Patterico's Pontifications

4/15/2012

Ken at Popehat Trashes the Affidavit in the Zimmerman Case

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 12:57 am



I can’t say I disagree:

It’s a piece of crap.

. . . .

The affidavit takes the lazy way out, starting with a paragraph that says, in effect, “we investigated a bunch of stuff, and here’s what we learned,” followed by a narrative of what the affiant believes happened. Almost nothing is specifically attributed — that is, for most facts asserted in the affidavit, it is impossible to determine whether a witness told the affiant the fact, how the witness knew, or whether it is just a conclusion drawn by the affiant.

This makes the argumentative and conclusory elements of the affi[dav]it that much more problematical. For instance, the affidavit states that Zimmerman “profiled” Martin. But it’s impossible to determine if (1) that’s the affiant’s characterization of the narrative that follows, or (2) that’s intended as a separate factual assertion based on unspecified facts or evidence or witnesses. Similarly, the affidavit makes numerous statements about what Zimmerman thought or intended. It is impossible to determine whether these statements are (1) conclusions based on Zimmerman’s actions and statements to the 911 dispatcher, (2) admissions Zimmerman made in some unspecified statement, or (3) mere argument.

. . . .

This is not the worst affidavit I’ve ever seen — but it’s damn close, and the decision to proceed based on it in such a high-profile case is stunning. . . . An affidavit like this makes a mockery of the probable cause process. There’s no way that a judge reading this affidavit can make an intelligent or informed decision about the sufficiency of the evidence — even for the low hurdle of probable cause.

A guy did some stuff, and so . . . murder!

Yeah, they could be a little more specific. Or . . . maybe they couldn’t.

More criticism from Empty Wheel, Talk Left, and CBS News. Racist right-wing racisty racists one and all. Thanks to narciso for all the links. Yeah, this thing is a piece of crap, all right.

74 Responses to “Ken at Popehat Trashes the Affidavit in the Zimmerman Case”

  1. Yeah, I read the Empty Wheel breakdown after shipwreckedcrew mentioned it. IANAL but bmaz did some apparently stellar work torching that affidavit… and he’s one of those Leftist kooks lettuce cooks. (Don’t want to give anything away that you hid right there at the end.)

    John Hitchcock (d1b9fb)

  2. I noticed problems too, from what I read in the newspaper. There’s at least three things I think that are false, and one of them is something en Popehat says they got right. Maybe right in a procedural sort of way, but not in a believeable evidence sort of way. And one of the most significant things is what the affidavit does not say.

    The affidavit was filed the day after the arrest and public announcement. At least it contains a more detailed assertions of fact.

    The charges were possibly filed a little bit early because Angela Corey (possibly advised this way by DOJ) wanted to make sure they took George Zimmerman into custody and he didn’t flee, and he didn’t commit suicide. Zimmerman had contacted the State’s Attorney office about his safety. He went to their offices on Wednesday and was surprised by his arrest. He was mot arrested by he Feds. I think we need more details on that. To arrest him, I think, though, Angela Corey had to file charges. So she did.

    But I read that not using a grand jury is not such a surprise. Prosecutors often avoid them. They would use them mostly when legally required: to file first degree murder charges, or to charge a juvenile as an adult, as Angela Corey did with a 12 year old boy, who is accused of having banged his 2-year old half brother’s head against something (a bookcase) while babysitting. The mother, who didn’t call for a doctor for eight hours after the baby was unconscious, has already pleaded guilty to aggravated manslaughter. But she’s also charged the boy. Angela Corey says she’s not asking for life in prison without he possibility of parole but wants to get a “middle ground.”

    Angela Corey is a very tough prosecutor. And she actually got the crime rate down by 25% in Jacksonville, Florida. It had the highest homicide rate in the state till the year after her election, 2009. No longer.

    She really goes after repeat offenders and has a practice of boding with crime victim’s families, and she stays in contact with them after the case is over.

    She was picked by Governor Rick Scott, on the recommendation of the (also Republican) Florida Attorney General, Pam Bondi, precisely because she is such a tough prosecutor – therefore the one most likely to file the toughest charges. Pam Bondi is the lead attorney general in the lawsuit seeking to overturn Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA).

    \\\The affidavit was

    Sammy Finkelman (cb261b)

  3. The charges were higher than most people expected. Judging by the Tuesday and Wednesday newspaper article, people were really thinking manslaughter would be a likely charge, or even aggravated battery with a firearm. It looks like a clear case of overcharging.

    One of the things wrong with the affidavit, or the assertions in the affidavit really doesn’t matter but is a sign of carelessness.

    The affidavit says a word George Zimmerman uttered was “punks.” It is clearly not punks. It unmistakely begins with a K sound. It sounds like “colts” with the l being a bit more uncertain to mean. I don’t know what that means in this context, but I suspect it has an answer. “Coals” or “Coles” is another possibility maybe.

    One person claimed in the end it was “cold” I don’t think it could be “kids” because I think the vowel is different. But anyway, George Zimmerman did say; “those assholes, they always get away” so it is true that he pegged Trayvon Martin as a likely criminal.

    More serious errors are:

    1) The affidavit says:

    Martin attempted to run home, but was followed by Zimmerman who didn’t want the person he falsely assumed was going to commit a crime to get way before police arrived.

    Maybe had been planning to commit a crime. But actually something else. He wanted him charged with trespassing – that is thought he had already committed a crime.

    Anybody present in a gated community (which is considered private property) who doesn’t live there or was not invited is considered to be guilty of trespassing even though they have what look like public streets. This is actually a quite problematical issue of law. It’s mostly on the hnor system actually.

