Patterico's Pontifications

6/27/2013

IS IT OR IS IT NOT TRUE, MA’AM, THAT YOU FOLLOW GEORGE ZIMMERMAN’S BROTHER ON TWITTER?!?!?!

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 9:18 pm

Oh, it’s just Twitter suggesting you should follow him? Um, OK, never mind then.

— Clueless Zimmerman prosecutor

Around 8:40 in this video, described here.

Painful.

44 Responses to “IS IT OR IS IT NOT TRUE, MA’AM, THAT YOU FOLLOW GEORGE ZIMMERMAN’S BROTHER ON TWITTER?!?!?!”

  1. I’m confused. How do these twitter things work? Does it make people google up bing? And if it does, why doesn’t the McAfee stop it? You know, to stop the spam virus?

    Ag80 (eb6ffa)

  2. Holy f—.

    I thought the defense was the only incompetent team here. It looks like Zimmermann has a shot!

    Battle of the legal dwarves.

    Former Conservative (6e026c)

  3. Yeah, that was terribly unprepared and painful, wasn’t it?

    And it’s not like this is an important case like, oh, I dunno — a murder trial.

    And it’s not like it’s high profile or anything!

    Former Conservative (6e026c)

  4. So I’m curious.

    Prosecutors and defense attorneys would probably know: Does this really harm the prosecution in the eyes of the jury, or is it no big deal? Does this sort of thing happen a lot?

    Former Conservative (6e026c)

  5. Isn’t this interesting? If the state was intending to lynch Zimmerman (like it apparently is) they would put an incompetent da in charge. Don’t they have anyone competent in their lynch mob?

    Doesn’t this look like they hung this da out to dry? Could he be any less competent? Did he even pass the Florida bar? What in the world does that take? Maybe a Wheaties box top?

    How much is this trial costing Florida and George Zimmerman? And all to appease race baiters sharpton and jackson.

    Wouldn’t it be nice if after all is said and done George could sue jackson and sharpton for the personal cost to him and his family?

    Jim (823b10)

  6. @Patterico would never make that mistake.

    JVW (23867e)

  7. I’m beginning to think that the prosecution team is trying to lose. Would this be an attempt to incite riots if Zimmerman is acquitted, and are they (the prosecution) conspiring to do this?

    htom (412a17)

  8. I’m beginning to think that the prosecution team is trying to lose.

    1. I doubt this.

    2. IF so, I think the most likely reason is they think the prosecution is bullshit, but were pressured into trying it.

    3. I don’t imagine that is even remotely likely.

    Former Conservative (6e026c)

  9. I’m beginning to think that the prosecution team is trying to lose.

    1. I doubt this.

    2. IF so, I think the most likely reason is they think the prosecution is B.S., but were pressured into trying it.

    3. I don’t imagine that is even remotely likely.

    Former Conservative (6e026c)

  10. That was brilliant compared to the idea of deposing the star ear witness while she sat in a house sitting next to the victims crying mother… and allowing the family spokeshole attorney to stay hovering around.
    I was originally unsympathetic to Zimmerman, but this is a trainwreck.

    My guess?
    Zimmerman wins his freedom on a very hot humid day in August. Overtown then burns for the weekend. Monday Obama appears wearing a hoodie and urges for peace… blames Jeb Bush, praises Holder. Holder announces federal charges against Cracker Ass Zimmerman for being a crackity assed cracker

    steveg (794291)

  11. I have seen commentary that says that she indeed had followed him at one point, despite the screen shown to the judge. The situation may have been confused by the clueless prosecutor not being logged into a twitter account himself.

    Kevin M (bf8ad7)

  12. From what I see in reports over at Legal Insurrection, the state doesn’t have much evidence and a number of their witnesses have help the defense more than the state. Ideally there would be a directed verdict, which might actually settle things down.

    Kevin M (bf8ad7)

  13. I’m not sure if I’m understanding either of them, but here is what I think happened.

    On Twitter, there are two lists that appear on a user’s main page:

    Following = People that the user follows on Twitter. Their tweets will show up on the user’s feed.

    Follower = People that follow the user on Twitter. The user’s tweets with show up on their feed.

    As of right now, the Twitter account for @Jenna_Lauer does not exist, though the Google cache has captured a screenshot of it, but the cache does not have the lists of the people she is following or who follow her.

