The State seems to have suffered the most destructive of its own witnesses to date in calling Jonathan Good to the stand.Good was composed, coherent, and direct through his extensive testimony, the entirety of which was entirely consistent with the defense’s theory of lawful self-defense.
Indeed, as has become the pattern in this trial, the longer the State’s witness was in the stand, the more damage he did to the State’s theory of the case. The continually growing climax was realized at the very end of the testimony, when O’Mara held a copy of Good’s initial statement to then-lead Investigator Chris Serino (a transcript of is provided below):
O’Mara: Just to clarify what was actually talked about with Chris Serino, Investigator Serino, during this, we’re going to call it for the moment the Ground-and-Pound conversation. We have a rule called completeness, so what I want to do is put it in context for you, ask you if this is what you said to Chris Serino. OK?
“Yeah I pretty much heard somebody yelling outside. I wasn’t sure if it was, you know, a fight or something going wrong. So I opened my blinds and I see kind of like a person out there. I didn’t know if it was a dog attack or something. So I open my door. It was a black man with a black hoodie on top of the other, either a white guy or now I found out I think it was a Hispanic guy with a red sweatshirt on the ground yelling out help! And I tried to tell them, get out of here, you know, stop or whatever, and then one guy on top in the black hoodie was pretty much just throwing down blows on the guy kind of MMA-style.”
Is that the context in which that happened?
O’Mara: And then Investigator Serino said, a word that I have, and the transcripts may differ, ground, couldn’t figure it, maybe he said Ground-and-Pound, and then you said:
“Yeah, like a Ground-and-Pound on the concrete at this point, so at this point I told him I’m calling 911.”
BDLR: Objection. Improper bolstering.
O’Mara: I’m at the end of it. Is that–
Judge: There’s an objection and the objection is . . .
BDLR: Hearsay and improper bolstering
O’Mara: I would suggest that rule 108, which is the rule of completeness, suggests that because they brought in part of it . . . and iI’m speaking, I apologize.
Judge: The objection as to hearsay is overruled. Bolstering is not the right objection either, so that’s OK.
BDLR: Beyond the scope of cross-examination to that point
Judge: I overrule on that objection, also, so go ahead.
O’Mara: That’s what you said.
Good: The whole thing, yes
O’Mara: And that was the context in which the words Ground-and-Pound came out.
Good: Yes, for more clarification.
O’Mara: OK. And do you stand by that today, that what you saw is was a Ground-and-Pound event?
Good: It looked like that position was a Ground-and-Pound type of position, but I couldn’t tell 100% that there were actually fists hitting faces.
O’Mara: But you did see [reading] “the guy in the top in the black hoodie pretty much just throwing down blows on the guy kind of MMA-style.”
Good: Meaning arm motions going down on the person on the bottom. Correct.
O’Mara: You’re’ not going to tell the jury here today that you saw fists hit flesh or face if you didn’t actually see it, right?
Good: I wouldn’t tell them that anyway, because i didn’t actually see it.
O’Mara: Great, thanks very much , no further questions.
BDLR: Not to elaborate but the thing that Mr. O’Mara said from the transcript, the bottom line, you needed to clarify after that to make sure that everybody understood that you did not hear or see fists the guy on the top hitting the guy on the bottom.
Good: Both sides made me clarify.
BDLR: Is that correct?
Good: That’s correct.
BDLR: You did not see blows on the guy on the bottom, correct?
BDLR: Thank you, no further questions.
Andrew F. Branca is an MA lawyer and author of the seminal book “The Law of Self Defense,” now available in its just released 2nd Edition, which shows you how to successfully fight the 20-to-life legal battle everyone faces after defending themselves. UPDATE: July 5, 2013 is the LAST DAY to take advantage of the 30% pre-order discount, only $35, plus free shipping. To do so simply visit the Law of Self Defense blog.
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Is there like a “ten run rule” in a trial, like in little league?
Perhaps if the case is made completely clear, it will diminish the riots by racists. But will the networks ever admit how racist and wrong they were in the initial coverage, by fairly covering the trial?
The #$%&*! news is presenting an entirely different trial to the public.
This is the Obama, Trayvon is my son-version, the Clintonesque Spin version and it is criminal…evil.
my wife an i watched exactly that on WTFV cbs orlando midnight news . 2nd day trial was pure Win-Win for defense . But if you listened to local cbs everything has been turned around . We both were listening to out right lies being told.I told the wife what Mr.Branca had said . News is for sales not truth. Land of the free ? not so much imo.
The local station I am seeing (from Portland, Oregon) has doubled down on the Travon as a cute kid by showing an even younger sweeter picture of him next to a current picture of Zimmerman fat and pudgy.
These people really want riots.
The riots will give them something else to cover for a day or two, and they are setting it up by covering the trial as if it were a normal slam-dunk murder case so the low-information violent thugs who might riot will be surprised and outraged when the inevitable not guilty verdict arrives.
AFAIC, every loss of life, limb, and property which occurs as a result of rioting over the verdict in this show trial falls squarely on the laps of Scott, Bondi, and Corey. They set it up, they allowed it to happen.
Media couldn’t present a distorted view of the trial if there were no trial.
It’s more sinister than just sales and ads. Our news sources have a narrative and talking points that have been handed them from agents of the regime in power.
Estragon: Your statement is close to what I had to say on the other GZ thread…to wit:
Apparently you’re assuming the State wants a guilty verdict. A guilty verdict won’t rill up the ignorant masses who have been prepped by 25 years of racial angst and intolerance by the practitioners of ‘diversity’ in the media and the Jesse Jackson/Al Sharpton offices.
A not guilty verdict, however, will get the ignorant fools around the country to pound the streets and create the theatrics that media expects and wants so they can get more Democrats and socialists to the voting booth for 2014. Maybe the race hustlers can then get more $$$$$$$ for their pockets, maybe the Democrats get more votes, but the country will definitely be damaged–which is the goal of every Democrat and liberal.
Yes. “If it bleeds, it leads.” The news media wants riots so they have something to write about.
…and what would give them to believe they will be successful in the effort to get the riots going? What group is likely to fall for their narrative?
The media is just feeding us eudcated Amercins. We wur knot taut to tink for owrselfs but to yist agree with the teechr and lern to spowt noncents!
The lamestream media is despicable, but they’re probably raking in more money than Professor Jacobson or Andrew Branca on this deal. Branca’s coverage is worth a lot and with that in mind I just made a small donation via Paypal. I urge everyone reading this great coverage to realize what it’s worth and to contribute to LI.
Going just a little “prison planet” here:
How else is the Media and the Libs/Dems/Racists going to get their riot?
They want a riot. They want to test their martial law response will work. Just as they tested keeping all the people in Boston at home after the marathon bombing.
Gotta love the talking heads claiming the fact that Good did not ACTUALLY see fist connecting with face is a plus for the prosecution. With two state’s wit claiming they saw arms moving downward I suppose the pundits can argue TM was giving GZ noogies or pinching his face, and the broken nose was just a coincidence.
Well, at this point, the fact that TM had hands at the ends of his arms is just unsupported speculation on the part of the defense. Derp!
Maybe Trayvon had some friends who were going to have babies soon, so maybe he was practicing the old “Got your nose” bit with Zimmerman?
How about pulling quarters out of his ears?
Martin was just trying the brush rain drops off of Zimmerman’s clothes.
And then that creepy a** cracker shot him for it!!!!
Look at this: Reuters Top [email protected] “Eyewitness describes Trayvon Martin’s fatal struggle to Florida jury”
This is the opposite of true. Just like the rest of the ‘news’ agency propaganda from every side.
[Did anyone else notice during the GOP Primary that the wrap-up after the debates, even on FOX, did not remotely resemble what was actually said by the candidates?]
Maybe Wikileaks can find George Zimmerman a nice quiet place to get away from the evil regime that has taken over the USA.
Exactly. The media racial agitators are working overtime to pretend that Zimmerman is guilty.
Now when he is found not guilty we may reap the whirlwind of what they have sown — race riots by blacks who honestly believe that Zimmerman is guilty, having been fed an unending diet of bald-faced lies ab initio.
Just like Dershowitz, Pat Buchanan nailed it over a year ago:
Thinking Americans ought to consider what it means when ideological opposites like Dershowitz and Buchanon are on the same side.
Justice is turned back,
and righteousness stands far away;
for truth has stumbled in the public squares,
and uprightness cannot enter.
“if it bleeds, it leads”.
The media has at least two years of white/brown on black racism headlines, at the ready.
