Monday, July 15, 2013

Gelber on Trayvon Martin, Zimmerman and the Rick Scott GOP Legislature, 'Stand Your Ground'

Former state senator Dan Gelber gets it right, even if voters don't.

From Dan's post:

Here is the actual jury instruction read to Florida juries prior to the legislature’s enactment of Stand Your Ground.
“The defendant cannot justify the use of force likely to cause death or great bodily harm unless he used every reasonable means within his power and consistent with his own safety to avoid the danger before resorting to that force.

The fact that the defendant was wrongfully attacked cannot justify his use of force likely to cause death or great bodily harm if by retreating he could have avoided the need to use that force. “
Here is the actual instruction that was read to the Zimmerman Jury:
“If George Zimmerman was not engaged in an unlawful activity and was attacked in any place where he had a right to be, he had no duty to retreat and had the right to stand his ground and meet force with force, including deadly force if he reasonably believed that it was necessary to do so to prevent death or great bodily harm to himself or another or to prevent the commission of a forcible felony.”


Anonymous said...

They both say the same thing, Mr. Gelber.

Here's the thing .. we now know that Trayvon had a history of juvenile delinquency. Tagging, theft?, drugs. Social media is now buzzing with the back story here and people are asking why this young man was not expelled from school.

Had Mr. Zimmerman shot a white kid with a checkered past after having received a fractured nose and bashes to the back of his head, the Gov's office and the President would not have intervened.

Had this not been overly politicized, there might have been an opportunity to gather more evidence against Mr. ZImmerman (if it was there to be gathered). Often times suspects will admit to crimes after the fact.

The first injustice to Trayvon was the way i which evidence was handled. Two photos of his torso - one with blood and one with the blood wiped away. No bags on the hands. etc. etc. It is tragic that he died, tragic that his parents have lost their son, tragic that he was a young kid showing tendencies towards juvenile delinquency, tragic that the evidence gathering was botched -- but the dog and pony show that followed was sickening. They rushed this, and now it is done. The politicians can say they did their job and wash their hands before they go back to campaigning.

Was justice done? Who the hell knows.

Anonymous said...

It looks like Stand Your Ground basically justifies picking a fight and then using lethal force to protect yourself. What a mess. If Zimmerman has simply sat in his car, reported it, and waited - as he was told to do - this would not have happened. So sad.

Anonymous said...

It appears Trayvon was a "bad kid" on his way to achieving his goal of being a thug. Drugs, fights, damaging private and public property. The kid was just escalating.