"If we value the pursuit of knowledge, we must be free to follow wherever that search may lead us. The free mind is not a barking dog, to be tethered on a ten-foot chain."

Adlai E. Stevenson Jr.

A Library in Your Pocket

June 29, 2012

Even if Trayvon Martin threw the first punch, Zimmerman is guilty

George Zimmerman has admitted that he saw Trayvon Martin engage in no criminal activity; that, he nonetheless began following Trayvon Martin.

Zimmerman's taped call to the police made while he was observing Trayvon, proves that Trayvon ran away from Zimmerman, not towards him in any threatening manner. When the police dispatcher could obviously hear from the sounds of Zimmerman's truck door opening and closing as well as Zimmerman's heavy breathing that Zimmerman had gone from simply observing Trayvon from his vehicle to exiting the vehicle and chasing after him -- after telling the dispatcher that Trayvon was taking off -- the police dispatcher told Zimmerman not to follow Trayvon, but Zimmerman's heavy breathing shows he continued his pursuit.

Imagine you are young Trayvon Martin. A young man simply talking to a girlfriend on the phone when he suddenly realizes that a stranger  -- a stranger we now know to be George Zimmerman -- is watching him. We know from Trayvon's girlfriend who was on the phone with him that Trayvon was alarmed by Zimmerman and we know she told him to run. And run he did.  Importantly, Trayvon  did not run toward Zimmerman to confront him. He ran away  from Zimmerman to escape this frightening stranger. And what did George Zimmerman do -- this wannabe cop with documented anger management issues -- he got out of his vehicle and began chasing Trayvon.

Zimmerman's taped call to the police proves that while he chased Trayvon he never made any attempt to identify himself as a Neighborhood Watch. Instead, Zimmerman chased after Trayvon without giving Trayvon any clue that Zimmerman meant him anything but harm.

Clearly, Trayvon was running scared from a stranger who was chasing after him.

So what if Trayvon decided that his only recourse was to stop and defend himself. Trayvon's girlfriend heard Trayvon ask Zimmerman. "Why are you following me?" Zimmerman himself has admitted that his response to Trayvon was to reach in his pocket. Zimmerman claims he was reaching for his phone.

What would you think Zimmerman was reaching for if you were 17 year old Trayvon Martin? A phone or a gun?

There is only one person who had the legal and moral right to stand his ground that night in Sanford, Florida and it was not George Zimmerman.

Zimmerman claims that as he was fishing around in his pocket, Trayvon started punching him in the face.  Zimmerman alone created the circumstances that caused Trayvon Martin to reasonably conclude that he needed to fight for his life. 

When did Zimmerman show his gun? Since he killed Trayvon, we will never know. Zimmerman claims as he struggled with Trayvon , he screamed for help.  Cries for help were, indeed, heard by nearby residents and recorded on calls to 911.  But the expert evidence shows that is was not George Zimmerman who was yelling for help in this life and death struggle.
The world is a dangerous place and Florida's 'stand your ground' law, perhaps, represents an understandable response.  It is vital to remember, however, that this law was intended to shield Trayvon Martin from prosecution had he prevailed in defending himself against George Zimmerman, the man who got out of his vehicle and chased after Trayvon for no reason known to Trayvon other than to cause him harm.  

Ironically, when George Zimmerman applied in 2008 to the Seminole County Citizen Law Enforcement Academy, he justified his assault on a law enforcement officer in 2005 on the grounds  the  undercover officer "never told me he was an officer and [he] assaulted me first."

Under the law, an "assault" is an intentional act by one person that creates an apprehension in another of an imminent harmful or offensive contact with another.

On February 26, 2012, Zimmerman  assaulted Trayvon when he intentionally chased after Trayvon. As a result of Zimmermn's assaultive conduct, Trayvon Martin  had every reason to be apprehensive that Zimmerman represented an imminent harm to him.

Thus, even if Trayvon ultimately stood his ground to defend himself against the assailant George Zimmerman who was chasing him and even if Trayvon threw the first punch, the evidence shows George Zimmerman is guilty of murder.


George Zimmerman is a flight risk who should stay in jail

George Zimmerman, the killer of 17 year old Trayvon Martin, is a proven liar and likely flight risk. When he first sought and was granted bail, Zimmerman and his wife Shelley lied to the court, claiming they were destitute, when in truth, they had collected hundreds of thousands of dollars through George Zimmerman's website, that begged for donations.  

Since their deceit was revealed, Shelley Zimmerman has been charged with perjury. Not only did George Zimmerman fail to disclose how greatly he has financially profitted from killing Trayvon Martin , Zimmerman also concealed and failed to turn over a second passport that he had obtained in 2004.

The court should be highly suspicious as to why Zimmerman concealed the very substantial amount of money at his disposal and the fact he had a second passport.   

The court might also consider that since George Zimmerman's mother, Gladys Zimmerman, is Peruvian, George Zimmerman may well hold or be able to obtain dual citizenship with Peru. Moreover,  if Zimmerman fled to Peru, it is entirely possible that Peru might refuse an extradition request from the United States for his return since the Peru Extradition Treaty with the United States allows Peru to refuse an extradition request if it believes the request is politically motivated.

Considering that nationwide protests demanding justice for Trayvon Martin were required to trigger the ultimate arrest of George Zimmerman, a Peruvian court could possibly decide that the prosecution of Mr. Zimmerman for Trayvon's killing is politically motivated and deny any extradition request.

In sum, there is no reason for the court to believe at this point in time that George Zimmerman is not a flight risk.  Indeed, all the evidence shows Zimmerman to be deceitful and someone not to be trusted.


June 15, 2012

John Edwards should be disbarred

                                                                                      Disgraced ex-U.S. Senator and two time losing presidential candidate John Edwards main defense at his criminal trial was that his actions were immoral, but not criminal. While slime is still coalescing around the verdict acquitting Edwards on one count and hanging on all remaining chargers, two things are very clear:
John Edwards is a contemptible, sleazy lying louse who used and betrayed people over and over  to protect and further himself;
and John Edwards should be disbarred because of his admitted immorality.

Every state bar has a requirement that each attorney must pass a moral background investigation before being licensed and must maintain a modicum of morality to remain licensed.  If nothing more, Edwards' criminal trial proved he lacks the moral capacity to retain the privilege of a law license.  

Was Sandusky's Basement Soundproofed?

UPDATE:  On June 19th Doris Sandusky testified in her husband Jerry Sandusky's sexual abuse trial that the basement in their home is not soundproofed and that she could have heard any screams from the basement.  Of course, she denied she heard any screams.

In the trial of pedophile Jerry Sandusky, one of his many victims testified that Sandusky raped him repeatedly in Sandusky's home basement while Jerry's wife Doris was upstairs. The young man recounted screaming for help and concluded that his screams went unanswered because the basement must have been soundproofed.

If the prosecutor has not yet determined whether the Sandusky basement was, in fact, soundproofed, I would hope he would do so and should it turn out that screams from the basement can be heard upstairs in the Sandusky's living quarters, then Doris Sandusky should be charged as an accessory to her husband's heinous acts. 

Based on Mrs. Sandusky's testimony that the Sandusky basement is not soundproofed, after Jerry Sandusky  convicted, she should be charged as an accessory.