Media will show pics/video if unsuspecting whites are beaten or killed with LEGAL GUNS in the hood, of course..buwhaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa.
Any white or brown folk kicking the living shit out of blacks OR worse..Ready? RACISM!
Look for “doctored pics”. The only straight up pics/video will come from citizens.
Out of curiosity I checked Google generic news. Zimmerman trial finally made it back onto the page, but not one article wasn’t spinning pro-Trayvon. Even featured an idiotic piece by Time “explaining” the sullen stupid woman’s “Black English”.
check out ‘Drudge Report’. 4 different links for Dee-Dee’s ghetto defense !
I posted this at the other link, to a person my former partners and colleagues would have shot Martin because they would be in fear of their lives.
“I’m here to say, as a former detective, if this were a police officer on the ground, without any medium weapons like a taser but only his weapon as a tool, he could shoot Martin dead and it would be ruled a good shoot.
Because every police officer on the planet knows just how little it takes to be knocked unconscious, and your weapon taken to kill you with, and how easy it is to be killed from a single blow to your head or you head pounced off concrete.
Not to mention the permanent injuries like loss of vision or broken jaws.
The only difference is we are trained to keep shooting until the bad guy is stopped, Martin would have taken four or five round to the chest, which mean Zimmerman was using restraint.”
I am curious whether the defense has on its list of witnesses any experts on the use of deadly force? It would be great to get a trained police officer to testify in the case on the substance of the comment made by Archer52 above.
Well, we haven’t seen too many investigators on the stand yet. Strangely, and intentionally, the prosecution has started the witnesses that have nothing to offer but a stirring up of the mud so when the real witnesses show up the jury may have already made up some of their mind on the facts.
It is unconscionable but sadly legal if the SAO is a amoral unethical attorney.
I’m sure at some point the question would be asked of an officer IF the answer is already known. You don’t want some cop saying he would do such and such that disputes what Zimmerman did.
A decent self-defense expert that trains police would be able to clarify the danger.
I’ve SEEN single blow deaths, the kicking to death killings, the lethal blow from landing on concrete. Zimmerman was in a deadly situation. I loved what Jeantel said when told Martin may have attacked Z. She said that was retarded because Martin would know better than to jump a man with a gun. Not that it is WRONG to jump a man on the street you have a dispute with- rather than talking like a civilized human being. But that the street rule is don’t jump someone WHO CAN BEAT YOU!
Truth is I’m willing to bet Jaentel urged Martin to go back and teach that cracker a lesson for disrespecting him. Martin went back to “thug up” on an unarmed man, and found out too late he misjudged the opponent.
Don’t think that happens? Browse youtube and read about “knock out” games.
i thought the same thing and that is why she feels guilty ..
So Dee Dee said that Trayvon starting a fight with an unknown person would be “retarded”. I guess I’d say, “if the shoe fits……”
I would never have thought of that.
At 53, I am still so darn naive.
I seriously doubt that TM knew GZ was armed, so all the posters positing that TM knew he was tackling someone armed are just full of it. That model Kel-Tec is a very small firearm with a dark slide, so I really doubt TM could have seen it, even if it was in GZs hand. And, if it was in GZs hand, the blows to his head would have stunned him enough to make him lose his grip on the firearm, IMO.
As for the lack of TM DNA on the firearm (not even blood splash?), TM could be grabbing GZs wrists, and be described as him trying to take the firearm from GZ. We will have to await further testimony on that, though.
The notion that a thugette such as Rachel told sweet little Trevon to run away or anything similar is profoundly at odds with the ghetto culture exhibited by her and Trevon.
To assume that she didn’t encourage him to fight, if not instigate the fight, is ignoring reality.
Same with Chad. He knew what his Martin was going to do after he talked to him on the phone getting his Skittles update. ‘I’ma put bangaz on dis cracka din I beback.’ Call Chad back to the stand, too.
Put them all on trial for perjury, RICO; whatever they can find. Enough of this garbage.
This is one of the best comments that I have ever seen on this case. It pertains to the facts of the situation.
Here in Australia we have had a spate of these king hits that have killed or hospitalised the victims. The latest in Sydney is a victim who is Russian born. He is still in a coma and the authorities have sent for his family. The previous victim was on life support at one stage but he has recovered.
I add here that my own sister was a victim of being king hit in the week prior to Easter. Since I was in Melbourne at the time I saw her injuries up close and personal. She was lucky because her head missed the brick fence behind her at the property.
These knock-outs are very deadly.
I’m no physician or professional gunman, but I grew up in a family of physicians and am a CPL holder. Archer52 is correct about injuries being inflicted upon GZ were potentially debilitating and lethal. As I recall, his beating, after being sucker punched (per the only publically available credible evidence available to date), lasted in excess of 40 seconds. GZ clearly showed restraint in not shooting TM far earlier.
Archer52 is also correct about shooting only once being a sign of restraint on GZ’s part. In fact, GZ didn’t realize at first that he had hit TM, which is why he got astride him to rrstrain him. As a CPL holder, I was taught to, if necessary, shot to stop — not to warn, not to maim, not to kill, but to stop. That means you keep pulling the trigger until the assailant stops his illegal behavior, or until your magazine is empty and your slide locks back. At such time, if the assault has not yet stopped, you insert a fresh magazine and keep pulling the trigger.
If someone sucker punches me and runs away, or even just backs off and indicates he’s done fighting, he gets away without a physical response by me. If he sucker punches me then pounces on me to continue pummeling me, he’s signed away his right to life.
Is this Skookum the horseman from FA? If so, I miss your writings but couldn’t stomach Mata and Aye over there.
I’m no horseman, and I’m unfamiliar with FA. I’m just a scientist (a logical thinker) who learned about this case in March 2012. I can’t remember why, but I immediately smelled liberal infestation.
Even if justice is done and GZ is found not guilty, remember that this travesty served Obama well in stirring up the racist portion of the electorate.
When the law is favorable, you lean on the law. When the fact is favorable, you lean on the fact. When neither the law nor the fact are favorable, you bang on the desk. What the prosecution is doing right off the bat is baning on the desk.
I had an attorney characterize the strategy we are witnessing another way: Throwing a handful of fecal matter against the wall and hoping some will stick. So far, the turds the State thought they were hurling seem to have been floral arrangements with GZ’s name on them.
Zimmerman showed remarkable restraint, given the circumstances. Unlike Martin, Zimmerman knew all along he had a loaded gun just inches away from his hand. Zimmerman could have shot Martin after Martin punched him in the face, or after Martin knocked him to the ground, or during the 40+ seconds that Martin was straddled over him and beating him MMA-style. Instead, Zimmerman repeatedly screamed for help and tried to get away.
I seem to recall GZ saying, sometime last year, that he forgot he was carrying his pistol. In fact, I think he said he only remembered after TM spotted the pistol and said, while making a move for the gun, “You gonna die tonight, muthaf*cka!”
I think it is entirely plausible to forget you are carrying. We hear stories a few times each year about TSA finding a concealed handgun in carryon luggage. In many of these cases the owner routinely carries that way (e.g., in a briefcase, computer bag, or purse) and simply forgets. I’ve lost three pocketknives that way.
Archer52, you are exactly right. I’m an ex-beat cop and I would not have hesitated to use deadly force in this instance.
There was a similar instance in my old haunts of Honolulu where an off-duty cop stopped an argument in a 7-11. He left to go back to his car and he was jumped by one of the perps. The “crumb” was getting in some good licks and the cop was beginning to lose consciousness, so he shot the perp multiple times.
The guy didn’t die, but to any cop out there it was obviously a good shoot and determined to be exactly that.
If Zimmerman is not acquited, I will have lost all faith in the system. All faith.
It really is hard to fathom that the defense hasn’t even started their case yet… It seems like that is all we have seen so far.
I was telling some friends about the last couple days’ activities in court, and somewhere about 3/4 of the way through, one of them stopped me and said, “Wait, I thought you said the State hadn’t rested yet?”
I’m beginning to wonder if B29 is going to be a holdout. She’s been reported a couple of times as less engaged. Maybe her mind’s already made up?
And during 911 playback she’s watching Trayvon Martin’s mom. Was she one of the jurors shedding tears during Ms. Jeantel’s testimony?
Trying to read a jury based on what someone else is reporting is a waste of time. I’ve watched juries from inside the courtroom and they are pretty good at keeping their poker faces on.
As a juror, glowering at a cocky defendant can be very entertaining.
Thought the same thing.
