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View Diary: Stand Your Ground Law PROHIBITS Trayvon's Parents from Suing Zimmerman For Wrongful Death (206 comments)

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  •  The DA and cops don't make the determination (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    buddabelly, leevank

    of probable cause that overturns the immunity, so far as I can tell. A judge does. A judge is also the one who determines, ultimately, if the use of force falls under the conditions permitted.

    A suit would have to convince a judge of the existence of probable cause that the shooting law unlawful and fails to meet the required criteria, just as a prosecutor would have to show probable cause to a judge before arresting and prosecuting. If the suit fails to do such, it would be dismissed.

    In other words, the law doesn't put immunity in the hands of cops and DAs to decide.

    The only immunity cops and DAs can grant is kind where they sweep the case under the rug by scrubbing evidence and coaching witnesses and looking the other way, and they don't need specific laws to do that.

    Non enim propter gloriam, diuicias aut honores pugnamus set propter libertatem solummodo quam Nemo bonus nisi simul cum vita amittit. -Declaration of Arbroath

    by Robobagpiper on Tue Mar 27, 2012 at 10:32:47 AM PDT

    •  In Stand Your Ground Law COPS & DA make that (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      kyril

      decision - not a judge.

      re-read:
      "(2)  A law enforcement agency may use standard procedures for investigating the use of force as described in subsection (1), but the agency may NOT arrest the person for using force unless it [agency/cop] determines that there is probable cause that the force used was unlawful.

      Hard to get before a judge if the shooter is NOT arrested and that is ONE HUGE problem with Stand Your Ground Law.

      •  But the validity of the determination by the (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        leevank, burlydee

        agency is always up to the judge - which is why the judge can award damages to someone wrongly prosecuted (the following passage).

        The DA and cops may move forward if they think they can convince a judge they have probable cause, and frankly that's not a very high bar to meet. If they determine this incorrectly, the judge will spank them for it.

        Non enim propter gloriam, diuicias aut honores pugnamus set propter libertatem solummodo quam Nemo bonus nisi simul cum vita amittit. -Declaration of Arbroath

        by Robobagpiper on Tue Mar 27, 2012 at 10:49:09 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  No, You're incorrect - as proven by zimmerman not (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          greengemini, kyril

          being arrested by the Sanford Police.

          The Sanford Police closed their investigation on 3/16/2012  and THEY (not a judge) determined that Zimmerman was not guilty of manslaughter or murder due to self-defense under Stand Your Ground Law.

          It was only because public outcry that FBI & DOJ began looking at this case as  a Civil Rights Case (not a murder in cold-blood case).

          No judge has been involved.

          Like I said, the biggest problem with this law is that the guilty or not guilty is determined by POLICE before an arrest can be made ... not a judge.

          •  There is no alleged crime on the books where the (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            burlydee, VClib

            police and DA are compelled to arrest or prosecute, as you imply. When police and DAs want to ignore crimes, they don't need SYG to do it, and never have. It's called "prosecutorial discretion"; and has a lot to do with whether they think they can meet the burden of proof, but in corrupt cases, it's done partially.

            This has nothing to do with what SYG provides. If SYG were not in effect, there is still nothing that would have forced the police to honestly investigate or arrest, or the DA to prosecute. A corrupt police force that has shown a willingness to scrub a 911 tape to remove a racial slur, or coach witnesses to make the shooter look better, gained no powers under that law they didn't have already.

            SYG protects the reverse situation - where the police and DA want to prosecute a legitimate act of self-defense, they have to meet a minimum bar of probable cause, and defend that bar to a judge, before they can prosecute. This protects people against whom the police and DA may have animus against wrongful prosecution (and wrongful civil suit) in the event of a legitimate act of self-defense.

            Your claim might have merit if this were a case of the police and DA wanting to prosecute, but aw-shucks, being unable to do so because they couldn't meet a very low standard of evidence.

            The conduct of the Sanford PD proves that it's the reverse. They never wanted to prosecute from the start. Yes, it's the notoriety that's causing this case to be seriously looked at, but not because SYG hampered Sanford PD. It's because Sanford PD are corrupt asshats who were working to cover the killer's tracks from the start.

            Non enim propter gloriam, diuicias aut honores pugnamus set propter libertatem solummodo quam Nemo bonus nisi simul cum vita amittit. -Declaration of Arbroath

            by Robobagpiper on Tue Mar 27, 2012 at 12:30:42 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

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