• Creep Doggie Log

    George Zimmerman didn’t just not “formally” invoke Florida’s SYG law in his defense, he didn’t invoke it in any way.

    Florida’s jury instructions for murder trials in which a defendant asserts self-defense say that a person has the right to stand his or her ground and has no duty to retreat in the face of a violent attack; however, those instructions predate the broader “Stand Your Ground” law by decades and are materially no different than instructions given to jurors in California and other states in similar cases. Zimmerman likely would have been acquitted had the shooting and trial occurred in any state.

    If you want to impeach SYG laws, there are plenty of ways to do that without invoking the Zimmerman case. Zimmerman asserted he shot Trayvon Martin because Zimmerman was in fear for his life when Martin brutally attacked him without provocation. The state failed to present to the jury an alternate narrative that beyond a reasonable doubt made the shooting unreasonable.

  • Rutherford LeMasters

    The problem has been the focus on irrelevant arguments – some of which are actually unsupported by the evidence.

    1. ‘George Zimmerman (GZ) racially profiled Trayvon Martin (TM)’ There is no evidence of this.

    2. ‘GZ disobeyed an order by the police’ * The civilian dispatcher, Sean Noffke, testified that he did not give GZ an order and, in fact, he, like his fellow dispatchers, are trained not make comments that sound like commands. * Noffke also testified under cross that, as a result of his asking GZ which way TM was going, GZ could have reasonably interpreted this as being asked to follow Martin. * It is also not a crime in Florida to disregard a comment made by a civilian dispatcher.

    3. ‘GZ got out of his car’ Not a crime on public property and not negligent either.

    4. ‘GZ followed TM’ Again, anyone can follow anyone on a public street unless the followee has obtained a restraining order against the follower and even there, the RS only places time, place, and manner restrictions on the person enjoined.

    5. ‘GZ wasn’t really injured’ * Under Florida’s self-defense laws, one doesn’t have to be injured AT ALL to use deadly force * No one is required to refrain from defending himself while another is engaged in or attempting to commit a felony.

    6. ‘TM is dead through no fault of his own’ * If you believe that TM assaulted GZ, then he IS dead as a result of his own actions.

    7. ‘GZ could have left’ * Under Florida law, there is not a duty to withdraw rather than use deadly force * TM was straddling GZ so how the latter was supposed to leave the scene is unanswered.

    8. ‘GZ was armed and TM wasn’t’ * One’s fists can be considered weapons and can result in severe bodily harm or death. * GZ was legally carrying a weapon * There is no requirement under the law that the same weapon be used by the assailant * A homeowner can kill an intruder whether or not he has been threatened * Those that attack cannot feign surprise if they are met with superior firepower.

    9. ‘Stand Your Ground!’ * SYG is NOT at issue in this trial. * The defense is a classic self-defense case.

    10. ‘Black men NEVER get to use SYG!’ * Wrong http://tinyurl.com/nboht35

    11. ‘GZ is a man and TM was a boy!’ * As if ‘boys’ don’t commit murder, rape, and assault everyday in this country.

  • Joe

    Personally I am not against the stand your ground law. I disagree with the out come of this case. I believe the prosecution failed in this case. It is my understanding when Zimmerman called in he was told to stay in his vehicle. He chose not to. When he exited his vehicle and started to follow the kid. He was without reasonable grounds to make the confrontation. The prosecutor went every direction and failed to stay on this point. There was no justification for Zimmerman to be confronting this kid.