Jurors were crying during RJ’s testimony? I’d really like an answer. Is this true?
They were probably crying in agony that they had to listen to her!
OK I have been very impressed with the daily coverage of this trial on this blog. Something just clicked with me today. I regularly read the comments on these posts, but never comment. There seems to be a regular “troll” JHORTON that regularly lambasts the cross-examination skills of Mark O’Meara. I just happened to be watching some of the coverage on CHH HLN and they were showing pictures of Trayvon Martin. On one of the pictures, it clearly shows “photo courtesy of Jerome Horton2011/2012”. Does anyone know what this means and how he is connected with this case or the family or why he might be commenting on this blog? I just thought it was an interesting thing and/or coincidence.
I thought rhorton1 was Al Sharpton’s online alias.
Oh I guess you are right it was rhorton1. Still wonder if there is some connection between this commenter and the trial.
(search jerome horton + trayvon martin)
Ya’ mean http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/dam/assets/120402010432-exp-point-horton-trayvon-00002001-horizontal-gallery.jpg this dude?
Ya he gon be sright up mofo…
Good find, bro!
Ah didn’t see you beat me to it.
Jerome Horton is Trayvon’s former football coach at his high school.
He isn’t just Good but excellent
Someone demands proof that Zimmerman didn’t switch jackets with Martin in order to throw off witnesses in 3.. 2.. 1..
Right about now, the jurors are asking themselves ..
Do either of these guys know MMA ?
… but the YouTube is wrapped up in pretrial motions.
Exactly! TM and GZ The were like a couple of HS girls: [GZ]: “Hey, TM, can I borrow your red jacket? It looks really good on me.” [TM]: “As long as I can borrow your hoodie. I promise I’ll wash it.”
The sad part is that even though Selma Mora’s testimony makes it clear that this is impossible, people will continue to suggest things like this, and that GZ inflicted the wounds on himself to make his case for self defense. Meanwhile they will believe that there is no proof that was beating because although Good witnessed downward motions from TM towards GZ’s head, he didn’t witness the actual blows. One thing I’ve learned from arguing with liberals though, is they have no concept of Occam’s Razor, they will chase the worst of conspiracy theories before ever believing the simplest solution. It’s just part of the mindset.
The Defense is in a bad position; I don’t know why anyone is convinced otherwise.
The State obviously proved Zimmerman shot Trayvon; what Zimmerman has to show is that he WASN’T the aggressor.
So far the only witness to testify as to who was the aggressor was the star witness. There is NO contrary evidence so far. Doesn’t matter if Trayvon beat him up if he wasn’t the person starting the altercation.
That leaves only one option for the Defense; putting GZ on the stand, which they know will be disaster.
Maybe not Murder II but definitely manslaughter.
You sound exactly like our friend rhorton1.
More like Baghdad Bob.
It would really help if you open your eyes and turn the sound up. Or were you actually watching MSNBC, CNN, ABC, CBS, NBC?
Advice to Racists:
1 – You are a very dumb Racist if you
. call 911
. speak to 911 for almost 5 minutes
. tell 911 exactly where you are
and THEN go and shoot someone.
2 – You are a very incompetent Racist if you
. intend to murder someone
. but first get into a Rolling-on-the-Ground fist fight
. get your head slammed repeatedly on the concrete
. have to wrestle your gun away from the guy on top of you
and THEN shoot him.
3 – It’s so much easier to blast him from 2 or 3 yards away.
You have clearly not been following the trial yourself, but have been getting your info from the mainstream media.
That is not a criticism; I understand many people have to work and don’t have time to follow every minute of the trial. But it’s important to know the limitations of your information.
What EXACT evidence has been introduced at trial that shows Trayvon Martin as the INITIAL AGGRESSOR?
All the evidence shows is that Zimmerman got beat up.
What it doesn’t show is that #1. Zimmerman was walking away as he claimed OR #2. Trayvon actually physically attacked him first.
What you are failing to realize is that all of the evidence so far is at best neutral to the defense, they don’t bolster or knock down his claims of self-defense. Because the State already proved their case it is Zimmerman that has to show that he was INITIALLY assaulted, not that he was beat up during the altercation.
The star witnesses testimony was far better than you are giving it credit for. She establishes that Zimmerman struck first. On top of that, whether you believe her words now her actions on that day are consistent with the evidence. If Trayvon was really going to strike first why would the girl be constantly calling her back?
Meaning, he didn’t tell her that he was going to strike first. Which, by conclusion means that the only way Trayvon would start a physical altercation with Zimmerman was while he was on the phone with the girl AND while not telling her.
Makes no sense.
You are misinformed.
Then show me ANY evidence introduced in trial so far that has Trayvon as the INITIAL aggressor, besides the girl’s testimony and the defense’s opening statements.
Correction, the Girl’s testimony doesn’t count as she didn’t say that 🙂
The defense does not have to show any such thing. You are simply wrong about how the “self defense defense” works.
Florida’s exact self defense law is quoted above in this thread. I don’t think he has to prove that TM was the initial aggressor, just that TM raised the level of violence to the point that GZ feared for his life OR great bodily harm.
And even that you cannot prove, because there is nothing to show that it wasn’t GZ that took a hard swing and missed.
See, folks here don’t know truly how reasonable doubt works.
You can’t PONDER all of the possible outcomes. You can only look at the outcomes INTRODUCED at trial and make judgments on what was introduced by the Prosecution and Defense.
Again, even with your more stringent criteria at hand, what evidence shows that Trayvon escalated the violence himself?
If anything, it is Zimmerman who escalated the confrontation by #1. “following” TM #2. with a loaded gun. and #3. based on testimony so far GZ being the one who actually initiated the confrontation.
Weak case by defense. Laughable that folks think he will get away scot free. Again, he won’t be found guilty of Murder II but definitely manslaughter.
And there’s nothing to show that invisible unicorns didn’t use their psychic powers to control Martin and make him punch Zimmerman when he was on the ground.
You refuse to understand or acknowledge the applicable legal principles.
All I can think to say to this gem of a comment is WTF. Please, inform everyone what news channel you have been watching.
Uh. You got any evidence. Any evidence at all that Trayvon wasn’t the initiator of the fight? That he didn’t throw the first punch?
S/he seems confused, and doesn’t seem to understand that the prosecution must prove Zimmerman guilty, beyond a reasonable doubt.
What evidence has the prosecution presented to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that George Zimmerman is guilty of second degree murder? That’s what they charged him with, and that’s what they’re supposed to be proving, right now.
S/he seems to think Zimmerman is doomed, DOOMED, because the prosecution — the prosecution! — has not proven that Trayvon was the aggressor.
Initial aggression to the Martin/Obama/Crump crowd is just A. being white and organizing a Watch group instead of an Obama OFA or OWS group.
B. being suspicious a tall black teen kid with a hood over his face
C. Calling the police,
D. describing the subject as acting like someone on drugs wandering about the neighborhood where a 17 y.o. black teen was recently caught for burglary and
E. Getting out of the car and looking to see where he was headed so he could tell the police.
Completely doesn’t make sense when you believe the testimony of someone who has repeatedly perjured herself, admits multiple lies, admits that the persecution put a tremendous amount of pressure on her and she changed her testimony under oath, that the prosecution actually took her deposition AT TM’S MOM’S HOUSE, WITH TM’S MOM SITTING RIGHT NEXT TO HER, silently weeping, with TM’s dad also there. And she and TM are racists.
And for some strange reason, she feels “guilty” – In her ABC interview, she said “I feel guilty,” “I am guilty” over and over and over. You don’t feel guilty when your friend dies – you feel sad. Which could explain why she didn’t want to go to the funeral, see TM’s mom, see her cry… Which could mean she was somehow involved in his death. Such as telling TM to go ahead and beat the crap out of that Creepy Ass Cracker. Because she knew he was a fighter, knew how to fight
Her testimony cannot be relied on, and has no credibility.
Other than that, what was your question?
You keep falsely asserting that following someone or “chasing” them makes one an aggressor.
That’s simply not true. The prosecution has presented no evidence that Zimmerman began any physical confrontation.
No matter how often you try to claim that following someone is “aggression” it simply isn’t true.
“She establishes that Zimmerman struck first.”
No, she said she heard Zimmerman hit Martin. How she can tell from sound alone that it wasn’t Martin hitting Zimmerman she didn’t make clear. She saw none of this.
“the only way Trayvon would start a physical altercation with Zimmerman was while he was on the phone with the girl AND while not telling her.”
