"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.


1 comment:

  1. What evidence are you referring to that shows it was not George Zimmerman yelling for help? The only evidence that I am aware of is Trayvon's family saying it was Trayvon, and Zimmerman and his family saying it was Zimmerman. That is a wash as far as I am concerned.