    2) The affidavit says Trayvon’s mother recognized him screaming. I think that is very shaky evidence. She obviously wants to believe that she’s hearing her son. That she has something a bit more from her son, and that he was a pure victim. There are ways to test this out that the prosecutor’s office didn’t try – just: The mother recognized the voice therefore it was not George Zimmerman screaming for help. Even though George Zimmerman made that claim almost immediately (that he had called for help) and even though there may be witnesses who think it was Zimmerman.

    3) Notice one thing the affidavit doesn’t say: the time of the cell phone call between Trayvon and the girl. That’s a crucial omission from the affidavit. I think that means it did occur between 7:13:41 and 7:17: There’s no mention either of overhearing a challenging question, and the phone going dead. Only that Trayvon told her he had a feeling he was being stalked. I think we must be very careful about this phone call – even if the number in question was his phone. Is the number in question the same one his father knew and called? And was a phone found with Trayvon’s body or nearby? If not, why not?

    Sammy Finkelman (cb261b)

  4. If I didn’t know any better, Corey is almost following ‘Nifongs’ footsteps and, while Nifongs ‘victim’ isn’t dead, she’s now in jail for murder.
    There’s another identical comparison – Corey also is in the middle of a difficult re-election campain as was Nifong at that time.

    I doubt that Zimmermann will get afair trial.

    A friend, a PI, is in Florida currently to do a little of his digging and, found that Corey refused to acknowledge, interview, or even consider three different witnesses;one who physically saw the struggle, Martin being on top of Zimmermann, pummeling him, banging Zimmermanns’ head into the concrete.

    Another thing is missing; Martin walked towrds Zimmermann with his hand in his waistband. I could cite more, this affidavit stinks of an attempt to ‘nifong’ George Zimmermann.

    cali (2718fe)

  5. Cops can’t do racial profiling, but is it against the law for a neighborhood watchman to do it?

    Normally a person who can escape is expected to do so rather than using deadly force. The stand and fight law doesn’t apply if you are laying on your back with a guy holding you down, beating the crap out of you. Regardless of who started the fight, if witnesses saw Martin on top of Zimmerman, it wouldn’t it be reasonable to assume self defense?

    Is this whole exercise some plea bargaining process to get Zimmerman to plead guilty to manslaughter?

    Personally, I would not accept a deal. If I didn’t do it I’d make them fish or cut bait.

    Arch (0baa7b)

  6. Allah floated the scenario that Corey is trying to reap maximum electoral clout with a dead raccoon that the judge will be obliged to reject.

    She can then submit something, at a reduced charge, that might be arguable. As it would stand, Z’s attorneys would refuse plea bargain preferring to beat an unwinnable case for the prosecution.

    Change of venue and jury selection could postpone eventual trial past general election.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  7. I read that last night, wished Popehat was a judge.

    SarahW (b0e533)

  8. Or rather, Ken at Popehat.

    I can still see no honest explanation for the poorly set out charging document. So odd. She was so full of smiles, too, when she had her little presser. I can’t really make sense of it, and I expect she won’t benefit from it if it was deliberate.

    SarahW (b0e533)

  9. Sammy, reliance on the mother’s belief about the voice is all the shakier, because her first claim was that it was not her son’s voice.

    SarahW (b0e533)

  10. Sounds like the Underpants Gnomes have gone to law school.

    Dead Lee Iacocca (bf8ad7)

  11. damn.

    But to further that meme:

    Step one: investigate
    Step two: ???
    Step three: convict

    Kevin M (bf8ad7)

  12. I know it would be speculation at this point as to why/how a document like this was produced. I am assuming, from what I’ve read, that this person must be capable of much better work than this.

    I’m not a person who has run for any office, if that makes any difference, but I usually don’t like to do shoddy work, even less so when I know it will be scrutinized.

    Is it kind of a “Passive-aggressive intellectual thing”, like procrastination can be? As in, “I know it’s a rotten piece of work, but there were surrounding circumstances that made it necessary to get filed it without more thorough work”.

    I don’t know, just strange to me to give written evidence that suggests I don’t have much of a clue, unless this is some kind of “wink and nod” that other lawyers and “important people” would understand.

    Since this thing became so distorted, it will take some work to get past it, if we ever do. Has US society digested OJ yet?

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  13. It’s time Florida AG, Pam Bondi, was asked a series of rather pointed questions about her recommendation of Angela Corey as Special Prosecutor in the TraMar case.

    Angela Corey’s decidedly sub-standard affidavit as a basis for grossly over-charging Zimmerman must be fully explained and defended in light of her decision to forgo a grand jury indictment combined with reports of her completely irresponsible decision to ignore important witnesses (see Comment by Arch — 4/15/2012 @ 6:16 am).

    Corey’s questionable conduct opens the door to highly unfavorable comparisons with North Carolina’s Mike Nifong while he was similarly conducting a reelection campaign in a racially inflamed atmosphere.

    ropelight (1f2785)

  14. On a side note, I read that Angela Corey is a very strong victim’s rights advocate and that has been the signature of her career. So, when she went to visit the Martins, the first thing she did was pray with them. On one hand, that seems admirable and certainly reassuring to the family, yet on the other hand, does it cause a prosecutor to lose perspective and the ability to maintain a certain detachment that might be necessary to remain objective, or is this SOP?

