness is (conveniently) dead.


How did Trayvon enter the gated compound? If you are in one of these places with out an invitation... is your being there breaking the law?

He was a guest of his father's girlfriend who lived in the community. Presumable, guests are allowed entry.

lofter1
March 29th, 2012, 11:57 AM
As stated Trayvon was a guest of a resident, and had every right to be there.

Where as Zimmerman, with no authority other than what he proclaimed for himself, had no right or business to pursue & engage TM. As the police told him, that was their job and he should stand back.

Zimmerman's claim is that he only got out of his truck to look at the street sign to determine his location, when all of a sudden TM was on him. That doesn't hold water: The shooting took place far from any street or intersection. Rather it happened along a sidewalk that runs between two sets of residences, far from the street.

eddhead
March 29th, 2012, 12:22 PM
Under a bill sponsored by Senator Mark Begich, Democrat of Alaska, you could take your Florida permit and your Florida loaded handgun and travel anyplace in the country, including the states where the police investigate every permit application, and say yes to relatively few. “If this law existed today, George Zimmerman could carry a loaded hidden handgun in Times Square. Today,” said Dan Gross, the president of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence.



More Guns, Fewer Hoodies

By GAIL COLLINS (http://topics.nytimes.com/top/opinion/editorialsandoped/oped/columnists/gailcollins/index.html?inline=nyt-per)

The debate over the shooting death of Trayvon Martin seems to be devolving into an argument about the right to wear hoodies, but it really does not appear to be a promising development.

Congress, which never draws any serious conclusions from terrible tragedies involving gunplay, did have time on Wednesday to fight about whether Representative Bobby Rush of Chicago violated the House dress code when he took off his suit jacket, revealing a gray sweater he was wearing underneath, and pulled the hood up over his head.

You may remember that Geraldo Rivera took measure of the Martin case and determined that the moral was: young men, throw out your hoodies. Even Rivera’s son said he was embarrassed. But, hey, we’re talking about it. Mission accomplished.

“Just because someone wears a hoodie does not make them a hoodlum,” Congressman Rush said, before he was hustled off for violating the rule against wearing hats on the House floor.

This is pretty much par for the course. Whenever there is a terrible shooting incident somewhere in America, our politicians talk about everything except whether the tragedy could have been avoided if the gunman had not been allowed to carry a firearm.

You would think that this would be a great time to address the question of handgun proliferation, but it has hardly come up in Washington at all. This is because most politicians are terrified of the National Rifle Association. Also, the small band of gun control advocates are busy with slightly less sweeping issues, such as their ongoing but still utterly futile effort to make it illegal to sell a weapon to anyone on the terror watch list.

The only serious debate Congress is likely to have this year on the subject of guns involves whether to allow people with concealed weapons permits to carry their handguns into other states.

Say you were from — oh, maybe Florida, where George Zimmerman was carrying a legal, loaded pistol while he was driving around his gated community, looking for suspicious characters. In Florida, even non-Floridians can get a concealed carry permit. You can get the application online. From the Department of Agriculture. (“Fresh from Florida.”)

Under a bill sponsored by Senator Mark Begich, Democrat of Alaska, you could take your Florida permit and your Florida loaded handgun and travel anyplace in the country, including the states where the police investigate every permit application, and say yes to relatively few. “If this law existed today, George Zimmerman could carry a loaded hidden handgun in Times Square. Today,” said Dan Gross, the president of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence.

And that would be the moderate version.

Senators John Thune of South Dakota and David Vitter of Louisiana have a competing bill that would relieve residents of states like Vermont and Arizona — which don’t require concealed weapons permits at all — from the cumbersome process of actually putting in some paperwork before they tote their handguns to, say, California or New Jersey. Under this one, Jared Loughner, who shot Representative Gabrielle Giffords, a judge, a small child and four other innocent Arizonans, could have brought his loaded handgun to Times Square.

There is a serious trend toward states letting their residents carry concealed weapons with no more background check than you need to carry a concealed nutcracker. All of this is based on the gun rights lobby’s argument that the more armed law-abiding people we have on our streets, the safer everybody will be. Under this line of thinking, George Zimmerman’s gated community was safer because Zimmerman was driving around with his legal gun. You can bet that future Trayvon Martins who go to the store to buy Skittles after dark will seriously consider increasing their own safety by packing heat. The next confrontation along these lines may well involve a pair of legally armed individuals, legally responding to perceived, albeit nonexistent, threats by sending a bullet through somebody’s living room window and hitting a senior citizen watching the evening weather report.

The Violence Policy Center has a list of 11 police officers and 391 private citizens who have been killed over the last five years by people carrying concealed weapons for which they had a permit. That includes a man in Florida who killed four women, including his estranged wife, in a restaurant in 2010 and another Floridian who opened fire at Thanksgiving, killing four relatives.

You would think all of this would cause states to stop and rethink. But no. And, personally, I’m worn down from arguing. Florida, follow your own star. Arizona, arm your kindergarteners. Just stop trying to impose your values on places where the thinking is dramatically different.

Really, just leave us alone. If you don’t like our rules, don’t come here. Is that too much to ask?

Hof
March 29th, 2012, 12:23 PM
Still, Lofter, Zimmerman did have an absolute right to be where he was that night as well. He is a two-year resident and owns his personal piece of Florida within his gated community, he drives the same streets each day, and as it is well known, he's a keen observer of his surroundings, a wannabe police recruit. Z. appears to be alert as a part of his personal routine and reports a lot of happenings that he sees around his place. One of his neighbors swears that Z. prevented a break-in, and is certain that Z. discouraged others.
When he saw Travon that rainy night, his senses sparked and he went into "protect and serve" mode. What happened after he stepped out of his truck is now in the discovery phase.
Action has been established, now it's motivation's turn to be unccovered.

lofter1
March 29th, 2012, 12:32 PM
Action, meaning what really took place, is still questionable, based on Zimmerman's unbelievable account (unbelieved by a number of officers in the Sanford Police Department).

Zimmerman's antenna seems to need adjustment.

As for Gail Collins, maybe she should have written:

If you don't like our rules, just SHOOT US.

Don't Worry, You'll GET AWAY WITH IT.

Fabrizio
March 29th, 2012, 12:40 PM
I'm also wondering: when Zimmerman says in the 911 call :

"This guy looks like he’s up to no good or he’s on drugs or something. It’s raining and he’s just walking around looking about".

"Something’s wrong with him. Yep, he’s coming to check me out."

"He’s got something in his hands. I don’t know what his deal is."

^ It sounds to me that he was simply witnessing someone talking on a cell phone. Have you ever noticed your behavior while talking on a cell phone out in the open? You are gesticulating, pacing back and forth, turning abruptly, hunched over ...or staring at the sky etc. And now imagine it's a teenager.

We've all seen people walking about behaving oddly... and then realize they're on the phone engrossed in a conversation.

It sounds to me that this shooter guy... sooner or later... was going to wind up killing somebody. This was the perfect combination of events.

lofter1
March 29th, 2012, 12:41 PM
Yeah, imagine it's a teenager viewed by a guy itching to be an enforcer.

His dad's perspective:


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LnEQQnj7eXo

Hof
March 29th, 2012, 01:18 PM
Right after writing the Spike Lee post, I found this out: the old couple who were driven from their home have hired the firm of Morgan and Morgan, who's slogan "FOR the People" is broadcast many times daily on the Orlando based stations, and they are seeking an apology from Spike as "a way to heal racial divides". (Morgan et al, are a contingency firm, and don't do many pro bonos). lt seems that Spike had somehow found out that SOMEONE named Zimerman lived at an address sort of like George Zimmerman's, so Spike advised whomever was interested to go find him, via his tweet.
(Their son is WILLIAM Zimmerman, and he doesn't live with them).

Now that is interesting.

BBMW
March 29th, 2012, 02:02 PM
There are witnesses, just not great ones (ie, who had a close up, complete view of the incident)


Maybe that is because the only non-shooting witness is (conveniently) dead.

BBMW
March 29th, 2012, 02:14 PM
I have a feeling Zimmerman called in a lot of these things, so many that the cops became lackadaisical about responding (or maybe just were to begin with.) So he got frustrated and decided to up his reponse. This still doesn't justify shooting someone. Then again, if/when this gets to court, how it will turn out depends on what the jury thought happened in that "missing minute".

And, since I don't think we want this turning into (yet another) gun control discussion, I won't comment on the Gail Collins column.


Action, meaning what really took place, is still questionable, based on Zimmerman's unbelievable account (unbelieved by a number of officers in the Sanford Police Department).

Zimmerman's antenna seems to need adjustment.

As for Gail Collins, maybe she should have written:

If you don't like our rules, just SHOOT US.

Don't Worry, You'll GET AWAY WITH IT.

mariab
March 29th, 2012, 03:05 PM
There's another strange thing in lofter's post #40, in the link to the police report. At the top of the first page, about 2/3 of the way down in the first section, it reads "#Offences: 1" then "#Victims: 1" then "#Offenders: 0".

It may come to haunt whoever (whomever? I always mix them up) filled out the report. Why wasn't the number 1 entered under #Offenders? Whatever the outcome of this, whether he ends up guilty or not, he was technically the offender. Even if it's ruled that Martin set upon Zimmerman without just cause, Martin ended up being the victim, so that leaves Zimmerman as the offender.

I read in a previous post of zippy's an exerpt of an article, of a laundry list of 911 calls from Zimmerman over the past two years. Sort of like a reverse rap sheet. That may also come up in court (if it ever gets there) that Zimmerman's zealousness, & the PD's failure to recognize that were aggravating factors in this case. The prosecution will want to use it. Based on what I've read about him, it was going to happen sooner or later, maybe not a killing, but something big where he would be listed as the offender. It's almost like he was looking for something to happen so he could be the hero. Some people look for that. "If somebody starts with me they're going to get it." You hear it all the time.

ZippyTheChimp
March 30th, 2012, 09:58 AM
It may come to haunt whoever (whomever? I always mix them up) filled out the report.Oh shit, relative pronouns.

Subject-Verb-Object (most of the time).

Subject = whoever
Object = whomever

Ninjahedge
March 30th, 2012, 10:57 AM
So she got it right.

To whomever....
Whoever may.....

ZippyTheChimp
March 30th, 2012, 12:36 PM
George Zimmerman lost job as party security guard for being too aggressive, ex-co-worker says

By Matthew Lysiak In Sanford, Fla. AND Helen Kennedy / NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
Thursday, March 29, 2012, 11:06 PM

George Zimmerman was fired from his job as an under-the-table security guard for “being too aggressive,” a former co-worker told the Daily News.

Zimmerman, at the center of a firestorm for shooting an unarmed black teenager a month ago, worked for two different agencies providing security to illegal house parties between 2001 and 2005, the former co-worker said.

“Usually he was just a cool guy. He liked to drink and hang with the women like the rest of us,” he said. “But it was like Jekyll and Hyde. When the dude snapped, he snapped.”

The source said Zimmerman, who made between $50 and $100 a night, was let go in 2005.

“He had a temper and he became a liability,” the man said. “One time this woman was acting a little out of control. She was drunk. George lost his cool and totally overreacted,” he said. “It was weird, because he was such a cool guy, but he got all nuts. He picked her up and threw her. It was pure rage. She twisted her ankle. Everyone was flipping out.”

The year 2005 was a bad one for Zimmerman: he was arrested for fighting with a cop trying to arrest his friend for underage drinking, and he and his ex-fiancée took out protective orders against each other.

The former co-worker, who is no longer in touch with Zimmerman, said he was shocked to hear what happened Feb. 26 in a gated community in Sanford, Fla.

“He definitely loved being in charge. He loved the power. Still, I could never see him killing someone. Never,” he said.

Zimmerman, who was working as an insurance agent and liked to patrol his neighborhood, killed 17-year-old Trayvon Martin after calling 911 to report a suspicious person. The teenager, who was staying with his father, went out to buy a bag of Skittles and an iced tea.

Zimmerman claimed self-defense and was not arrested. He has gone into hiding.

Zimmerman’s father, a former magistrate judge, came forward Wednesday night to defend his son, alleging that Trayvon said “you’re going to die now” before decking Zimmerman and battering his head into the sidewalk.

He discounted newly revealed video shot in the police station that night showing his son free of bruises, blood or bandages.

“I know his nose was broken and his scalp was cut in two different places. They may have cleaned him up, I don’t know,” Robert Zimmerman told the Fox affiliate in Orlando.

Zimmerman lawyer Craig Sonner also played down the video, saying George Zimmerman’s wounds had been cleaned up.

His older brother, Robert Zimmerman Jr., told CNN’s Piers Morgan that his sibling acted in self-defense.

“He prevented his firearm from being taken from him and used against him,” he said. “That’s called saving your life.”

In another twist, the Daily News learned that a key witness whose account has been used to back Zimmerman’s story saw less than has been attributed to him.

Police have said that Austin Brown, 13, who went out to walk his dog near where Trayvon was shot, saw Zimmerman lying in the grass crying for help just before the slaying.

But Austin’s mom, Cheryl Brown, told The News that when cops interviewed her son eight days after Trayvon’s death, he told them he saw only one person lying in the grass and he couldn’t tell who it was because it was too dark.

“He said he couldn’t see the race or anything. He never saw a second person,” Brown said.

“Then they asked him if he saw what the man was wearing. They gave him a multiple-choice question and gave him three colors. He said, ‘I think it was red.’” Zimmerman was wearing a red and black jacket. Trayvon was wearing a gray hoodie.

“Knowing my son, I believe he felt pressured to give the color,” Brown said.

A new witness interviewed on CNN cast doubt on Zimmerman’s story, saying that he looked out his window, glimpsed two men scuffling in the dark, heard “an excruciating kind of yell” and saw what he thought was Zimmerman on top of Trayvon.

“After the larger man got off, then there was a boy, obviously now dead, on the ground, facing down,” the witness told CNN.

“After the shot, one man got up,” the man said. “He was walking towards where I was watching and I could see him a little bit clearer, and see that he was a Hispanic man and he was, you know, he didn’t appear hurt or anything else, he just seemed very worried.”

Meanwhile, filmmaker Spike Lee paid off Elaine and David McClain, the elderly Florida couple who were terrorized when he mistakenly tweeted their address as George Zimmerman’s. Lee called them to apologize and paid them an undisclosed sum for “the disruption to their lives,” his lawyer said.

The McClains, in their 70s, had to flee their home for a hotel due to harassment from people angry that George Zimmerman remains free.

© Copyright 2012 NYDailyNews.com

lofter1
March 30th, 2012, 01:24 PM
Zimmerman's brother says: "That's called saving your life."

More like it's called what happens when you go after someone who proves to be your match, and you freak out and end up killing the person you went after. Sure it saves your life, but it doesn't absolve you of the fact that you started it. Hardly self defense in the legal sense.

ZippyTheChimp
March 30th, 2012, 02:24 PM
Sure it saves your life, but it doesn't absolve you of the fact that you started it. Hardly self defense in the legal sense.In a legal sense, I disagree with that.

It doesn't matter who started it, unless it is life-threatening from the beginning. If an argument escalates to a point where one person feels his life is threatened, then self-defense should be justifiable.

The question here is whether Zimmerman's life was under threat at all. Or how about Martin? What if he turned and walked up to Zimmerman to ask him why he was following him, and Zimmerman panicked and pulled out his gun. Zimmerman could reason that he was protecting himself, but he couldn't say his life was under threat. Martin, however, could reasonable think his life was under threat by a stranger pointing a handgun at him.

Since no one actually saw the entire incident conclusively, a decision to charge is going to depend on piecing together the physical evidence, and various witness accounts.

In the police video, there doesn't appear to be evidence of a fierce struggle.

The mortician stated that Martin's body had no marks, bruises on his fists, etc, except the bullet wound.

The scene of the shooting is a common-area of backyard lawn, with a narrow concrete walkway. One witness stated the incident happened entirely on grass.

Another witness stated that after the shot, one person was lying on the ground, and the other was walking, and he didn't appear to be injured.

Martin's girlfriend stated that she was talking to him on his cell while he confronted Zimmerman.

What you may have had is two guys scuffling in wet grass.

Anything Zimmerman's brother says about the incident is hearsay.

Ninjahedge
March 30th, 2012, 02:50 PM
Anything his brother has been saying has been pure conjecture and absolute BS.

How long before someone has the brains to look at where the grass is/was all torn up? TLTL?

lofter1
March 30th, 2012, 03:22 PM
Zimmerman's lawyer stated, after the brother gave the lengthy interview last night on CNN where he reiterated the Zimmerman tale, that the two brothers haven't spoken in years.

So it's beyond hearsay.

And why do the Zimmerman spokesmouths all have a similar countenance, well practiced and very smooth. During their telling of the tale hardly a real emotion passes across the face of brother Zimmerman or friend Oliver. Kind of creepy.

