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Zimmerman Trial: Tired of media bias? See gun-friendly legal coverage

Discussion in 'Legal & Political Archive' started by Law of Self Defense, Jun 11, 2013.

  1. Law of Self Defense

    Law of Self Defense Boston, MA Bronze Vendor Bronze Vendor

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    Hey folks,


    I just wanted to drop a note to let you know I'm covering the George Zimmerman trial down in Florida for one of the internet's largest legal blogs, Legal Insurrection.


    Some of you may know me as a lawyer with a practice specializing in the law of self defense, others as that guy who shoots the IDPA matches wearing a suit jacket along with his cargo pants.


    In any case, if you're tired of the incredibly biased mainstream media coverage (or should I call it mis-coverage) of the Zimmerman case, consider taking a look at my coverage of the trial and analysis of the legal issues, all from the perspective of a gun guy who has CCW'd every day of his adult life.


    It is, of course, all entirely free, and Legal Insurrection doesn't sell anything.


    Past coverage (up through last night's daily wrap-up post) can be found here: » Andrew Branca - Le·gal In·sur·rec·tion


    Today's live coverage will be added to that list when Court goes into session at 9AM.


    Thanks for your consideration!


    Andrew
     
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  2. Law of Self Defense

    Law of Self Defense Boston, MA Bronze Vendor Bronze Vendor

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    Hey folks,


    I just posted up my summary of today's voir dire of prospective jurors for the Zimmerman trial, click the link below if you'd like to read it.


    » Zimmerman Jury Selection ? Day Three Wrap-Up - Le·gal In·sur·rec·tion


    In brief, two events today were particularly interesting . . . or, more accurately, shocking.


    First was a prospective juror, J39, who told the Court that as far as he was concerned, murder's murder, no matter what. Even if it's self defense. Self-defense doesn't make it right to kill somebody." When asked if he would be biased in this case on the issue of self-defense as murder he responded, "Yes," and that he would not be able to set his opinion aside.


    Prospective juror J39 was promptly dismissed by the court.


    Far more disturbing, however, was prospective juror E7, who may have attempted to perpetuate a despicable fraud upon the Court in an effort to destroy the integrity of the jury.


    While being questioned by the State, E7 made all the right noises about having not yet made up his mind about the case. He said, for example, that if someones within their right to defend themselves, they shouldn't be arrested.


    The entire time he was being questioned by the State, however, the defense table was scribbling like crazy. They asked to approach the bench, along with the State, and there was a hurried discussion with Judge Nelson out of everyone's hearing. After a few minutes Judge Nelson addressed E7, held up a printed Facebook page, and asked him if he had made this post on a Facebook page called "Coffee Page Progressives." He said that he had. Judge Nelson then noted for the record that the post in question had been made on March 21, 2012.


    I took the liberty at looking at the Facebook postings for "Coffee Party Progressives" on that date. What I found was a hard-core Progressive site that, among other things, advocated for the violent death of George Zimmerman: "I say give the guy some skittles and an iced tea and shoot him in the head," wrote one commenter. Another commenter wrote, ". . . In Sanford . . . & I CAN tell you THIS. "Justice" . . . IS Coming! " and "The Seminole County "Justice" System needs an ENEMA . . . & they just MIGHT GET one!"


    Prospective juror E7 was also promptly dismissed by the court.


    To see the entire wrap-up of today's third day of voir dire, including screen caps of the "Coffee Party Progressives" posts and comments from March 21, 2012, just click here:


    » Zimmerman Jury Selection ? Day Three Wrap-Up - Le·gal In·sur·rec·tion


    Best,


    Andrew
    @LawSelfDefense
     
  3. pokerace

    pokerace Newberg Well-Known Member

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    been watching on going..
     
  4. Father of four

    Father of four Portland, Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Be ready for riots in Florida and probably elsewhere if the jury decides Zimmerman shot the guy in self defense. It shouldn't happen but I bet it would if he is ruled innocent. We'll see in 30+ days.
     
  5. Law of Self Defense

    Law of Self Defense Boston, MA Bronze Vendor Bronze Vendor

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    It turns out the best line to come out of the Zimmerman trial yesterday might have been delivered after the Court had recessed for the day.


    Attorney Benjamin Crump, advisory to the Martin family, announced to the press that, ""The evidence shows there is no blood on Trayvon's hands."