    Dana (4eca6e)

  15. Greetings:

    Sometimes, the process is the punishment. Whatever the quality of the affidavit, Mr. Zimmerman is now in jail, perhaps to be out on high bail in the near future, while this very Special Prosecutor’s legal Sword of Damocles hangs over his head and he and his family try to avoid bankruptcy.

    And then, of course, Eric (My People) Holder’s high integrity Department of Justice will be circling in the background waiting for its bite at Mr. Zimmerman’s apples.

    It looks like an easy 2-5 to me.

    11B40 (192e0a)

  16. Can Zimmerman simply waive arraignment and move on to trial and avoid the prosecutor changing the charge. If this is such a slam dunk error on the prosecutor, why not go to trial on the single charge?

    cedarhill (fc3a1e)

  17. Not sure that is a good idea to skip the arraignment.

    The “stand your ground law” includes a step where the prosecutor must prove (by 50%+1?) that Z. is potentially guilty of the crime charged. With the public evidence seen so far–That appears to be a tough hill to climb.

    If the prosecutor fails at that step, then any further state prosecution ends right there with no second bite of the apple (I would guess–unless the Feds come in with a civil rights case).

    BfC (fd87e7)

  18. You guys can quote law and facts ’till the cows come home. None of ’em make any difference. George Zimmerman is going to spend serious jail time. Or be killed in custody. This is necessary to prevent Florida from being burned down.

    f1guyus (877ee1)

  19. f1guyus,

    I fear you are correct–And this could be mutual assured destruction (from the old Nuclear “MAD” theory) on the “civil society” level (gun sales explode as election looms)…

    There are a lot of people out there now with not much left to lose due to the current destruction of the economy and “American” culture.

    BfC (fd87e7)

  20. 20. “This is necessary to prevent Florida from being burned down.”

    “Necessary to prevent” or “part and parcel of”?

    The mestizo dies or we balkanize Amerikkka, you’re a bit late. Bring it on cretin.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  21. The comments at Empty Wheel were disturbing.

    The suggestion that “repugs” are throwing the game because they want riots to bolster their bigotry about blacks being all rioty, is so crazy – what are you going to do with people like that?

    The commenter seems not to notice his own bigoted assumption that black people must and will burn down the town if Zimmerman is not proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

    Also all the allusions to and mention of “private unreasonable suspicion”. Zimmerman’s report of a suspicious person was reasonable, and attempt to see where the kid ran, even if Trayvon had just been lollygagging about through the neighborhood, was perfectly reasonable. Calling police to check him out was no crime.
    Reacting to the kid fleeing to see which way he went is also not illegal or wrong or depraved.

    Show me that Zimmerman chased the kid, cornered him into a fight, or somehow did something more than try to keep an eye on in order to direct police to his location –

    Lord, if Zimmerman had hopped out of the car with his weapon pulled like Jodie foster at Buffalo Bill’s house, or tried to detain the kid by blocking his way or threatening force – how differently I would see the situation.

    Looking over the Martin family lawyer’s representation of the girlfriends remarks – even then Martin speaks first, and it is totally unclear who starts physical contact.

    SarahW (b0e533)

  22. ____________________________________________

    It’s a piece of crap.

    The ironies in this matter are too thick to cut with even a sharp knife—ie, anything rooted in left-leaning sentiment (eg, Angela Corey’s heart going pitter-patter, pitter-patter upon meeting the sad, touching, heroic underdog mother of a dead child?) can very easily become corrupted and ass-backwards.

    And perhaps similarities to the infamous Duke Lacrosse case too? But instead of a left-leaning prosecutor — with an agenda, and quite susceptible to deficient common sense — there’s a rightist district attorney—with an agenda, and a brain that’s no less susceptible to pangs of liberal bias, or deficient common sense?

    washingtonpost.com, Jennifer Rubin, April 15: Democratic lawyer and law professor Alan Dershowitz shook things up on Friday by severely criticizing the prosecutor in the Trayvon Martin case. Calling the affidavit “not only thin, [but] irresponsible” and accusing the prosecutor of kicking off her reelection at the news conference is strong stuff.

    But even tougher was former federal prosecutor Andy McCarthy, who lambasted Angela Corey: “This affidavit is not law, it is agitprop: invoking, for example, the explosive term ‘profiled’ but carefully avoiding any discussion of what it means and failing to note that (a) there is no evidence of racial profiling, and (b) absent an invidious racial component there is nothing wrong with profiling (indeed, we want police to do it so that innocent people don’t get hassled).”

    There are ambiguities in the complaint that more information could have cleared up. The prosecutor has more information. Yet, she chose to leave matters ambiguous. That strongly suggests the additional information would hurt the prosecution’s case — a suggestion that is bolstered by the affidavit’s self-serving omission of any mention of Zimmerman’s injuries…

    It is especially important for conservatives, who have historically been on the side of “law and order” (largely in reaction to the Warren Supreme Court and the unraveling of effective criminal justice in the 1960s and 1970s), to consider the lessons of the past few years concerning prosecutorial overreach and abuse.

    usatoday.com: The woman at the forefront of the Trayvon Martin case was appointed by Florida Republican Gov. Rick Scott after 30 years as a state prosecutor and a career that was not without controversy.

    Angela Corey is currently prosecuting another high-profile slaying. In that case, Corey charged 12-year-old Cristian Fernandez as an adult with first-degree murder in the death of his 2-year-old half brother. Corey has said the boy will not face trial or spend the rest of his life in jail, but Florida law allows only life in prison for a first-degree murder conviction.