If I were on a jury I'd toss all their testimony, under the instruction of "if one bit doesn't make sense, then disregard it all."

ZippyTheChimp
March 30th, 2012, 03:55 PM
None of it is testimony.

The elder Zimmerman referenced Obama in his interview, so he's trying to tap into anti-Obama sentiment.

But it really doesn't matter anymore what they say. If there was an injustice done and evidence was being suppressed, it's too late for the Good Ol' Boys Network to keep the lid on. Everyone now is going to protect his own ass.

Ninjahedge
March 30th, 2012, 05:22 PM
Two things that Good Ol Boys are good at are looking the other way and keeping their hands behind their backs.

Merry
March 30th, 2012, 08:40 PM
Oh shit, relative pronouns.

Subject-Verb-Object (most of the time).

Subject = whoever
Object = whomever


So she got it right.

To whomever....
Whoever may.....


she/he/they = whoever (She/he/they filled out the report.)
her/him/them = whomever (The report was filled out by her/him/them.)

The "m" helps...sometimes :). But it's an easy-to-remember clue by association (i.e. her equates to him).

Merry
March 30th, 2012, 08:54 PM
Zimmerman's brother says: "That's called saving your life."

More like it's called what happens when you go after someone who proves to be your match, and you freak out and end up killing the person you went after. Sure it saves your life, but it doesn't absolve you of the fact that you started it. Hardly self defense in the legal sense.


In a legal sense, I disagree with that.

It doesn't matter who started it, unless it is life-threatening from the beginning. If an argument escalates to a point where one person feels his life is threatened, then self-defense should be justifiable.

So, the fact that the whole confrontation was entirely avoidable doesn't come into it? Isn't Zimmerman entirely responsible and therefore entirely accountable, self-defence (which it clearly wasn't) or not? It wasn't life threatening from the beginning.

Zimmerman was a walking disaster just waiting for a victim.

lofter1
March 30th, 2012, 11:22 PM
Any intense fight could make someone feel threatened, and push a person to the point of aggravation leading to an irrational response and possible death of the opponent. If the one who threw the first punch / made the first assault ends up killing the other person then that would definitely make a smart jury think more than twice about going with self defense.

stache
March 31st, 2012, 12:00 AM
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bernard_Goetz

ZippyTheChimp
March 31st, 2012, 12:36 AM
So, the fact that the whole confrontation was entirely avoidable doesn't come into it?Remember, this is a hypothetical, not necessarily about what actually occurred between Zimmerman and Martin. Just consider any confrontation and "the person who started it."

Two people get into a fight, and it's broken up by a cop. Maybe the person who started it is charged with assault and battery. Let's say no cop is present to break up the fight , and one person pulls out a handgun and shoots the other. Does it matter who threw the first punch?

The legal concept that makes this situation different from any confrontation is deadly force, the point where someone commits an action that he reasonably knows will cause death or serious injury. It is legally justifiable if that person reasonably thinks that his life is in danger.

Again hypothetically, If Martin had actually thrown the first punch, that of itself would not mean that Zimmerman was justified in using deadly force.

Lofter's point isn't valid in this consideration because deadly-force requires a rational response.

lofter1
March 31st, 2012, 02:05 AM
So are you saying in this case, despite all we're beginning to know, that Zimmerman's story lines up with someone who logically and rationally responded and that deadly force was the only option?

We know that's the scenario that the Zimmerman team is trying to project. But that story doesn't add up. Either hypothetically or otherwise.

lofter1
March 31st, 2012, 02:07 AM
... one person pulls out a handgun and shoots the other. Does it matter who threw the first punch?



Sure it does. Maybe it matters more if the shooter can afford a good lawyer.

Merry
March 31st, 2012, 03:00 AM
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bernard_Goetz

Goetz had a credible reason. Zimmerman doesn't.

ZippyTheChimp
March 31st, 2012, 03:06 AM
It's late; I just got in; I'll give it one more shot.

You're missing the point about legally determining if the deadly-force is justifiable homicide (as Zimmerman contends).



So are you saying in this case, despite all we're beginning to know, that Zimmerman's story lines up with someone who logically and rationally responded and that deadly force was the only option?Zimmerman has to argue that it was his only option, or else it isn't justifiable homicide.

Zimmerman stated that Martin punched him. Assume that's true. At that point, would Zimmerman have been justified in using deadly-force; was his life in imminent danger? No.

Zimmerman's narrative has him in a helpless position, being beaten, unable to escape. In that situation, deadly-force could be justified.


Sure it does.So if Martin threw the first punch, the shooting is his fault?

You're trying to show that Zimmerman is guilty. All I'm saying is that in determining whether deadly-force was justified, who started the confrontation doesn't matter, unless as I said earlier, the confrontation starts out life threatening.

Merry
March 31st, 2012, 03:16 AM
IMO, hypotheticals and endess analysis are pointless because, based on information so far (it's not going to become more enlightened, only more confused and tainted), Zimmerman caused this situation from beginning to end, via both his innate personality and his behaviour.

eddhead
March 31st, 2012, 12:02 PM
So, the fact that the whole confrontation was entirely avoidable doesn't come into it? Isn't Zimmerman entirely responsible and therefore entirely accountable, self-defence (which it clearly wasn't) or not? It wasn't life threatening from the beginning.

Zimmerman was a walking disaster just waiting for a victim.

So if someone attacks you, and you fight back to the point where you are winning badly, and the initial attacker shoots you, they were acting in self-defense?

ZippyTheChimp
March 31st, 2012, 09:16 PM
^
The way you answered that quote has me confused.

Anyway, Zimmerman may have been an idiot for not staying in his car, but he committed no crime in getting out. The 911 dispatcher told him he didn't have to do that, but he was withing his rights to do so. If he said something like, "I'm getting that sonofabitch," then it's different. If a witness saw him get out of his car with the pistol in his hand, again, that's different.

But nobody saw or heard anything until a point during the cell conversation between Martin and his girlfriend. If there's a criminal charge made, that's where it starts.

Now there's audio analysis of the 911 call recording...



Trayvon Martin shooting: It's not George Zimmerman crying for help on 911 recording, 2 experts say

March 31, 2012, Jeff Weiner, Orlando Sentinel

As the Trayvon Martin controversy splinters into a debate about self-defense, a central question remains: Who was heard crying for help on a 911 call in the moments before the teen was shot?

A leading expert in the field of forensic voice identification sought to answer that question by analyzing the recordings for the Orlando Sentinel.

His result: It was not George Zimmerman who called for help.

Tom Owen, forensic consultant for Owen Forensic Services LLC and chair emeritus for the American Board of Recorded Evidence, used voice identification software to rule out Zimmerman. Another expert contacted by the Sentinel, utilizing different techniques, came to the same conclusion.

Zimmerman claims self-defense in the shooting and told police he was the one screaming for help. But these experts say the evidence tells a different story.

'Scientific certainty'

On a rainy night in late February, a woman called 911 to report someone crying out for help in her gated Sanford community, Retreat at Twin Lakes.

Though several of her neighbors eventually called authorities, she phoned early enough for dispatchers to hear the panicked cries and the gunshot that took Trayvon Martin's life.

George Zimmerman, a Neighborhood Watch volunteer, shot Trayvon, an unarmed 17-year-old, during a one-on-one confrontation Feb. 26.

Before the shot, one of them can be heard screaming for help.

Owen, a court-qualified expert witness and former chief engineer for the New York Public Library's Rodgers and Hammerstein Archives of Recorded Sound, is an authority on biometric voice analysis — a computerized process comparing attributes of voices to determine whether they match.

After the Sentinel contacted Owen, he used software called Easy Voice Biometrics to compare Zimmerman's voice to the 911 call screams.

"I took all of the screams and put those together, and cut out everything else," Owen says.

The software compared that audio to Zimmerman's voice. It returned a 48 percent match. Owen said to reach a positive match with audio of this quality, he'd expect higher than 90 percent.

"As a result of that, you can say with reasonable scientific certainty that it's not Zimmerman," Owen says, stressing that he cannot confirm the voice as Trayvon's, because he didn't have a sample of the teen's voice to compare.

Forensic voice identification is not a new or novel concept; in fact, a recent U.S. Department of Justice committee report notes that federal interest in the technology "has a history of nearly 70 years."

In the post 9-11 world, Owen says, voice identification is "the main biometric tool" used to track international criminals, as well as terrorists.

"These people don't leave fingerprints, but they do still need to talk to one another," he says.

'The home run'

Though the term "biometric analysis" may sound futuristic, it basically just means using personal characteristics for identification. A fingerprint scanner is an example of a biometric device.

Much as the ridges of a human hand produce a fingerprint, each human voice has unique, distinguishable traits, Owen says. "They're all particular to the individual."

Another benefit of modern biometric analysis, Owen said, is it doesn't require an "in context" comparison. In other words, Owen didn't need a sample of Zimmerman screaming in order to compare his voice to the call.

The technology Owen used to analyze the Zimmerman tape has a wide range of applications, including national security and international policing, he said. A recently as January, Owen used the same technology to identify accused murderer Sheila Davalloo in a 911 call made almost a decade ago.

Owen testified that it was Davalloo, accused of stabbing another woman nine times in a condo in Shippan, Conn., who reported the killing to police from a pay phone in November 2002.

Davalloo was convicted, according to news reports.

Owen says the audio from Zimmerman's call is much better quality than the 911 call in the Davalloo case. Voice identification experts judge the quality based on a signal-to-noise ratio; in other words, comparing the usable audio in a clip to the environmental noises that make a match difficult.

And the call on which the screams are heard is better quality than is necessary, Owen says.

"In our world, that's the home run," he says.

Not all experts rely on biometrics. Ed Primeau, a Michigan-based audio engineer and forensics expert, is not a believer in the technology's use in courtroom settings.

He relies instead on audio enhancement and human analysis based on forensic experience. After listening closely to the 911 tape on which the screams are heard, Primeau also has a strong opinion.

"I believe that's Trayvon Martin in the background, without a doubt," Primeau says, stressing that the tone of the voice is a giveaway. "That's a young man screaming."

Zimmerman's call to authorities minutes before the shooting provides a good standard for comparison, Primeau says, because it captures his voice both at rest and in an agitated state.

'CSI' effect

Only one person alive knows exactly what transpired in the moments immediately before Trayvon was fatally shot: Zimmerman, who has claimed he fired in self-defense.

Zimmerman told police he was walking back to his SUV after a brief foot pursuit of Martin, and the teen confronted and attacked him, punching him and slamming his head into the pavement.

Arriving police said Zimmerman was bloodied. One officer wrote in a police report that he overheard Zimmerman telling a paramedic, "I was yelling for someone to help me, but no one would help me."

Angela Corey, the special prosecutor assigned to the case, has yet to decide whether to charge Zimmerman, send the case to a grand jury or decide against charging.

If Zimmerman's self-defense claim is tested at trial, legal experts say a forensic identification of the voice in the 911 audio could be key evidence, either in Zimmerman's favor or to his detriment.

Still, Maine-based audio enhancement expert Arlo West says that today's juries sometimes seem reluctant to accept evidence that's any less conclusive than what they're used to seeing on television.

"I call it the 'CSI' effect," he says, referring to "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation," the popular — if not always realistic — forensics-based TV drama. "You get in front of a jury, and they expect a miracle."

jeweiner@tribune.com or 407-420-5171
Copyright © 2012, Orlando Sentinel

Audio clip of 911 recording (http://www.orlandosentinel.com/videogallery/69143866/News/Trayvon-Martin-Audio-expert-extracts-911-screams-compares-to-Zimmerman-call)

ZippyTheChimp
March 31st, 2012, 09:27 PM
I also came across a story titled: Witness: Zimmerman was Crying for Help in Trayvon Shooting

But the story describes what might be police "re-directing" or "adjusting" a witness account, or at least jumping to a conclusion.

The witness appeared anonymously on CNN:


The witness, who sounded like a man though the voice was digitally altered, said he heard someone making noises that were distorted and agonized.

The witness was extremely upset to learn someone had died. The witness told Cooper that one of the police officers, trying to comfort the witness, said if it made him or her feel better, the person calling for help is alive. http://www.newsmax.com/US/zimmerman-trayvon-witness-cnn/2012/03/29/id/434293

Merry
April 1st, 2012, 01:02 AM
^
The way you answered that quote has me confused.

Me, too :confused:.

ZippyTheChimp
April 1st, 2012, 09:15 AM
03/31/2012


NBC to do ‘internal investigation’ on Zimmerman segment

By Erik Wemple

NBC told this blog today that it would investigate its handling of a piece on the “Today” show that ham-handedly abridged the conversation between George Zimmerman and a dispatcher in the moments before the death of Trayvon Martin. A statement from NBC:

“We have launched an internal investigation into the editorial process surrounding this particular story.”

Great news right there. As exposed by Fox News and media watchdog site NewsBusters, the “Today” segment took this approach to a key part of the dispatcher call:

Zimmerman: This guy looks like he’s up to no good. He looks black.

Here’s how the actual conversation went down:

Zimmerman: This guy looks like he’s up to no good. Or he’s on drugs or something. It’s raining and he’s just walking around, looking about.

Dispatcher: OK, and this guy — is he black, white or Hispanic?

Zimmerman: He looks black.

The difference between what “Today” put on its air and the actual tape? Complete: In the “Today” version, Zimmerman volunteered that this person “looks black,” a sequence of events that would more readily paint Zimmerman as a racial profiler. In reality’s version, Zimmerman simply answered a question about the race of the person whom he was reporting to the police. Nothing prejudicial at all in responding to such an inquiry.

In an appearance on Fox News’s “Hannity,” Brent Bozell, president of the conservative Media Research Center, called this elision on the part of ”Today” an “all-out falsehood” — not just a distortion or misrepresentation.

And it’s a falsehood with repercussions. Much of the public discussion over the past week has settled on how conflicting facts and interpretations call into question whether Zimmerman acted justifiably or criminally. That’s a process that’ll continue. But one set of facts in the is ironclad, and that’s the back-and-forth between Zimmerman and the dispatcher. To portray that exchange in a way that wrongs Zimmerman is high editorial malpractice well worthy of the investigation that NBC is now mounting.

© 1996-2012 The Washington Post

eddhead
April 1st, 2012, 03:28 PM
^
The way you answered that quote has me confused.



That is because I worded my reply incorrectly. The point is it should not be self-defense when you instigate a confrontation, lose the resulting fight and respond by shooting the other person.

ZippyTheChimp
April 1st, 2012, 03:56 PM
The point is it should not be self-defense when you instigate a confrontation, lose the resulting fight and respond by shooting the other person."Instigate the confrontation" and "lose the fight" are vague terms, and do not necessarily involve life threatening situations where deadly-force is justified for self defense.

If I get involved in an auto accident, and lose my temper and start screaming at the other driver and calling him an ashole, and he takes exception to it, and beats the hell out of me - would you say I'm justified in using deadly force if my life is threatened?

However, if he just hits me once and breaks my nose, and just stands there, am I still justified in using deadly fiorce?

In both scenarios, I instigated the confrontation and lost the fight.

lofter1
April 1st, 2012, 09:40 PM
The Zimmerman team is claiming that Trayvon was going for George's gun, and that's why GZ had to use the weapon.

Apparently, from Zimmerman's own words, he carried the gun in a holster at his waistband, concealed under his shirt / jacket.

So how did Trayvon know Zimmerman had a gun? Was it just a wild guess? X-Ray vision?

stache
April 1st, 2012, 09:41 PM
Intimate moment?

Ninjahedge
April 2nd, 2012, 10:04 AM
"Instigate the confrontation" and "lose the fight" are vague terms, and do not necessarily involve life threatening situations where deadly-force is justified for self defense.

If I get involved in an auto accident, and lose my temper and start screaming at the other driver and calling him an ashole, and he takes exception to it, and beats the hell out of me - would you say I'm justified in using deadly force if my life is threatened?

However, if he just hits me once and breaks my nose, and just stands there, am I still justified in using deadly fiorce?

In both scenarios, I instigated the confrontation and lost the fight.

I understand what he is saying.

Example. You get out at that accident and beat the crap out of the person. That person manages manages to get a tire-iron out (somehow) while you are still pummeling him. He then turns the table and starts pummeling you.

Are you validated in killing him when he is just "defending himself"? Where does the line get drawn? Can I go into a room full of people, start beating them all up, then pull out a gun and start shooting them when they fight back and I feel "endangered"?

Ninjahedge
April 2nd, 2012, 10:06 AM
The Zimmerman team is claiming that Trayvon was going for George's gun, and that's why GZ had to use the weapon.

Apparently, from Zimmerman's own words, he carried the gun in a holster at his waistband, concealed under his shirt / jacket.