    I just scrolled through the people Robert Zimmerman Jr follows and the list of people who follow him. I did not find Jenna Lauer on either list. However, because her account is now disabled, she will no longer appear as a follower of anyone.

    A Twitter user (and former Reuters reporter) has posted a screenshot in which Jenna is in fact following Robert Zimmerman Jr.: https://twitter.com/MatthewKeysLive/status/350348513844023296/photo/1

    (Indeed, I have checked the following/follower lists of two of the other people that appear in the above screenshot. Jenna does not appear on either list, presumably because her account has been disabled.)

    If you look at the above screenshot, there is the option to “follow” listed next to each user’s name. Twitter makes you sign in to see the following/follower lists of users. When you observe the lists, there is a button to the side which says either “follow” or “following.” If you are already following said user, the button will say “following,” but if you do not follow said user the button will say “follow.”

    I’m assuming the prosecutor signed into an account other than Jenna’s. He then went to Jenna’s page and clicked “following” to observe the user’s she is following. The option presented is to “follow” RZJ because the prosecutor does not follow him, although Jenna does.

    Again, Jenna’s account is disabled, so other than a screenshot, I’m not sure if Jenna was indeed following RZJ or not.

    In any case, I’m not sure where the prosecutor is trying to go with this. Instead of discrediting Jenna as pro-Zimmerman, he showed more incompetence after his star witness imploded. It has also been pointed out that Jenna had zero tweets – by no means is she a social media expert on Twitter nor does it appear that she was seriously following anyone. One look at the screenshot shows she also followed a website, a company, and a rapper.

    ratbeach (f5aad4)

  14. After submitting, Kevin M #10 says it much more concisely than I did: the clueless prosecutor was probably signed into his own account, thereby the suggestion to follow RZJ.

    It certainly does not help the state’s case any further. Jaentel was downright bad and CNN seemed to have a hard time of spinning it.

    ratbeach (f5aad4)

  15. Isn’t it interesting that the prosecution attempted to impeach its own witness? That’s the part I think is funny.

    “I’ll put you on the stand because I think you will help my case, but if what you say doesn’t help I’ll make an incompetent attempt to have your testimony thrown out.”

    Clown show.

    Pious Agnostic (20c167)

  16. I haven’t been watching the trial, only snippets. If this is still the state’s case in chief WTF are they doing bringing Zimmerman’s character and reputation in? With or without prior bad acts. Did the defense open the door on cross?

    nk (875f57)

  17. I’m confused. How do these twitter things work? Does it make people google up bing? And if it does, why doesn’t the McAfee stop it? You know, to stop the spam virus?

    Comment by Ag80 (eb6ffa) — 6/27/2013 @ 9:35 pm

    Stop! It sounds like I’m at work.

    tek (2063de)

  18. The ABC morning show worked hard at misdirecting the thrust of the defense. They focused, as did Diane Sawyer last night, on the exchange regarding the witness’s ability to read cursive writing… they must have been strapped for time as they did not get around to showing that this was an issue because a written statement, in cursive, purported to be HER statement, was what they wanted her to read. The issue was, how could she have written this when she could not “do cursive”.

    The content of the document was what was at issue, the inability of the witness to read it put the origin of the document into question. Maybe this was too complicated for the “talent” at ABC news to deal with. They characterized it as “picking on” someone who did not appear bright.

    My grandkids learned cursive in 3rd grade, for the record.

    The twitter-tweet-bing-facebook sh*t is not a part of my world….

    gramps (13e453)

  19. I find it interesting to note, all the articles I read say Zimmerman “identifies as Hispanic”. Which strikes me as a rather odd way to describe him.

    MSL (1c8558)

  20. Ah, but you see, Zimmerman doesn’t get to decide if he’s Hispanic. Confer such a sacred status upon him? Without checking to see if he thinks properly?

    No no, ‘Hispanic’ status must be for the media gatekeepers and the government to decide.

    luagha (5cbe06)

  21. The prosecution’s case is pathetic — and I did them for 21 years.

    When you are in day 3 of witness testimony, and nearly every witness you have called has provided testimony that supports critical components of the defense theory of the case, then you are prosecuting a case that should not have been brought.