    In a news conference Wednesday announcing a second-degree murder charge against Trayvon’s shooter, George Zimmerman, Corey smiled as she described first meeting “those sweet parents” of Trayvon three weeks earlier. The meeting began with a prayer, she said, but no promises.

    In 2006, Corey was fired by Harry Shorstein, former state attorney for Florida’s 4th Judicial Circuit. He said the firing stemmed from a complaint by a law school intern that Corey was abusive toward women. Corey responded with letters criticizing the intern’s professor and dean, Shorstein said. “I said that was unprofessional, you must apologize. She refused.”

    cnn.com, June 2007: The prosecutor in the Duke University lacrosse team rape case was disbarred Saturday for unethical conduct, and the chairman of the disciplinary committee blamed “political ambition” for his downfall.

    Earlier Saturday, the panel of the North Carolina State Bar concluded that Durham County, North Carolina, District Attorney Mike Nifong violated more than a dozen ethics rules in prosecuting the case against the now-exonerated players.

    The panel determined Nifong withheld key DNA evidence from the players’ defense attorneys that might have cleared them earlier, and lied to the presiding judge and state bar investigators.

    The three students — Reade Seligmann, Collin Finnerty and Dave Evans — were accused of sexually assaulting an escort-service dancer [a black female] at a party in March 2006.

    ____________________________________________

    Mark (31bbb6)

  23. As a thirty-year prosecutor,here is how it works.Reject the case and everyone hates me and I disappear into obscurity.File the case and I’m world famous and everyone loves me.After careful inspection and analysis of all the evidence,I’m ready to vote.

    Unattorney (ab7da1)

  24. If intelligent, highly-educated prosecutors given all the time in the world plus an extensive support staff, produce such crap, how is the average person supposed to make perfect decisions in a sudden life and death situation under enormous stress and fear?

    Random (fba0b1)

  25. The commenter seems not to notice his own bigoted assumption that black people must and will burn down the town

    Excellent observation.

    They assume everyone has the same ugly view of blacks as they have, then they condemn bigotry. It reminds me of all the losers who sit, pointing at the TV judging people on various daytime talk shows, because as they do it they are distracted from their own problems.

    Dustin (330eed)

  26. The affidavit says a word George Zimmerman uttered was “punks.” It is clearly not punks. It unmistakely begins with a K sound.

    I think the recording makes the K or P sound extremely mistakable. Not that I can assert what he did say. Punks, cold, or something else.

    It’s amazing how our brain will hear what it’s told to hear, though.

    Dustin (330eed)

  27. It reminds me of all the losers who sit, pointing at the TV judging people on various daytime talk shows, because as they do it they are distracted from their own problems.

    Comment by Dustin — 4/15/2012 @ 11:46 am

    I thought that was the point of daytime TV?

    Dianna (f12db5)

  28. I think it has been clear from day one (to me anyway) this is a political process. For that reason, the Prosecutor should be disbarred if what amounts to evidence is the hyperbole presented so far.

    … and yes, I don’t trust law enforcement to always be chaste and pure. I realise that upsets a few posters here but politics runs the DA office on high profile issues such as these.

    My hear goes out to the Zimmerman family for what they are going to be put through. And the Martin family for having to lose a child and now be used as props in a “media fabricated race war.”

    Bill (af584e)

  29. #26 Funny.

    Bill (af584e)

  30. #20 So we are to presume you view blacks as savages or something?

    Bias is one thing, outright crazy violence is another.

    Bill (af584e)

  31. If only Ryan/Alex/our designated concern troll was here to make sense of all this for us. Whatever shall we do?

    Gazzer (75ef82)

  32. Dustin @ 27,

    They assume everyone has the same ugly view of blacks as they have, then they condemn bigotry.

    I was pleasantly surprised to see a black man boldly weigh in on this and frankly, it’s refreshing to see a person think for himself and reject the obligatory herd mentality – no matter what the skin color may be.

    Dana (4eca6e)

  33. I think the recording makes the K or P sound extremely mistakable. Not that I can assert what he did say. Punks, cold, or something else.

    Maybe, but this is my belief (“punks”) and some sources for the belief: one source (Ace’s expert Chris Reynolds) I consider better than the other (Tom Owen, who discredited himself via this method).

    Random (fba0b1)

  34. My guess would be that it was punks too, primarily on Ace’s argument about the flow and stress of the word we hear.

    Great link, Dana. There’s a lot of hope for our country, if only we had leaders who would actually get past the short term politics. Obama could have easily been a transformational and healing leader that this country needed.

    Dustin (330eed)

  35. Anyone know if the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, Republican or Democrat wing, taken a public position yet?

    It would be entirely appropriate and rather courageous (and politically risky) for Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) to step up and make a statement before Zimmerman gets railroaded into taking a plea.

    From the initial press conference his lawyer doesn’t seem to be making much of an effort to defend his client. Listening to him talk, he sounded like second chair for the prosecution.

    ropelight (1f2785)

  36. From the initial press conference his lawyer doesn’t seem to be making much of an effort to defend his client. Listening to him talk, he sounded like second chair for the prosecution.

    He certainly needs good, zealous representation against this unethical prosecutor.

    Random (fba0b1)

  37. Congressional Hispanic Caucus,

    On March 20, the Congressional Hispanic Caucus released a statement asking for the Department of Justice to pursue the matter as a federal hate crime.

    “The Department of Justice is sending a message to the Martin family and to communities of color that our children’s lives have value and deserve equal protection under the law,” said Rep. Charlie Gonzalez, D-Texas, leader of the caucus.

