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Short Analysis of the Zimmerman Affidavit of Probable Cause

 

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chainpin

Apr 17, 12 12:23

Post #1 of 108 (2335 views)
Short Analysis of the Zimmerman Affidavit of Probable Cause Quote | Reply

It appears that there really isn't a smoking gun piece of evidence in this case.

John Lott looks at the "case" against Zimmerman, as laid out by the prosecution in the charging document:

http://www.nationalreview.com/...cause-john-r-lott-jr

The charges brought against George Zimmerman sure look like prosecutorial misconduct. The case as put forward by the prosecutor in the “affidavit of probable cause” is startlingly weak. As a former chief economist at the U.S. Sentencing Commission, I have read a number of such affidavits, and cannot recall one lacking so much relevant information. The prosecutor has most likely deliberately overcharged, hoping to intimidate Zimmerman into agreeing to a plea bargain. If this case goes to trial, Zimmerman will almost definitely be found “not guilty” on the charge of second-degree murder.


"I really wish you would post more often. You always have some good stuff to say. I copied it below just in case someone missed it." BarryP to Chainpin on 10/21/06



j p o

Apr 17, 12 12:29

Post #2 of 108 (2323 views)
Re: Short Analysis of the Zimmerman Affidavit of Probable Cause [chainpin] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

Let's break down the story using Zimmerman's own story.

I chased this guy through the neighborhood for no other reason than I did not like the way he looked. I ended up right by his house. He confronts me about chasing him without reason. I shoot him. He is dead. I am innocent.

I'm pretty sure that I would prefer people that do things like this go through a trial so a jury can actually make that last statement. Whether or not he is guilty I cannot answer. But I'm not just going to take his word for it even if I take his version as the gospel truth. And he would seem to have a whole lot of reason for telling a story that reflects positively on himself.


rick_pcfl

Apr 17, 12 12:31

Post #3 of 108 (2314 views)
Re: Short Analysis of the Zimmerman Affidavit of Probable Cause [j p o] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

Weak!


vitus979

Apr 17, 12 12:35

Post #4 of 108 (2304 views)
Re: Short Analysis of the Zimmerman Affidavit of Probable Cause [j p o] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

Let's break down the story using Zimmerman's own story.

Let's. You didn't.

Using Zimmerman's story: Zimmerman, aware of a number of recent burglaries in his neighborhood, sees someone he thinks is suspicious. He calls the police to report the person, and follows the person to make sure the police can still find him when they arrive. He loses track of the person. He starts to walk back to his vehicle when he is confronted, then immediately assaulted by that person. The person, having knocked Zimmerman to the ground, proceeds to bash Zimmerman's head against the sidewalk. Zimmerman shoots the person.

I don't know any more than you do if that account is honest, and I think a trial is reasonable. (Though I hope there's some evidence the prosecutor has that contradicts Zimmerman's story.)











"People think it must be fun to be a super genius, but they don't realize how hard it is to put up with all the idiots in the world."


chainpin

Apr 17, 12 12:37

Post #5 of 108 (2300 views)
Re: Short Analysis of the Zimmerman Affidavit of Probable Cause [j p o] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

j p o wrote:
Let's break down the story using Zimmerman's own story.

I chased this guy through the neighborhood for no other reason than I did not like the way he looked. I ended up right by his house. He confronts me about chasing him without reason. I shoot him. He is dead. I am innocent.

I'm pretty sure that I would prefer people that do things like this go through a trial so a jury can actually make that last statement. Whether or not he is guilty I cannot answer. But I'm not just going to take his word for it even if I take his version as the gospel truth. And he would seem to have a whole lot of reason for telling a story that reflects positively on himself.

So I guess what you are saying is that you are against the concept of probable cause?

Like I said before, there are going to be some really pissed off people when this case is decided.


"I really wish you would post more often. You always have some good stuff to say. I copied it below just in case someone missed it." BarryP to Chainpin on 10/21/06



Eppur si muove

Apr 17, 12 12:39

Post #6 of 108 (2292 views)
Re: Short Analysis of the Zimmerman Affidavit of Probable Cause [chainpin] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

Like I said before, there are going to be some really pissed off people when this case is decided.