    The prosecutor has an ethical obligation to try people only where they have a good faith belief that the evidence will establish the defendant’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt — ALL the evidence. Its not enough to say “Well, the evidence that supports my theory should convict” while ignoring the evidence that supports the defense theory.

    The Prosecutor has the obligation to consider ALL the evidence — like the witness this morning who testified that he sawi Martin on top of Zimmerman, straddling him in a mixed-martial arts position, and possibly raining blows down on his head. When he went to call 911, he heard a gunshot.

    That’s a prosecution witness, and on redirect the best the prosecutor could do was say “You’re not sure that Martin was actually hitting Zimmerman, correct?”

    Brilliant.

    shipwreckedcrew (5de044)

  22. The local legal expert on Legal Insurrection’s livestream says he expect this judge to give Martin the maximum for a lesser included charge because the expert has a history with her, among other things.

    So the jury is the bulwark, not the judge.

    Former Conservative (6e026c)

  23. Martin is dead.

    elissa (d03d59)

  24. Right.

    Former Conservative (6e026c)

  25. 15. I haven’t been watching the trial, only snippets. If this is still the state’s case in chief WTF are they doing bringing Zimmerman’s character and reputation in? With or without prior bad acts. Did the defense open the door on cross?

    Comment by nk (875f57) — 6/28/2013 @ 5:24 am

    The above state’s witness, Jenna Lauer, has met Zimmerman at HOA meetings. During cross examination O’Mara asked her what her personal opinion and knowledge about Zimmerman was. The state tried to argue that by asking about her opinion of Zimmerman the defense opened the door to bringing his reputation and prior bad acts into the trial.

    Apparently the judge deferred ruling on the matter because both she and the attorneys had to review the law before they’d prepare to make the cases and she could rule. I haven’t been watching except for snippets but based on the trial updates there doesn’t seem to be any more basis to support the state’s assertion than to believe Jenna Lauer follows Robert Zimmerman on Twitter. Nothing has come of it yet.

    As an aside O’Mara brought up the fact that when police asked her to identify a photo of Zimmerman (but the police didn’t identify him by name) she couldn’t due to his injuries.

    Again, not a good witness for the prosecution.

    Steve57 (ab2b34)

  26. During cross examination O’Mara asked her what her personal opinion and knowledge about Zimmerman was.

    Why would the defense do this?

    Former Conservative (6e026c)

  27. Just remember that the congressional Intelligence committee oversight people, the head honchos at NSA and the FISA judges are probably about as conversant on technology as the twits shown here discussing twitter. Feel better now?

    elissa (d03d59)

  28. “Did the defense open the door on cross?”

    nk – Depends on who you ask. According to commentary at LegalInsurrection the answer is no under the relevant Florida statute.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  29. 25. Why would the defense do this?

    Comment by Former Conservative (6e026c) — 6/28/2013 @ 1:41 pm

    The state has to prove some sort of malice on Zimmerman’s part or a “depraved mind” to convict him of second degree murder. Absent those elements he doesn’t meet the threshold. The people who know him just think he’s a concerned citizen who cares about his community. Not at all like how the prosecution is trying to paint him.

    http://www.emptywheel.net/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/george-zimmerman-information-document.pdf

    COUNT 1: IN THE COUNTY OF SEMINOLE, STATE OF FLORIDA, On February 26, 2012, GEORGE ZIMMERMAN, did unlawfully and by an act imminently dangerous to another, and evincing a depraved mind regardless of human life, although without any premeditated design to effect the death of any particular individual, kill TRAYVON MARTIN, a human being under the age of eighteen, by shooting the said victim, and during the commission of the aforementioned Second Degree Murder, the said GEORGE ZIMMERMAN did carry, display, use, threaten to use or attempt to use or attempt to use a firearm and did actually possess and discharge a firearm and as a result of the discharge, death or great bodily harm was inflicted upon any person, contrary to the provisions of Sections 782.04(2), 775.08(1) and 775.087(2), Florida Statutes.

    I don’t know if manslaughter is automatically a lesser included charge in Florida, but there’s only one count in the indictment. If it isn’t then it seems to me the state’s in a bind. I’d expect they’ll take every chance they have to try to get Zimmerman’s prior “bad acts” in no matter how desperate the attempt. Just like overcharging Zimmerman smacks of desperation.