    In Orlando, Navarette said one of the first people to reach out to the Martin family lawyer was Marytza Sanz, who is affiliated with La Raza and runs a Latino leadership nonprofit near Sanford.

    “Look, there are tensions between our two communities, but it would be a further injustice if this incident was used to further that,” she said. “We’ve been in touch with Rev. Al Sharpton and Ben Jealous at the NAACP, and as this continues we’ve offered our support to them.”

    Other than that, silence. Rush was first to note that.

    Dana (4eca6e)

  38. Other than that, silence. Rush was first to note that.

    Well good for the Congressional Black Caucus, etc. Shame on the Congressional Hispanic Caucus for pandering, prematurely, well in advance of any decent understanding of the situation.

    Also to hell with NBC and much of the media for their intentionally-deceptive and reckless racial-firestorm stoking.

    Random (fba0b1)

  39. If someone tells me 2+2=4, I’m going to believe the person means 2+2=4. If a person tells me 2+2=5, I’m going to believe the person thinks 2+2=5 and is wrong, unless I have strong reason to believe something else is going on.

    This is called “words mean something”.

    When people are quoted about getting the “m-f’ng cracker” and “blood running in the streets”, guess what I think they mean? I may doubt they really have the commitment to pull it off, but there should be no doubt of the sentiment communicated, So, if people don’t want me to be concerned about rioting, don’t show me quotes about rioting or veiled threats of what will happen if Sharpton and company don’t get their way.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  40. I am still interested if anyone with credentials (like our host and shipwreckedcrew) has a good idea why someone a prominent position and accomplished would put out a public document, sure to be widely read and scrutinized, that is shoddy and puts their competency in doubt.

    I mean, it seems like the medical equivalent of writing in a chart that the patient has pain in his belly and something is wrong.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  41. There’s a simple and cynical explanation, MD, she couldn’t well exonerate with the NBPP, Sharpton et
    al, on the loose, the place might go up in smoke,
    so she turned in a perfunctory document, and hoped
    for the best.

    narciso (8d0f34)

  42. She’s an elected prosecutor in a state judicial district that is centered in Jacksonville. The case is in Orlando. She does not have to answer to the voters of Orlando for her conduct, but she will be rewarded or punished in Jacksonville for her choices.

    I suspect the document is the proverbial “best of a bad situation.”

    Zimmerman will be able to defend himself on his claimed right to use self-defense in the somewhat unique SYG proceeding where he can beat the case by showing to a judge by a preponderance of evidence prior to trial that he was acting in self-defense.

    Doing what she has done puts the wheels in motion towards that process playing itself out. At that time a judicial officer in Orland — not up for re-election in Jacksonville — will very likely take her off the hook by ruling in Zimmerman’s favor.

    shipwreckedcrew (e962f3)

  43. shipwreckedcrew,

    Is entering a vague charge so Florida can “let the process play out” the standard for prosecutorial ethics in Florida or anywhere? It could be that prosecutors have that much discretion, but I thought prosecutors have a higher burden than just getting the ball rolling.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  44. Thank you for taking the time to answer (but I’m almost sorry I asked).

    So, for political gain she puts out a piece of trash that is a DA equivalent of “Present”?

    I saw elsewhere when Z had been protesting a different police action months ago, the stationary/leaflet included the quote attributed to Burke, “All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing”. How ironic. Maybe Corey thought that since Burke said “men” it doesn’t matter what a woman does. Somehow I don’t think that is a valid excuse. Z should file charges against Corey.

    Profiles in Cowardice, anyone?

    I am usually not so hostile in my criticism, knowing that we are all fallible and weak more than we would like, but for someone in an official position to wimp out and let some specific, visible person to pay for their cowardice, well, that’s “Pilatian”.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  45. Hey, this bounty thing is gaining ground:

    In an expression of solidarity with Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) Chief Hafiz Muhammad Saeed, British parliamentarian of Kashmiri origin Lord Nazir Ahmed has announced a reward for the [capture] of U.S. President Barack Obama and his predecessor, George W. Bush.

    “He made the announcement at a reception arranged in his honor by the business community of Haripur on Friday [April 13, 2012]. Former [Pakistani] foreign minister Goher Ayub Khan, Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl’s (JUI-F) central leader Hafiz Hussain Ahmed, and [Khyber Pakhtunkhwa] Provincial Minister for Education Qazi Muhammad Asad were also present [at] the occasion.
    “Lord Nazir said that the bounty placed on Saeed was an insult to all Muslims, and [that] by [offering it], President Obama has challenged the dignity of the Muslim ummah.

    “‘If the U.S. can announce a reward of $10 million for the [capture] of Hafiz Saeed, I can announce a bounty of 10 million [for the capture of] President Obama and his predecessor, George Bush,’ Lord Nazir said, adding that he would arrange the bounty at any cost, even if he was left with the option of selling all his personal assets, including his house…”

    Lord Nazir Ahmed is a Baron and was appointed a Life Peer by Tony Blair in 1998. He is a member of the Labour Party.

    http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2012/04/british-lord-offers-bounty-on-obama-and-bush.php

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  46. It’s a distressing turn of events, MD, she was looking more to cut her losses, rather than seek
    any political gain, meanwhile how much longer will
    justice be denied for Danny Faulkner,

    narciso (8d0f34)

  47. narciso, only the Lord knows when He will grant an audience to Mumia and let him plead his case. He will then need a much better Advocate than the ones he has had so far.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  48. She’s an elected prosecutor in a state judicial district that is centered in Jacksonville. The case is in Orlando. She does not have to answer to the voters of Orlando for her conduct, but she will be rewarded or punished in Jacksonville for her choices.