But his ear things (what were they, earphones?) were in his pocket. That’s where they’d be if he anticipated attacking somebody in the immediate future.
Tmason, too much tv, not enough education. You are ABSOLUTELY WRONG in so many ways. The defense does not have to prove anything for a self defense claim. If the defense alleges self defense, it is up to the prosecution to prove that it was not. Second, following behind someone is neither illegal nor an act of aggression. Answering someone’s question, with a question, is not an act of aggression. The prosecution has not provided any proof (nor have they alleged) that GZ did anything illegal prior to the shooting. Got that? They have not suggested that GZ did anything illegal prior to the shooting. Do you really think the prosecution can prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, that GZ did not fear for his life and that he was not in fear of serious bodily injury? The physician’s assistant testified that Zim’s injuries could have led to death or brain injury if they had continued.
Trayvon was a thug. He wanted to be a thug. He liked to fight and wanted to get better. Why is it hard for you to believe he attacked Zim, who thought he was following from a safe distance (some 60 to 90 seconds) behind TM? TM may have felt justified in punching Zim, but if he had lived, TM would have been charged with assault, because it is not legal knock someone to the ground and beat the hell out of them just because you felt disrespected because he watched you, then followed you.
Nobody except Morning Joe thought there was any doubt as to who shot whom. The state has to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Zimmerman was not acting in self defense. His broken nose and gashes on the back of his head constitute a reasonable doubt.
The very fact that #1. Zimmerman himself said that he was at least chasing him initially and #2. that the girl’s testimony corroborates this shows that his claim is not substantiated by evidence.
You can’t start a fight, lose the fight, and then claim self-defense. So Zimmerman has to prove he didn’t start that fight which he has not done.
I believe it is established that GZ was FOLLOWING TM, not chasing him.
Following in order to provide location to police who were on the way, not chasing to commit a crime-that-he-had-already self-reported-to-the-police.
Even if we are to accept 100% hook, line, and sinker that GZ was “following” TM his own statements via the 911 tapes show TM was RUNNING AWAY and attempting to be non-confrontational.
So, you now want to convince a jury that in approximately 2-3 minutes TM goes from running away and hiding to wanting to beat up someone?
With no direct evidence of that?
Just check out one of Legal Insurrection’s other posts. There were two minutes between GZ losing sight and when GZ hung up. The distance from where GZ lost sight and where TM was going is ~400 feet. GZ was not running. Therefore, TM could not have been trying to escape. If he was, he could’ve made it to where he was going very easily in 2 minutes.
In fact, the confrontation takes place a short distance from where GZ lost sight. TM either doubled back or hid and waited for GZ. There is no other explanation. A person trying to get away could’ve done so very easily.
There’s a difference between trying to get out of sight of someone, possibly because you want to confront or surprise them, and attempting to escape. If TM had been doing the latter he would’ve had no trouble.
CREinstein, do you mean this post, on http://www.lawofselfdefense.com?
Myth Busters: Did Zimmerman “Chase Down” a Fleeing Martin?
No, it has not been established that GZ was following TM. The actual evidence so far was he walked to the edge of the complex boundary to get the name of the street so he could give it to the non-emergency dispatcher. Going back to his truck, TM stalked him, jumped him, and beat the crap out of him.
It’s only the MSM and those who believe the MSM and don’t research the evidence themselves, who think GZ followed TM.
Zimmerman doesn’t have to prove squat. The prosecution has to prove his guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. Something all the Trayvon pimps seem to forget. And about all the prosecution has done so far is add to the doubt about Zimmerman’s guilt.
The core of the State’s case is already proven. GZ shot TM.
The DEFENSE has to show enough evidence to raise reasonable doubt in the jury. The DEFENSE so far hasn’t introduced one IOTA of evidence that GZ didn’t corner TM and/or attack first.
The State already has the Girl on the phone. Whether or not you like her or not her actions are consistent with talking to someone on the phone who was attacked (why would you try and call/text someone back multiple times if you know they are about to get into a fight?).
“The core of the State’s case” is that Zimmerman committed second-degree murder. That case is in no way “already proven”.
Gee Gosh, you did land safely.. 🙂
First, there is no evidence that Zimmerman was chasing Martin at the time of the confrontation nor is there evidence that he started the fight. The ear witness has changed her story repeatedly and has little or no credibility.
Second, self defense is an appropriate plea even if a person assaults another and then starts fearing for his life. I would fear for my life if someone was smashing the back of my head into concrete.
Zimmerman’s story is consistent with the physical evidence and that in and of itself constitute reasonable doubt.
The DEFENSE so far hasn’t introduced one IOTA of evidence that GZ didn’t corner TM and/or attack first.
LOL. The defense case hasn’t even started yet!
No, the prosecution has to prove that Zimmerman DID start that fight.
The prosecution also has to prove that Zimmerman was winning the fight according to the Florida self-defense statute.
Yes you can. You can start a fight then if retaliated with deadly force can use deadly force yourself.
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
tmason, your ignorance of the law is staggering and probably deliberate. Zimmerman is not contesting that he shot Trayvon, he has admitted to such. You are probably some liberal who is aghast at the concept of self-defense, but that is immaterial to the facts and the law here.
Six years ago inÂ Murray v. State,Â 937 So.2d 277, 279 (Fla. 4th Dist. 2006), the Fourth District Court of Appeal in Florida ruled that once a defendant in a criminal case has introduced proof that he acted in self-defense the jury is entitled to consider the defense, and the jury may not convict the defendant unless it finds beyond a reasonable that he didÂ notÂ act in self-defense.Â The Fourth District Court of Appeal stated:
But, with these additional facts, did he also incur a burdenÂ of proof identical to the State’s? That is, did he have to prove the additional facts for self-defenseÂ beyond a reasonable doubt?Â Or was he instead bound by some lesser standard-say, the greater weight of the evidence? Indeed, how about something even less onerous than that? Was he merely obligated to lay the additional facts before the jury, without any burden as to the strength of their probative value – other than they might be true?Â The answer is this. No, he did not have to prove self-defenseÂ beyond a reasonable doubt. He did not have to prove even that his additional facts were more likely true than not. The real nature of his burden concerning his defense of justification is that his evidence of additional facts need merely leave the jury with a reasonable doubt about whether he was justified in using deadly force. Hence, if he wanted his self-defense to be considered, it was necessary to present evidence that his justification might be true. It would then be up to the jury to decide whether his evidence produced a reasonable doubt about his claim of self-defense.
FYI, Ohio remains the last hold-out state which treats self-defense as a traditional affirmative defense that the defendant must prove by a preponderance of the evidence. In the 49 other states it is the prosecution that must disprove self-defense beyond a reasonable doubt.
Saying it has gotten tiresome, but: if you have to lie to make your point, it probably isn’t worth making. You’re simply wrong (or most likely lying) about the facts of the case.
Someone wandered away from Shepherds Jackson and Sharpton again.
You’re also wrong about the law. You can, in fact, start a fight then later claim self defense if you can show you were justified in using it to prevent serious bodily harm. The state’s own witnesses have established that Zimmerman was reasonably in fear of serious bodily harm, and, in fact, that he suffered serious bodily harm. Regardless, the evidence introduced so far supports the conclusion that Martin initiated the confrontation. There has never been any credible evidence that Zimmerman followed Martin in a way that could been construed as initiating a confrontation, and there has never even been a plausible allegation that he “chased” him.
While it’s true that affirmative defenses generally shift the burden (of establishing the defense, not guilt or innocence) to the defendant, the state is not entitled to refute a defendant’s evidence simply by assuming that the defendant did something to initiate or escalate the confrontation. There is no credible evidence the Zimmerman did either; there is, in fact, good reason to believe that what non-credible evidence there is was maliciously fabricated.
If GZ is guilty of 2nd degree murder then why did he wait to shoot TM until after TM almost killed him? Wouldn’t GZ pull his gun out and shoot TM before that happened? Common sense says that he would, but he didn’t.
TM attacked GZ from behind as he walked back towards his car, following the suggestions of the 911 operator. We know that TM attacked from behind because that is the only way he could have knocked GZ down, climbed on top and bashed his head into the sidewalk. You see if GZ had been watching TM he would have drawn his gun and shot Tm before that could have happened.
No, you don’t understand the law. The State has to prove it WASN’T self defense. The burden is on them to do that. I suggest you read the statute. So far, ALL the evidence supports GZ.
