Mark O'Mara moved for sanctions five separate times against de la Rionda and John Guy. In this previous 30 years of practice he never moved for sanctions against one a single time.
The judge in the case reserved ruling on the latest motion for sanctions until after the conclusion of the trial.
O'Mara told me this when I saw him in West Palm Beach at the Florida Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers Annual Meeting.
Many people, myself included, believe he will file a grievance with the state bar association against the prosecutors involved in the case.
When involved in discussions that evoke strong emotional responses, clarity is important to help avoid the hyperbolic nonsense into which they often devolve.
Well there you go, a straight answer. That wasn't so hard was it?Yes, I have a verifiable source. The discovery file for the case. Does it get more verifiable than that? Now that the case is over that will become available as a public record and I'm sure the media will get a copy of it. You can read it at that point.
Asking you to be helpful and provide information is not an insinuation that you are being dishonest. When I've discussed the case with others I specifically don't bring up the claim that he was told to 'keep an eye' on Martin because thus far it's been impossible to find solid evidence of it. Most of the leads track back to him being told such in calls on previous, unrelated nights. Being directed to such evidence would be useful when putting together a narrative when deconstructing that night in the future.Until then you're going to have to believe me and not insinuate that I'm lying to you. Which by the way annoys the hell out of me.
To be honest, if I had asked you to provide a source so I could fact check, it still wouldn't be an insinuation that you're lying. It's pretty standard within discussions where the parties are interested in objectively understanding a topic.
What position do I have that you believe you are undermining?Why is that your tact? You don't agree with what I'm telling you because it undermines your position so therefore I'm lying. That's exactly what the prosecution wanted the jury to do without any evidence to support the argument.
I don't know why you're bringing your personal baggage into this, and I don't care. To be clear, if I think you're full of $#@!, I'll happily tell you that you're full of $#@!.
So far your anecdotes have been pretty damn interesting, don't let things so sideways because believing someone isn't taking your word as gospel gives you a conniption. Ultimately you're just another guy with an opinion, however informed that opinion may be.
Last edited by Scarlet_Lutefisk; 07-14-2013 at 10:34 PM.
The prosecution needed to prove that George Zimmerman acted with ill will, hatred, or spite. However, its own witness, Detective Doris Singleton testified that Zimmerman did not appear to exhibit these qualities. I have tried cases where I had to show defendants acted intentionally, or recklessly, or with depravity, and never once did I have a case where my own witness completely contradicted what I myself was legally required to prove.I have never seen a case where the prosecutionís own witness said, point-blank, ďI believed the defendantís story.Ē Folks, this is unheard of. And yet it happened in this case, said Detective Christopher Serino. The testimony was ultimately stricken from the record, but, as we say in the trial biz, ďYou canít unring the bell.Ē
This was devastating for the prosecution.John Good, a witness called by the prosecution, testified he saw Trayvon Martin straddling George Zimmerman, totally undercutting the stateís case and fully corroborating Zimmermanís version.
When the prosecutionís only path to victory necessitates that it convince the jury to disregard the testimony of many of his own witnesses, well, then you know itís in big, big trouble.There were numerous other facts that emerged at trial to corroborate Zimmermanís version of events, or undercut the prosecutionís attempt to portray Zimmerman as a racist vigilante. Murderers, for example, generally donít summon the police to the scene minutes before their crime; they donít commit a murder when they know the cops are on the way; they donít make numerous voluntary statements without ever asking for a lawyer; they donít have visible injuries that corroborate their version of events; and they donít say, ďThank God,Ē when being (falsely) told by a detective that the whole thing was caught on video. But the testimony of the witnesses for the prosecution also weakened its case.In his statement to police and in an interview with Sean Hannity, George Zimmerman outlined out the elements of a valid self-defense claim.
Ultimately, the Hannity interview was played to the jury, and because it was played, Zimmermanís defense team wisely realized that Zimmerman had no need to testify at trial, thereby allowing him to avoid the risks associated with cross-examination. We now know from the verdict, the jury apparently did credit his version as true.
But surprisingly, the prosecution put all of Zimmermanís statements into evidence, underestimating perhaps, how influential they would be to the jury.The prosecution spent a lot of time and effort attempting to prove that George Zimmerman engaged in racial profiling and showing that none of this would have occurred if Zimmerman had not profiled Martin.
But even if both of those statements are entirely true, thatís not enough to convict Zimmerman ó a jury could conclude that Zimmerman had initially followed Trayvon Martin because of race, and but for that motivation, this confrontation would never have occurred, and yet still have found Zimmerman acted in self-defense.Of course this is what makes the outcome understandably disappointing to many people: A man who seems to have acted with improper motives, and whose improper motives led to the deadly confrontation, can still be found not guilty.