    I suspect the document is the proverbial “best of a bad situation.”

    Zimmerman will be able to defend himself on his claimed right to use self-defense in the somewhat unique SYG proceeding where he can beat the case by showing to a judge by a preponderance of evidence [he has to prove his innocence?] prior to trial that he was acting in self-defense.

    Doing what she has done puts the wheels in motion towards that process playing itself out. At that time a judicial officer in Orland — not up for re-election in Jacksonville — will very likely take her [her!!!!?] off the hook by ruling in Zimmerman’s favor.

    Are you freaking mad?

    Random (fba0b1)

  49. Got bored trolling the other thread and decided to troll here, Random?

    SPQR (26be8b)

  50. Now, another contingent notion, is the other major case her office is handling, the Christian Fernandez
    matter where a 12 year old, is facing a life term
    for killing his two year old brother, that has caused no lack of tumult, in her bailiwick,

    narciso (8d0f34)

  51. She’s an elected prosecutor in a state judicial district that is centered in Jacksonville. The case is in Orlando. She does not have to answer to the voters of Orlando for her conduct, but she will be rewarded or punished in Jacksonville for her choices.

    I suspect the document is the proverbial “best of a bad situation.”

    Zimmerman will be able to defend himself on his claimed right to use self-defense in the somewhat unique SYG proceeding where he can beat the case by showing to a judge by a preponderance of evidence [he has to prove his innocence?] prior to trial that he was acting in self-defense.

    Doing what she has done puts the wheels in motion towards that process playing itself out. At that time a judicial officer in Orland — not up for re-election in Jacksonville — will very likely take her [her!!!!?] off the hook by ruling in Zimmerman’s favor.

    English, por favor.

    JD (516dcc)

  52. JD–I agree with shipwreckedcrew.

    Corey files charges, leaving all the discontented feeling contented. (Martin’s mother has publicly said all she wanted was an arrest, and is satisfied now that there has been an arrest.)

    Zimmerman will have a Stand Your Ground hearing, and based on everything that I know, the ruling should go in his favor (and would do so no matter what how well the affidavit was drafted).

    Corey then gets to blame the SYG law, and say “Well, I did my best, but the judge said no. Sorry”.

    And then go back to Jacksonville.

    The above assumes there is nothing not publicly known which would vitiate Zimmerman’s SYG defense.

    JBS (01743a)

  53. I’m not sure what part you don’t understand JD.

    Corey was a career assistant prosecutor until 2006 when she was terminated.

    In 2008 she ran for the elected position of State Attorney in her old office after the guy who fired her announced he wasn’t going to run.

    She won the election in 2008,

    She is up for re-election in 2012.

    I do not think Gov. Scott did her any favors handing her this racially charged case when Jacksonville has a particularly large African-American population.

    From what had been reported in the media prior to the announcement of the charges, it always looked like a long uphill battle to gain a conviction simply because of the burden of proof and the nature of the available evidence.

    Yet her she was, given a case where opting to not charge would have been a huge blow to her re-election effort. If she had gone to the GJ there is no telling what charge they might have voted out.

    Doing what she has done allowed her to remain in control of the case, how it was charged, and how it was put forth to the public.

    NOTHING she has done suggests that the case is strong. But she got her press conference, great photo op, and the adulation of the African American community and race hustlers.

    When the case is ultimately dismissed it will be because a judge rules that under Florida law the prosecution is barred from trying the case because the defendant can establish by a preponderance of the evidence he acted in self-defense, which forecloses any possibility of a legitimate finding by a trial jury that the defendant committed any crime.

    shipwreckedcrew (e962f3)

  54. Corey files charges, leaving all the discontented feeling contented. (Martin’s mother has publicly said all she wanted was an arrest, and is satisfied now that there has been an arrest.)

    Zimmerman will have a Stand Your Ground hearing, and based on everything that I know, the ruling should go in his favor (and would do so no matter what how well the affidavit was drafted).

    Corey then gets to blame the SYG law, and say “Well, I did my best, but the judge said no. Sorry”.

    And then go back to Jacksonville.

    While I think that is entirely possible, to throw the dice with a man’s reputation and freedom and very life like that would be sociopathic and criminal.

    So (no offense intended to our host), she would then be just one more sociopathic, effectively criminal prosecutor.

    There’s lots of those.

    Random (fba0b1)

  55. Corey was a career assistant prosecutor until 2006 when she was terminated.
    That’s something I didn’t know.

    Shipwreckedcrew, thank you again for your comments. I hope I made clear that I was not upset at what you had to say, but upset at what you had to say.

    If one has a concern for the welfare of the state and its citizen’s, sometimes tough decisions need to be made. I’m not sure the crowd will be happy if Z isn’t convicted of something. The mother was been quoted saying pretty reasonable stuff considering her situation, but lots of other people saw his arrest as the first step of “getting justice for Trayvon”. I think many people who have been stirred up are going to still think the system is rigged by those racists when all is said and done. True, there was no easy solution, including “easy” if one is trying to do the best for the people involved and the state.

    Also makes one wonder how the Gov. decided who to put on the hot seat. Sounds like somebody who was going to retire soon should have volunteered.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  56. I’m dissapointed whenever a Republican yields to a special prosecutor, Cox, Walsh, Stein, Seymour or
    Fitz, it’s usually a bad sign.

    narciso (8d0f34)

  57. Shipwreckedcrew, thank you again for your comments. I hope I made clear that I was not upset at what you had to say, but upset at what you had to say.