So the testimony of one person, who has already admitted to lying several times, and who continues to embellish their story, is enough to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that GZ was the aggressor? Or did you just forget that whole ‘beyond a reasonable doubt thing’.
If the Prosecution had this witness, how in the name of God did this go to trial ?
The CNN spin will be interesting from here.
“It was a black man with a black hoodie on top ..”
This couldn’t be Trayvon. It must be his “evil twin” from episode 31
It was GZ in the shadows, trying to look like TM – he wanted the Skittles.
It’s not a criminal prosecution, it’s a political persecution — the purpose of which is to appease the racial grievance mongers (and, as always, put money in their pockets).
The purpose was to scare blacks into voting for the progressive fascists in 2012. They really haven’t changed much since the days of Jim Crow. They still prey on human weakness for political power.
That was my thought exactly. How the ever loving hell did this get past a Grand Jury?
@sybill: It didn’t get past a grand jury. GZ was charged by information, not by indictment. The original DA didn’t take to the grand jury, he declined to file charges. The special prosecutor didn’t take it to the grand jury either (likely because she knew it wouldn’t fly), she filed an Affadavit of Probable Cause.
Matt, the original DA had set up the Grand Jury and it was Corey who canned that option.
They did not want Rachel to appear before the Grand Jury because they knew if she did the case would go nowhere.
Oh, I misunderstood what I’d heard about the grand jury, then. Thanks for the clarification/correction.
Well here’s how they spun it:
They lied. They just lied. That’s a screen grab from CNN.
You know, there has been speculation about there perhaps being a soft-headed holdout juror who still wants to convict despite the evidence.
That would, politically, be the worst-case scenario for the race-industry agitators. Because then the Angela Corrys and the Rick Scotts would either have to reprosecute and explain that, or have to not reprosecute and explain THAT to their misinformed moron victims.
Reckless fools playing with fire.
Wait, this was a witness for the state? Good grief.
They have all been witnesses for the state. I’m thinking reverse psychology by the prosecution. Either that or an extreme case of Southern hospitality!
State is probably planning to go down this road
I can’t help wondering what the main stream media coverage of this otherwise unimportant criminal trial would look like were things going the other way.
They would probably find a family tree ‘expert’ to show that Trayvon is a distant relative of Moochelle so he really could have been Obama’s son.
Fatherhood is, um, portable. Obama could be Travon’s father quite without Michelle’s involvement. Eighteen years ago Obama’s cruising the country, learning how to organize, motel room to motel room. A feller gets lonely and a child is born.
I would think that we can now put the “Who was on top?” question to rest – once and for all.
I am also puzzled as to why the prosecution even called Mr. Good. “Stand your ground” is now in play – big time.
The new fallback, at least on HLN, is that we’ve got different witnesses seeing different people on top, by claiming that Good’s and Mora’s “straddling” testimony is contradictory.
I thought when Zimmerman was charged .. that Murder 2 was just too silly to be believed .. that it was all to let Zimmerman prove that it was self-defense.
It sure looks that way now.
The future of whether Zimmerman can walk the streets depends on making Trayvon look like not just the aggressor .. but an idiot .. and so much of an idiot that Sesame Street dumps the hoodie character, Alex.
One of the problems of over-charging as a prosecution tactic is that it invites the defense to call your bluff if it is too blatant.
Apparently…based on what we see of the evidence…as here…
Corey’s last big stunt was to charge a 12-year-old boy as an adult, with first-degree murder, over the death of his toddler step-brother. Now that was over-charging.
I didn’t follow all the ins and outs, except to know that all my friends, conservative and liberal alike, were shaking their heads over it. There was something wrong with that kid, and his family situation, from the start (his mother had him when she was just 12 years old herself…). It was obvious he needed serious help.
And earlier this year, somehow the case got quietly bumped down to the juvenile justice system, where it should have been all along, and the boy took a plea deal for manslaughter and will be out on his 19th birthday (instead of spending the rest of his life in an adult prison).
But it sure did get headlines when she laid the charges, since it was the youngest child ever to face life imprisonment in America:
Headlines – that seems to be her specialty.
Amy, what a relief on that case. Yes, I agree that was a case of disgraceful charging.
He pushed his toddler brother into a bookcase, and the child died.
BDLR and Corey claimed that the boy had done some despicable things to the brother. Their claims were probably lies.
I can agree to the manslaughter but really he probably should never have been charged.
Yep. His mother was just a 12-year-old child in foster care herself when she had him; his biological father got sent to prison for sexual assault; then Mom hooked up with a boyfriend who beat and probably sexually abused him and ended up shooting himself in the head in front of him; everyone around him (including his 32-year-old grandmother) was on drugs; and he was frequently left home alone in charge of a two-year-old… how was this ever not going to end badly?
Why Corey didn’t get more backlash for her initial insistence on trying him as an adult and locking him away for life, and then after two years and millions of wasted taxpayer dollars, letting him go into the juvenile system after all (the case was only settled a few months ago), I do not know. I guess by then we’d all moved on to this case. Sigh.
Over under on number of days before Alex, the new Sesame Street Muppet, who wears a hoodie and has a Dad in jail, is removed from the show?
Also, any guesses on possible story-lines for how they get him off the show. Maybe Alex jumps Elmo and starts wailing on him MMA style using the ole Ground and Pound technique and ends up getting arrested.
“Alex is blue-haired and green-nosed and he wears a hoodie”
The way the prosecution is putting on its case reminds me of the movie “Sleepers”. Brad Pitt can shave off all his hair and play the prosecutor.
This trial feels like the Defense was allowed to go first, seriously I mean…
How much longer for the comedy routine… I mean the prosecution…. side to continue?
The charge was always an overreach but the prosecution will go on and on until the well runs dry. At that point the defense will creditably ask for a dismissal based on the fact that the prosecution did not establish its case beyond a reasonable doubt. Hopefully, the judge will agree and save the state further expense.
Unless the prosecution has something in their quiver we don’t know about, the case should even go to the jury, the judge should dismiss it without the defense putting on their case. Did they even call the police investigators at all?
Of course, that won’t happen, the judge (like the first) understands her job isn’t “justice” in the traditional sense, but rather trying to put on enough of a show to please the mob so they don’t burn down her courthouse – irrespective of the cost to the freedom and fortune of an innocent citizen and his family.
It would have been a lot cheaper just to call out the National Guard in the first place and arrest Crump and Sharpton for inciting. There would have been a stronger case for that than against Zimmerman.
ought to read “should NOT even go to the jury”
No way in hell will the defense do that. Since this is a case that never should have been brought to trial, the defense will knock the evidential baseball out of the park so they can demonstrate beyond a reasonable doubt that GZ is not guilty.
Better to over-defend than under-defend.
[…] Zimmerman Trial | Live video | Prosecution Witnesses […]
OMG… Is there no self-parody these idiot Collectivist will not indulge…???
Tommy Christopher. They put out collections of his columns – look for them in the Humor section.
These Collectivist types seem sanguine about there ALWAYS being a racial divide in America.
They seem to approve.
I do not. I like the vision of the “I Have A Dream” speech.
How sad…and hard to believe…that that speech seems so antique to people on bsNBC.
Oh good lord. Well I hope if Mr Christopher is ever down this way, when he gets pulled over for speeding or whatnot, he looks the officer square in the eye and calls him a creepy-ass cracker. See for himself how that works out.
@tmason — Whether GZ was the initial aggressor or not is irrelevant. There was no sign of TM being harmed during the 40+-second scuffle, except for the gunshot wound that ended the fight. Thus, if GZ was the initial aggressor his act of aggression was minor, because it left not even a bruise. Assuming worst case, that GZ was the initial aggressor, based on GZ’s potentially life-threatening wounds, TM clearly escalated the fight. Furthermore, my yelling for help for a prolonged period, GZ was clearly attempting to de-escalate. Thus, even if GZ were the inital aggressor, from the standpoint of self defense law, TM became the aggressor by escalating, and GZ was within his rights to end the assault with lethal force.
In reality, there is no credible evidence that GZ initiated any aggression. Getting out of his truck was not an aggressive act. Following someone is not an aggressive act. Even approaching someone is not an aggressive act.
Andrew: Is the State purposely sabotaging their chances in the trial? Why do they keep putting up witnesses who help the defense more? Were they just not careful in asking questions and determining witnesses that would be beneficial to the State? I don’t get it.
And re: the folks live-blogging / Tweeting from the trial – Are all of you residents? Did you get to be present in the trial as journalists? Are you all journalists with lots of legal experience and knowledge?