    Steve57 (ab2b34)

  30. I mean why would the defense risk opening the door by asking that question.

    Former Conservative (6e026c)

  31. Former Conservative (quoting Steve57’s comment):

    During cross examination O’Mara asked her what her personal opinion and knowledge about Zimmerman was.

    Why would the defense do this?

    I think the defense asked about this because the Judge ruled Zimmerman’s prior calls to 911 will be allowed into evidence to show his state of mind when he called about Trayvon Martin. It’s been reported Zimmerman made several calls to 911, and I think two calls involved young black men. I assume the prosecutors will argue this supports the State’s theory that Zimmerman was inappropriately profiling and targeting young black men when he called 911 about Martin.

    Here is what the defense asked this witness (someone who knows Zimmerman from the HOA and Neighborhood Watch):

    He asked Lauer if in her personal interactions with Zimmerman he had acted appropriately. Yes, she answered. Did he appear to be a hot head? No. A wannabe vigilante? No. Did he seem to be a well-intentioned neighbor trying to help his community? Yes.

    I think this is a reasonable approach by the defense to “pre-rebut” evidence it knows the prosecutors will be offering. IMO it does not open the door to reputation or prior bad acts evidence because the defense did not ask this witness about either reputation or prior bad acts, but we’ll see what the Court rules — if she hasn’t already ruled.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  32. Comment by shipwreckedcrew (5de044) — 6/28/2013 @ 1:11 pm

    If only you were the US AG, or taught legal ethics at Harvard, I would sleep better at night…

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  33. Thanks, DRJ.

    Well that Doctor’s Assistant sure was a good witness.

    Former Conservative (6e026c)

  34. The prosecutor on redirect was pretty weak: “So, about the moon landings….”

    “Objection!”

    Former Conservative (6e026c)

  35. There’s another topic the court had previously ruled inadmissible that may now be admissible because the prosecution may have opened the door: Comparing Zimmerman’s and Martin’s knowledge of MMA-style fighting.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  36. Prosecutors and defense attorneys would probably know: Does this really harm the prosecution in the eyes of the jury, or is it no big deal?

    I don’t think the jury is aware of this whole exchange.

    Milhouse (3d0df0)

  37. Yes, this was a proffer, “if you’ll let us this is what we’ll ask and this is what the witness will say”, outside the jury’s hearing.

    I am not impressed with these defense attorneys. If they want Lauer to testify that Zimmerman is a good guy they can call her as their own witness during the state’s case. Their cross-eaminations, too, are almost perfunctory. They are following the law school rule of ask no more than three questions. That’s just to minimize amateurishness. They could have ripped Rachel Jeantel to pieces with all her prior inconsistent statements but they just did not trust their skills to go there, or were too lackadaisical in their investigation and preparation when they should know what brand of mascara she’s using.

    Oh, and the courtroom layout sucks too.

    nk (875f57)

  38. They can call her as their own wittness during the *defense case*. I am not impressed with my commenting skills either.

    nk (875f57)

  39. nk, from the commentary I’m seeing, the defense is doing a good job of making the defense case using the prosecution’s witnesses.

    SPQR (768505)

  40. You’re right, SPQR, I should shut up. I am not there and I do not know the dynamic of the courtroom.

    nk (875f57)

  41. 38.nk, from the commentary I’m seeing, the defense is doing a good job of making the defense case using the prosecution’s witnesses.

    Comment by SPQR (768505) — 6/28/2013 @ 6:36 pm

    Isn’t that exactly what the defense should be doing until the prosecution rests?

    Steve57 (ab2b34)

  42. Steve57, usually the defense is happy to just be discrediting the prosecution’s witnesses.

    When a defense attorney is actually making his case using the prosecution’s witnesses … well, that kind of fun usually happens in Vegas not courtrooms.

    SPQR (768505)

  43. From what I hear, they should fire the prosecutor and hire Hamilton Burger. He’d never get his ass handed to him like this.

    Kevin M (bf8ad7)

  44. 43. Hamilton Burger would do better, yes.

    But the only way to get a Perry Mason moment is for a witness ot testify that he or she was the real person talking on the phone to TM

    Sammy Finkelman (d22d64)


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