    Yeah, I at thought you were sort of empathizing with her. You weren’t.

    But it’s freaking evil if true.

    Random (fba0b1)

  58. Empathizing a tiny little bit, as she was put into the position she was in by somebody else. G’night.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  59. Comment by Dustin — 4/15/2012 @ 11:49 am

    SF: The affidavit says a word George Zimmerman uttered was “punks.” It is clearly not punks. It unmistakely begins with a K sound.

    I think the recording makes the K or P sound extremely mistakable. Not that I can assert what he did say. Punks, cold, or something else.

    K and P don’t sound similar. P is also outvoted.

    I don’t go by whatever is supposed to make it punks. In playing with a tape, if you adjust sounds, you can (deliberately?) adjust them wrong.

    I don’t know under what circumstances or how firmly George Zimmerman may have said it was punks. He fired those lawyers who, among other things, claimed that is what he said it was. Did they play for him the tape so that he knew at what point we’re talking about? Or did he agree, under a bit of pressure, or not argue, with their proposition that it was “punks?” Or did he even not support it that much? Punks is not even close.

    It’s amazing how our brain will hear what it’s told to hear, though.

    Within limits. And actually really not so. What the brain is capable of is adjusting sound, which we do to properly understand people who speak with an accent.

    I heard a K sound. No question about it. I heard an long O vowel. I heard some unclarity, could be an L sound. A little bit long though. I heard what is almost certainly a T sound. It could be the second half of another sound. And it ends with an S sound, no question about it. The absence of an S is also outvoted. It ends with an S – probably some group (plural)

    It is also all one syllable. We can distinguish the number of syllables best of all.

    Sammy Finkelman (19c914)

  60. From the Wikipedia article on Angela Corey:

    Angela Corey got fired in 2006, but only after she had already decided to run in the 2008 election.

    When she obtained another job in another sate attorney’s office, the very next day her predecessor announced his retirement and endorsed his chief assistant.

    Upon taking office, Corey terminated 10 assistant state attorneys, over half of the investigators, and 48 support employees.[10][11][12] In 2010, the Florida Times-Union reported that Corey sent 230 juvenile felony cases to adult court in 2009. This amounted to twice the number of juvenile felony cases placed in adult court in the years prior to Corey becoming State Attorney.[13]

    And, as the New York Times reported on Tuesday, the crime rate went down by 25% since 2009. She probably got picked because she is tough prosecutor, and the Governor and Attorney general probably assumed that there really is fire where there is smoke.

    Sammy Finkelman (19c914)

  61. Comment by shipwreckedcrew — 4/15/2012 @ 9:14 pm

    When the case is ultimately dismissed it will be because a judge rules that under Florida law the prosecution is barred from trying the case because the defendant can establish by a preponderance of the evidence he acted in self-defense, which forecloses any possibility of a legitimate finding by a trial jury that the defendant committed any crime.

    George Zimmerman’s lawyer may not want to get the case dismissed, out of concern for his safety, and because federal charges might then follow, while if he waits till next year, or at least past the election, this won’t happen. This in spite f the fact that hearings will be televised and amount to a mini-trial. What his lawyer will be interested in on May 29 is getting him out of bail, or more or less free, in a safe situation. It’s going to a while to figure out something.

    He’ll probably only move for complete dismissal at this stage if he doesn’t get the bail. An important point is that if the case is dismissed, the state of Florida might not feel as bound to provide (and pay!) for his safety.

    Sammy Finkelman (19c914)

  62. SF: The affidavit says a word George Zimmerman uttered was “punks.” It is clearly not punks. It unmistakely begins with a K sound.

    It sounds like punks to me. I don’t know why you’re absolutely convinced it wasn’t.

    I heard a K sound. No question about it. I heard an long O vowel.

    I heard a word with inconsistent stress starting with a hard consonant, but also ending with another. I think it was punks and poorly recorded.

    I also am not sure why this is significant. The reason I found it interesting was that it was one of many examples of the media asserting something horrible without basis. In this case, they claimed their experts said it was a racial slur (c**ns). They did not have a basis to make that assertion, and this and many other skewings of the story built a frenzy of demands that I think led to a prosecution.

    Now that I know more about his background, I think it’s silly to say he said that racial slur that the recording didn’t really sound like anyway. While I think he said ‘punks’, I don’t really care beyond what I think is already shown.

    Dustin (330eed)

  63. So it looks like the Po-Po might have had it out for Zimmerman b/c he pursued charges/censure against the very police who came to the crime scene …. fantastic. No conflict of interest there for our vaunted civil serveants.

    Seems like in 2010 the Po-Po beat the crap out of a black homeless guy i Sanford and Zimmermen filed some paperwork against the Cops. Hmmmm.

    Anyway, it is looking even worse for our vaunted local law enforcement by the day …. makes you wonder with all the “evidence” and “hunches” the Po-Po had against poor George the local DA did not press charges …. Maybe the local DA knew the Po-Po had it out for poor George?

    So poor fat little George is stuck between police who have a vendetta against him, race hustlers persecuting a guy who is anything but a racist (and innocent it seems), and politicians a Special DA more interested in looking good as opposed to seeking justice.

    Nifong II.

    Bill (af584e)

  64. “coons”

    Does anyone in this day and age actually say that epithet? This accusation sounds like the kind of ancient nonsense that a Soviet kangaroo trial would dredge up as a charge.

    iconoclast (47e9a5)

  65. “Does anyone in this day and age actually say that epithet? This accusation sounds like the kind of ancient nonsense that a Soviet kangaroo trial would dredge up as a charge.”