This is the evidence and witnesses that the State has available, so it’s all they have to work with.
If they had better, they would have used better by now, given how several of their witnesses have gutted them.
If I had a strong witness, I would have moved them up in the batting order by now.
Would you even have called Good?
As a prosecutor…HELL no. Not if I’d interviewed him.
Of course, if I’d interviewed him, I would, as a prosecutor, have had to review what I was doing, starting with a clean sheet of paper.
When you evaluate a witness, you consider a LOT of factors. Not just what they contribute in terms of substance, but in terms of how they will impact a jury.
I’ve had clients who were truthful people, who had good facts to relate, but who would be crappy witnesses for a raft of reasons.
I’ve had experts who were stellar in their field, but would make TERRIBLE witnesses in a jury trial.
BDLR was stuck – how do you NOT call the only true eyewitness? The defense would then surely call him, and it invites the jury to wonder about the prosecution’s motives.
So he calls the witness to preempt that, and just pretends he offers evidence to convict. It wasn’t much of a stretch for Bernie, that’s been the case with most of the witnesses so far.
Fascinating. Thank you Rags and Estragon.
Isn’t it kind of a clue, when all they can find are witnesses favorable to the defense, that maybe this isn’t a case at all???
Do you agree that after this trial there will be a big-a$$ legal malpractice lawsuit against the city, the mayor, and Angela Corey?
But also for strategic reasons they have to put on witnesses like Good, because if they didn’t call them, when the Defense put them on the stand it would make the State look devious, intentionally hiding important witnesses.
Hey if it wasn’t for bad
Oh! I wouldn’t have no
luckwitnesses at all.
–BDLR’s Blues 😉
First line sung three times right? Since it’s blues?
Second line is the fourth line of the song.
Sung with a gritty, bluesy guitar and a harmonica.
Watching the trial on MSNBC and a legal analyst just told the host (Toure?) that John’s testimony established who was on top, who was getting beaten, etc. When the video cut back to Toure, he looked like he’d just smoked a turd! Priceless.
Sounds like an expert on their show was finally not willing to sacrifice his own credibility to the gods of mainstream propaganda.
This analyst had been hedging for the first few days and only today gave in to reality. Nonetheless, it was refreshing to see.
Just now, the same analyst just said that evidence shows Zimmerman was on his back during part of the fight. Maybe her producers reminded her of who signs her paycheck?
I don’t watch him – MSNBC isn’t one of my selected channels on my “favorites” list – but every time I’ve ever seen the guy he either looked like he just smoked a turd, or was a turd awaiting smoking.
Assuming rachel’s testimony is to be believed, Following someone does not make you an aggressor. If your going accept rachels testimony, you also have to accept the fact that Trayvon is at his dads house. Thats 80-100 yard from where this incident occurred. Here’s a rhetorical question for you. If he was afraid why didn’t he go into his dads house? The common sense answer is that he was spoiling for a fight.
The reality is that Rachel’s testimony was a statement that has been molded and shaped to fit the needs of the state and the civil lawsuit.
Btw-It’s legal in FL to carry a gun if you possess a concealed weapons permit. The irony is that people who hold cwp’s are much more cautious to avoid confrontation.
Yes, remember he’d just been suspended.
Does anyone know if he’d been permanently sent to live with his dad, or just for the suspension period, which was two weeks, IIRC?
I wonder how a permanent move would have affected both his AND Rachel’s mood that night.
If TM had kept living with his mom, this wouldn’t have happened. But you know he would have committed other violent incidents and/or murders.
So, when someone finally finishes beating the dead horse that is the prosecutions case in this trial, can GZ realistically sue the city, state, the special prosecutor, or the race riot instigators (Al and Jesse) who got this farce of a case brought to begin with, or will he have to rely on just money from the book and movie deals to pay any outstanding legal bills ?
I certainly hope, given the evidence so far, and assuming on my part that Zimmerman fired in justifiable self-defense, that he sues everyone he can. And collects. Because they have brought hell to him in spades, and it will go on for years.
What I heard several months ago was that the Martin family could not sue George Zimmerman in a civil wrongful death suit unless he had been charged criminally … regardless of the out come of the criminal trial. Is that true? If so perhaps there is more than a trace of complicity in manipulating the system to their benefit by certain powers?
Regardless, my thoughts are that to them it does not matter what the verdict is, the Martins are going to sue George Zimmerman big time. They have already reached a very hefty settlement apparently, with the gated community (or the HOA, not sure which). Of course Crump & Co. (and Sharpton??) get a large cut of whatever comes in.
This is exploitation and extortion of the American criminal justice system and someone needs to shut these guys down as it is costing not only people like the Zimmermans, but the residents of Florida and the American citizen in general.
To corrupt and foul the justice system with a case created for racist reasons and political — and financial — gain is disgusting. It is one more thing which undermines foundation of trust Americans have had in our government.
Al Sharpton escaped in the Brawley fiasco but the damage he caused to the families of the men he lied about was devastating and deadly. This man feeds on that and I hope to God someone in the black community begins to confront this.
My thoughts are with these jurors. Keep your vision clear and don’t let the implicit threats make you sacrifice one more minute of George Zimmerman’s life on this disgusting alter.
How much risk is there for Zimmerman regarding the included manslaughter charge? Is the prosecution really trying for that charge to stick and so doesn’t care as much about the murder 2 charge? Is there a significant chance that the jury will vote guilty on the manslaughter charge and innocent on the murder charge?
Manslaughter will be a cake walk. Anytime you use force against another person and they die, it’s pretty much manslaughter. Did Zimmerman use force against Martin? Yes. Did Martin die as a result? Yes. So proving the elements of manslaughter beyond a reasonable doubt will be no problem for the State.
The problem the State will ave is that it’s not enough to prove the elements of manslaughter–indeed, Zimmerman has never contested that he used deadly force and Martin died as a result.
He claims, however, that his use of that force was justified as lawful self-defense.
The State’s challenge, an overwhelming one I think, will be to disprove self-defense beyond a reasonable doubt.
Right. Or, put another way, this was a homicide, pure and simple.
It was ALSO, according to the evidence, NOT an unjustified homicide.
When a soldier kills in combat, THAT is absolutely a homicide.
Does not FL define manslaughter as an unlawful killing? And, killing in self defense is not unlawful. (Another way to say what you said?) I think the only difference between murder 2 and manslaught is murder 2 requires the unlawful killing be done with depravity; whereas, no depravity is required for manslaughter.
I think in my state, WA, one is allowed to use lethal force to stop any felony being committed against one or another. When TM sucker punched GZ did he not commit a felony?
Looks like it
Seems a bit unreasonable to shoot someone for punching you though.
It doesn’t seem unreasonable to me. In fact, if you threaten me and make a fist, you will be staring at my Sig P239 and I will be yelling, “Do not advance toward me or I will shoot!”
If you actually swing at me, I’m not waiting for the punch to land. You’re getting three shots to center mass right then and there. And at a distance close enough for you to punch me, all three will be in your chest. Your chances of survival will be very slim.
Google one punch kill. A punch is deadly force. It represents imminent harm up to and including death.
A society that allows people to run around battering others without an opportunity for self defense is a society I don’t wish to be a part of. As a biologist, I see the current law as Darwinian — any bully dumb enough to bring his fists to a gunfight will be, and deserves to be, removed from the gene pool.
I am not a gun owner and do not know how to use a gun.
However, if someone is pinned to the ground and is being beaten, especially around the head, then the use of the gun is not unreasonable.
In a given situation where one fears being killed, the use of a gun is not unreasonable.
Not really. GZ is woefully outmatched by TM in fighting. GZ loses, risks severe or fatal injury. The more serious the assault gets, esp when TM spots his gun, tries to grab it,and says he is going to kill GZ – at that point, the gun is his only option, if he wants to live.
I’d say the sucker punch alone would be a misdemeanor. Escalating it to pummeling Zimmerman and pounding his head against the sidewalk would be a felony though.
Ok, I believe I understand (the most dangerous state of mind, I have found)
In my words, the State has the same requirement for a manslaughter conviction to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the claim for self-defense was unjustified, right? I assume that is the case since you state clearly that the State has to disprove self-defense beyond a reasonable doubt. Others on comment boards have claimed that Zimmerman had to prove self-defense and it confused me (easily done, I admit).
It does appear that the State’s witnesses were carefully selected to make Zimmerman look innocent. I was wondering if there was some fantastically subtle plan like one watches on Law and Order behind the prosecution strategy.