It may well be the case that Trayvon Martin would be alive today if he had been a white kid walking home that night. It may well be that the detectives and ultimately the jury would have been less inclined to believe George Zimmermanís self-defense claim if Trayvon Martin had been white. We will never know for sure.
The juryís verdict does not address those other questions, but the verdict was not supposed to address those issues.
^ Donnie's link
"Improper motives" is the part that just floors me. What is improper about wanting to protect your neighborhood and prevent crime to your neighbors' property?
Bonehead seems to have run off a number of the "GZ is a murdering, racist, stalker" crowd from this thread.
The court case would go down just the same if you felt for TM and his family, and pretended to understand racial profiling from the side of the profiled. Instead you held your ground firm and once again solidified the minority voting bloc.
Last edited by FondrenRoad; 07-15-2013 at 07:51 AM.
Young men do stupid things that can cause their death -- driving recklessly, binge drinking, not wearing steabelts, drinking and driving, etc. Most of the time these poor choices do not result in death. Sometimes they do. I see attacking someone who posed zero threat to you as a poor choice that caused Martin's death. Especially the part where he beat him for 40 seconds while Zimmerman pathetically screamed for help. You just cannot do that and then complain when the victim defends himself.
I'm glad Zimmerman is free, not because of his skin color or the skin color of Martin, but because we have a system of justice in this country that CANNOT and SHOULD NOT be pushed aside because it will appease the mob.
I'd rather see 100 men go free than 1 innocent man found guilty at the hands of an overzealous government.
I don't know Bonehead (that I know of), but many years ago I was a prosecutor in Seminole County and I also knew Mark O'Mara professionally (although I never tried a case against him). I also happen to have some acquaintance with the prosecution team through my internship at the Jacksonville SAO but I don't know any of them very well.
I do NOT have the access that Bonehead claims (I don't do any kind of criminal work) but everything he is saying seems fairly consistent from what I know of O'Mara and my time at the Seminole County SAO.
Listen to what Bonehead is saying. His analysis is spot-on.
Question for Bonehead...
I really enjoyed your take on the Crump stuff... from my working with lawyers around here years ago (I was an auditor), this really resonated with me, the "what's REALLY going on" sounds and is familiar with the real motivations behind things like this (excellent stuff).
The one question I have is that in your summary, you didn't mention much about the connect between (Angela) Corey(?) and Crump or whatnot. That is, I get why Crump wanted to see the case brought to trial, but since Corey was the agent that allowed it to bypass the GJ, do you know if there is/was any collusion or some type of communication between the two (or someone in their chain) which orchestrated this?
I understand it's quite likely Corey will be up for sanctions about the discovery issues (though I doubt she'll get much penalty out of it), but what about this? Do you see any way she or any of her associates get some pain from this?
(Personally I think Corey is the most odious turd in this whole crapfest, JMO).
Thanks for anything you can add.
I can't tell you the number of cases where I was involved either as a prosecutor or a defense attorney where a young man--the maxims 'young and stupid' and 'Youth is wasted on the young' exist for a reason because they're mostly true--grossly underestimated the situation while simultaneously overestimating himself thereby leading to a very bad outcome.
One that sticks in my mind is where an elderly man cut off in traffic a young man who was Martin's age. The young man got out of his car when both cars were stopped at the next traffic light with a length of broom handle and loudly announced that he was going to "do a job" on the elderly man for cutting him off in traffic. There were numerous witnesses to this. The old man reached into his glove box; pulled out a .38 special revolver; and shot the young man dead.
I was the prosecutor on the case and I declined to pursue it. Both parties were white and upper middle class, but there were elements of the community that were enraged both ways. Some wanted the old man hung by the neck until dead. Some wanted more laws passed to protect the elderly from 'young punks.
I fail to see how calling in a suspected prowler and trying to "keep an eye" on the suspected prowler make Zimmerman a bad actor. I just don't get it.
One night about ten years ago on my home from a meeting I saw a car where the driver was clearly impaired. I called 911 and followed the car. Frankly, several times as I was following the car and reciting to the operator what was occurring the operator told/asked, describe it how you like, not to put myself in danger. I knew I had to stay close to the other car because if I lost sight of it or got too far away to accurately describe what was happening then my testimony (assuming things got as far as motion hearing or trial) would be subject to impeachment.