    You probably do find it in some regions. Whether urban Florida is one of them is questionable.

    Also, why would you bring out your inner racist on a 911 call, just before you get in a confrontation with a guy of another race? Makes no sense.

    Oh, aside from the fact that self-identified Hispanic Zimmerman went out of his way to stand up publicly in defense of a homeless black man beat, rightly or wrongly, by the police.

    Random (fba0b1)

  66. Comment by Dustin — 4/16/2012 @ 4:42 am

    SF: The affidavit says a word George Zimmerman uttered was “punks.” It is clearly not punks. It unmistakely begins with a K sound.

    It sounds like punks to me. I don’t know why you’re absolutely convinced it wasn’t.

    You may be listening to a different online version of the recording.

    I could maybe think “colds” if the situation was that George Zimmerman, as he was trying to chase Trayvon Martin, found himself lacking stamina and blamed that on some (presumed) colds he had had.

    It definitely ends with an S, so it is not “cold”

    A bit of hoarseness could also maybe change a voiced “D” into a “T” plus maybe also of course that it was semi-whispered.

    Sammy Finkelman (d22d64)

  67. Some corrections: The bal hearing is schduled lomng before the Stand Your Ground arraignment hearing on May 29. It is not true that Zimmerman has to wait until then to ask for bail. The hearing is schduled for Friday April 20, but now might be postponed now that Zimmerman’s lawyer, Mark O’Mara, has decied to ask for the judge to recuse herself.

    Breaking news: She’s just DISQUALIFIED HERSELF.

    http://blogs.wsj.com/law/2012/04/18/judge-in-zimmerman-case-disqualifies-herself

    April 18, 2012, 4:03 PM

    Sammy Finkelman (d22d64)

  68. The court records in the case were sealed at the request of Mark O;Meara last week. the new York times and other organizations are petitioning for that to be overturned. Among other reasons they say the procedue sealing it was irregular.

    Motion: http://www.documentcloud.org/documents/336774-zimmerman-media-ocr.html

    Story: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/17/us/media-firms-sue-to-force-opening-of-zimmerman-file.html

    Media Companies Ask Judge to Open Florida Defendant’s File by JENNIFER PRESTON
    Published: April 16, 2012

    Key excerpt:

    The Seminole County judge who presided over Mr. Zimmerman’s brief court appearance on Thursday agreed to a request by Mark M. O’Mara, Mr. Zimmerman’s lawyer, to keep documents related to the case private. State Attorney Angela B. Corey did not object to Mr. O’Mara’s request during the hearing.

    In an eight-page motion, the lawyers for the media companies, which included The New York Times Company, argued that the records were improperly sealed because Mr. O’Mara did not submit evidence showing that closing them was necessary to prevent a “serious and imminent” threat to the administration of justice.

    George Freeman, assistant general counsel and vice president of the Times Company, said that the judge, Jessica J. Recksiedler, did not go through the procedural steps required before a file can be sealed. “Just because a case gets a lot of publicity does not mean that papers should be sealed,” Mr. Freeman said.

    Mr. O’Mara had no comment on the motion because he was still reviewing it, said Jimmy Woods, a spokesman.

    In an interview, Ms. Corey said that she was also reviewing the motion and the concerns outlined by the media companies. “We are doing our best to balance everyone’s rights,” she said.

    Holland & Knight, the Miami-based law firm representing the media companies, argued that it would be possible to empanel an impartial jury if the court records were made public. Other news media companies that joined in the brief included The Associated Press, CNN, Gannett and McClatchy, publisher of The Miami Herald.

    Here is Jennifer Preston on today’s story:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/19/us/florida-judge-in-martin-case-steps-aside.html?_r=1

    Sammy Finkelman (d22d64)

  69. The new judge in the case will be Kenneth Lester Jr.

    According to this story, the bail hearing is still on (scheduled for 9 AM Friday)

    http://www.thegrio.com/specials/trayvon-martin/trayvon-martin-case-circuit-judge-kenneth-lester-jr-named-as-new-judge-in-zimmerman-trial.php

    …a second judge stepped aside immediately after Recksiedler, Circuit Judge John Galluzzo. Galluzzo was next in the rotation, but has practiced law with O’Mara. Zimmerman’s attorney is also the godfather of one of Galluzzo’s children.

    All criminal judges in Seminole County are assigned at random according to a rotation system. Judge Lester will hold Zimmerman’s bond hearing in Recksiedler’s court room, number 5D, at the Seminole Criminal Justice Center on Friday.

    Lester, 58, has been a judge for 15 years, having won his judgeship in 1997 against an incumbent.

    List of judges:

    http://www.flcourts18.org/biographies.html

    Sammy Finkelman (d22d64)

  70. 47. British parliamentarian Lord Nazir Ahmed has denied making the statements about a bounty for Obama attributed to him.

    False statements piublished by media affiliated with propogandists in the Moslem world are actually common. They go beyond what the people quoted actually said.

    Sammy Finkelman (d22d64)

  71. Case against Zimmerman might have taken a couple near fatal blows in a short bond hearing this morning.

    Depending on jurisdiction, some states allow exploration of the underlying charge in order to gauge the strength of the evidence against the defendant as part of determining a bail amount. It seems that was done some this morning as several witnesses testified, including the lead detective. He admitted on cross-exam that he has no clear evidence that Zimmerman attacked Martin or otherwise initiated the confrontation.

    Given the burden of proof, this will likely be huge down the line.

    shipwreckedcrew (beac54)


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