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View Diary: Zimmerman waives Stand Your Ground hearing in Trayvon Martin case (201 comments)

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  •  I think that his lawyers been trying to move (23+ / 0-)

    that point for a while. And argue that Zimmerman's actions are covered under Florida's standard self defense statutes.

    IIRC, he's been arguing that the Duty to retreat/Does not have to retreat is a moot point because Zimmerman was allegedly on the ground(suffering injury) and couldn't retreat if he had wanted to anyway - which would fall under standard self defense.

    Regardless, we'll see in June.

    The defense will also likely use the information that Witness 8(Trayvon's girlfriend) lied about her not attending his funeral because of a medical reason. Not really relevant to her testimony on the night of the killing but useful to the defense if they want to impeach her I guess.

    Look, I tried to be reasonable...

    by campionrules on Wed Mar 06, 2013 at 09:40:41 AM PST

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    •  I can't imagine how that would even come in. (5+ / 0-)

      It has virtually no relevance to Zimmerman's state of mind.  It has no relevance to Trayvon's actions or lack of.  In other words, it has no relevance.  It wasn't made under oath (I don't believe), so couldn't be used to impeach her.  And even if made under oath, it's not a statement that's relevant to the case, so probably wouldn't be permitted to be used to impeach.  

      "If you trust you are not critical; if you are critical you do not trust" by our own Dauphin

      by gustynpip on Wed Mar 06, 2013 at 10:48:52 AM PST

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      •  It was made under oath to the prosecutor (3+ / 0-)

        It can be used to impeach her credibility if she testifies.

        •  Very unlikely that a judge would allow (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          oceanview, aitchdee

          it.  People lie under oath All The Time.  And generally, unless it's about something substantive about the case, the judge will consider that lie irrelevant and decide that bringing it up will simply confuse  the issues of the case and waste valuable time.  There's no way to know what the judge will do, but I think it's unlikely it'll be admitted.  Saying that lie is relevant is like saying Bill Clinton's lie about Monica Lewinsky was relevant.  People lie about things they're embarrassed about when they think it won't matter.  And everyone knows that and doesn't think much of it.

          And even if it is, it'll have no impact.  What does she have to testify about?  The only thing of relevance is what Trayvon was saying on the phone to her.  That's it.  She has virtually no knowledge of what happened between Trayvon and Zimmerman or what Zimmerman's state of mind was.  Those are the two relevant issues.  Not why she didn't attend Trayvon's funeral.

          "If you trust you are not critical; if you are critical you do not trust" by our own Dauphin

          by gustynpip on Wed Mar 06, 2013 at 01:44:59 PM PST

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          •  A witness who has previously lied under oath? (3+ / 0-)

            That would definitely be considered relevant to the witness's credibility, and since she's a key witness, I would think the judge would let it in, and instruct the jury to give it whatever weight they thought it deserved.

            •  Not necessarily, if the lie was about (1+ / 0-)
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              something as irrelevant as why she didn't attend the funeral.  Cripes, you can catch people lying while on the stand, and the judge will only let you go with that a very short way unless it's about a critical piece of evidence.  People don't seem to realize how common it is for people to lie - including under oath.  

              "If you trust you are not critical; if you are critical you do not trust" by our own Dauphin

              by gustynpip on Wed Mar 06, 2013 at 02:24:05 PM PST

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          •  Whether people lie under oath all the time (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            VClib, Neuroptimalian

            is irrelevant as to whether a witness can be impeached for  lying under oath.  I've seen witness credibility impeached by their tax returns, by past criminal convictions, by statements in depositions, affidavits and pleadings. For example, a witness in a case can be impeached by a criminal conviction that happened as long ago as ten years under certain circumstances. You are arguing for the admissibility standard but that is not the correct standard. Materials used to impeach often are not admitted as substantive evidence but are used to    attack the witnesses credibility.

             I agree that this witness is overrated, but the State sure doesn't think so. It's never a good thing for a party in litigation to have its witness impeached for lying.

      •  you can always impeach based on someone's (2+ / 0-)
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        VClib, Neuroptimalian

        veracity, and lying to a prosecutor is highly probative of that.

        •  No you can't. If they testify on the stand (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          amsterdam, aitchdee

          differently than the statements they've made previously, you can attack them on that.  Or perhaps if they've lied about a  relevant issue in the case.  But not just some extraneous lie.  Every single person lies at  times.  And if a judge was to permit an attorney to attack every witness for some extraneous irrelevant lie, no trial would ever stay on track and every trial would take forever.  Because you can Always find a lie someone told.  

          The judge will make a decision on whether this particular lie is relevant to the issues in the case - and my guess is it will be decided it's not.

          "If you trust you are not critical; if you are critical you do not trust" by our own Dauphin

          by gustynpip on Wed Mar 06, 2013 at 01:50:54 PM PST

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