    I guess he hasn't seen this picture:


    Andrew
    @LawSelfDefense
     
  6. Law of Self Defense

    Law of Self Defense Boston, MA Bronze Vendor Bronze Vendor

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    Just FYI, Day 4 of jury selection has just kicked into gear. Our live, all-day coverage can be found at Legal Insurrection here, if you're interested in following along.


    We'll also be doing our usual end-of-day summary of events. I'll drop a brief note when that's up, for folks who are interested.


    Andrew
    @LawSelfDefense
     
  7. JGRuby

    JGRuby Portland Oregon New Member

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    Father of four
    In this instance I respectfully disagree with you - I feel Zimmerman should be found guilty - however my opinion aside we will see what comes out of the legal preceedings.

    James Ruby
     
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  8. peetar

    peetar Kitsap County Active Member

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    Why do you feel he should be found guilty?
     
  9. Law of Self Defense

    Law of Self Defense Boston, MA Bronze Vendor Bronze Vendor

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    I predict, if we get a response at all, that it will be drawn from among the seemingly infinite pieces of disinformation distributed by the Crump propaganda machine, every element of which shares the characteristic of having no evidentiary basis.

    But I could be wrong (just as my wife). :)

    As a starting point, you might list the elements of the crime with which Zimmerman is charged--murder 2--and point out the facts in evidence (not mere newspaper reports or internet "facts") that support each of those elements (ideally, beyond a reasonable doubt, which is what the prosecution must prove). (As an assist, the murder 2 statute, 782.04, can be found here: http://bit.ly/13HtqTz.)

    Once that is accomplished, you might list the elements of Florida's self defense statute, and point out the facts in evidence that can disprove any one of them (again, beyond a reasonable doubt). (Florida's deadly force self-defense statute, 776.013, can be found here: http://bit.ly/19viLBB.)

    If the State cannot do both, Zimmerman must be found not guilty.

    Emotional argument based on media/internet speculation and disinformation is not the legal standard for convicting someone of murder 2, or any other crime, for that matter. Only facts in evidence count.

    Andrew
    @LawSelfDefense
     
  10. JGRuby

    JGRuby Portland Oregon New Member

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    Zimmerman followed, and confronted Martin - you do that to me you will get a fight as well - Zimmerman's only repsonsibility was to observe and turn it into the police if he found wrong doing. To me this has nothing to do with Zimmerman being armed - to me it is more about Zimmerman taking actions which he as a citizen should not have. Zimmerman confronted Martin strictly based on suspicion which then escalalted into the mess it is today.


    James Ruby

    I am not a lawyer or pretend to know the law as it is not my proffessional field. If found not guilty under the law I will accept it though question how someone can instigate a conflict and find not to be responsible for it.
     
  11. Law of Self Defense

    Law of Self Defense Boston, MA Bronze Vendor Bronze Vendor

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    See, I knew this would be fun.

    Sorry, there's not a shred of evidence that Zimmerman did anything but "follow" Martin from a distance in an effort to keep him under observation while Zimmerman stayed on the phone to talk police into the scene. (Get that part--Zimmerman was on the phone with police all throughout the time he was "following" Martin--hardly the behavior of a violent stalker.)

    As far as the alleged confrontation, not only is there no evidence--zero, zilch, nada--that Zimmerman confronted Martin, the facts in evidence tell us that it was Martin who confronted Zimmerman. This false narrative of Zimmerman "following and confronting" Martin is nothing more than misinformation spewed by the Crump propaganda machine.

    Even if Zimmerman HAD followed and "confronted" Martin, how would that constitute legal justification for Martin's deadly force attack on Zimmerman? Neither following nor confronting someone legally justifies a physical attack in response, much less a deadly force attack, which requires that one be in reasonable fear death or grave bodily harm, not likely outcomes of being followed or confronted.

    "Hey, what are you doing here?" does not provide legal justification for attacking the person asking the question, particularly not with deadly force.

    And, yes, breaking someone's nose, knocking them to the sidewalk, and relentlessly beating their head into the concrete (MMA-style) until compelled to stop by an S&B 115g 9mm bullet through the heart, falls well within the definition of "force likely to cause death or grave bodily harm" under Florida law.

    Absent legal justification for his beating of Zimmerman, Martin was nothing more than a thug attacking an innocent man. Had he survived he could well have been charged with aggravated assault & battery or even attempted homicide. Both the intensity of Martin's unjustified attack in general and those criminal acts in particular are more than sufficient justification under Florida law, especially given the other facts of the case, to warrant Zimmerman's use of deadly force in self defense.

    By the way, I know you're not a lawyer. I'm not trying to mock you. I'm trying to inform you.