The driver pulled into a neighborhood where he clearly didn't live--he was scruffy looking with long unkept hair; was in his 30s; and was driving a late model Pontiac while the neighborhood was upper middle class--and actually pulled into someone's driveway. I parked on the curb and waited for law enforcement to arrive. Twice he got out of his car and walked up to mine. Both times were hairy as I had no idea what he would do.
When law enforcement finally arrived the whole shift for that zone appeared. The 911 operator told the shift sergeant that the situation was dangerous. The 911 operator also told the shift sergeant the wrong address.
While two officers conducted a DUI investigation the shift sergeant gave me a form to write a witness statement. It was four pages long when I had finished and air tight.
I got a phone call about a month later from the driver's lawyer. The driver had multiple DUIs and wanted to question me about the case. After about an hour long conversation the lawyer said words to the effect of, "I got nothing. Good thing most PC affidavits aren't as thorough as you are." The driver ended up pleading.
Am I a vigilante wannabe cop because of my actions that night or a concerned individual who cared about his community and the safety of his fellow citizens?
I guess the answer depends on who you ask.
Last edited by Bonehead; 07-15-2013 at 08:54 AM.
I believe Corey had political aspirations. "Had" as in the past tense.
And Fondren....you're attributing altruistic goals to the media they don't deserve.
Last edited by gecko; 07-15-2013 at 09:06 AM.
The best way to describe Corey (and Bernie de la Rionda, Rich Mantai and John Guy) is she is a true believer, over-zealous prosecutor and a bully at heart.
I dealt with her in Jacksonville when she was an assistant state attorney under then elected state attorney Harry Shorestein. This was over a decade ago. She was notorious for being fast and loose with evidence and was willing to stop at nothing, repeat, nothing to win. My last conversation with her prior to her running for office was really a shouting match in the hallway outside a courtroom. I had caught her hiding critical Brady material. I had witness affidavit to support my contentions.
In reality, Angela Corey and Ben Crump don't like each other. They both look down their noses at each other and would cheerfully throw the other under a bus. Corey has taken a lot of heat from the NAACP in Jacksonville for many of her cases against black people. Jacksonville is divided by the St. Johns River. North of the river is predominantly populated by black citizens. Jacksonville Sheriff's Office (JSO) and the State Attorneys' Office (SAO) treat the area like a war zone. Jacksonville itself is a very harsh legal environment. Bond on a first time DUI for a lifetime resident who is gainfully employed with no prior arrests is $5,000.00. In the rest of the state it is $500.00 or an ROR (release on own recognizance) depending on the situation.
That Rick Scott gave the case to Corey was no accident. His advisers told him who Corey is and that she would be the ideal choice given her reputation. Last year he assigned elected state attorney of the Fifth Circuit, Brad King, to investigate Skip Jarvis the elected state attorney of the third circuit for abusing the power of his office. Jarvis clearly had done just that by using the weight of his office to intimidate political opponents. But the investigation was also clearly political as Brad King (his claim to fame is praying with the family of a murder victim that the defendant would get the death penalty) is very aggressive and a Republican. Jarvis is a Democrat. The new state attorney for the Third Circuit, Jeff Sigmeister (a Republican) has been cleaning house. One of Jarvis' former prosecutors was fired by Sigmeister after a motion to set aside the verdict was filed and supported with recorded telephone calls where the prosecutor conspired with a convicted sexual predator to suborn perjury and commit fraud on the court in another trial. The motion was granted. The Florida Bar is now investigating that former prosecutor and likely will disbar him.
Folks, never forget that Florida gave the US, Gideon v. Wainwright. Justice and fair play are in short supply here.
Last edited by Bonehead; 07-15-2013 at 09:24 AM.
The ironic part is that the people trying to destroy GZ are of the same political mindset...and the admin that he supposedly supported enthusiastically is going to be the one going after him in unprecedented ways.
As far as Crump, sounds like then he was just a typical legal opportunist, saw the opening created by Corey and jumped on it. Strange bedfellows sort of thing...
Lots of legal cesspoolism going 'round in Fla, but I'm sure it's by no means unique. Anyway, this is the take I'm getting now on how Crump and Corey relate to each other... correct if needed(?). Thx.
Crump's media consultant facilitated the governor's assignment by the story he wrote and fed to the media. Mark O'Mara mentioned this in the press conference post verdict. O'Mara said, “He didn’t know why he was turned into this monster, but quite honestly you guys had a lot to do with it. You just did. Because you took a story that was fed to you and you ran with it, and you ran right over him . . ." Crump was always driving the train.
