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View Diary: A day late with the rent? Eviction and prison may be in your future in Arkansas (80 comments)

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  •  To be fair (4+ / 0-)

    It's not a story in an article, it's a Human Rights Watch report, which is actually quite thorough, but perhaps a bit one sided...i.e. it's basically a collection of anecdotal information collected by HRW in interviews with aggrieved tenants, and personal observations of some judges.  There's nothing wrong with that, I've worked with HRW before and that's what they do, but I wouldn't say it's exactly the whole picture.

    The problem is, people tend to get worked up about these things without having all the facts.  For example, there was a diary yesterday about the acquittal of some guy who shot a prostitute because she didn't give him sex and kept his 150.00.  One its face, it sounds outrageous (and it is in any event), but if you just read the diary and the accompanying article, you'd think the john shot the woman point blank range in cold blood and killed her on the spot. A few seconds of Google research revealed that in fact the the assailant shot at the car (he claims he was aiming for the tires) the woman was getting away in with her pimp. This is a fact not a single person mentioned in a diary with over 300 comments. And in fact the woman died months later, apparently because a feeding tube (there because of her injury, to be sure) dislodged. This doesn't excuse this low life's actions, of course, and he still should have gone inside for the crime.  But it does perhaps illuminate a bit more why jury reached the verdict it did, and maybe that the prosecution over charged.  

    In any event, the point is, facts matter, even if they make a story less sensational.

    Black Holes Suck.

    by Pi Li on Fri Jun 07, 2013 at 08:43:46 AM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  thanks for that detail, but (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Pi Li, second gen

      shooting at the tires and hit her instead?  I don't believe anyone could be that bad a shot.  

      •  Well, that's what he claimed (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        wilderness voice, VClib

        The car was in fact speeding away, and he did shoot at it (the woman apparently hit by a ricochet bullet). His claim is that he was shooting not at the woman but at the tires in order to prevent them getting away with his "stolen money." In any event, it's plausible, and perhaps if the jury believed that version of events, they might not have been willing to convict for murder. I'm not saying I agree with what the jury decided, just that there's more to the case than what was in the diary. What I don't know is if the jury was given instructions on any lesser chargers...or why the prosecution didn't charge agg assault or some lesser crime. But that's not as much fun as talking about how backwards Texas is.

        In any event, I don't want to derail this diary with that discussion, the point is, the devil is in the details. All Coffeetalk is trying to do is provide some perspective and more information than is contained in the diary. Having all the facts may not add kindle to our outrage, but it does at least make us better informed.

        Black Holes Suck.

        by Pi Li on Fri Jun 07, 2013 at 09:27:01 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  I believe they could be (0+ / 0-)

        what  I don't believe is that we make it so easy for millions of people who are just that bad a shot to have guns.

      •  wilderness voice - really? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Pi Li

        First, handguns are accurate only for very short distances unless they are being fired by an expert who spends lots of time at the range.

        "let's talk about that"

        by VClib on Fri Jun 07, 2013 at 01:05:58 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Apparently it was an assault rifle (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          But your point is well taken...the car was speeding away, and I imagine in his agitated state this genius wasn't exactly the best shot.

          Black Holes Suck.

          by Pi Li on Fri Jun 07, 2013 at 01:19:06 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  let's put it this way (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          Are you prepared to believe the uncorroborated testimony of a  defendant on trial for murder?  

          As I mentioned above, not the first time I have heard a freak "ricochet" did it.

          Never mind that he had already handed over the money voluntarily, so this wasn't theft at all, but fraud, if she had agreed to have sex.

          •  Prostitution is illegal in TX; no 'fraud'. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            wilderness voice

            Agreed, I don't believe Ezekiel Gilbert's story, that he wanted to shoot out the tires so he could call the police. (Wtf? Just write down their license plate #, there's absolutely no need shoot an assault rifle at them.)

            Btw, one cannot be legally held to a contract (verbal or written) that requires illegal behavior. Assuming prostitution is illegal in Texas, she cannot be required to 'deliver'.

            Her ad on CL presumably said "escort". If he wants sex, that's his risk that as a consensual adult she may say "No", even after taking his money.

            If she says "no" and he makes a physical effort or threat to have sex with her, that's attempted rape.

            If he shoots her as she's leaving, and she dies from the wound, that's murder (even if it took 7 painful months with her paralyzed and on a respirator, fighting for her life).

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