So how did Trayvon know Zimmerman had a gun? Was it just a wild guess? X-Ray vision?

Well, with Treyvon sitting on him bashing his head against he sidewalk, it is only natural that he would know about the gun on the waist of Zimmerman.

I think most people know what happened that night, the key is whether or not, by Florida state law, it was "legal".

ZippyTheChimp
April 2nd, 2012, 10:50 AM
I understand what he is saying.I understand what Eddhead is saying. I'm saying that it's not universal; it depends on the situation. Like your examples.

I've become a little confused about the Florida law, so I asked a friend who's an attorney. He said that he didn't think the Stand your Ground law applied in this case; the use of deadly force has applications throughout the US. We were at a "social function;" it got blah-blah for me; we resumed talking about sports and women.

eddhead
April 2nd, 2012, 11:57 AM
I understand what he is saying.

Example. You get out at that accident and beat the crap out of the person. That person manages manages to get a tire-iron out (somehow) while you are still pummeling him. He then turns the table and starts pummeling you.

Are you validated in killing him when he is just "defending himself"? Where does the line get drawn? Can I go into a room full of people, start beating them all up, then pull out a gun and start shooting them when they fight back and I feel "endangered"?

What he said.

BBMW
April 2nd, 2012, 12:08 PM
I thought it would. But reading the FL self defense law, not so much.

Again (I've quoted this before, but it goes exactly to the point):


776.041 Use of force by aggressor. —The justification described in the preceding sections of this chapter is not available to a person who:
(1) Is attempting to commit, committing, or escaping after the commission of, a forcible felony; or
(2) Initially provokes the use of force against himself or herself, unless:
(a) Such force is so great that the person reasonably believes that he or she is in imminent danger of death or great bodily harm and that he or she has exhausted every reasonable means to escape such danger other than the use of force which is likely to cause death or great bodily harm to the assailant; or


So, the fact that the whole confrontation was entirely avoidable doesn't come into it? Isn't Zimmerman entirely responsible and therefore entirely accountable, self-defence (which it clearly wasn't) or not? It wasn't life threatening from the beginning.

Zimmerman was a walking disaster just waiting for a victim.

ZippyTheChimp
April 3rd, 2012, 08:16 AM
Trayvon Martin: Enhanced Zimmerman video shows possible head wound (http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-os-trayvon-martin-video-zimmerman-20120402,0,498809.story)

Merry
April 3rd, 2012, 08:27 AM
We stop-and-frisk because we aren't able to educate-and-employ.

"Aren't able to" should say "don't want to"



In New York City, Police Commissioner Kelly defends his policies aggressively. He argues that "stop, question and frisk" has taken guns off the street. He says that it has helped reduced crime, and that communities of color are the main beneficiaries.

Is there actually any evidence of this?



My Son Doesn't Look Like Trayvon

by Dan Cantor
Executive Director of the Working Families Party

You've heard the story already. A young, unarmed black man was shot and killed, in a place he had every right to be. The tears of parents and friends flow.
But I'm not talking about the death of Trayvon Martin in Florida. This story is closer to home.

A few weeks before Trayvon was killed, Ramarley Graham was killed in the Bronx. He was all of 18. The NYPD saw a black teenager "adjusting his waistband," saw something that seemed to their eyes suspicious, and ended up chasing him into his own home. He was shot to death attempting to flush a bag of marijuana down the toilet. The police thought he had a gun. But like Trayvon Martin in Florida, Ramarley Graham was unarmed.

I'm a 56-year-old white man with a 20-year-old son. My son spent his high school years traveling around New York City at all hours, and never once was he stopped and frisked. He always wore hoodies. I always told him to "keep safe," but if I'm telling the truth, it never occurred to me to worry that he might be stopped and questioned and frisked. I never thought for a second that he might fall victim to a police "mistake." And I never gave him a lecture about how to be deferential to the police. Not so for black and brown parents. Every parent loves and wants to protect his children, but the ability to do so is not equal.

One of the reasons that we created the Working Families Party was to tell the truth, as we saw it, about our society and economy. The truth is, Trayvon Martin's death wasn't an isolated act of vigilantism. And Ramarley Graham didn't die because of a mistake. They died because we live in a nation where young men of color are stopped, and sometimes killed, because somebody decides they look suspicious. It is hardly news to say this, and of-color leaders and activists across the country are mobilizing with a sense of anger and righteousness that is entirely warranted. But what is new and welcome is that more and more white people are reminded or learning for the first time what the persistent existence of the color line means to millions of our fellow Americans.

It's two different worlds. If a middle-class white teenager visiting his father were shot to death by an African-American "neighborhood watch" leader, would an arrest be likely? Or, as in Florida, would the shooter walk free and be allowed to keep his gun?

Public safety is crucial to every community -- black, white, Latino, Asian -- and we need a vigilant, well-trained police force. But there is a law-and-order culture in our nation that has crossed the line. The dominant society is afraid of young of-color men, and instead of asking ourselves why and what might be done about it, we endorse policies that keep the problem under control. Until it isn't.

In New York City, Police Commissioner Kelly defends his policies aggressively. He argues that "stop, question and frisk" has taken guns off the street. He says that it has helped reduced crime, and that communities of color are the main beneficiaries.

But Kelly's line of argument is a dead-end. It's a vision of a society that will never deal with racism -- not just the individual prejudice and preconceptions of the Florida "watchman," but the ingrained structures of a society in which life chances are determined at birth. It's not Kelly's fault; we ask the police to deal with problems the rest of us want to ignore. We have decided that there is no way for our society to create job opportunities, education and healthy families that will set young men down a promising path to adulthood, so we focus immense resources on policing and jailing them instead. We stop-and-frisk because we aren't able to educate-and-employ.

There are a lot of young men growing up in tough circumstances, but -- again, let's tell the truth -- it seems toughest in the black community. Deindustrialization. Residential segregation. The lure of the informal economy. A prison-industrial complex that requires ever more prisoners and lobbies for absurdly harsh sentencing laws. It's a toxic combination, and the results are not surprising: there are now more African-American men in prison or on parole than were held as slaves. America's "original sin" has not been expiated.

This is a serious challenge. At the Working Families Party, we spend much of our energy on the shared interests of people of all races. We ask working-class and middle-class people -- white and of-color, citizen and immigrant -- to unite and work together. We want a society in which all people have a chance at a decent, productive life. That means excellent schools, jobs that pay living wages, parents with the time and inner resources to raise healthy children, taxes that stop the obscene selfishness that now characterizes American society. But we're kidding ourselves if we don't acknowledge the serious and exceptional problems faced by of-color Americans.

New York City Council Members Jumaane Williams, Melissa Mark Viverito and Brad Lander have concrete proposals to reform stop-and-frisk that deserve support. And it may sound utopian, but Mayor Bloomberg should convene public hearings in which young people, beat cops, social scientists, employers, unions and elected leaders come and testify about their experience and their ideas on ways to reduce crime and increase opportunity. It won't be perfect, but it can be a step forward.

The killings of Trayvon Martin and Ramarley Graham and too many others to name are a stain on our nation's honor. Let's learn from it, and act on it.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dan-cantor/trayvon-martin-and-ramarley-graham_b_1389921.html?ref=new-york

BBMW
April 3rd, 2012, 10:44 AM
That's all right, the cops can back off, and we'll go back to 2200 murders a year.

scumonkey
April 3rd, 2012, 02:45 PM
ludicrous

Fabrizio
April 4th, 2012, 04:07 AM
That's all right, the cops can back off, and we'll go back to 2200 murders a year.

Between 1980 and 1990 (it's peak) there were over 19,000 people murdered in NYC.

Parts of NYC were like a war zone.

--------

Mr. Cantor makes many good points in his article posted above, but he makes no mention of personal responsibility... as if somehow it's insignificant.

----

I also notice that he uses a new twist on a familiar term: "of-color Americans." Sounds just a little awkward.

ZippyTheChimp
April 4th, 2012, 07:29 AM
That's all right, the cops can back off, and we'll go back to 2200 murders a year.Specious argument.

BBMW
April 4th, 2012, 11:08 AM
^It did happen, then the cops threw the lid on, and it stopped (or vastly reduced.) The stop and frisk strategy was a big part of that.

Now maybe it isn't cause and effect. Maybe the cops can back off, and nothing bad will happen. How many bodies are you willing to bet on that?

Ninjahedge
April 4th, 2012, 11:34 AM
Again, you are baiting the hook.

You know, if we just killed a suspect immediately, we would greatly reduce the amount of people killed BY them.

How many bodies are you willing to risk on that?

ZippyTheChimp
April 4th, 2012, 11:57 AM
^It did happen, then the cops threw the lid on, and it stopped (or vastly reduced.) The stop and frisk strategy was a big part of that. Now maybe it isn't cause and effect. Maybe the cops can back off, and nothing bad will happen. How many bodies are you willing to bet on that?You refuted your premise.

Yes, maybe it wasn't cause and effect. Classic example of taking two things that happened at the same time and drawing a conclusion without any further consideration, simply because it fits an argument.

The city was in its worst shape in recent history at about 1980. Crime was just as high as 1990, but added to that was the breakdown of the city fabric, the loss of almost 1 million people in the preceding decade, a feeling that the city was unmanageable and doomed.

Things began to change during the 1980s. Homicide rates dropped just as fast as in the 1990s. Population growth during the decade was greater than 2000-2010. It's when we bought an apartment in Manhattan; things were still dicey, so we stayed in the house in Brooklyn. But people and money were coming in, and crime was being reduced.

Then something happened in 1986, and lasted for about 7 years.

Anyone know what that was? During that time, the increase in NYC homicide was greater than at any time in its history. When it subsided, homicide rates began to drop again.

You can't say it was THE reason, but you could make a good argument that it was #1.

Your last statement is silly. I could reduce homicide to almost nothing. Just institute a full police state; then we can argue crime from that point.

Ninjahedge
April 4th, 2012, 12:25 PM
I would say Crack.

But I don't know New Jack.

Fabrizio
April 4th, 2012, 12:29 PM
Some studies said a decline in crack use contribued to a drop in crime across the US but there were also differing opinions:

http://www.nytimes.com/1997/10/27/us/drop-in-homicide-rate-linked-to-crack-s-decline.html?pagewanted=all&src=pm

BTW: I believe the biggest jump in crime in NYC was in the 1960s when the murder rate more than doubled.

Ninjahedge
April 4th, 2012, 12:52 PM
That was because of the Beatles.

BBMW
April 4th, 2012, 03:20 PM
This is patently false. Homicides rose a bit in the beginning of the '80's dipped a bit, then exploded back. They peaked in 1990 at 2245, then started declining steeply, constinuing this decline for the last 20 years. Recently they seem to have leveled out. But there's no denying that the timing of the start of the decline was EXACTLY when Giulianni came into office and changed the attitude of the NYPD, which continues to operated in the same way now.

Given that near perfect correlation, it behooves those that want to reject the causality to off some proof that the change in attitude and tactics of the NYPD (and other LE agencies that took similar steps) wasn't the reason.


Things began to change during the 1980s. Homicide rates dropped just as fast as in the 1990s.

Ninjahedge
April 4th, 2012, 03:30 PM
Isn't it also true that the cops stopped reporting certain crimes........ Or, at least, the serious ones?

stache
April 4th, 2012, 03:50 PM
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Broken_windows_theory

ZippyTheChimp
April 4th, 2012, 03:58 PM
This is patently false. Homicides rose a bit in the beginning of the '80's dipped a bit, then exploded back.
Rather than give you numbers, which might induce you to use words like "dipped a bit" and exploded,"


After steady to declining trends until the early 1960s, the homicide rate doubled in the period from 1964-74 from just under 5 per 100,000 at the beginning of that period to just under 10 per 100,000 in 1974. After 1974, the trend over time appears to be fluctuations around the 1974 high. Homicide dropped somewhat in the mid-1970s then climbed back up to just above 10 per 100,000 in 1980, dropped in the early 1980s, then climbed back up close to the 1980 high point in the early 1990s only to drop off again after 1991.

If all the homicide trends since 1964 were forced into a single trend line, the direction of the trend would be upward. If the doubling of rate prior to 1975 is plotted separately, however, the two decades since 1975 represent a trendless fluctuation down from the new peak rate of 10 per 100,000 per year and then back up. By 1995, the homicide rate had dropped back near but not yet below the twenty-year low set in 1984.

The New York City history can be briefly stated. In its relative and absolute magnitude, the homicide drops after 1992 were by far the largest in the postwar history of New York City. The second largest percentage drop was 25% from 1981-1985. The number of lives involved is even more impressive, with more than 1,100 fewer homicide victims in New York City in 1996 than in 1992. This reduction in homicide far exceeded the total number of homicides the city experienced each year in the 1950s and early 1960s.

Source (http://www.questia.com/googleScholar.qst?docId=5001411152)


But there's no denying that the timing of the start of the decline was EXACTLY when Giulianni came into office and changed the attitude of the NYPD, which continues to operated in the same way now.Again, you SELECTIVELY use concurrent facts to show a cause and effect.

BBMW
April 4th, 2012, 05:26 PM
Certain crimes they can do that with. Murder is more difficult (what do you do with the body?)


Isn't it also true that the cops stopped reporting certain crimes........ Or, at least, the serious ones?

BBMW
April 4th, 2012, 05:28 PM
Year
Murders


1928
4041


1929
425


1930
494


1931
588


1932
579


1933
541


1934
458


1936
510


1960
482


1961
483


1962
631


1963
548[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1964
636[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1965
634[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1966
654[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1967
746[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1968
986[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1969
1043[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1970
1117[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1971
1466[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1972
1691[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1973
1680[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1974
1554[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1975
1645[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1976
1622[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1977
1557[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1978
1504[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1979
1733[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1980
1814[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1981
1826[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1982
1668[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1983
1622[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1984
1450[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1985
1384[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1986
1582[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1987
1672[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1988
1896[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1989
1905[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1990
2245[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)2


1991
2154[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1992
1995[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1993
1946[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1994
1561[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1995
1177[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1996
983[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1997
770[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1998
633[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


1999
671[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


2000
673[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


2001
649[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)3


2002
587[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


2003
597[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


2004
570[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


2005
539[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


2006
596[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


2007
494[9] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-NYC_murder-8)


2008
522


2009
471[10] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-9)


2010
534[11] (http://wirednewyork.com/forum/#cite_note-10)

BBMW
April 4th, 2012, 05:35 PM
Zip,

I just gave you the numbers above. So, peak to trough:

'81-85 - down 442 = Dip
'85-90 - up 861 = Explode
'90-09 - down 1774 = wholesale implosion.

So, without the change in LE tactics, if the murder count sayed at it's 1990 peak, almost 23,000 more people would have been murdered, than actually have been.

Fabrizio
April 4th, 2012, 05:38 PM
Under our various NYC mayors - number of homicides:

Homicide under Bloomburg: 1st term: from 649 down to 570. 2nd term: from 535 down to 522. As of 2010 at 534.

Homicide under Giuliani: 1st term: from 1561 down to 633 (the largest 4 yr drop in homicide under any NY Mayor. Down to 1964 levels). By the end of his last term down to 570.

Homicide under Dinkins: from 2245 down to 1946 (but ended his term with the number of homicides still higher than anytime under Koch).

Homicide under Koch: 1st term: from 1504 up to 1814. By the end of his last term up to 1905.

Homicide under Beam: from 1554 up to 1557

Homicide under Lindsey: 1st term: from 654 up to 1043. By the end of his last term up to 1680.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timeline_of_New_York_City_crimes_and_disasters

ZippyTheChimp
April 4th, 2012, 06:29 PM
'81-85 - down 442 = Dip
'85-90 - up 861 = Explode
'90-09 - down 1774 = wholesale implosion.Again, you're adding your own descriptive terms to numbers. And you are not looking at homicide rates.

But regardless, the homicide rate dropped a significant amount (unless you think #2 at 25% is insignificant), before Giuliani and his policied came along.


So, without the change in LE tactics, if the murder count sayed at it's 1990 peak, almost 23,000 more people would have been murdered, than actually have been.How do you conclude that the drop in homicide was dues to the change in tactics. And saying that if the homicide count stayed the same - that's speculation. A hypothetical situation + arithmatic.

All you're saying is:

A happened in the 1990s
B happened in the 1990s
Conclusion: A caused B.

That's not how you use statistics.

Anyway, by your own numbers, homicide dropped in 1991, 1992, and 1993. Giuliani took office in 1994. The effects of crack on society were mostly over by this century. If you look at homicide reduction during the last decade, it was about 15%. Even went up slightly last year.

In contrast, homicides declined over 70% during the 1990s. If the same policies are carried over by the NYPD, why hasn't there been as dramatic a reduction as the previous decade. It points to other factors which may not be in play any longer.