The wrongful death suit filed against the deep pocket was settled before the trial even began.
Last edited by Bonehead; 07-15-2013 at 09:39 AM.
Following someone at a distance in a car is very different than following someone on foot. When George Z got out of the car to follow the suspect (or possibly look to acquaint himself) and brought his gun, he created a vastly different situation.
Bonehead, thanks again. Man that it GREAT stuff... explains ALL of this $#@! way, way better than 1,000 dumb$#@! talking heads with ignorant agendas on cable. I've learned more about this case from your 10 or so posts than anything put together, period, the entire time this has been going on the past 18 months. Thx.
Also, this has never been about the case at hand. Go back and see where I've conceded the fact that GZ would win this case somewhere close to page 1 on the Bada Bing thread. You are late to the game. It isn't a matter of whether GZ should be convicted. He shouldn't be. You keep tilting at that windmill though. You are ignoring and losing the public eye discussion, mostly because you don't understand it, or how to engage in it, as evidenced by your anti-media posts.
You may want this to not be about race, but it was always going to be framed that way. It's actually quite shocking that the right still consistently loses the public eye battles when the path to winning them isn't all that difficult.
Last edited by FondrenRoad; 07-15-2013 at 09:45 AM.
What if Zimmerman was walking to his truck and sees Martin and begins following him on foot instead of from his truck?
Then where's your huge difference?
You want a particular outcome and you're trying to seize on anything to get you there.
Last edited by FondrenRoad; 07-15-2013 at 09:51 AM.
I get out of my car all the time in my neighborhood for various reasons. So what if Zimmerman got out of his?
This morning there was a car I did not recognize idling in front of my house. We live on a cul de sac so typically it is only residents and yard workers on our street. I walked up and asked if they needed anything. I actually had my Glock on me (concealed) for reasons that had nothing to do with the car (I was trading out the pistols I keep in my truck).
Turns out the person in the car was lost. I was able to help them find their way. I guess I am lucky that person did not attack me for approaching them.
Was there more to the broom stick story than that? Just so we understand, the kid was outside the old man's vehicle making threats with a stick, old man, who could have simply driven off, instead rolled down the window and shot the kid, and you declined prosecution? If that's the gist, and there's nothing more that's important, why not charge him and offer some kind of probation? Not gonna argue your point that the kid was an idiot and brought about his own death, but the old man's actions absolutely were criminal and unjustified (again, unless you've left out something major, like the kid already had shattered the glass and the old man's car was boxed in at the light).
That said, the same concerns that I have with "overzealous government" and mob justice apply equally, or with even more force, to overzealous self-appointed pseudo-cops patrolling neighborhoods with guns and no identification. For all the complaints and stories we see about cops on this board, at least they are subject to training and hiring standards and have insignia letting us know who they are. While I don't want cops following me around for no good reason when I'm walking home from the store, I sure as hell don't want to be followed by the unholy combination of cop and HOA $#@!head, and in an unmarked vehicle no less. Frankly, I'm surprised so many GZ supporters seem to view him as some sort of hero rather than an $#@! who nonetheless shouldn't get jail time based on the evidence.
So I understand why many people are distraught that TM was deemed suspicious and followed in the first place, regardless of the blow-by-blow once the confrontation started, and why many people think race played a significant role in the suspicion GZ had. Pinning their hopes for justice on this trial was probably misguided, because some of what makes GZ an $#@! isn't sufficient for a conviction, while evidentiary limitations and TM's death make it difficult to know what really happened. But that doesn't make the situation any easier to swallow for those who feel they are routinely targeted for suspicion based on their race.
Serious question -- why is the fact that GZ got out of his car the golden chalice? Why does that swing him from innocent to guilty - or at least, not innocent?
Again, not illegal, I support the right to carry a concealed weapon, but with that, if you carry a gun, you should try to take alternate methods to protect yourself and definitely not escalate situations.
By leaving the car with a gun when he himself acknowledge there was a possible threat, it really could end three ways: he was overreacting to a stranger, the person could attack and kill him with his own gun, or he would kill the stranger.
If Zimmerman was within a reasonable distance of his car, even if he wasn't in it already, why not get inside and gain an advantage?
The only outcome is that a kid is dead and George Zs life has been changed forever. As far as justice? Only god knows what happened. We can guess, we can surmise, but really only god knows how the confrontation began.
Let me add, you should be able to walk around your neighborhood without fear, but if you sense a potential criminal is in the area, why not do everything to protect yourself? It is just baffling...
Last edited by Gosset the Table; 07-15-2013 at 10:25 AM.
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