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  •  and it highlights the crime in the neighborhood. (5+ / 0-)
    •  Yes, there was discussion of that today. (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Pi Li, Neuroptimalian, VClib, Woody

      Even a story about a young black male about 17 or 18 who was spotted coming out of a house in that same neighborhood after he had broken into the house.  Some stucco workers (I think that's what they were) saw him come out, jump into a truck, and speed away.  A couple of days later, the stucco workers saw him again, and the stucco workers called the same line Zimmermand did AND followed the young man to keep track of where he was going, and the police came and arrested him.  This happened before February 2012, and Zimmerman and the HOA knew about it.

      What's really ironic -- and not a good statement about the State's lawyers -- is that this story was told by a witness called by the State - the president of the HOA.  

      •  Let me play devil's advocate for a second (3+ / 0-)
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        coffeetalk, Kevskos, VClib

        I've thought about this, and it's just hard for me to imagine that the prosecution has been so staggeringly sloppy in their preparation of these witnesses.

        Even though it's an admittedly risky strategy, isn't it possible that all of this just plays into the state's theory of the case...i.e. they are willing to concede Zimmerman was just being a neighbourhood watch guy...and maybe he even had reason to be angry about what was going on in his neighbourhood...who can blame him, after all? And he finally did something about it.

        "Yes, ladies and (well, ladies) of the jury, there had been several burglaries in the defendant's neighboorhood, you heard it from several witnesses. His neighbourhood had suffered a crime wave. Yes, of course George Zimmerman was upset about it, you heard it from his mouth. Imagine, his neighboorhood gets burgalrized time and again, and the police did nothing about it. You heard it in his own words, George Zimmerman was mad. He was frustrated. He wanted to protect his neighbourhood.

        And this time, he wasn't going to let these punks get away with it."

        No? Or am I being too generous?

        Black Holes Suck.

        by Pi Li on Tue Jun 25, 2013 at 05:34:49 PM PDT

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        •  That might explain what appeared to be a bad (3+ / 0-)
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          Pi Li, Neuroptimalian, VClib

          day for them on the NW lady and the HOA president. But that doesn't explain why they let the credibility of that last witness be shredded like that.  

          I thought the only witness they had today that was really good for them was the police officer. As expected, the pictures of Martin and the description of finding him was powerful.  And he had the added benefit of saying that Martin's arms were not out straight as Zimmerman described them.  He was the only one today, I think, that the defense wasn't able to use to score big points for the defense on cross.  

          Certainly, the first two witnesses diluted the argument that Zimmerman "profiled" Martin, which was the word we heard over and over in opening.  The State's own witnesses pretty much recognized that it was the "right" thing for Zimmerman to do to call the non-emergency lines. And the HOA guy told that story about the stucco workers "following" that young man who had broken into a house in the neighborhood and  how that allowed the police to get the right guy.  If the State expected these witnesses to support the notion that Zimmerman was a NW guy who turned into an out of control vigilante, these two witnesses not only didn't do that, but they actually helped the defense refute that notion. I hope, for their sake, they are shifting their argument more to what you suggested.

          Even the woman who gathered evidence was used by the defense to point out all of the injuries on Zimmerman's head -- that last picture with those three lumps on the back of his head was something I had not seen, but is going to go a long way to refuting the prosecution's suggestion that his injuries were minor.  And, again, it came from the state's own witness.

          I always think of the "success" of a witness I call not in terms of direct -- I should KNOW how that will go -- but in terms of cross.  If they don't touch the witness, or only neutralize him around the edges, that's good for me.  If they neutralize the major points I've made on direct, not so good.  But when the other side uses MY witness that I called - essentially "vouching for" that witness in the eyes of the jury -- to score a big point for THEIR side, that's bad.  By that standard, the NW witness and the HOA witness were bad for the State, I think.  The police officer was good for the State.  The lady who gathered evidence was ok for the State, except for two things: (1) the fact that Martin was lying in the rain for like 15 minutes before she did those DNA tests, and (2) pointing out all those head injuries on Zimmerman.  