If you want to take the time to look at how statistical analysis is done, try this study done in 2006 about the years in question.

Or just skip to the charts and graphs on the last few pages.

http://isites.harvard.edu/fs/docs/icb.topic542908.files/Fryer%20et%20al%20Crack%20Cocaine.pdf

stache
April 4th, 2012, 06:46 PM
Certain crimes they can do that with. Murder is more difficult (what do you do with the body?)

I heard this is why home garbage disposals were illegal in NY/NJ for so many years.

Fabrizio
April 5th, 2012, 12:50 AM
homicide dropped in 1991, 1992, and 1993.

Yes it did. But still, the number of homicides under Dinkins increased.

There were more homicides every year under Dinkins than any year under Koch.

Dinkins left office with more homicides than when he started his term.

Under Giuliani the number of homicides took a nose dive.

Surely a reduction in crack use played a big part... but I find it difficult to believe that the drop had nothing to do with policing methods.

ZippyTheChimp
April 5th, 2012, 12:57 AM
^
You missed the point.

We're not comparing mayors.

ZippyTheChimp
April 5th, 2012, 01:09 AM
Surely a reduction in crack use played a big part... but I find it difficult to believe that the drop had nothing to do with policing methods.You probably find it difficult to believe because no one said that.

We're responding to post #102.

Fabrizio
April 5th, 2012, 01:11 AM
^
You missed the point.

We're not comparing mayors.

BBMW wrote: "But there's no denying that the timing of the start of the decline was EXACTLY when Giulianni came into office and changed the attitude of the NYPD, which continues to operated in the same way now."

Fabrizio
April 5th, 2012, 01:16 AM
You probably find it difficult to believe because no one said that.

We're responding to post #102.

We are? That was a few pages ago and the conversation does move along...

I am agreeing with the ebb in cocaine use factor but also with BBMW's point about Giuliani.

ZippyTheChimp
April 5th, 2012, 01:48 AM
We are? That was a few pages ago and the conversation does move along.No one has compared or mentioned other mayors except you.


I am agreeing with the ebb in cocaine use factor but also with BBMW's point about Giuliani.What he said was:
Given that near perfect correlation, it behooves those that want to reject the causality to off some proof that the change in attitude and tactics of the NYPD (and other LE agencies that took similar steps) wasn't the reason.That isn't correct. Crime dropped for three years before Giuliani took office. If you say that Giuliani's NYPD policies are causal to the drop in crime, then you arrive at the conclusion of post #102 - that if you remove those policies (and we're not even sure what BBMW means by the police "backing off"), you'll see 2000 homicides again.

lofter1
April 5th, 2012, 02:02 AM
And of course the practices of the NYPD has a direct relation to the killing of Trayvon Martin.

Fabrizio
April 5th, 2012, 02:04 AM
No one has compared or mentioned other mayors except you.


So?

And no one mentioned mayors until BBMW did.

And obviously a "change in attitude" (as per BBMW's post) is making a comparison with previous administrations.

You repeat again that "Crime dropped for three years before Giuliani took office."

We got it. No disputing that.

But I would like to add that under the administration preceeding Giuliani's (I'll do that way with out mentioning names... happy now?).... homicides rose.

Under Giuliani it was not a slight decline... it was a huge drop.

As far as post #102 goes (that was 20 posts ago), I think BBMW needs to be a bit clearer but I think his over all point is that current policing policies are a success so don't change them. I don't agree with all of that.

ZippyTheChimp
April 5th, 2012, 02:08 AM
So?We're talking about why crime dropped in the early 90s, and what would happen today if the NYPD "let up."


We got it.We minus you?

Fabrizio
April 5th, 2012, 02:23 AM
*Sigh*

I think it's you who is not getting it.

Again.

ZippyTheChimp
April 5th, 2012, 02:24 AM
And of course the practices of the NYPD has a direct relation to the killing of Trayvon Martin.I think most of us know that post #102 was in response to the article in post #101 about "stop and frisk."

Sanford police attitudes may have played into how the crime scene was handled.

There's an effort to depict Zimmerman as racist, but there's no evidence of it. The guy thinks a neighbor leaving his garage door open is a crime.

But look at how the police responded to the shooting. Resident shoots black teenager. Martin had no ID on him. There had been robberies in the past. Intruder up to no good?

They didn't call a homicide detective to the scene. One upset witness said a police officer told him/her that the person he/she heard screaming was still alive. How did he reach that conclusion? The guy who did the shooting told him?

The dead guy didn't say anything.

ZippyTheChimp
April 5th, 2012, 02:26 AM
Resorts to the *sigh* when befuddled.

Fabrizio
April 5th, 2012, 02:34 AM
Befuddled? No, resigned. To hearing more "vague, misdirected comments".

ZippyTheChimp
April 5th, 2012, 07:36 AM
Scumonkey, help me.

Is that another metaphor? I'm going to guess no.

Fabrizio
April 5th, 2012, 07:44 AM
And then the monkey asked the chimp, "What's a metaphor?"

ZippyTheChimp
April 5th, 2012, 11:31 AM
Two interviews with Frank Taaffe, friend and neighbor of George Zimmerman:

Wednesday, March 21, 2012


Tonight on AC360

In an interview airing tonight on AC360°, Anderson Cooper speaks with Frank Taaffe, a friend of George Zimmerman. Zimmerman is accused of shooting 17-year old Trayvon Martin. Anderson Cooper 360° airs at 8 and 10pm ET on CNN.

Rough transcript of interview, courtesy of AC360, after the jump.


Anderson Cooper: So Mr. Taaffe, you know George Zimmerman. What is he like?
Frank Taaffe: George Zimmerman was a very congenial, amiable admirable person. He was very very kind to everyone in our community and I really appreciated and so did the rest of our residents in our neighborhood that he stepped up and took over the position as neighborhood watch captain to ensure the safety of all the residents in our community.

AC: You say he stopped a potential burglary at your house a couple of weeks ago before the shooting?
Taaffe: That is correct.

AC: And were you surprised that he was carrying a gun. Were you aware that he carried a gun?
Taaffe: I was extremely shocked to the fact that he was carrying a gun yes.

AC: What shocked you? How did it shock you?
Taaffe: The lethal weapon, it wasn’t George. As I said, he was a very congenial, amiable man. The use of a lethal weapon, a deadly lethal weapon, as the 9 millimeter that he used was very shocking to me. It didn’t fit the person.

AC: Has there been burglaries in your neighborhood? What is the neighborhood like?
Taaffe: I have lived at Twin lakes since 2006, July 2006. In the last 15 months, we have experienced 8 burglaries. One, which was perpetrated during the daylight hours. Most, the majority of the perpetrators, were young, black males.

AC: And when you reflect on what’s happened and what we know about, and obviously a lot isn’t known, what do you think?
Taaffe: This was a perfect storm. You had a neighborhood that was experiencing extremely high tension and anxiety and with the burglaries we, pardon my phrase, we were a defcon-5.

AC: I guess, you know, a lot of people believe race played a factor in this. Form what you know about George Zimmerman, do you believe race played a factor?
Taaffe: Absolutely not.

AC: Why do you feel so strongly about that?
Taaffe: George is not a racist. He was just performing his duties as watch captain. Whether it be African American, Latino, Asian, or white, he would’ve done the same thing. He would have appropriate the person, asked him “What’s your business here?” and if he had just answered him in an appropriate manor, “I’m just here visiting. My mother’s house is around the corner,” and be upfront and truthful, there wouldn’t be any problem.

AC: Well Mr. Taaffe, I appreciate your perspective, thank you for being with us.
Taaffe: Thank you Anderson.






Zimmerman Defender (Frank Taaffe) Rants About ‘Young Black Males’ - RawStory

By David Edwards - RawStory
Tuesday, April 3, 2012

In an interview on Tuesday, one of George Zimmerman’s neighbors referred to “young black males” eight times, but insisted that there was no racial profiling by his neighborhood watch. Speaking to CNN’s Soledad O’Brien, Frank Taaffe defended Zimmerman’s February slaying of Trayvon Martin, an unarmed African-American teen.


“Neighbor-hood, that’s a great word,” Taaffe said, chuckling. “We had eight burglaries in our neighborhood, all perpetrated by young black males in the 15 months prior to Trayvon being shot.”

“How many of those cases did they arrest people?” O’Brien wondered. “How many of those cases were people actually convicted.”

“One that I know of where the perpetrator was apprehended,” Taaffe admitted. “The young black male went in during the daytime just two houses down from where my my place was.”

“It sounds like you are saying that it made sense to you that George Zimmerman would be fearful of young black men,” O’Brien observed.

“No, it would be consistent that the perpetrators were all of the young black male ID,” Taaffe explained. “All of the perpetrators of the prior burglaries were young black males. … You know, there’s an old saying that if you plant corn, you get corn.”

“If you plant corn, you get corn. What does that mean?” O’Brien wondered.

“It is what it is,” Taaffe replied. “I would go on record stating, of the eight prior burglaries in the 15 months prior to the Trayvon Martin shooting, all of the perpetrators were young black males. … No disrespect to George Clooney, but it was a perfect storm. All the ingredients were set up. You know, the prior burglaries were committed or perpetrated by young black males, George was on his <neighborhood watch> rounds.”

http://www.rawstory.com/rs/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/cnn_sp_zimmerman_tape_120403a-615x345.jpg

http://media-files.gather.com/images/d935/d309/d747/d224/d96/f3/inter.jpg
Frank Taafee mug shot, domestic violence 1999.


Did he mean defcon-5 or defcon-1? :)

lofter1
April 5th, 2012, 12:08 PM
... interviews with Frank Taaffe, friend and neighbor of George Zimmerman​ ...


Another "friend" who apparently doesn't know Zimmerman all that well:




Taaffe: I was extremely shocked to the fact that he was carrying a gun yes.

AC: What shocked you? How did it shock you?

Taaffe: The lethal weapon, it wasn’t George. As I said, he was a very congenial, amiable man. The use of a lethal weapon, a deadly lethal weapon, as the 9 millimeter that he used was very shocking to me. It didn’t fit the person.


But of course Taaffe knows exactly what happened, down to the "appropriate" tone of voice that Zimmerman used and the less than "appropriate" way that Trayvon responded after Zimmerman followed him down the path far from where he was when the local police dispatcher told him not to pursue the teenager ...




... Taaffe: George is not a racist. He was just performing his duties as watch captain. Whether it be African American, Latino, Asian, or white, he would’ve done the same thing. He would have appropriate the person, asked him “What’s your business here?” and if he had just answered him in an appropriate manor, “I’m just here visiting. My mother’s house is around the corner,” and be upfront and truthful, there wouldn’t be any problem.

eddhead
April 5th, 2012, 12:34 PM
If i were lawfully and peacibly walking down a suburban street and had a stranger stop me and ask what I was doing, I would politely suggest that he go eff himself.

OmegaNYC
April 6th, 2012, 10:27 AM
Just don't do it in Florida, where someone could take that as a threat and legally blow you away.

Ninjahedge
April 6th, 2012, 01:07 PM
Its getting to the point where we won't need Big Brother watching over our shoulders. Everyone will be carrying around their own cloud-connected "little brother"s so that we can view their "black boxes" before the body is even cold.

BBMW
April 6th, 2012, 04:04 PM
We are. They're called cell phones. With embedded GPS it can track you movements to maybe 15 meters. I was fully expecting the GPS tracking history to be part of this case (to show how Z and M were moving relative to each other.)

eddhead
April 10th, 2012, 07:21 PM
April 10, 2012


Zimmerman’s Lawyers Withdraw From Case


By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS


SANFORD, Fla. (AP) — The Trayvon Martin case took a bizarre turn Tuesday when George Zimmerman's attorneys said they were dropping the neighborhood watch captain as a client, complaining that they have lost all contact with him and that he called the prosecutor and talked to a TV host after they told him not to speak to anyone.


The lawyers portrayed Zimmerman as erratic and his emotional state as shaky, and they expressed fear for his mental and physical health amid the pressure that has been building over the past month since he shot and killed Martin, an unarmed black teenager.


"As of the last couple days he has not returned phone calls, text messages or emails," attorney Craig Sonner said. "He's gone on his own. I'm not sure what he's doing or who he's talking to. I cannot go forward speaking to the public about George Zimmerman and this case as representing him because I've lost contact with him."


The split came as a special prosecutor neared a decision on whether to charge Zimmerman with a crime in the Feb. 26 shooting.


Sonner and colleague Hal Uhrig said they had not spoken with Zimmerman since Sunday. Since then, they said, they had learned that he spoke to special prosecutor Angela Corey's office and to Fox TV host Sean Hannity without consulting them, in an attempt to give his side of the shooting. They said Corey refused to talk to Zimmerman without his attorneys' consent and Hannity wouldn't tell them what was discussed.


Zimmerman also set up his own website even as the lawyers were setting up one for him at his request. Zimmerman said on his website that he wants "to ensure my supporters they are receiving my full attention without any intermediaries." The site allows visitors to give Zimmerman money for living expenses and legal bills.


Sonner and Uhrig said that they still believe in Zimmerman's innocence and that they would probably represent him again if he contacted them and requested it. They said Zimmerman is in the U.S., but wouldn't say where because they fear for his safety.


They said Zimmerman has been under extreme pressure and is basically alone, having gone underground because of the furor.


"This has been a terribly corrosive process. George Zimmerman, in our opinion, and from information made available to us, is not doing well emotionally, probably suffering from post-traumatic stress syndrome. We understand from others that he may have lost a lot of weight," Uhrig said.


"To handle it this way suggests that he may not be in complete control of what's going on. We're concerned for his emotional and physical safety."


Ben Crump, an attorney for Martin's family, said they are worried that Zimmerman could flee if he is charged.


"We're just concerned that nobody knows where he is at. Nobody knows how to get to him," Crump said.


In a case that has stirred a furious national debate over racial profiling and self-defense, Zimmerman, 28, shot Martin, 17, after he spotted the teen walking through the gated community in Sanford. Zimmerman's father is white and his mother is Hispanic.


Zimmerman said Martin attacked him, and he claimed self-defense under Florida's "stand your ground" law, which gives people wide leeway to use deadly force. Martin's family has said the evidence suggests Zimmerman was the aggressor.


Meanwhile, tensions were rising in Sanford as townspeople awaited the prosecutor's decision. Someone shot up an unoccupied police car Monday night as it sat outside the neighborhood where Martin was killed. And a demonstration by college students closed the town's police station earlier in the day.


Some residents said they worry there will be violence if Corey accepts Zimmerman's claim of self-defense and decides not to charge him. Corey has not said when she will announce her decision, but many in town believe it will be soon.


Police aren't saying what, if any, precautions they are taking.


Eddie Jones, a 58-year-old black man and lifelong resident of Sanford, said Zimmerman's arrest is paramount to keeping the protests peaceful.


"They need to go ahead and arrest this guy before something happens," he said. "Sanford is screwed up. This place just didn't get corrupt."


While tensions are high, some think this city of about 53,000 — around 57 percent white and 30 percent black — will come through the crisis without violence, as it did during similar uproars.


Two years ago, after a black homeless man was beaten by the son of a Sanford policeman, passions soon cooled. The assailant, Justin Collison, initially wasn't charged but eventually was arrested after footage of the episode went viral on YouTube. He pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor and received probation.


James Carder, a mechanic at McRobert's Auto Center, put a message on his shop that was readily visible to anyone driving down First Street: "Sanford is still a good little town."


Until the Martin shooting, Sanford was probably best known as the Florida stop for the Auto Train, the Amtrak line that carries tourists and their cars between suburban Washington and central Florida's theme parks.


"I put it up because I do care about my good little town," said Carder, who is white. "It has problems just like everywhere. But it's still a good little town. It always has been and always will be."

ZippyTheChimp
April 10th, 2012, 08:02 PM
Zimmerman also set up his own website even as the lawyers were setting up one for him at his request. Zimmerman said on his website that he wants "to ensure my supporters they are receiving my full attention without any intermediaries." The site allows visitors to give Zimmerman money for living expenses and legal bills.
I saw the website when it was first put online. This photo...

http://gothamist.com/attachments/nyc_chrisrobbins/41012zimmerman.jpg
...was used.

The building is the Hale Black Cultural Center at OSU, and the graffiti was done the day after the anniversary of the death of Martin Luther King. The message is racist, and little to do with Zimmerman. Probably unintentional, but really dumb; something a good lawyer would prevent.

The next day, the webpage looked like this (http://www.therealgeorgezimmerman.com/Home_Page.php).

Ninjahedge
April 11th, 2012, 08:47 AM
Oops.

stache
April 11th, 2012, 09:30 AM
They forgot the swastika.

Ninjahedge
April 11th, 2012, 09:45 AM
"Long Live" also does not make much sense either.....