Don’t let them confuse you, in Florida (and 48 other states), the STATE has to DISPROVE self-defense beyond a reasonable doubt (although in most cases that’s not as hard as you might think–ZImmerman has an usually, almost shockingly, solid self-defense case).
Only in Ohio is it still the law that the defendant has to prove self-defense, and then by a preponderance of the evidence. (Although this rule used to be far more common, so some of those you’re talking with may just be out of date–though 20+ years out of date, mostly.)
But you don’t have to take my word for it–you could buy my awesome book and see for yourself. 🙂 http://lawofselfdefense.com/preorder-now/
@iconotastic “Others on comment boards have claimed that Zimmerman had to prove self-defense and it confused me (easily done, I admit).”
Beware of internet lawyers.
“BDLR: Not to elaborate but the thing that Mr. O’Mara said from the transcript, the bottom line, you needed to clarify after that to make sure that everybody understood that you did not hear or see fists the guy on the top hitting the guy on the bottom.
Good: Both sides made me clarify.
BDLR: Is that correct?
Good: That’s correct.
BDLR: You did not see blows on the guy on the bottom, correct?
BDLR: Thank you, no further questions.”
JUROR: Gee, let me see. He never saw fists hitting face, but the pictures are pretty graphic. Let me put two and two together. Yup! The black guy on top, the one in the ground and pound position, was punching the guy on the bottom, the white guy with the red shirt, in the face.
OK, I think I got it.
Do we really need to hear more testimony? Or can I go home now?
And the only wound on TM, other than the fight-stopping bullet hole, was an abrasion on his left knuckle. Obviously, that depraved GZ repeatedly pummuled poor TM’s knuckle with his face and head, while deviously yelling for help for 40+ seconds, when, after toying with TM in this manner, he drew his pistol and shot the boy in cold blood.
Your logic is impeccable.
Hey TX good to see you posting again!!
Agree with your comments completely.
I’ve been listening to a radio story about a kid in Texas who beat another child to death.
There has been no mention of a weapon.
In the long, bloody history of mankind, I wonder how many people have been beaten to death with just fists.
IF I recall correctly, MORE people in the U.S. are killed with fists or feet than are killed by rifles each year.
A few years back in Seattle a man was killed after being hit with a single punch. Apparently he fell down and hit his head on the curb.
Yep. There is a famous old English tort case involving a victim with a “thin skull”.
The upshot: you takes your victims as you finds ’em…
Rags, if you do the right kind of searching you will find lots and lots of cases here in Australia. At the present time there is one or two cases per week, where someone has been beaten, and some are lucky to survive.
The latest case is that of a Russian victim. He was beaten and is close to death in hospital. Another victim was close to death and in coma but he survived. He has brain injuries.
There are victims in the Newcastle area. One of those is a paraplegic as a result of the beating.
As for names, there is the case of David Hookes, the former cricketer who was beaten to death in Victoria.
There have been several cases where a king hit has killed. One of them was only 18 years old when he was king hit and died as his head hit the concrete.
It is very common over here.
As I’m sure you have, I’ve read scores of cases where the victim was killed by a single blow of the fist. Sometimes it is because the blow fells the victim and they strike their head, suffering a mortal blow. Sometimes it is simply the blow itself.
Of course, an intensive beating of duration skillfully applied can easily cause permanent disfigurement, blindness, brain damage, or death.
Bare hands, if used in a way likely to cause death or grave bodily harm, justify a defensive use of deadly force in exactly the same way as if the attacker had wielded a knife or gun.
What I like to remind people is that the NFL players union (I believe) is suing the NFL over brain injuries and the ramifications down the road. And these guys wear helmets. It doesn’t actually take much pounding on some heads to cause permanent damage. GZ, years from now, may have problems that aren’t manifested right now. Besides, my understanding for self defense is you aren’t required to get even a scratch…if you feel you could be harmed or killed by someone close enough to do it, that’s it. The fact that GZ sustained bonafide injuries at the hands of another is game, set, and match to me.
Indeed, you needn’t EXPERIENCE death or grave bodily harm before you can use deadly force in self-defense, you need merely be in REASONABLE FEAR OF imminent death or grave bodily harm.
Andrew, I am not a lawyer. However, this is what I have been arguing for the past 18 months since I first heard about the case.
Fists are lethal. They are a lethal weapon.
Here in Australia there are tons of these cases, and there are incidents almost every week about people being king hit.
My sister was lucky because she did not hit the brick fence that was behind her when she was king hit. She had bruises to the eyes and face.
Most countries keep track of numbers of people injured and killed by fists and other weapons such as bats and knives.
I hope the defense calls an expert medical person who can explain the potential damage of a “ground and pound” MMA beatdown and that it is all explained for a layperson’s understanding.
A la Bryan Stowe, savagely beaten up after a Dodger game, for wearing a SF shirt.
He almost died, is now permanently disabled. All from being beaten up severely.
Speaking of media bias, check out this screen grab: http://i.imgur.com/hojkl1I.jpg (via @bob_owens)
CNN says Good testified that “lighter skinned person was punching other one”. They’re just flat-out lying now. Flat-out lying.
Unbelievable! That’s plainly false!
Well, people here were wondering how the media were going to spin the inconvenience truth revealed by Good. And that’s our answer: they’re just going to lie.
They need so badly to make the public believe that it was light-skinned Zimmerman up there punching down on dark-skinned Trayvon, that when an eyewitness testifies under oath that it was dark-skinned Trayvon up there pounding down on lighter-skinned Zimmerman, they report that it was light-skinned Zimmerman up there punching down on dark-skinned Trayvon … and facts be damned.
And seriously, how is anyone who only gets their news from TV going to know any different?
I originally was happy this was being televised because I figured the truth would come out but alas no….when you people both locally and nationally twisting, spinning, and outright lying about what has been said under oath coupled with a lazy population that won’t bother to watch for themselves, you know this isn’t going to go well. From the testimony I’ve seen and read, it is obvious the state’s case is beyond thin. Yet somehow you still have people stubbornly clinging to the memes ‘he shouldn’t have gotten out of his car’ ‘he shouldn’t have followed him’ ‘and so on. It’s pathetic. Do we really have this many people incapable of rational thought?
Yes, their earbuds are still in, and they are blindfolded.
Can they impeach Rachel regarding the letter that was written to Ms. Fulton? She claims that she didn’t write it because she doesn’t know cursive. Is there a law that a ‘personal letter’ be written in cursive? There was also no salutation — odd for a personal letter. She also signed it ‘Diamond Eugenie’, not her legal name — very, very odd for a personal letter. It appears as the date has been added after the letter was written, as it’s in a different script. Rachel also said that Sybrina didn’t open the letter — was it in an envelope? Looked folded in half to me. This whole letter ‘optic’ stinks, in my opinion.
She also didn’t know the last name of her friend who wrote the letter, nor how to spell the name of sweet, sweet ‘Trevon’. But, maybe I’m cynical for some reason.
She could probably find the last name of the “friend” who wrote the letter for her by reading (or having someone literate read to her) a list of Crump’s employees.
It amazes me that the defense gets to wave the bloody shirt over and over again. That has to be making an impression on the jury. The prosecution keeps handing them opportunity after opportunity to display the bloody pictures to the jury.
Are they clueless? Or are they really trying to sabotage their own case? Or are they powerless to stop it because of the witnesses and the evidence?
On the reverse, the prosecution really hasn’t missed a chance to show Trayvon’s body. One of the responding officers earlier, during redirect:
“Is this Trayvon’s body, as you found it?”
“Is this another shot of Trayvon’s body, as you found it?”
“Is this yet another shot of Trayvon’s body, as you found it?”
“Is the the bullet hole?”
I don’t think I’m off on my count; I believe it was three shots of the body, then the bullet hole.
“No further questions.”
After a bit, jurors get to resent having their noses rubbed in gore.
I’ve had cases where motorists were decapitated or burned to death…or worse, burned close to death. Nothing more powerful for a juror than that stuff.
Still, you use the images carefully.
At this point, everybody on that jury knows that Martin was shot to death. You don’t want to keep gilding that lilly.
The State would get more mileage out of the photos if TM had been shot in the head.
This is starting to remind me of the Duke lacrosse team rape case:
Regardless of the merits of the Martin/Zimmerman case, the media has been unabashed in trying to play the racial card (had anyone ever heard of a “white Hispanic” before this incident?).
Yes, from reports about racism in Cuba and Puerto Rico.
