Friday, April 13, 2012

A Struggle Ensued As Florida v. Zimmerman Arrived in Court

Special prosecutor Angela Corey filed her charges in court today against George Zimmerman in the shooting death of Trayvon Martin.

The three page probable cause affidavit is short and to the point. The key legal issue in the case is summed up in the phrase:

Zimmerman confronted Martin and a struggle ensued.
Of course, the defense will want to argue that Martin attacked Zimmerman, but what will the evidence show?

It would seem that the question that has captivated the media circus, whether Zimmerman used a racial slur, may not be much relevant to the state's case.

Later, while talking about Martin, Zimmerman stated "these assholes, they always get away" and also said, "these fucking punks".
That plus the loaded gun in his waistband may be sufficient to prove the crucial element of 2nd degree murder under Florida law, "imminently dangerous to another and evincing a depraved mind regardless of human life." The source of the animus may not be as crucial as the animus itself.

Of course, Zimmerman's claim of self-defense was not outlined in the special prosecutor's case. So far his new defense lawyer not asked for bail and has not shown his hand, except to enter a not guilty plea.

It seems to me, in reviewing what is publicly known about what happened that night, that George Zimmerman was simply wrong in his belief which he undoubtedly held from the moment he called 911 until he pulled the trigger on his gun that Trayvon Martn was one of the people who had been committing and getting away with break-ins in his neighborhood.

What he saw as suspicious behavior was quite likely just a kid who was a little bit lost or disoriented in a neighborhood he was only visiting and a little distracted in talking with his girlfriend on his cell phone. And George Zimmerman was so intent on the police arriving in time to catch the kid, he doesn't seem to have bothered to identify who he was or that the police were on the way. George Zimmerman will have the rest of his life to think on that.

It's a cautionary tale with a tragic ending.

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