BBMW
April 11th, 2012, 11:41 AM
^
Lots of people want him dead.

Ninjahedge
April 11th, 2012, 11:58 AM
That is not the heart of the issue.

Him living does not support their cause. It is an ill-fitting commemoration of the individual. "Well done" or the like would be more... in line with what they really mean, but I guess they did not want to run out of silver lining....

ZippyTheChimp
April 11th, 2012, 12:42 PM
A lot of the anger toward Zimmerman is extra-legal.

Of course he deserves a fair trial. No one knows for certain - you can hope that those collecting evidence can piece together a credible story - exactly what happened, and can say that under the law, Zimmerman is guilty of a crime. We can have opinions on probability, but that doesn't belong in a jury room.

But what everyone does know for certain is that Zimmerman caused the death of Martin. It's not so random as Zimmerman portrays it on his website:
I was involved in a life-altering event...
It's not like a minor fender-bender, where the two drivers get into an argument, and it escalates into a deadly event. Neither wanted to crash into the other.

Zimmerman followed Martin, who was doing nothing wrong. In the overall picture, Martin was killed for nothing. It's zero-sum, and unacceptable.

stache
April 11th, 2012, 01:23 PM
Martin was killed for nothing.

Sad but true. He didn't even have his hood up at first. Poor kid -

BBMW
April 11th, 2012, 04:21 PM
I will point out the obvious here, which is that Zimmerman hasn't been charged with anything (yet.) When this first popped on the media radar, this could have been chalked up to prosecutorial indifference, institutional racism, connections/cronyism (from Zimmermans father), etc.. Except this has now been under a white hot media spotlight for weeks now. The prosecutors should have all the evidence, and whatever witness testimony they can get. If there is existing probable cause, and a decent possibility that they could get a conviction at trial, you'd think they'd just love to file the charges, which would tone down the controversy considerably.

But they haven't. What this says to me, unless they actually do get around to filing the charges some time not long after I write this, is that they don't like their case. Specifically, they may have evidence that what happened to Zimmerman before he fired his gun does, in fact, fit the definition of self defense under Florida law (as I have posted previously), or don't have evidence to the contrary (since the burden of proof in on them), and the fear if they go to trial they would lose. And no prosecutor wants to bring a loser to trial (especially in the wake of the Casey Anthony debacle.)

Edit: Auspicious timing. Looks like they're filing charges

http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/lookout/george-zimmerman-charged-trayvon-martin-death-reports-193845232.html

At least now they'll have to put their cards on the table.



A lot of the anger toward Zimmerman is extra-legal.

Of course he deserves a fair trial. No one knows for certain - you can hope that those collecting evidence can piece together a credible story - exactly what happened, and can say that under the law, Zimmerman is guilty of a crime.

ZippyTheChimp
April 11th, 2012, 05:35 PM
If there is existing probable cause,


And no prosecutor wants to bring a loser to trial (especially in the wake of the Casey Anthony debacle.)Probable cause (to charge) is a lower standard than beyond a reasonable doubt (to convict). Prosecutors may not like bringing a loser to trial, but what they hate is an improper indictment, which makes them look incompetent at trial. That's the mistake that was made in the Casey Anthony case; she was overcharged.

The prosecutor assigned to this case didn't take the indict-a-ham-sandwich route through a grand jury. I think she wants to make sure the charge is correct.

Manslaughter? There's no distinction in Florida between voluntary and involuntary.

eddhead
April 11th, 2012, 06:22 PM
In addition, there is the point you raised earlier that being, regardless of weather or not a crime took place, it is completely unacceptable for a person who is doing nothing more than minding his/her own business, lawfully walking along a path to a home he/she is staying in, to end up shot dead. If a crime was not committed, the law is effed up. Either way, it is an indictment on the state of Florida.

p.s. I bet there is quite a bit of dialog taking place right now between federal authorities investigating possible civil rights infractions, and the Florida Attorney General. It would not look good for Florida to decide against prosecuting while the Feds pursue an indictment.

eddhead
April 11th, 2012, 06:38 PM
Hot off the press so to speak. As I previously suggested, it would not surprise me to learn that the State of Florida acted anticipating that the Feds were going to move to indict, not wanting to appear lax.

================================================== ===========
April 11, 2012
2nd-Degree Murder Charge in Shooting
By LIZETTE ALVAREZ
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — The Florida special prosecutor announced a second-degree murder charge on Wednesday against George Zimmerman in the shooting death of Trayvon Martin.


Angela B. Corey, the prosecutor, said Mr. Zimmerman, 28, a crime watch volunteer, was in the custody of law enforcement officers in Florida. He is accused of fatally shooting Mr. Martin, an unarmed teenager, in a case that has captivated the country and brought to the fore issues of race, violence and precisely what constitutes self-defense.


“We did not come to this decision lightly,” Ms. Corey said. She added, “Let me emphasize that we do not prosecute by public pressure or by petition.”


“We will continue to seek the truth about this case,” she said.


Ms. Corey opened the news conference by saying that she had spoken to Trayvon Martin’s parents shortly after she took on the case and the investigation was driven by “the search for justice for Trayvon.”


“It was less than three weeks ago that we told those sweet parents that we would get answers,” she said.


Critical to the case is the question of whether or not the shooting fell under Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” law, which gives wide leeway to people who claim self-defense, and which does not require people to retreat before using deadly force.


Earlier this week, Ms. Corey announced that she had decided not to convene a grand jury to investigate the shooting and would herself make the ultimate decision as to whether to charge Mr. Zimmerman.


Mr. Zimmerman has been in hiding for the past several weeks after having received death threats. He has not spoken publicly since the shooting . Mark O’Mara, a criminal defense lawyer from Orlando, announced that he is now representing Mr. Zimmerman.


On Tuesday, Mr. Zimmerman’s previous lawyers, Craig Sonner and Hal Uhrig, announced that they were withdrawing from his legal team. They said they were worried about Mr. Zimmerman’s state of mind, that he had been in contact with Ms. Corey without consulting them, and that they had not been in communication with him and did not know where he was.


A statement on a Web site set up by Mr. Zimmerman to raise money called the shooting a “life-altering event.”


The shooting occurred the evening of Feb. 26 when Mr. Martin was walking back from a store to the home of his father’s girlfriend in a gated community in Sanford, just north of Orlando. Mr. Zimmerman, who had called 911 to report a man who he said was behaving suspiciously, had trailed Mr. Martin for several minutes and had continued to do so even after having been advised by a 911 operator that he should stop.


Mr. Zimmerman has told the authorities that Mr. Martin punched him in the face and tried to take his gun. He has said he shot Mr. Martin in self-defense.


After conducting an investigation, the Sanford Police Department said it lacked sufficient evidence to file charges against Mr. Zimmerman, a decision that set off a wave of protests nationwide by people who believed that the shooting had been racially motivated. Mr. Martin is black. Mr. Zimmerman is Hispanic.


Bill Lee Jr., the police chief, announced his resignation on March 22.


The previous prosecutor in the case, State Attorney Norm Wolfinger, had directed the grand jury to convene to hear evidence starting earlier this week. But Mr. Wolfinger, who usually handles cases in Sanford, recused himself after public outcries about the pace of the inquiry.


An investigation by the Justice Department is continuing.

mariab
April 11th, 2012, 07:38 PM
I was surprised to hear 2nd degree murder. That's going to be a tough one to win. Manslaughter, even aggravated, would have been a clear winner. When the circumstances surrounding the final altercation get trimmed away, they're going to look at whose life was in danger at that final moment. That's where the conviction, or lack of one, is going to come from. They'll still listen to the entire confrontation from beginning to end, but they're going to convict or not based on those final moments.

Merry
April 11th, 2012, 08:55 PM
^ Zimmerman shot and killed Trayvon Martin with intent.

And, as already pointed out, for nothing. All the other BS should be irrelevant...if it weren't for such unbelievably crazy laws.

BBMW
April 11th, 2012, 11:20 PM
i get a feeling that some of you think this is going to be an easy conviction. I'm not convinced, especially since they're charging him with 2nd degree murder. Unless the prosecution has an ace in the hole (which is very possible), this is a very iffy case, given FL self defense law and the cirumstances of the case.

I wonder how those who've been howeling for Zimmerman's arrest would handle an aquittal?

Fabrizio
April 12th, 2012, 06:54 AM
If he's aquitted I would expect some rioting.

ZippyTheChimp
April 12th, 2012, 08:16 AM
Unless the prosecution has an ace in the hole (which is very possible), this is a very iffy case, given FL self defense law and the cirumstances of the case.The first (biggest?) test as regarding Florida self-defense is today at a pretrial hearing, where it could be ruled that Zimmerman is immune from prosecution, and the case would not go to trial.

Assuming that hurdle is passed and the case goes forward to trial, I'm not sure how differently self-defense would play out whether the charge is murder or manslaughter. For murder, the prosecution must prove a level of mens rea (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Model_Penal_Code) for conviction.

In most of what I've read, legal experts were surprised at the higher charge, but given that the prosecutor released no further evidence - conceded that "she has more information than we do."

There's been no information at all about the autopsy.

Ninjahedge
April 12th, 2012, 08:52 AM
Maybe they are not letting on to other injuries sustained by Trayvon.... I would imagine that if they got into a fight, that the kid did not end up with just a bullet.....

eddhead
April 12th, 2012, 09:40 AM
i get a feeling that some of you think this is going to be an easy conviction. I'm not convinced, especially since they're charging him with 2nd degree murder. Unless the prosecution has an ace in the hole (which is very possible), this is a very iffy case, given FL self defense law and the cirumstances of the case.

I wonder how those who've been howeling for Zimmerman's arrest would handle an aquittal?

I am not convinced this will be an easy conviction either. All I know is that it never should have happened. It was either a crime, or there is a problem with the law, I am not sure which.

Just for the heck of it, I went onto the Fox News site to get their take of the events last night and read some of the comments from the site visitors. I was shocked at the amount of bigotry; it was just outrageous. I guess I just don't expect to read that kind of stuff with that degree of regularity in this day and age. Really disheartening. And I cannot help but wonder how much that attitude permeates our society in general and to what degree it will impact the trial.

Nexis4Jersey
April 12th, 2012, 09:45 AM
I am not convinced this will be an easy conviction either. All I know is that it never should have happened. It was either a crime, or there is a problem with the law, I am not sure which.

Just for the heck of it, I went onto the Fox News site to get their take of the events last night and read some of the comments from the site visitors. I was shocked at the amount of bigotry; it was just outrageous. I guess I just don't read that kind of stuff with that degreeof regularity in this day and age. Really disheartening. And I cannot help but wonder how that attitude will effect the verdict.

I can't help but chuckle , what you expect from the comments? Its Fox News , most people who use that site are racist and close minded. But then again look at the comments on the NJ.com....just as bad.

eddhead
April 12th, 2012, 09:49 AM
IIts Fox News , most people who use that site are racist and close minded. But then again look at the comments on the NJ.com....just as bad.
And they comprise the majority (or at least plurality) of News followers, and they vote. When I think about it, I cannot help but wonder what chance we have of electing responsible, reasonable polititicians.

BBMW
April 12th, 2012, 10:20 AM
There has to be an autopsy report.


Maybe they are not letting on to other injuries sustained by Trayvon.... I would imagine that if they got into a fight, that the kid did not end up with just a bullet.....

ZippyTheChimp
April 12th, 2012, 10:23 AM
No mention if the lesser charge will be included, as is often the case.

That raises the possibility of a plea-bargain during trial, or a choice when the jury is charged.

There's a Murder in the 3rd Degree in Florida criminal law, but it doesn't apply here - homicide during the commission of a felony.

Florida statutes:

Second-degree murder:
The unlawful killing of a human being, when perpetrated by any act imminently dangerous to another and evincing a depraved mind regardless of human life, although without any premeditated design to effect the death of any particular individual, is murder in the second degree and constitutes a felony of the first degree, punishable by imprisonment for a term of years not exceeding life or as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.


Manslaughter:
The killing of a human being by the act, procurement, or culpable negligence of another, without lawful justification according to the provisions of chapter 776 and in cases in which such killing shall not be excusable homicide or murder, according to the provisions of this chapter, is manslaughter, a felony of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.

Ninjahedge
April 12th, 2012, 10:47 AM
It doesn't really fit either.

He was not "a depraved mind", and this was not an act of negligence either.....

lofter1
April 12th, 2012, 11:27 AM
Depraved mind could be applicable, given his statements just prior and his apparent pursuit of TM.

ZippyTheChimp
April 12th, 2012, 11:28 AM
@NH:

Look up the LEGAL definitions of these terms.

The only other choice is 1st degree murder. Does that fit?

BBMW
April 12th, 2012, 12:12 PM
What was his motive for shooting Martin, then?


It doesn't really fit either.

He was not "a depraved mind", and this was not an act of negligence either.....

Ninjahedge
April 12th, 2012, 12:12 PM
I don't know zip. I am not saying that he does not deserve to be convicted, he DID commit a crime, but by the way these are stated, he seems to be at 1st degree Manslaughter?

I mean, how can you split it? he caused harm, he knew what he was doing, he did not PLAN it, he was (arguably) fighting back....

The reason I am saying this is after reading your definitions..... I am wondering if, legally, they will find it hard to get one to stick....

BBMW
April 12th, 2012, 12:41 PM
If the jury thinks this is his motive, he will likely be aquitted. A big issue will be who committed the first violent act (ie threw the first punch.) Of course, the only person alive who can directly answer that question is Zimmerman.


I mean, how can you split it? he caused harm, he knew what he was doing, he did not PLAN it, he was (arguably) fighting back....

eddhead
April 12th, 2012, 12:45 PM
What was his motive for shooting Martin, then?

What was his motive for approaching him in the first place?

eddhead
April 12th, 2012, 12:47 PM
or let's turn this ^ around. If you are suggesting that Martin instigated the violence, what was his motive?

eddhead
April 12th, 2012, 12:51 PM
I don't know zip. I am not saying that he does not deserve to be convicted, he DID commit a crime, but by the way these are stated, he seems to be at 1st degree Manslaughter?

I mean, how can you split it? he caused harm, he knew what he was doing, he did not PLAN it, he was (arguably) fighting back....

The reason I am saying this is after reading your definitions..... I am wondering if, legally, they will find it hard to get one to stick....

This was not an act perpetrated by 'negligence of another'; he did not kill him through negligence. This was a case of depraved indifference. Now they may settle for Manslaughter, but the charge is justified in my view.

BBMW
April 12th, 2012, 01:34 PM
Zimmerman thinking he had or was about to commit a crime (with no rational reason.) But approaching him, in and of itself wasn't a crime. The questions are, how did the altercation start, who started it, how did it progress, and what what the situation when Zimmerman pulled his gun and shot.


What was his motive for approaching him in the first place?

eddhead
April 12th, 2012, 02:05 PM
That would be the same Zimmerman motive for attacking Martin. BTW, you do not need to prove motive to get a conviction.

If Zimmerman approached Martin in such a way as to make him feel threatened, and Martin reacted to what he perceived to be a threat by not backing down, wouldn't Martin be "standing his ground" and according to the law, be acting within his rights?

scumonkey
April 12th, 2012, 02:09 PM
Don't forget that Zimmerman was told NOT to approach Martin by the 911 operator- and did so anyway.

eddhead
April 12th, 2012, 02:12 PM
That would be the same Zimmerman motive for attacking Martin. BTW, you do not need to prove motive to get a conviction.

If Zimmerman approached Martin in such a way as to make him feel threatened, and Martin reacted to what he perceived to be a threat by not backing down, wouldn't Martin be "standing his ground" and according to the law, be acting within his rights?

We could have a situation where both Zimmerman and Martin were legally "standing their ground" What a convoluted law.

BBMW
April 12th, 2012, 02:13 PM
I think he would have had to actually attacked Martin, displayed a weapon, or at least made threatening comments. I don't think following him would be enough.

Now if as Zimmerman has claimed, Martin punch Z, knocked him to the ground, and was slamming his head into the sidewalk, would that be justification for Z to shoot M, even if the incident started by Z approaching M?


That would be the same Zimmerman motive for attacking Martin. BTW, you do not need to prove motive to get a conviction.

If Zimmerman approached Martin in such a way as to make him feel threatened, and Martin reacted to what he perceived to be a threat by not backing down, wouldn't Martin be "standing his ground" and according to the law, be acting within his rights?

eddhead
April 12th, 2012, 02:16 PM
^ I don't think that is true. The way the law is written, one is justified to act if they "feel" or are threatened. The law does not stipulate that an act of violence has to be perpetrated, just a threat. Menancing probably suffices.

BBMW
April 12th, 2012, 02:40 PM
^
Okay, I'd give that a maybe. But that's not what happened.

