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Thu Apr 5, 2012, 10:22 AM

If Zimmerman invokes his constitutional right to not speak with prosecutors, he should be arrested.


The entire rationale for not arresting Zimmerman is his invoking the "Stand Your Ground" law which bars police from arresting someone with a fear that they were in danger.

If Zimmerman lawyer's up and refuses to cooperate with prosecutors now (as reported in the media) investigating the facts of the case then he should not be allowed to use the "Stand Your Ground" law to avoid arrest because those investigating the case are no longer able to question Zimmerman on his state of mind at the time of the shooting and have no basis in fact to apply the "Stand Your Ground" law.

Of course Zimmerman could still invoke the law as his defense but he would have to do it from the witness stand.

If Zimmerman is not going to provide prosecutors with a first hand account of the incident and evidence of his state of mind at the time of the shooting then the prosecutors have no basis in fact to apply it for him and have absolutely no alternative but to arrest him and prosecute vigorously unless and until he cooperates fully with the investigation.

If you aren't going to discuss your frame of mind with prosecutors you shouldn't be able to use it as a defense, it simply doesn't exist.

11 replies, 1369 views

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Arrow 11 replies Author Time Post
Reply If Zimmerman invokes his constitutional right to not speak with prosecutors, he should be arrested. (Original post)
grantcart Apr 2012 OP
former9thward Apr 2012 #1
NYC_SKP Apr 2012 #2
former9thward Apr 2012 #3
grantcart Apr 2012 #7
former9thward Apr 2012 #9
CAPHAVOC Apr 2012 #4
CBGLuthier Apr 2012 #5
grantcart Apr 2012 #6
ManiacJoe Apr 2012 #10
ProgressiveProfessor Apr 2012 #11
slackmaster Apr 2012 #8

Response to grantcart (Original post)

Thu Apr 5, 2012, 10:35 AM

1. You may wish that was the law but it is not.

First ,Zimmerman was questioned for hours on the night of the incident by the police. Whatever he said is there for prosecutors to examine. Second. no matter what a potential defendant says or doesn't say a prosecutor must feel the defendant is guilty of a charge before bringing it. A prosecutor is violating his ethics if he brings a charge just to see what happens in court. Third, Zimmerman's defense attorney has told him to not talk, I'm sure. I know I would. Prosecutors have no right to endlessly question a suspect until they get want they want.

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Response to former9thward (Reply #1)

Thu Apr 5, 2012, 10:40 AM

2. Having been arrested and questioned does not prevent prosecutors from filing charges.

Especially if they are federal prosecutors.

While grantcart's theory may or may not be flawed, Zimmerman is no less exposed to further investigation and prosecution.

Just saying.

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Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #2)

Thu Apr 5, 2012, 10:43 AM

3. Of course Zimmerman can be investigated by anyone and prosecuted.

But his refusal to talk at this stage can't be used a reason to bring charges. That would be illegal in and of itself.

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Response to former9thward (Reply #1)

Thu Apr 5, 2012, 11:36 AM

7. Wrong on four counts


1) Zimmerman was questioned briefly not for hours.

2) The Stand Your Ground law requires an affirmative defense, Zimmerman must assert that he was frightened and must give evidence to support it.

3) Regardless of how complete the police questioning was it was done without checking other witnesses and other forensic evidence that certainly conflict with his original statement. If Zimmerman is going to assert that he was justified in the shooting to avoid arrest then the burden is on him to clear up all of the relevent questions.

4) "A prosecutor is violating his ethics if he brings a charge just to see what happens in court". This is quite funny. Here are the facts. Zimmerman shot and killed somebody. He should be arrested immediately unless there is convincing evidence that the shooting is justified. If he refuses to cooperate in establishing that evidence then he absolutely should be arrested unless and until that evidence is provided. If the defense refuses to cooperate with the prosecution in establishing that defense then he should be arrested and given the opportunity to establish the defense in court.

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Response to grantcart (Reply #7)

Thu Apr 5, 2012, 12:01 PM

9. Wrong on four counts.

Zimmerman was questioned for five hours that night. Do you consider that briefly? Unless you think CBS is conspiring to make it up. http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-18563_162-57405476/what-happened-right-after-trayvon-martins-shooting/

On the other three you are hopelessly mixing up your bizarre interpretations of legal procedures with your assertions. Good luck with those.

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Response to grantcart (Original post)

Thu Apr 5, 2012, 10:54 AM

4. I hope you don't realize what you are saying.

 

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Response to grantcart (Original post)

Thu Apr 5, 2012, 11:02 AM

5. He should be arrested. But not for refusing to talk to cops.

As has been stated many times on DU, only an idiot talks to the cops without a lawyer present. Even then you have nothing to gain.

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Response to CBGLuthier (Reply #5)

Thu Apr 5, 2012, 11:28 AM

6. He is not going to be arrested for refusing to talk with the cops, he should be arrested

because without his complete statement there is no evidence for the "Stand Your Ground" law.

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Response to grantcart (Reply #6)

Thu Apr 5, 2012, 12:03 PM

10. Which will lead to a really easy prosecution, right?

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Response to grantcart (Reply #6)

Thu Apr 5, 2012, 01:27 PM

11. SYG is not the issue...it is the if the requirement for deadly force in self defense were met

It is indeed an affirmative defense, which can be brought up at any time.

Clearly self defense was brought at some point, though the police still wanted to charge him and the State Attorney said not to.

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Response to grantcart (Original post)

Thu Apr 5, 2012, 11:43 AM

8. I don't believe you understand the process of making a claim of self-defense

 

It would be presented to the judge in a pre-trial motion to dismiss the case, which could occur if and only if charges are filed.

Zimmerman absolutely does not have to cooperate with prosecutors now.

Of course Zimmerman could still invoke the law as his defense but he would have to do it from the witness stand.

That could only happen if 1) charges are filed and then 2) any pre-trial motion to dismiss the case is denied.

If Zimmerman is not going to provide prosecutors with a first hand account of the incident and evidence of his state of mind at the time of the shooting then the prosecutors have no basis in fact to apply it for him...

They have the police reports.

Zimmerman has a lot of potential avenues out.

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