          That last witness was a fiasco.  

          •  Yeah (3+ / 0-)
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            coffeetalk, Neuroptimalian, VClib

            I just can't believe they hadn't prepared their witnesses better for some questions they should have known were coming.

            What really struck me was when the woman from the Citizen's on Patrol (COP) program testified that she was so impressed with Zimmerman that she asked him to formally join the program, which would have allowed him to have amber lights on his car like the, you know, the police, and he declined. Doesn't sound much like a "wanna be" cop to me. And this was a state's witness?

            I'm just not getting the out of control vigilante thing, but as I said I can possibly see them portraying him as a well meaning, but ultimately misguided guy who snapped in those seconds. But that's not what the guy they described in their opening, so I'm kind of a loss as to what they are thinking right now.

            What I do know is that they have to get a LOT out of this vigilante thing, because that's all they've got so far. There is no witness to the crucial seconds when Martin was shot, and that's a pretty big piece of evidence they're missing. So they basically just have to ask the jury to take a leap with them and assume Zimmerman's actions based on him being some kind of angry, out of control crusader...and SO FAR the evidence doesn't support that. But of course we're just getting started...I believe there's a witness Martin was speaking with just prior to the shooting.

            I don't even know why they called the woman who signed the petition. My God.

            I agree with you in that a well-prepared witness is one who can survive cross relatively unscathed. But when the state's own witness actually bolsters the defendant's case...crikey.

            Black Holes Suck.

            by Pi Li on Tue Jun 25, 2013 at 06:23:19 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  It seems like this was exactly their strategy (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Pi Li, Neuroptimalian, VClib
              There is no witness to the crucial seconds when Martin was shot, and that's a pretty big piece of evidence they're missing. So they basically just have to ask the jury to take a leap with them and assume Zimmerman's actions based on him being some kind of angry, out of control crusader..
              And I'm afraid that two witnesses this morning were supposed to be the ones to make that case.  

              I'm with you - I have no idea why they let that last woman get on the stand.  AT THE VERY LEAST you admonish her against trying to embellish her story by adding facts she's never told anyone until today.  AT THE VERY LEAST you have her prepared to admit she signed the Change.org petition, you maybe even bring it out on direct, so it doesn't seem like a big deal.  The problem they have is now that the defense was able to call her credibility into question like that, the defense can plausibly argue that the jury shouldn't believe a thing she said.  And the State has a bit of a black eye because they called a witness who pretty clearly decided at the last minute to embellish her story by adding that "left to right" statement.  

              The prosecution had better hope that it can do the same thing with "John," the witness who supposedly saw Martin beating up on Zimmerman, as O'Mara did with that young woman today.  

              The star witness supposedly tomorrow, the young lady who was on the phone with Martin, has some credibility issues from what I've read (she supposedly lied about being in the hospital the day of Martin's funeral, and lied about her age).  I hope that the prosecution does a better job preparing her to address those issues than they did with that last witness today.

              •  "DeeDee" has other problems as well, ... (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                VClib

                including repeatedly claiming, while being interviewed by De La Rionda, that TM was not at all into fighting (essentially implying he was pacifistic), yet her text message exchanges with him show she definitely knew he was.  In fact, I believe she was the author of the text message in which it was predicted that TM would one day "take one in the chest".

                "Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity, and I am not sure about the universe." -- Albert Einstein

                by Neuroptimalian on Tue Jun 25, 2013 at 08:30:58 PM PDT

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        •  I think that defense counsel can spin this (2+ / 0-)
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          Kevskos, Tonedevil

          If they are competent (and the jury is out on that.)

          I think your scenario is exactly right.

          Of course, even if burglaries were happening every single day, you could make a good argument that murder is an unlawful escalation from a simple property crime, particularly when the "burglar " is standing out in the open on a sidewalk.

           

          © grover


          So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not. -- Me.

          by grover on Tue Jun 25, 2013 at 06:00:38 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

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