Let's say that Z's story can be confirmed, was he justified in shooting (under existing FL law)?

eddhead
April 12th, 2012, 04:16 PM
That's pretty flippant. How do you know that is not what happened? Based on Martin's phone conversation with his girlfriend, I think it is reasonable to assume that IS what happened.

Put it this way.... You're walking down the street, minding your own business, not bothering anyone when suddenly you notice you are being followed. You turn around and the person says, not so politely "what are you doing here"? Oh yeah, you happen to be a black teenaged male and the person who approached you is a tough looking white guy, physically larger than you are.

You're not going to feel threatened?

BBMW
April 12th, 2012, 04:35 PM
That's pretty flippant. How do you know that is not what happened? Based on Martin's phone conversation with his girlfriend, I think it is reasonable to assume that IS what happened.



I'm not saying that it did happent hat way. I am saying, for the sake of argument, assume it happened that way, and give your opinion of whether it would be justified.






Put it this way.... You're walking down the street, minding your own business, not bothering anyone when suddenly you notice you are being followed. You turn around and the person says, not so politely "what are you doing here"? Oh yeah, you happen to be a black teenaged male and the person who approached you is a tough looking white guy, physically larger than you are.

You're not going to feel threatened?

One point of fact: Martin was taller than Zimmerman. I've heard his hight as given anywhere from 6'1" to 6'3". He was no little kid. Zimmerman is 5' 9" but stockier.

But given your hypothetical (and that may have been how it went down), what do you do? A big question being, did Zimmerman have his gun out at this point. I think that unlikely. So to Martin, this was some random white guy giving him crap. Time for a fight?

Fabrizio
April 12th, 2012, 04:47 PM
... you happen to be a black teenaged male and the person who approached you is a tough looking white guy, physically larger than you are.

For accuracy: Martin was taller than Zimmerman.

And although technically Zimmerman may be a "white guy", his ethnicity is Hispanic.

eddhead
April 12th, 2012, 05:54 PM
I am under the impression that Zimmerman weighed in the neighborhood of 240llbs (I read somewhere that his 2005 arrest record listed him at 250), while martin weighed about 150. That constitutes a considerable size difference.

As to his being hispanic, that does not make him less intimidating, or less white.

ZippyTheChimp
April 12th, 2012, 06:05 PM
By his own account, Zimmerman thought that Martin was up to no good.

It's reasonable that Martin might have thought the same thing about Zimmerman.

eddhead
April 12th, 2012, 10:39 PM
Yes, and by extrapolation, Martin likely felt 'threatened' by Zimmerman.

ZippyTheChimp
April 12th, 2012, 10:42 PM
You won't find any additional evidence in the document, but the conclusion is that the State does not believe Zimmerman was attacked and punched by Martin.

Affidavit of Probable Cause - Second Degree Murder (http://www.scoutmastersandbox.com/Zimmerman_Probable_Cause_Document.pdf)

mariab
April 12th, 2012, 11:02 PM
"...back to the townhouse where he was living when he was profiled by George Zimmerman."

Anyone think the defense will argue that that's a biased statement for an affadavit? They can argue that Zimmerman only referred to Martin as black after he was asked by the dispatcher what Martin looked like.

BBMW
April 12th, 2012, 11:06 PM
They can't. If they say they think M attacked Z before Z shot him their case implodes.



You won't find any additional evidence in the document, but the conclusion is that the State does not believe Zimmerman was attacked and punched by Martin.

Affidavit of Probable Cause - Second Degree Murder (http://www.scoutmastersandbox.com/Zimmerman_Probable_Cause_Document.pdf)

ZippyTheChimp
April 12th, 2012, 11:58 PM
"...back to the townhouse where he was living when he was profiled by George Zimmerman."

Anyone think the defense will argue that that's a biased statement for an affadavit? They can argue that Zimmerman only referred to Martin as black after he was asked by the dispatcher what Martin looked like.The affidavit isn't evidence at trial. It's the same as grand jury deliberations that result in a charge. Generally, grand juries don't hear from the defense.

The "profiling" mentioned in the affidavit is that Zimmerman assumed Martin to be a potential criminal. On the 911 call: "These assholes, they always get away," and "these f_cking punks." That Zimmerman may have come to this conclusion based on race would only be relevant if he was charged with a hate-crime. It would not matter if Martin was white; the second degree murder charge is based on the mindset of Zimmerman toward Martin.


They can't. If they say they think M attacked Z before Z shot him their case implodes.This makes no sense. If the prosecutor really believes (has evidence) that M attacked Z, the affidavit would have been written differently, with a different charge.

Ninjahedge
April 13th, 2012, 08:58 AM
I think they should just try it as a strait case and leave race the hell out of it.

Zimmerman saw a teen walking alone at night through the neighborhood he appointed himself to protect.

He confronted him, there was an altercation and shot the kid.

There was NO REASON for him to confront him. He could have just hung back and watched until the police got there, but Mr. "I have a gun in my belt and I know how to use it" felt it was his "duty" to play the enforcer, and ended up doing something he probably never saw himself actually doing.....

He shot him w/o cause. The only thing we have to see is if it is determined to be illegal or not in the state of Florida, and what will happen as a result.

BBMW
April 13th, 2012, 09:05 AM
^
The problem with that thinking is that it does not fit how the law is written (which I've posted in this thread previously.) How the altercation (not the initial confrontation) initiated and progressed will be huge issues.

ZippyTheChimp
April 13th, 2012, 09:50 AM
He shot him w/o cause. The only thing we have to see is if it is determined to be illegal or not in the state of Florida, and what will happen as a result.The first statement isn't a fact. The prosecution has to convince a jury beyond a reasonable doubt.

"The only thing" is the entire trial.

The judge will have leeway in sentencing, but the penalties for manslaughter and murder 2 are substantially different. The fact that a firearm was used in the homicide and that Martin was a minor also comes into play under Florida law.

Zimmerman gets some sort of bond hearing in the future; but right now, he's in custody. He's getting a taste of prison life, and that might influence whether or not he wants to roll the dice should a plea bargain be offered.

stache
April 13th, 2012, 09:58 AM
Mr. "I have a gun in my belt and I know how to use it" felt it was his "duty" to play the enforcer, and ended up doing something he probably never saw himself actually doing.....


I have my doubts about that. He's a wannabe cop (that no one would have) and I bet he watches all the cop/ law enforcement television shows and fantasizes about this exact type of situation.

ZippyTheChimp
April 13th, 2012, 10:02 AM
How the altercation (not the initial confrontation) initiated and progressed will be huge issues.That is legally true, but may not be so huge to a jury.

Reading about this over the last few weeks, I came across a statement by a Florida judge:
(paraphrase)"Not every fight where punches are thrown is an excuse for someone to use a handgun."

An interesting read here (http://www.alljujitsu.com/self-defense-law.html) about self defense, or as described - the defense of self defense.

BBMW
April 13th, 2012, 11:14 AM
^
A key issue will be if the jury buys Z's version of the events. If they do, it meshes very well with FL self defense statute.

If the prosecution can show (likely through foresnics) the both combatents were upright when Z shot M. I think Z is done. If it shows that Z was on his back on the ground, in a comprimised position, with M on top beating on him, I think Z walks.

eddhead
April 13th, 2012, 11:29 AM
So if Zimmerman starts a fight than finds himself in trouble and shoots the other person, he is OK?

Ninjahedge
April 13th, 2012, 12:07 PM
The first statement isn't a fact. The prosecution has to convince a jury beyond a reasonable doubt.

Debatable, but my crystal ball says otherwise... :p


"The only thing" is the entire trial.

That is why it was "the only thing" :rolleyes:


The judge will have leeway in sentencing, but the penalties for manslaughter and murder 2 are substantially different. The fact that a firearm was used in the homicide and that Martin was a minor also comes into play under Florida law.

Zimmerman gets some sort of bond hearing in the future; but right now, he's in custody. He's getting a taste of prison life, and that might influence whether or not he wants to roll the dice should a plea bargain be offered.

Possible. It all depends on how he is played in this media circus.

Ninjahedge
April 13th, 2012, 12:08 PM
So if Zimmerman starts a fight than finds himself in trouble and shoots the other person, he is OK?

Hey, it's only fair!

He started it... after I started it.....

BBMW
April 13th, 2012, 02:17 PM
In FL, it would appear so. Have you read the sections of the FL law I posted?


So if Zimmerman starts a fight than finds himself in trouble and shoots the other person, he is OK?

eddhead
April 13th, 2012, 08:44 PM
I did read the sections of the law you posted and I will stand by my ascertain of a few posts back. According to my read of the law if there was an altercation it is likely more that Martin was standing his ground as it is Z was.

BBMW
April 13th, 2012, 09:53 PM
You seem to making the assumption that if M may have been justifed in attacking Z (because Z followed and confronted him), if the tables tuned, and M was putting a serious hurt on Z, Z would not be justifies in shooting M. I think that this assumption is incorrect.

Ninjahedge
April 16th, 2012, 08:35 AM
What I think, law or not, that chasing someone down and confronting them does not give you the right to kill them if they attack you in response.

It is SYG, not "Chase the guy down and SYG".

eddhead
April 16th, 2012, 09:42 AM
You seem to making the assumption that if M may have been justifed in attacking Z (because Z followed and confronted him), if the tables tuned, and M was putting a serious hurt on Z, Z would not be justifies in shooting M. I think that this assumption is incorrect.

The assumption I am making is that M was standing HIS ground against what he felt was a bodily threat

ZippyTheChimp
April 16th, 2012, 11:16 AM
What I think, law or not, that chasing someone down and confronting them does not give you the right to kill them if they attack you in response.Actually, you do have that right, legally, and not just in Florida. It's codified in NY State, and probably in all states.

In many states (including NY): The use of deadly force is legally authorized if - including other situations I won't go into - your life is threatened. It doesn't matter who started the confrontation, unless it starts as life threatening. The judge's quote I cited earlier applies to both parties. If a fight is broken up by police, they may ask, "Who started this?" The person that started it may be charged with assault.

If a homicide is committed before the police arrive, the important question is, "Why did you use deadly force?" Who started the fight may be a factor in the court case as to whether the defendant's story is believable, but it's not paramount. In Zimmerman's case, it will be, because he gave a statement to police that he was initially attacked - that he was returning to his car and Martin came up and punched him. That still wouldn't give him the right to use deadly force, but at least his story would be true. If Martin didn't attack first, then Zimmerman lied about the encounter, and his justification to use deadly force is less believable.

What clouds the situation in Florida is the law that allows Zimmerman to us deadly force if he reasonably thinks that he is in deadly peril. What has happened is that the Castle Doctrine (a man's home is his castle) has been expanded into the street. Street-justice has encroached into an area historically the domain of a court of law. The value of a person's fears have been elevated, at the expense of the value of a life which has been diminished.

The decision to use deadly force becomes less weighty. In a pretrial hearing, a judge can rule deadly force was authorized and dismiss the charge entirely. Also unique in Florida, if the defense is successful, Zimmerman gets immunity from a wrongful-death civil suit.



Ii wouldn't be surprised if there are class-action challenges to the Stand Your Ground laws in Florida and elsewhere, and may wind up in the Supreme Court. Due Process Clause - 14th and 5th Amendments.

eddhead
April 16th, 2012, 11:32 AM
Actually, you do have that right, legally, and not just in Florida. It's codified in NY State, and probably in all states.

In many states (including NY): The use of deadly force is legally authorized if - including other situations I won't go into - your life is threatened. It doesn't matter who started the confrontation, unless it starts as life threatening. The judge's quote I cited earlier applies to both parties. If a fight is broken up by police, they may ask, "Who started this?" The person that started it may be charged with assault..

Zip, is it possible for both parties to an encounter to feel as though both their lives are threatened and as a result for both to (legallly) attempt lethal force? If so, and one person dies, does that mean no one was at fault because both parties felt threatened?

I mean, it is like the wild, wild west.

stache
April 16th, 2012, 11:48 AM
What has happened is that the Castle Doctrine (a man's home is his castle) has been expanded into the street.

Reinforcing this is that the incident happened within a gated community/ restricted access area. On the other hand, Trayvon was also a resident (although on a temporary basis).

BBMW
April 16th, 2012, 01:55 PM
I think in this case, it MIGHT have gone back and forth. If Z did, if fact chase M down and attack him, and M also had a gun, and shot him at the moment, M might very well have been considered justified. But if no matter how the fistfight started, M ended up on top of Z, and making repeaped blows to Z's head (as Z alleges), at that point M may be considered to be justifired. We'll find out experimentally. Then again, we may never know exactly what happened in the moments before Z fired.


Zip, is it possible for both parties to an encounter to feel as though both their lives are threatened and as a result for both to (legallly) attempt lethal force? If so, and one person dies, does that mean no one was at fault because both parties felt threatened?

I mean, it is like the wild, wild west.

BBMW
April 16th, 2012, 01:58 PM
While I can see the various stand your ground laws getting more political scrutiny, I find they prospect incredibly unlikely.


Ii wouldn't be surprised if there are class-action challenges to the Stand Your Ground laws in Florida and elsewhere, and may wind up in the Supreme Court. Due Process Clause - 14th and 5th Amendments.

Ninjahedge
April 16th, 2012, 02:03 PM
B, I agree that this might be considered "legal" by the strict definition of the law as it is now written.....

But that would only be ammunition for repeal of a poorly worded law.

BBMW
April 16th, 2012, 02:32 PM
^In FL? I don't think so. The two gun happy-est states I can think of are FL and AZ. The majority there likes it the way it is. Miami may feel like the 6th borough, but the rest of the state very much isn't.

eddhead
April 16th, 2012, 03:00 PM
I am having a hard time with this because I am of the mind-set that if someone is shot to death, somone is legally cupable .... either the person who shot him/her, or the person who was shot and who may have acted in a threatening manner (that is actually not really my mind-set but it will do for the sake of arguement)

I just can't process somone getting shot and no one (including the person who got shot) is to blame.

Hell, why have laws at all?

stache
April 16th, 2012, 08:41 PM
The two gun happy-est states I can think of are FL and AZ.

Don't forget Texas.

eddhead
April 17th, 2012, 09:55 AM
^ I was thinking the same thing about Texas. In Dallas, just about every pick-up truck you come accross (and there are a lot of them) has a gun rack.

Meanwhile, it appears Big Business is jumping in on the whole Stand Your Ground issue,

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
April 16, 2012

Embarrassed by Bad Laws

A year ago, few people outside the world of state legislatures had heard of the American Legislative Exchange Council, a four-decade-old organization run by right-wing activists and financed by business leaders. The group writes prototypes of state laws to promote corporate and conservative interests and spreads them from one state capital to another.

The council, known as ALEC, has since become better known, with news organizations alerting the public to the damage it has caused: voter ID laws that marginalize minorities and the elderly, antiunion bills that hurt the middle class and the dismantling of protective environmental regulations.

Now it’s clear that ALEC, along with the National Rifle Association (http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/13/us/nra-campaign-leads-to-expanded-self-defense-laws.html?ref=todayspaper&pagewanted=all#p[CstTet]), also played a big role in the passage of the “Stand Your Ground” self-defense laws around the country. The original statute, passed in Florida in 2005, was a factor in the local police’s failure to arrest the shooter of a Florida teenager named Trayvon Martin immediately after his killing in February.

That was apparently the last straw for several prominent corporations that had been financial supporters of ALEC. In recent weeks, McDonald’s, Wendy’s, Intuit, Mars, Kraft Foods, Coca-Cola and PepsiCo have stopped supporting (http://www.npr.org/2012/04/05/150013705/boycotts-hitting-group-behind-stand-your-ground) the group, responding to pressure from activists (http://colorofchange.org/campaign/alec/) and consumers who have formed a grass-roots counterweight to corporate treasuries. That pressure is likely to continue as long as state lawmakers are more responsive to the needs of big donors than the public interest.

The N.R.A. pushed Florida’s Stand Your Ground law through the State Legislature over the objections of law enforcement groups, and it was signed by Gov. Jeb Bush. It allows people to attack a perceived assailant if they believe they are in imminent danger, without having to retreat. John Timoney, formerly the Miami police chief, recently called the law a “recipe for disaster,” (http://www.nytimes.com/2012/03/24/opinion/floridas-disastrous-self-defense-law.html) and he said that he and other police chiefs had correctly predicted it would lead to more violent road-rage incidents and drug killings. Indeed, “justifiable homicides” in Florida have tripled since 2005.

Nonetheless, ALEC — which counts the N.R.A. as a longtime and generous member — quickly picked up on the Florida law and made it one of its priorities, distributing it to legislators across the country. Seven years later, 24 other states (http://www.propublica.org/article/the-23-states-that-have-sweeping-self-defense-laws-just-like-floridas) now have similar laws, thanks to ALEC’s reach, and similar bills have been introduced in several other states, including New York.