    Andrew
    @LawSelfDefense
     
  12. Father of four

    Father of four Portland, Oregon Well-Known Member

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    No problem. I think he will probably be ruled guilty. We'll see.
     
  13. JGRuby

    JGRuby Portland Oregon New Member

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    LAW FOR SELF DEFENSE:

    We will see - that is what the court system is for - I for one disagree with you but enjoy reading your information on this trial. I feel that Zimmerman was the attacker. One side note - it appears anything that you dont like as far as information comes from the "crumps news system" - To me you are anything but nuetral in your opinion on this.

    James Ruby

    Yes this is my opinion - based on what information I have garnered from other sources. It is doubful we will ever know exactly what occurred as there is only one side to tell the story.
     
  14. Jamie6.5

    Jamie6.5 Western OR Well-Known Member

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    Oh I don't know about that.
    I think Zimmerman's blood tells a very significant side of the story.

    Of course, one has to be willing to believe what their eyes tell them when they see it.
     
  15. Law of Self Defense

    Law of Self Defense Boston, MA Bronze Vendor Bronze Vendor

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  16. dobeman

    dobeman Hillsboro Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    trial by jury (jury of ones peers?) is a scary concept to me nowadays.. given rampant stupidity and ignorance in society today....
     
  17. JGRuby

    JGRuby Portland Oregon New Member

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    LOSD:
    I cannot argue against what you are saying however I have never been nor I do I expect to have unbiased information provided to me. I also do not have knoweldge of the evidence in the case. I will say this one nght when I was invited to dinner while working in Phoenix many years ago a trial lawyer told me this and I beleive it. A lawyer doesnt have to be right he just has to create a preception of what is right and be able to make a jury beleive that preception. This really blew my concept of what right and wrong represented. I use to be more naive than I am today.

    I will wait and see how this comes out in the end but my opinion stays until presented with other facts in the case.

    James Ruby
     
  18. Law of Self Defense

    Law of Self Defense Boston, MA Bronze Vendor Bronze Vendor

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    I can perhaps explain, or expand on that, if you like.

    That trial lawyer was exactly right--in a real sense, trial lawyers are story tellers, which each side trying to tell the most compelling story for their own side.

    But that doesn't mean it's chaos in the court room. The lawyers aren't allowed to build their stories around fantasy. They have to work within the constraints of the facts in evidence. They can't just make stuff up, nor can they use real evidence that actually exists but which the court has ruled inadmissible (such as the possibility in this case that the defense might not be permitted to reference Martin's history of drug use or acts of violence at school).

    Those facts in evidence are the elements or "pieces" with which each side has to build their compelling story for the jury. They can each pick and choose different "pieces" from those available , and they can try to draw different implications from the same "piece" -- but those are the pieces they have to work with. That's ALL of them.

    The "facts" being disseminated by the disinformation campaign are nothing but propaganda, and are not facts in evidence. They may sound compelling in a newspaper article or coming from the mouth of an MSNBC host, but they are not "pieces" the lawyers are going to have available to them to build their compelling story for the jury at trial.

    Again, I'm not trying to be patronizing, I'm just trying to explain how the system actually works at a practical level.

    I hope it's helpful.

    Andrew
    @LawSelfDefense
     
  19. JGRuby

    JGRuby Portland Oregon New Member

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    LOSD

    Thank you for giving me some things to consider - I sincerely mean this. I cannot nor would I refute what you have written if I could. Some of the things you have discussed I remember from Business law that I took in college. I know that there is a world of difference but some concpets remain the same. That being said I will be watching and reading what goes on during this trial. It to me has far reaching legal and in my mind moral implications. I carry when not at work and am very interested in how this effects the decisions that I might make in the future. My thought process has always been if and when I can walk away I will especially when carrying - that however does not mean that I wont defend what I feel is important. I am willing to change my mind but at this point simply disagree with my beleif being that Zimmerman being guilty. What i beleive and what reality is I am sure varies. One point I would like to make is that news does effect ones opinion on the case even though it should not. I would be willing to bet that most jury members have read something on this case at one time or another.

    James Ruby
     
  20. Law of Self Defense

    Law of Self Defense Boston, MA Bronze Vendor Bronze Vendor

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    And I take you at your word.

    Should you have any questions, feel free to ask them of me here in this thread, or by private message if you prefer, or really anywhere we happen to bump into each, whether on line or in "meat space." I'll do my best to provide an informed answer, and let you know when I can't.

    Andrew
    @LawSelfDefense