Not sure if this is what you meant, but that statement will be true regardless of the final dispostion of the case.

-----
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I--
I took the one less traveled by,
Which is probably why I was registering 59.67mi as I rolled into T2.



j p o

Apr 17, 12 12:39

Post #7 of 108 (2291 views)
Re: Short Analysis of the Zimmerman Affidavit of Probable Cause [chainpin] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

chainpin wrote:
j p o wrote:
Let's break down the story using Zimmerman's own story.

I chased this guy through the neighborhood for no other reason than I did not like the way he looked. I ended up right by his house. He confronts me about chasing him without reason. I shoot him. He is dead. I am innocent.

I'm pretty sure that I would prefer people that do things like this go through a trial so a jury can actually make that last statement. Whether or not he is guilty I cannot answer. But I'm not just going to take his word for it even if I take his version as the gospel truth. And he would seem to have a whole lot of reason for telling a story that reflects positively on himself.


So I guess what you are saying is that you are against the concept of probable cause?

Like I said before, there are going to be some really pissed off people when this case is decided.

How is there not probably cause? He admits to shooting and killing the unarmed kid.


j p o

Apr 17, 12 12:41

Post #8 of 108 (2287 views)
Re: Short Analysis of the Zimmerman Affidavit of Probable Cause [rick_pcfl] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

rick_pcfl wrote:
Weak!

Weak how? I have no emotional investment in this case. I wasn't there, I don't know either party, and I am not privy to any witness statements.

Zimmerman's story is that he followed Martin because he thought he looked suspicious. Martin confronted him. Zimmerman shot him. Martin is dead.

Not sure what you are objecting to.


vitus979

Apr 17, 12 12:45

Post #9 of 108 (2281 views)
Re: Short Analysis of the Zimmerman Affidavit of Probable Cause [j p o] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

I''m objecting to the fact that you keep mischaracterizing Zimmerman's story.

He doesn't claim that Martin "confronted" him, for example. He claims that Martin hit his head against the sidewalk repeatedly.








"People think it must be fun to be a super genius, but they don't realize how hard it is to put up with all the idiots in the world."


chainpin

Apr 17, 12 12:46

Post #10 of 108 (2273 views)
Re: Short Analysis of the Zimmerman Affidavit of Probable Cause [Eppur si muove] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

Eppur si muove wrote:
Like I said before, there are going to be some really pissed off people when this case is decided.

Not sure if this is what you meant, but that statement will be true regardless of the final dispostion of the case.

I meant, really, really pissed off, not just really pissed off.... : )


"I really wish you would post more often. You always have some good stuff to say. I copied it below just in case someone missed it." BarryP to Chainpin on 10/21/06



Rodred

Apr 17, 12 12:47

Post #11 of 108 (2272 views)
Re: Short Analysis of the Zimmerman Affidavit of Probable Cause [j p o] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

j p o wrote:
Let's break down the story using Zimmerman's own story.

I chased this guy through the neighborhood for no other reason than I did not like the way he looked. I ended up right by his house. He confronts me about chasing him without reason. I shoot him. He is dead. I am innocent.

I'm pretty sure that I would prefer people that do things like this go through a trial so a jury can actually make that last statement. Whether or not he is guilty I cannot answer. But I'm not just going to take his word for it even if I take his version as the gospel truth. And he would seem to have a whole lot of reason for telling a story that reflects positively on himself.


Thats a hell of a break down. Care to try again?

I sure hope no one "confronts" you when you ask what they are doing snooping around your car. I know that daring to ask makes you a racist and a cold blooded killer but your head might not survive the "confrontation".

Going by the facts that we know so far, in my neighborhood having someone smashing my head of of anything is grounds for me to protect myself. Your mileage may vary.


~
"You lie!" The Prophet Joe Wilson

(This post was edited by Rodred on Apr 17, 12 12:51)


j p o

Apr 17, 12 12:52

Post #12 of 108 (2263 views)
Re: Short Analysis of the Zimmerman Affidavit of Probable Cause [vitus979] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

vitus979 wrote:
I''m objecting to the fact that you keep mischaracterizing Zimmerman's story.