The corporations abandoning ALEC aren’t explicitly citing the Stand Your Ground statutes as the reason for their decision. But many joined the group for narrower reasons, like fighting taxes on soda or snacks, and clearly have little interest in voter ID requirements or the N.R.A.’s vision of a society where anyone can fire a concealed weapon at the slightest hint of a threat.

In a statement issued on Wednesday (http://www.alec.org/2012/04/alec-responds/), ALEC bemoaned the opposition it is facing and claimed it is only interested in job creation, government accountability and pro-business policies. It makes no mention of its role in pushing a law that police departments believe is increasing gun violence and deaths. That’s probably because big business is beginning to realize the Stand Your Ground laws are indefensible.

ZippyTheChimp
April 17th, 2012, 10:29 AM
Zip, is it possible for both parties to an encounter to feel as though both their lives are threatened and as a result for both to (legallly) attempt lethal force? If so, and one person dies, does that mean no one was at fault because both parties felt threatened?That situation is possible, but what I think is being missed here is that it was always possible under existing laws. What has changed is that justified homicide has become easier to claim, without going through the scrutiny of the courts. If you are truly guilty, it's easier to get away with murder. In Florida, you can't even be sued for wrongful death.

ZippyTheChimp
April 17th, 2012, 10:39 AM
I wouldn't be surprised if there are class-action challenges to the Stand Your Ground laws in Florida and elsewhere, and may wind up in the Supreme Court. Due Process Clause - 14th and 5th Amendments.


While I can see the various stand your ground laws getting more political scrutiny, I find they prospect incredibly unlikely.


B, I agree that this might be considered "legal" by the strict definition of the law as it is now written.....

But that would only be ammunition for repeal of a poorly worded law.


^In FL? I don't think so. The two gun happy-est states I can think of are FL and AZ. The majority there likes it the way it is. Miami may feel like the 6th borough, but the rest of the state very much isn't.Issues that wind their way up the court ladder are usually driven by politics.

If the issue of constitutionality reached the Supreme Court, it wouldn't matter what the people of Florida thought. It wouldn't have to originate in Florida, and it would affect all states.

There's already one suit filed, in Georgia: http://blogs.wsj.com/law/2012/04/10/georgia-stand-your-ground-law-challenged-as-vague/

eddhead
April 17th, 2012, 10:55 AM
I can see the mattergoing to the Supreme Court, but I cannot see THIS court striking down Stand Your Ground Laws. Another 5-4 case along ideological lines.

Ninjahedge
April 17th, 2012, 11:04 AM
I can see it being struck down only on the grounds of vague wording.

They may support the idea, but you can't make a law that says it is OK to shoot someone because you "felt" you had to.

BBMW
April 17th, 2012, 11:05 AM
Texas while gun happy, is not as gun happy as FL and AZ. For a log time there was no concealed carry in TX. They started allowing it after the Luby's shooting.


Don't forget Texas.

ZippyTheChimp
April 17th, 2012, 11:08 AM
I can see the mattergoing to the Supreme Court, but I cannot see THIS court striking down Stand Your Ground Laws. Another 5-4 case along ideological lines.It wouldn't reach the SC until long after the Nov elections. Another reason to give Obama a second term.

BBMW
April 17th, 2012, 11:09 AM
There's no constitutional issue here. While some people (like most here) may not like this, this is something the states are free to define on their own.


I can see the mattergoing to the Supreme Court, but I cannot see THIS court striking down Stand Your Ground Laws. Another 5-4 case along ideological lines.

BBMW
April 17th, 2012, 11:11 AM
It's not going to reach the Supreme Court at all. In all the discussions over the SYG laws in the media (falling out of this case,) I haven't heard of anyone in a position to know claiming that there's a constitutional issue here. This is all idle speculation.


It wouldn't reach the SC until long after the Nov elections. Another reason to give Obama a second term.

ZippyTheChimp
April 17th, 2012, 11:15 AM
There's no constitutional issue here.How do you know this?


While some people (like most here) may not like this, this is something the states are free to define on their own.How do you know this?

BBMW
April 17th, 2012, 12:02 PM
How do you know this?



I've never heard of a successful constitutional challenge to a self defense law. I see nothing in the constitution that would tend to directly contradict SYG or any other self defense law. If you know of a successful challenge, please post it.




How do you know this?

Because it's always been this way. All of the self defense cases I've every heard of have been based on state law. While the feds have pumped up their ability to press murder charges, these are ususally based on other federal laws (racketeering, terrorism, etc.) Self defense generally won't come into play.

In this country, whenever someone runs into a law they don't like, the first thing they spout is "oh, it must be unconsititutional." On the other side of the political spectrum, I hear people trying to apply the second amendment to situationi where courts really will never buy it. That's what's happening here.

Hey, maybe someone will try and run a case up the flagpole, and we'll get to find out definitively. But if they did, would you put money on it succeeding?

ZippyTheChimp
April 17th, 2012, 01:12 PM
I've never heard of a successful constitutional challenge to a self defense law.It's not the concept of self-defense, which isn't even defined in the Constitution, that's at issue. It's the way some (maybe all) these recent laws are written. There is constitutional protection against ANY law that is vague or arbitrary.


In this country, whenever someone runs into a law they don't like, the first thing they spout is "oh, it must be unconsititutional."So what does that "prove" about this particular issue?


While the feds have pumped up their ability to press murder charges, these are ususally based on other federal laws (racketeering, terrorism, etc.) Self defense generally won't come into play You are confused as to what is being challenged. It's not about the federal government enacting criminal law to supercede state law.

I can cite you dozens of state criminal laws that have been struck down as unconstitutional.

eddhead
April 17th, 2012, 02:31 PM
From the Wall Street Journal. This law is being challenged in Federal Court on what appears to be constitutional grounds


April 10, 2012, 1:50 PM ET
Georgia ‘Stand Your Ground’ Law Challenged as Vague
http://s.wsj.net/public/resources/images/OB-HS209_gunhol_D_20100301105505.jpg iStock
Florida’s not the only state where the “Stand Your Ground” law is making headlines.

Civil rights activist Markel Hutchins is challenging Georgia’s similar self-defense law in federal court, claiming that it leads to the “unnecessary use of lethal force” that could endanger people, and that the law should be struck down because it is vague and could result in a disproportionate number of minorities being shot, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported (http://www.ajc.com/news/georgia-government/lawsuit-challenges-georgias-stand-1411841.html).

“An individual seeking to stand their ground and assert self-defense has no way of knowing if their ‘reasonable belief’ comports with the standards protected by the law and [they] want to ensure that they do not subject themselves to criminal penalties,” the suit alleged, according to AJC.

The suit also says that some courts accept race as evidence to “establish the reasonableness of an individual’s fear in cases of justifiable homicide,” and Hutchins claims that in those circumstances the law doesn’t equally protect him and other African Americans, AJC noted.

“The law itself breeds bias-based killings in that it merely requires that one only have ‘reasonable’ fear in order to deprive another of his or her life without giving any statutory definition of what is reasonable and it does so without any duty to retreat from confrontation,” Hutchins said, according to (http://www.examiner.com/republican-in-atlanta/federal-lawsuit-challenging-georgia-s-stand-your-ground-law-filed-today) Examiner.com.

Supporters of stand-your-ground laws say they empower people to confront criminals in life-threatening situations. They also say the laws, in many cases, simply codified the position taken by juries in self-defense cases.

“Stand Your Ground” laws have received national attention in the wake of the Florida fatal shooting of a 17-year-old unarmed man, Trayvon Martin, by a neighborhood watch volunteer, George Zimmerman. Law Blog pointed out (http://blogs.wsj.com/law/2012/04/06/florida-prosecutors-say-stand-your-ground-should-be-repealed/) last week that the Florida Prosecuting Attorneys Association offered testimony to a task force, recommending the law be repealed.

http://blogs.wsj.com/law/2012/04/10/georgia-stand-your-ground-law-challenged-as-vague/tab/print/

Ninjahedge
April 17th, 2012, 02:42 PM
It needs to be defined better.

That is what should be taken up as issue. "Reasonable" is a subjective term used to describe many things and can mean different things in different context. In the case of Treyvon, who is to say what was "reasonable" when the only one who saw the whole thing is the suspect himself?

SYG may have some solid root for its creation, but it is just too fuzzy to be applied appropriately without a large margin of potential abuse.

BBMW
April 17th, 2012, 04:49 PM
When some activist lawyers finds a law they don't like, they cobble together some cockemamie argument using, at best, very loosely applicable precidents. It's not going anywhere.

If these laws are going to be changed, it will be legislatively. And given the states in question, I find that prospect somewhat unlikely.

eddhead
April 17th, 2012, 07:01 PM
I guess we'll see how far this goes. I don't think this is a slam dunk for either side.

BBMW
April 20th, 2012, 10:13 AM
The photo linked below, supposedly of Z taken minutes after the shooting, shows him with his head bloodied. If this is verified, it will be fairly powerful evidence for his self defense claim.

Linking not pasting in, in case anyone can't stand the sight of blood.

http://abcnews.go.com/images/US/ht_george_zimmerman_head_dm_120419_wmain.jpg

Fabrizio
April 20th, 2012, 03:17 PM
Zimmerman had this to say at the Bail Hearing today:

“I wanted to say I am sorry for the loss of your son, I did not know how old he was. I thought he was a little bit younger than I am".

Yet on the 911 call when asked, "How old would you say he looks?", he answered: "(....), late teens".

Zimmerman is 28.


Looks like Zimmerman is off to a bad start...

Ninjahedge
April 20th, 2012, 05:09 PM
He should learn, like many people in the world, to keep his mouth shut.

mariab
May 12th, 2012, 12:06 AM
A different defense under the SYG law, but not as cut and dried as you think. Article said she left the room and came back with a gun, but read further.

http://usnews.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012/05/11/11660804-marissa-alexander-gets-20-years-for-firing-warning-shot-after-stand-your-ground-defense-fails

Merry
May 12th, 2012, 03:11 AM
Oh my god :mad:.


Trayvon Martin hoodie gun targets reportedly sell out

By Michael Winter

Shooting targets featuring Trayvon Martin's hooded sweatshirt were sold on a gun auction site "to make money off the controversy," the unidentified seller told Orlando TV station WKMG (http://www.clickorlando.com/news/news/Trayvon-Martin-gun-range-targets-sold-online/-/9533136/13069306/-/10ffct0z/-/index.html).

The paper targets do not show Trayvon's face but include a box of Skittles and a beverage, which the 17-year-old bought before being shot and killed in February during a confrontation with George Zimmerman in Sanford, Fla.

Two unidentified Florida gun dealers bought some targets, the seller said in an email exchange. "I sold out in 2 days," the seller wrote, without revealing the quantity.
The exchange occurred before a WKMG reporter identified himself as a journalist.

The seller's advertisement stated, "[We] support Zimmerman and believe he is innocent and that he shot a thug." The ad has been taken down.

The station does not identify the "popular firearms auction website" and says it has not been able to determine the identify of the seller.

Before the reporter identified himself, the seller said targets were still available, afterward saying they would no longer be sold, the station writes. The targets cost $8, plus $7.50 shipping.
An attorney for Trayvon's family called the target "disgusting."

"It's a sad certain segment of our society that would think you could make a profit off the killing of a teenage boy," said Natale Jackson.

Zimmerman's attorney denounced the targets as "hate-mongering."

"This is the highest level of disgust and the lowest level of civility," said Mark O'Mara. "It's this type of hatred -- that's what this is, it's hate-mongering -- that's going to make it more difficult to try this case."

Zimmerman is being tried for second-degree murder. He is free on bond.

http://content.usatoday.com/communities/ondeadline/post/2012/05/trayvon-martin-hoodie-gun-targets-reportedly-sell-out/1#.T64MXcXwJ7Q

BBMW
May 16th, 2012, 11:44 AM
Apparently Zimmerman was examined by a doctor the day after the shooting. The doctor released a report on the injuries Z sustained. They are consistent with Z's story. The news story is linked below:

http://abcnews.go.com/US/george-zimmerman-medical-report-sheds-light-injuries-trayvon/story?id=16353532

I also heard that some of Martin's autopsy result were released, and he had scratches on his knuckles.

Edit: forund link:

http://www.wftv.com/news/news/local/autopsy-results-show-trayvon-martin-had-injuries-h/nN6gs/

Ninjahedge
May 16th, 2012, 12:14 PM
Lesson learned.

A strange man comes up to you at night and starts acting like a cop when he isn't, you obey everything he says or he will shoot you.


Unless Tray confronted HIM and asked HIM what was going on, started the fight, and was going to KILL HIM, Zim still did not have any "grounds" to "stand his ground" and kill him.

BBMW
May 16th, 2012, 12:45 PM
^
Under FL law you may be wrong. We're going to find out experimentally.

Ninjahedge
May 16th, 2012, 01:51 PM
I know.

What I am saying is that the law may not be right.

Otherwise this pretty much says that you can start a fight and use a gun when you start to lose.

stache
May 16th, 2012, 02:13 PM
Yep.

BBMW
May 16th, 2012, 02:36 PM
This gets into the definition of who started the fight. I one person follows and approachs another, but never lays a hand on him, but the person followed slugs the first guy, who started the fight?


I know.
Otherwise this pretty much says that you can start a fight and use a gun when you start to lose.

infoshare
May 16th, 2012, 04:46 PM
Otherwise this pretty much says that you can start a fight and use a gun when you start to lose.

I think Zimmerman would have enjoyed being a moderator on Internet forums. HeHe

eddhead
May 16th, 2012, 07:23 PM
This is kind of long, but it is a good explanation of highlighting how 'Police Misstep' could potentially hamper the prosecution
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

May 16, 2012


Trayvon Martin Case Shadowed by Series of Police Missteps


By SERGE F. KOVALESKI
SANFORD, Fla. — The killing of Trayvon Martin here two and a half months ago has been cast as the latest test of race relations and equal justice in America. But it was also a test of a small city police department that does not even have a homicide unit and typically handles three or four murder cases a year.


An examination of the Sanford Police Department’s handling of the case shows a series of missteps — including sloppy work — and circumstances beyond its control that impeded the investigation and may make it harder to pursue a case that is already difficult enough.


The national furor has subsided for the moment. But as the second-degree murder case against the defendant, George Zimmerman, moves from the glare of a public spectacle to the grinding procedures of the court system and eventual trial, the department’s performance, roundly criticized by Mr. Martin’s family as bungling and biased, will be scrutinized once again, though in more meticulous detail.


With doubts shadowing the quality and scope of the police work, the prosecution and the defense will be left to tackle critical questions even as they debate the evidence. And ultimately, what happened on the rainy night of Feb. 26 may come to rest on the word of one man, George Zimmerman, the 28-year-old neighborhood watch volunteer who fired the fatal shot.


In interviews over several weeks, law enforcement authorities, witnesses and local elected officials identified problems with the initial investigation:


¶ On the night of the shooting, door-to-door canvassing was not exhaustive enough, said a law enforcement official familiar with the investigation. If officers had been more thorough, they might have determined that Mr. Martin, 17, was a guest — as opposed to an intruder — at a gated community called the Retreat at Twin Lakes. That would have been an important part of the subjective analysis that night by officers sizing up Mr. Zimmerman’s story. Investigators found no witnesses who saw the fight start. Others saw parts of a struggle they could not clearly observe or hear. One witness, though, provided information to the police that corroborated Mr. Zimmerman’s account of the struggle, according to a law enforcement official.


¶ The police took only one photo at the scene of any of Mr. Zimmerman’s injuries — a full-face picture of him that showed a bloodied nose — before paramedics tended to him. It was shot on a department cellphone camera and was not downloaded for a few days, an oversight by the officer who took it.


¶ The vehicle that Mr. Zimmerman was driving when he first spotted Mr. Martin was mistakenly not secured by officers as part of the crime scene. The vehicle was an important link in the fatal encounter because it was where Mr. Zimmerman called the police to report a suspicious teenager in a hooded sweatshirt roaming through the Retreat. Mr. Zimmerman also said he was walking back to the vehicle when he was confronted by Mr. Martin, who was unarmed, before shooting him.


¶ The police were not able to cover the crime scene to shield evidence from the rain, and any blood from cuts that Mr. Zimmerman suffered when he said Mr. Martin pounded his head into a sidewalk may have been washed away.


¶ The police did not test Mr. Zimmerman for alcohol or drug use that night, and one witness said the lead investigator quickly jumped to a conclusion that it was Mr. Zimmerman, and not Mr. Martin, who cried for help during the struggle.


Some Sanford officers were skeptical from the beginning about certain details of Mr. Zimmerman’s account. For instance, he told the police that Mr. Martin had punched him over and over again, but they questioned whether his injuries were consistent with the number of blows he claimed he received. They also suspected that some of the threatening and dramatic language that Mr. Zimmerman said Mr. Martin uttered during the struggle — like “You are going to die tonight” — sounded contrived.