Are you only just being reminded of the Duke lacrosse case? People have been aware of that from the beginning. Some every refer to Corey by the name of the prosecutor in that case.
I hope she suffers from the same fate, because she did not take any notice of that outcome.
Us locals have been saying this from the start…and Angela Corey should be Nifonged for this travesty. If there is any justice once this is over, there should be a general house cleaning of all these lawyers for the irreparable harm they’ve done to the Zimmerman’s, Chief Bill Lee, the Sanford community, and the people of Florida who are footing the bill for this trial.
MSNBC has been co-opted by rational beings! They’re saying how well the defense did with the prosecution’s witnesses!
Just saw interview with Geraldo Rivera. Even he’s saying that….perhaps there is some logic and reason seeping in after all.
MSNBC?! You jest.
Seriously, that’s great to hear. One.
Why did the prosecutor bring this case to trial when a witness can confirm the defendants story? Either the prosecutor is the most incompetent boob in Florida OR he was pressured to bring the case to trial for political reasons.
This is why you try cases.
You can have a theory, and you get to test it before a jury.
Not being able to stand up to political pressure. Throw all the bums out.
Rachel’s attorney (Vereen) just admitted on tv that he advised her that she could get on social media even though she is still under subpoena! And right after he said he had not spoken to her because that would be unlawful!
Good grief — this is illegal. Grrr.
These people have no respect for the law – from Obama to Holder to Crump on down to Rachel and her so-called lawyer.
What a dumba$$ giving unethical and unwise advice to a witness in a murder trial. Who never should have been brought to trial.
it’s remarkable that the PROSECUTION has presented these witnesses. what can they possibly be thinking? unless something remarkable comes up, as of now my guess is they were politically pressured to make this case, and this is the best they can do.
I don’t think the prosecution can help it. As the police said, it is a VERY strong self defense case. So 95% of the testimony all supports the defense. It could never happen any other way, and the dumba$$es should never have taken this to trial.
An example of caving to public opinion over treating GZ ethically and honestly, and giving him equal protection under the law.
Ouch – It seems Good does not like the defense attorney – he was very impatient and a bit snarky. Is it common for witnesses to get cranky when the other attorney asks the same questions of them? How does the jury know this is normal, and doesn’t mean the attorney is stupid or can’t remember what the witness just said? Since the defense has to cross every prosecution witness, I hope seeing that negative interaction won’t prejudice the jury.
My sense was that Good felt strongly about protecting his objectivity and not allowing himself to be exploited by either side.
I felt he was pretty much equally arms-length with both sides. He’s got a forceful personality–if you crowd him, he pushes back. I’m that way myself.
I think that strengthens the weight of his testimony, which was overwhelmingly favorable to the defense.
Don’t know if this important enough – I believe the MMA witness’s name is Jonathan Good vs. John.
You’re quite correct, correction made, and thanks.
Andrew – not sure if you saw this article in the American Thinker that mentions your coverage of the trial:
Wow, that’s awesome! They even caught me calling Mr. Good “John” instead of the correct “Jonathan” (palm to head–I’ve already corrected my pages, and alerted American Thinker to the error).
No, I never see stuff like that unless you folks send it my way. I’m totally focused on just my work, don’t have time to hunt around the internet for other stuff.
Andrew, is this a defense attorney website, or whatever perspective the person writing happens to document? Ie, sometimes would be prosecution. Just curious. I can’t figure out the overall perspective of this site, if there is one! Not that that’s a problem. Just wondering.
If you mean Legal Insurrection, not, it’s not a defense attorney site. I hesitate to characterize it in any particular way, as it’s a bit eclectic, and I’m sure Professor Jacobson, whose site this is, would prefer to describe it in his own terms.
I suggest you look around and get a feel for it.
For what it’s worth, I’m pretty sure my specific posts are something of an aberration from the sites usual–and always excellent–content, but then this trial is an aberration, as well.
Andrew – The coverage and comment are excellent – Have never seen anything like it. And have never seen a travesty like this case. I like the website a lot and will follow up with Prof. Jackson. Thanks.
Mr Branca, in the opening post above there is an objection by the Prosecution:
“BDLR: Objection. Improper bolstering.
O’Mara: I’m at the end of it. Is that–
Judge: There’s an objection and the objection is . . .
BDLR: Hearsay and improper bolstering
O’Mara: I would suggest that rule 108, which is the rule of completeness, suggests that because they brought in part of it . . . and iI’m speaking, I apologize.
Judge: The objection as to hearsay is overruled. Bolstering is not the right objection either, so that’s OK.
BDLR: Beyond the scope of cross-examination to that point
Judge: I overrule on that objection, also, so go ahead.”
The Judge implies there is a valid objection at this juncture, BDLR just picked wrong. Do you know what VALID objection may have been?
In the Jim Crow days dems would prey on the weakness of racist southern whites. They preyed on the fears, racism and hatred of blacks in order to gain political power. Just like what the Nazis. Did to the German people. The dems haven’t changed much since then except it’s blacks and other minorities that they prey upon.
[…] Andrew Branca again has a solid account of this testimony. […]
I’ve noticed a change in tactic on the HLN website comments and change in talking points by the HLN commenters following John Goods testimony. They’re dropping the who bashed who,who was under/on top line and pressing the “well Zimmerman should never have gotten out of his truck” & “after all he’s not law enforcement…” lines. One HLN commentator, so clearly disappointed that 2nd Murder wouldn’t stick, cried out “well we’ve still got manslaughter”. It’s like they really and truly just want to put Zimmerman away. You know I’m thinking that if a cop had gotten out of his patrol car instead of Zimmerman and exactly the same thing had happened that cop would be sitting where Zimmerman is sitting right now.
You know I’m thinking that if a cop had gotten out of his patrol car instead of Zimmerman and exactly the same thing had happened that cop would be sitting where Zimmerman is sitting right now.
I seriously doubt it. Cops are held to a more lenient standard in their shootings than civilians are.
Not to mention, Trayvon would most likely respect a cop. As it is, he did not know if GZ was a Skinhead, or a Rapist (as Jeantel suggested) or a mugger….or just a plain old murderer.
GZ was the wolf, not the rabbit.
You can’t assault people be cause you don’t know that they are “Skinhead, or a Rapist (as Jeantel suggested) or a mugger….or just a plain old murderer’. You can’t assault them even if you know that they are one of these.
There is no evidence that justifies Trayvon’s attack on Zimmerman. This attack threatened Zimmerman’s life and provides plenty of justification for killing Trayvon in self defense.
When you consider the injuries that Zimmerman and Martin suffered in this conflict it’s clear that Zimmerman wasn’t up to fighting Trayvon. It was Trayvon who was a thug.
Nothing substantiates TM initiates the altercation. GZ was stalking/chasing him, the better speculation has TM as the victim. TM was yelling for help because he was trying to wrestle the gun away from GZ. You call TM a thug but GM was the aggressor from the 911 call til death.
There is no evidence to support your argument that GZ started the fight. He followed and watched TM which is perfectly legal.
He continued to follow/chase/stalk/ Trayvon after 911 advised him not to. Zimmerman was in hot pursuit with a loaded firearm… but, I state the obvious.
It’s like arguing with members of the KKK. You think your so smart you can just throw out some loaded words and lies to “prove” the niggggg did it or in this case the evil wannabe cop white hispanic did it. Facts, logic and the law are all ignored in order to lynch Zimmerman. There really isn’t much difference between the Jim Crowe Dems and the current ones. Their tools of the trade are just as evil.
The facts are:
1) Zimmerman walked down that street watching Martin. This was perfectly legal.
2) Zimmerman carried a firearm which was legal.
3) Martin was angry and attacked Zimmerman and almost killed him.
4) Martin attacked Zimmerman from behind or by surprise so Zimmerman was unable to use his firearm to prevent Martin from almost killing him.
5) Bashing someone’s head into the sidewalk is attempted murder and many people have died from this.
6) Zimmerman showed great reluctance to using his firearm for self defense. He waited until after Martin tried to grab it. The injuries he suffered from Martin provided all the legal justification he needed to kill Martin. He was foolish to wait.
[…] goes on and on. Neighbor Jonathan Good testified that Trayvon was planted atop Zimmerman doing a “ground and pound.” Officer Doris Singleton testified that Zimmerman hadn’t known Martin was dead until she […]
[…] ZIMMERMAN TRIAL BLOCKBUSTER — TRANSCRIPT — Eyewitness Good: Black guy in black hoodie on top pun… […]