He doesn't claim that Martin "confronted" him, for example. He claims that Martin hit his head against the sidewalk repeatedly.

Well, I clearly shortened it an awful lot. so it is short of any detail.

But that story from an outsider's point of view can look an awful lot like this(again, very shortened): "I chased a guy and started a fight. I started losing so I shot and killed him."

I worked in the city prosecutor's office during law school taking complaints from people when the police did not file charges. There are a lot of people who want criminal charges after the fight they start ends badly for them.

In this situation it may very well have been Martin that was standing his ground and defending himself against an aggressor. That sounds like a real good question for a jury to decide.


rick_pcfl

Apr 17, 12 12:52

Post #13 of 108 (2262 views)
Re: Short Analysis of the Zimmerman Affidavit of Probable Cause [j p o] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

j p o wrote:
rick_pcfl wrote:
Weak!


Weak how? I have no emotional investment in this case. I wasn't there, I don't know either party, and I am not privy to any witness statements.

Zimmerman's story is that he followed Martin because he thought he looked suspicious. Martin confronted him. Zimmerman shot him. Martin is dead.

Not sure what you are objecting to.

So you're saying there is no other relevant information? Come on, you're smarter than that.


j p o

Apr 17, 12 12:54

Post #14 of 108 (2255 views)
Re: Short Analysis of the Zimmerman Affidavit of Probable Cause [rick_pcfl] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

rick_pcfl wrote:
j p o wrote:
rick_pcfl wrote:
Weak!


Weak how? I have no emotional investment in this case. I wasn't there, I don't know either party, and I am not privy to any witness statements.

Zimmerman's story is that he followed Martin because he thought he looked suspicious. Martin confronted him. Zimmerman shot him. Martin is dead.

Not sure what you are objecting to.


So you're saying there is no other relevant information? Come on, you're smarter than that.

No, I am saying these questions are appropriate for a jury to decide. One man admits to shooting and killing another. It is not obvious that it was self-defense. We have courts for just this sort of thing.


vitus979

Apr 17, 12 12:56

Post #15 of 108 (2249 views)
Re: Short Analysis of the Zimmerman Affidavit of Probable Cause [j p o] [In reply to] Quote | Reply


Well, I clearly shortened it an awful lot. so it is short of any detail.

You didn't shorten it, you spun it like a top. To the point where it no longer represents Zimmerman's story, but looks more like the prosecutor's story.



In this situation it may very well have been Martin that was standing his ground and defending himself against an aggressor. That sounds like a real good question for a jury to decide.


It might have been. If so, one hopes that the prosecutor has some actual evidence to present.








"People think it must be fun to be a super genius, but they don't realize how hard it is to put up with all the idiots in the world."


j p o

Apr 17, 12 13:02

Post #16 of 108 (2232 views)
Re: Short Analysis of the Zimmerman Affidavit of Probable Cause [vitus979] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

vitus979 wrote:

Well, I clearly shortened it an awful lot. so it is short of any detail.

You didn't shorten it, you spun it like a top. To the point where it no longer represents Zimmerman's story, but looks more like the prosecutor's story.



In this situation it may very well have been Martin that was standing his ground and defending himself against an aggressor. That sounds like a real good question for a jury to decide.


It might have been. If so, one hopes that the prosecutor has some actual evidence to present.

Fine. A fat man chased a young kid, got out of breath, then got his ass kicked by said young kid. Unhappy with getting his ass handed to him he pulled out his gun and blew him away. Are you happy now?


rick_pcfl

Apr 17, 12 13:04

Post #17 of 108 (2221 views)
Re: Short Analysis of the Zimmerman Affidavit of Probable Cause [j p o] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

Might as well say what you really want to say. "A white-hispanic racist saw an opportunity to shoot a black kid and did."


vitus979

Apr 17, 12 13:06

Post #18 of 108 (2220 views)
Re: Short Analysis of the Zimmerman Affidavit of Probable Cause [j p o] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

No.

I don't know why you're getting impatient with me about this: You're the one who said you were going to examine the case using Zimmerman's story. And you've not done that.

If you want to present alternate versions of the story that are equally plausible, that's fine with me. I just don't understand why you don't just say that you're presenting an alternative to Zimmerman's story. You know, to keep everything honest and all.

Moving on half a step, do you think the prosecutor has evidence that will disprove Zimmerman's story?








"People think it must be fun to be a super genius, but they don't realize how hard it is to put up with all the idiots in the world."


big kahuna

Apr 17, 12 13:06

Post #19 of 108 (2216 views)
Re: Short Analysis of the Zimmerman Affidavit of Probable Cause [chainpin] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

chainpin wrote:
It appears that there really isn't a smoking gun piece of evidence in this case.

John Lott looks at the "case" against Zimmerman, as laid out by the prosecution in the charging document:

http://www.nationalreview.com/...cause-john-r-lott-jr

The charges brought against George Zimmerman sure look like prosecutorial misconduct. The case as put forward by the prosecutor in the “affidavit of probable cause” is startlingly weak. As a former chief economist at the U.S. Sentencing Commission, I have read a number of such affidavits, and cannot recall one lacking so much relevant information. The prosecutor has most likely deliberately overcharged, hoping to intimidate Zimmerman into agreeing to a plea bargain. If this case goes to trial, Zimmerman will almost definitely be found “not guilty” on the charge of second-degree murder.

That's what I said (about the over-charging). Throwing up shee-ite on the wall in order to scare the guy into copping a plea to manslaughter. Barring that, she's (Corey) hoping that the judge will toss the case and order her to come back with a more realistic charging instrument for, say, voluntary manslaughter, whereupon she can look at the community and say "Hey, I tried for second degree murder but the judge won't let it fly. But we can get Zimmerman on voluntary manslaughter, at least" and the hotheads in the community will then be satisfied (she's hoping) with the charge she initially should have brought but which political considerations (she's also an elected official) precluded her from bringing in the first place.

Like I've said before: If I was Zimmerman's lawyer I'd be licking my chops at the thought of trying this as a second degree murder, and only second degree murder, case. I don't see a jury out there that'd come back with a conviction on that if that was the only charge the panel could consider.


trail

Apr 17, 12 13:07

Post #20 of 108 (2214 views)
Re: Short Analysis of the Zimmerman Affidavit of Probable Cause [vitus979] (Deleted by trail) [In reply to]

 


j p o

Apr 17, 12 13:08

Post #21 of 108 (2212 views)
Re: Short Analysis of the Zimmerman Affidavit of Probable Cause [rick_pcfl] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

rick_pcfl wrote:
Might as well say what you really want to say. "A white-hispanic racist saw an opportunity to shoot a black kid and did."

Really? Where did I ever mention race?

I don't think this was based on race. It was based on a guy being a cowboy vigilante and an unarmed kid being killed because of it.


Hubblesmith

Apr 17, 12 13:11

Post #22 of 108 (2200 views)
Re: Short Analysis of the Zimmerman Affidavit of Probable Cause [j p o] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

You repeatedly use the word "chase" even though the evidence currently available to the public suggests no such thing.


trail

Apr 17, 12 13:18

Post #23 of 108 (2186 views)
Re: Short Analysis of the Zimmerman Affidavit of Probable Cause [vitus979] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

 
>Moving on half a step, do you think the prosecutor has evidence that will disprove Zimmerman's story?

We've been over this ad nauseum, but you have

1) Witness testimony Martin telling his girlfriend he was scared and trying to get away.
2) Zimmerman ignoring direction by the police to back off.
3) Zimmerman giving unsolicited commentary to the 9/11 dispatcher of "these assholes, they always get away" and "these fucking punks." This indicate, to me, that Zimmerman held considerable animosity towards Martin, and has reason to pursue (they always get away).
4) Testimony and voice analysis that says the scared screaming is Martin, not Zimmerman.
5) The large size differential between Martin and Zimmerman.

None of this is consistent with Martin suddenly turning and attacking Zimmerman.

In my lay opinion, that seems sufficient to bring before a jury.


j p o

Apr 17, 12 13:20

Post #24 of 108 (2180 views)
Re: Short Analysis of the Zimmerman Affidavit of Probable Cause [vitus979] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

vitus979 wrote:
No.

I don't know why you're getting impatient with me about this: You're the one who said you were going to examine the case using Zimmerman's story. And you've not done that.

If you want to present alternate versions of the story that are equally plausible, that's fine with me. I just don't understand why you don't just say that you're presenting an alternative to Zimmerman's story. You know, to keep everything honest and all.

Moving on half a step, do you think the prosecutor has evidence that will disprove Zimmerman's story?

No idea what the prosecution has. But the fact that a guy admits to shooting and killing an unarmed person after following them will pretty much get you to probable cause in a hurry.

I use "confronted" because that is what pretty much every account has used. Zimmerman says he followed him because he didn't look right, we know Martin was not armed and was in the neighborhood legitimately. We know the shooting happened very near where Martin was staying.

Here is where it gets tricky. Assuming that Zimmerman is telling the truth. Zimmerman says he lost Martin, but we can't tell whether or not Martin knew that. Say you are Martin. You think you got away and head home. And then when you get there, the creepy guy who has been following you is sitting right there.

We know some sort of confrontation/fight happened and we know that Zimmerman shot Martin dead.

If I had to put on my psychic hat I would say he gets convicted of manslaughter. I found this when searching for a real world distinction between voluntary and involuntary manslaughter, in FL there is none, "In states such as Florida, manslaughter is not broken down this way. In Florida, manslaughter, defined as: The killing of a human being by the act, procurement, or culpable negligence of another, without lawful justification according to the provisions of chapter 776 and in cases in which such killing shall not be excusable homicide or murder . . ."

Here is the story as far as I can tell according to Zimmerman:http://en.wikipedia.org/...7s_account_of_events
"According to early media reports, that night, and in later meetings, Zimmerman described in detail, and re-enacted for police, what he says took place:
He was on his way to the store to do some errands when he spotted Trayvon Martin walking through his neighborhood. He followed Martin, but lost track of him. He was returning to his SUV when Martin approached him from the left rear and confronted him. Martin asked him, "Do you have a problem?"[125] He replied "No", and Martin then said, "Well, you do now" or something similar,[125] while Zimmerman reached for his cell phone. Martin then punched him in the face, knocking him down, and began beating his head against the ground. Zimmerman called out for help, while being beaten, before shooting Martin once in the chest at close range, in self-defense.[125][126]"


slowguy

Apr 17, 12 13:23

Post #25 of 108 (2174 views)
Re: Short Analysis of the Zimmerman Affidavit of Probable Cause [trail] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

"We've been over this ad nauseum, but you have

1) Witness testimony Martin telling his girlfriend he was scared and trying to get away.
2) Zimmerman ignoring direction by the police to back off.
3) Zimmerman giving unsolicited commentary to the 9/11 dispatcher of "these assholes, they always get away" and "these fucking punks." This indicate, to me, that Zimmerman held considerable animosity towards Martin, and has reason to pursue (they always get away).
4) Testimony and voice analysis that says the scared screaming is Martin, not Zimmerman.
5) The large size differential between Martin and Zimmerman. "



Looks like we need to go over it again.

The "police" didn't tell Zimmerman to "back off." the 911 dispatcher told him it wasn't necessary for him to follow Martin. The two statements are NOT the same thing. Zimmerman's animosity, demonstrated by the comments you quoted, seems justified if there had been recent robberies or vandalism in the neighborhood and no one was arrested, right? Testimony about the voices is unreliable at best, and I'd be surprised if any real expert would stake a reputation on it, or on the idea that he could confirm scared screaming as opposed to angry screaming, or scared screaming that might still have been uttered by an attacker, as opposed to a victim. The size differential is a complete misdirect. The size has nothing to do with who was or was not the aggressor. Being taller doesn't automatically make you the bad guy.


Slowguy

(insert pithy phrase here...)

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