The Sanford police — who contended that their 16-day investigation, done in consultation with the original prosecutor in the case, was detailed and impartial — also encountered other obstacles. One involved the investigators’ inability to get the password for Mr. Martin’s cellphone from his family, who apparently did not know it. That was significant because Mr. Martin had been talking to a girl on the phone moments before he was killed, but the young woman did not contact the police after Mr. Martin’s death was made public.


From what is known of the investigation and the available evidence, what exactly happened in the dimly lighted residential development that Sunday night may remain out of reach. Given Mr. Zimmerman’s assertion that he was acting in self-defense, and lacking enough evidence to the contrary, the original prosecutor in the case, Norm Wolfinger, whose jurisdiction includes Sanford, filed no charges against him.


That decision resulted in an increasingly strident public outcry. After Gov. Rick Scott of Florida contacted Mr. Wolfinger and had a conversation with him in late March, the prosecutor recused himself, citing, among other things, an unspecified conflict of interest.


The governor selected another state attorney to handle the case, Angela B. Corey of the Jacksonville area. On April 11, after nearly three weeks of investigation, Ms. Corey charged Mr. Zimmerman with second-degree murder. An accompanying affidavit said that Mr. Zimmerman had “profiled” Mr. Martin and had assumed he was a criminal.


Ms. Corey declined to be interviewed, as did Mr. Wolfinger. Governor Scott also declined several requests for an interview about how and why he selected Ms. Corey for the case.


In announcing the charge, Ms. Corey praised the Sanford Police Department’s work, indicating that it had conducted a “thorough and intensive” inquiry and was a “tremendous help” to her office.What appears unchanged since the beginning, however, is that investigators say they do not know who started the fight. Florida’s controversial Stand Your Ground law, which has come to shadow a number of homicide cases since it was adopted in 2005, justifies the use of deadly force in certain threatening situations but does not require a person to retreat. The law became the framework within which the police and prosecutors had to work after Mr. Zimmerman claimed that Mr. Martin confronted and pounced on him.


Mr. Zimmerman had called the police from his vehicle to report what he believed was a suspicious person in the Retreat, something he had done numerous times in the past. He later told investigators that he got out of his vehicle and followed Mr. Martin but lost sight of him. As Mr. Zimmerman was returning to his vehicle, he told them, Mr. Martin emerged and then attacked him. Mr. Zimmerman told investigators that at one point, Mr. Martin had his hand over his mouth. And before he shot the youth, he explained to the police, Mr. Martin had reached for Mr. Zimmerman’s gun.


“There is a perception that we were trying to protect George Zimmerman,” the Sanford police chief, Bill Lee Jr., who temporarily stepped aside in March to quell the furor and later offered to resign, said in a recent interview. “We think that what he did was terrible. We wish that he had just stayed in his vehicle.”


“There was no bias in the investigation. We did not lean one way or another. We were looking for the truth,” he said.


Chief Lee declined to discuss specifics about the case, but he added, “I have been frustrated by the negative attention the police and the city have received that does not accurately reflect who we are and what we have done in this investigation.”


Eight Minutes


At 7:09 p.m., Mr. Zimmerman, who was driving to a Target store, made his call to a police dispatcher.


Within eight minutes, Mr. Martin was dead from a gunshot wound to the chest, his body crumpled on a stretch of grass behind a row of town houses. When the first officer arrived at 7:17, Mr. Zimmerman was waiting not far from the body. He raised his hands in surrender before relinquishing his 9-millimeter pistol from the holster in his waistband.


He was handcuffed and taken into “investigative detention” at Sanford police headquarters, where he was read his Miranda rights and answered questions without a lawyer present. Investigators described him as unhesitatingly cooperative. At some point, Mr. Zimmerman provided the police with a permit allowing him to carry a concealed weapon. His clothes were taken into evidence after his wife came to the station with a new set.


A law enforcement official said officers did not seize Mr. Zimmerman’s vehicle because they thought that he had been on foot. They did not realize that he had been driving until after his wife had moved the vehicle, the official said.


The official said he believed that the police, in the hours after the shooting, sought to determine whether Mr. Zimmerman was wanted for any crimes. But he said they did not have a complete background check in hand until midmorning the next day — after Mr. Zimmerman had been released. The records showed a domestic violence dispute with a woman who identified herself as his ex-fiancée and a run-in with a state alcohol agent, neither of which resulted in a conviction.


As for the officer at the scene who took the single full-face photo of Mr. Zimmerman — he suffered a nose fracture and other injuries during the struggle — he called an investigator “in a panic” over his failure to download it sooner, according to a person familiar with the case. Other photos of Mr. Zimmerman’s injuries were later shot at police headquarters, although he had been cleaned up by paramedics by then.


Another investigator briefed on the case said officers should have been more thorough as they knocked on doors in the neighborhood: they might have learned Mr. Martin’s identity early and that he was staying at the town house of his father’s girlfriend and was not trespassing. At the time of the shooting, the girlfriend’s 14-year-old son was waiting for Mr. Martin to return from a 7-Eleven store, where he had bought a bag of Skittles candies and a can of iced tea. Mr. Martin was not identified until Monday morning, about 12 hours after he was killed, when the police learned that his father, Tracy Martin, had reported him as missing.


One witness said a police investigator twice declined her offer to show him the close and unobstructed vantage point from a partly opened bedroom window where she had watched and heard the struggle between Mr. Martin and Mr. Zimmerman. The witness, who agreed to be interviewed on the condition she remain anonymous because the investigation is active, said the detective taped part of her account.


She also recalled telling him that night that she was haunted by the cries for help she believed came from Mr. Martin during the struggle. But she said the investigator seemed to have already formed an opinion about what had happened. He told her, she said, that it was Mr. Zimmerman — not Mr. Martin — who was the one screaming, an assertion that remains in dispute.


More than a month later, she and her lawyer, Derek Brett of Orlando, met with two investigators from Ms. Corey’s office. Mr. Brett said his client was subject to only 15 minutes or so of “substantive questioning.”


“This surprised me because when something is not done properly, in this instance by the police, you sit down and do more than just fill in the blanks,” he said.


On the night of the shooting, the police were assisted by the Seminole County sheriff’s office, which sent a representative to the scene with a live fingerprint scanner to see if a match showed up for Mr. Martin. It did not.


Benjamin Crump, a lawyer for the Martins, said that Mr. Martin was carrying a T-Mobile Comet phone and that the police contacted his father a day or two after the shooting to get the password, but he did not know it.


A law enforcement official said that the phone had died not long after the police retrieved it, and that it took days for the authorities to get a charger and an expert to try to get into the device. If the police had been able to get access to it, they could have interviewed Mr. Martin’s friend about what he had told her in those final moments of his life and what else she had heard. The police eventually subpoenaed Mr. Martin’s cellphone records, but did not receive them in a timely fashion.


The official said that while the police never tested Mr. Zimmerman for alcohol or drugs, such decisions are left to the discretion of investigators based on whether they have reason to suspect the person is under the influence. (The medical examiner in the case did a routine toxicology screening of Mr. Martin; the results have not been made public.)


Sgt. David Morgenstern, spokesman for the Sanford police, said he could not say much about the case because the investigation was continuing. But he said of the officer who took one photo of Mr. Zimmerman at the scene: “I don’t think that is wrong because subsequent photos can be taken within hours. They might not be as graphic but they still will depict the injuries somebody might have.”


Over all, Chief Lee, whose resignation was not accepted by the City Commission last month in a surprise vote, said in an interview that his department’s work was as fair and thorough as possible.


“I am confident about the investigation, and I was satisfied with the amount of evidence and testimony we got in the time we had the case,” he said.


“We were basing our decisions, which were made in concert with the state attorney’s office, on the findings of the investigation at the time,” he added, “and we were abiding by the Florida law that covers self-defense.”


Sorting the Evidence


The Sanford Police Department assigns homicide cases to its five investigators who handle major crimes. Their wide-ranging responsibilities cover everything from sex crimes to carjackings. On the evening that Mr. Martin was fatally shot, the head of the major crimes unit was on vacation. The rotation supervisor on call was a sergeant who works narcotics cases. In all, more than a dozen officers and department superiors were on the scene of Mr. Martin’s killing — which the police said was Sanford’s first homicide of 2012 — including Chief Lee, who joined the department last May.


In the two weeks after the shooting, the police were in regular contact with the office of Mr. Wolfinger, the first prosecutor in the case, sharing their findings and suspicions with him and his staff.


The police conducted a lie-detection procedure, known as voice stress analysis, on Mr. Zimmerman that he passed, and they had him re-enact the encounter with Mr. Martin back at the Retreat the day after the shooting. But the operating belief was that the police did not have enough evidence to establish probable cause for a manslaughter charge and an arrest, according to officials with knowledge of the case.


At one department meeting a few days after Mr. Martin’s death, a representative from Mr. Wolfinger’s office was told about the inconsistencies the police saw in Mr. Zimmerman’s account. The prosecutor told them he understood that the police were trying to build a case against Mr. Zimmerman, though they did not have adequate evidence, according to a law enforcement official. It was decided that more work was needed on the case.


As the national uproar intensified, the Sanford city manager, Norton N. Bonaparte Jr., and Mayor Jeff Triplett were growing eager to have the police send the case to Mr. Wolfinger to get it moving through the justice system. The police did so just over two weeks after Mr. Martin’s death. They included a recommendation that Mr. Zimmerman be charged with manslaughter, a position that one law enforcement official described as “weak,” and that the prosecutor did not act on.


Ms. Corey’s decision to charge Mr. Zimmerman with second-degree murder fueled even more criticism of the police. Mr. Zimmerman has since entered a written plea of not guilty.


http://www.nytimes.com/2012/05/17/us/trayvon-martin-case-shadowed-by-police-missteps.html?pagewanted=4&_r=1&hp&pagewanted=print

eddhead
July 16th, 2012, 04:27 PM
Wow.

July 16, 2012

By LIZETTE ALVAREZ (http://topics.nytimes.com/top/reference/timestopics/people/a/lizette_alvarez/index.html)MIAMI – An Orlando woman now in her mid-20s told investigators that George Zimmerman, who is charged with second-degree murder in the killing of Trayvon Martin, molested her over a decade, beginning when they were both young children, according to an audio tape released on Monday.

The woman, whose parents were close to the Zimmerman family, talked to investigators on March 20. Identified only as Witness 9, she said she had come forward now, a decade after her last encounter with Mr. Zimmerman, 28, because, after his arrest, she was no longer afraid of him.

It is unclear how, or whether, prosecutors plan to use the allegations in their case against Mr. Zimmerman, who is free on $1 million bond. Mark O’Mara, Mr. Zimmerman’s lawyer, tried unsuccessfully at the last minute to block the special prosecutor from releasing the tape, which he said was irrelevant and prejudicial. He also sought to block the release of another tape in which the same witness describes Mr. Zimmerman's family as routinely disparaging black people.

The witness said that Mr. Zimmerman, who is about two years older than she is, first molested her when she was 6. She was staying in the Zimmermans’ Virginia home while her mother and father were moving from Louisiana to Orlando, Fla. The woman said Mr. Zimmerman had groped her with his hands while they lay under a blanket as they watched television with a group of children.

Other groping episodes followed, she said. She visited the family “at least once a year” and she was molested during some of those visits, she said, including once behind a curtain when she was 7 or 8 and another time on a bunk bed when she was around 12.

“Before we left the room or left any place, he would say we weren’t doing anything – we were just laying there or we were just playing hide-and-seek,” said the woman, whose voice cracked as she recounted the events.” He would always make sure that he told me that. And I didn’t know. I was a kid. I didn’t know any better.”

The acts typically involved “a lot of kissing, groping. He would put his hands under my shirt and just rub and grab my chest and put his hands down my pants again,” the woman said.

The woman said that she had been traumatized by what happened and that she had blocked much of it from her mind. She said she had been too ashamed to tell anyone, including her parents. But she said she also feared that no one would believe her because Mr. Zimmerman came across as so likable.
“He just sucked up to my dad,” she said. “He was like the son he never had. He was always very charming and personable with everyone in the family and would always just laugh and entertain everybody. But he was different behind closed doors with me.”

The last encounter, and the only one that took place in Florida, occurred shortly after Mr. Zimmerman arrived in Lake Mary, not far from where she lived with her family, the woman said. She was 16 and Mr. Zimmerman was 18. He had invited her to a housewarming gathering, she said. When she arrived inside, he was alone. Frightened, she said, she followed his instructions and lay down on the bed, and he started groping her again. At that point, she said, she got up, ran out and jumped into her car. He followed her to the door but no farther, she said.

Always, she said, “I was so afraid.”

In 2005, when the woman was 19, she confided in her sister who told their parents, she said. She and her parents met with Mr. Zimmerman at a pizzeria in Lake Mary, she said. But she never described to them the full extent of the molesting, she said.

“Instead of talking about it, all he did was come in the room, come in the restaurant, and sat down on the end of the booth and said, ‘I’m sorry,’ and just got up and walked out,” she said.

Her mother thought it best not to pursue criminal charges, she said, adding that they believed that Mr. Zimmerman would just deny the accusations and that the case would be dropped.

The witness said there had been a lasting effect.

“I tried so hard to forget it all and to make it go away that I even forgot the good stuff in life,” she said. “There is things that my family talks about that sounded so awesome but I don’t remember them. It sounds like they are talking about somebody else.”

Mr. Zimmerman’s parents were also told about what had happened, she said. After she and her parents confronted Mr. Zimmerman, they did not see him again. He was never invited to any get-togethers where she was present.

In the other tape, the woman said the Zimmerman family had talked about race often and disparaged African-Americans. Mr. Zimmerman’s family said “they only like black people if they act like white people,” she said.

The killing of Mr. Martin set off a furor among African-Americans because of the suspicion that Mr. Zimmerman, a neighborhood watch volunteer, and the Sanford police had profiled Mr. Martin, an unarmed 17-year-old, because he was black. Mr. Zimmerman shot and killed him on Feb.
26 in a nighttime encounter at the gated community in Sanford, Fla., where Mr. Martin was a guest.

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/07/17/us/george-zimmerman-accused-of-molesting.html?hp&pagewanted=print

ZippyTheChimp
July 18th, 2012, 02:12 PM
Disturbing stuff about Zimmerman lately.

He tried to buy more firearms after the Martin killing. Lied about the money he collected.

Unfortunately, he's probably going to get off.

lofter1
July 18th, 2012, 02:40 PM
When it comes to Floridians, he's a totally upstanding kind of guy and should be allowed to Stand Watch wherever he so chooses :cool:

lofter1
July 19th, 2012, 12:09 AM
Bsed on Zimmerman's account to Faux News tonight, apparently now placing the altercation that resulted in Trayvon's death right next to the car, this sorry piece of psycho just might spend his life in jail ...

Zimmerman Apology: Trayvon Martin Shooter Tells Parents He's Sorry During 'Hannity' Interview

HUFFINGTON POST
July 18, 2012

SANFORD, Fla. -- George Zimmerman says he would tell Trayvon Martin's parents: "I'm sorry," and says he's open to talking with them.
Zimmerman is charged with second-degree murder in the teenager's death.

He made the statement Wednesday in an interview with Fox News host Sean Hannity.

When asked to explain what he meant when he told a police dispatcher he was following Martin, the neighborhood watch volunteer said he was trying to keep an eye on Martin to tell police.

Zimmerman says after he got out of his car, Martin was next to him. Zimmerman says he looked down, then looked up and Martin punched him and broke his nose.

He says as the two were struggling, Martin said "you're going to die tonight." He says Martin also reached for the gun that Zimmerman always carries.

When asked by Hannity if he would do anything differently (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eZxpwb0UYuk) the night he killed Trayvon Martin, Zimmerman responded: "No Sir."

"It was all God's plan, and for me to second-guess it, or judge it..." he also said, before trailing off.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eZxpwb0UYuk

ZippyTheChimp
July 19th, 2012, 02:56 AM
The spot that the confrontation took place is well established by witness statements. It was a backyard grassy pathway. What's unclear is the manner in which Martin and Zimmerman approached that spot.


Zimmerman says after he got out of his car,Is Zimmerman saying that the confrontation occurred at the moment he stepped out of the car, or sometime after?

It is known from the call between Zimmerman and the police dispatcher that Zimmerman initially followed Martin in his car, and at some point got out to follow on foot - when the dispatcher said, "You don't have to do that."

I don't get anything from that video except now it seems the whole thing is God's fault.

stache
July 19th, 2012, 03:32 AM
He says Martin also reached for the gun that Zimmerman always carries.




Now I'm wondering how many people always carry a gun. :confused: