How Would You Vote on the Zimmerman Trial?

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by Huntn, Jul 7, 2013.

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How Would You Vote as Part of the Zimmerman Jury?

Poll closed Jul 17, 2013.
  1. 2nd Degree Murder

    29 vote(s)
    17.9%
  2. Manslaughter with severe sentence

    21 vote(s)
    13.0%
  3. Manslaughter with mild sentence

    18 vote(s)
    11.1%
  4. Acquittal

    74 vote(s)
    45.7%
  5. Undecided

    20 vote(s)
    12.3%
  1. Huntn macrumors G5

    Huntn

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    #1
    As as a means of capturing the pulse of MacRumor PRSI particpants, based on the Prosecutions case that closed this week, on what has been published in media, and extensive televised coverage, if you were sitting on the Zimmerman jury how would you vote?

    This poll is only open for 10 days.
     
  2. Gutwrench macrumors 65816

    Gutwrench

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    #2
    Undecided.

    If convicted of manslaughter he'd be looking at a 9 1/4 year minimum with a max of 30. Since a gun was used it would be reclassified from a second degree felony to a first degree felony.
     
  3. ucfgrad93 macrumors P6

    ucfgrad93

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    #3
    I would vote not guilty as I don't think the state has proven its case beyond a reasonable doubt.
     
  4. filmbuff macrumors 6502a

    filmbuff

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    #4
    On the 911 tape you can clearly hear Zimmerman say that he is going to follow Martin and stop him. In my mind, that makes it murder. You can't chase somebody down, shoot them, and call it self defense when you instigated the whole situation. I don't even care if Martin fought back, he had every reason to fight back. IMO 90% of the "case" is irrelevant. Chase somebody down and shoot them when they aren't committing a crime = murder.
     
  5. Renzatic Suspended

    Renzatic

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    #5
    Yeah! Damn the circumstances! They just get in the way!
     
  6. rocknblogger macrumors 68020

    rocknblogger

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    #6
    Not guilty. As far as I'm concerned the state has not proven their case beyond reasonable doubt.
     
  7. filmbuff macrumors 6502a

    filmbuff

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    #7
    How are so many people saying acquittal for a man who:

    1) saw somebody walking down the street, not committing a crime
    2) called 911
    3) got out his gun
    4) chased the (unarmed) stranger down
    5) shot and killed him

    ???

    It is definitely proven beyond a reasonable doubt that Zimmerman initiated contact, and Martin ended up dead.

    What facts haven't been proved that would influence this decision? A scream on a 911 tape? How does that matter given the facts above?
     
  8. Renzatic Suspended

    Renzatic

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    #8
    3 & 4 is exactly what HASN'T been proven beyond a reasonable doubt, and why this is such a contentious subject.

    We don't know who initiated contact, who pulled the first punch, who started what, when, and why. There's a lot that can go down after point 2 that could make Zimmerman out to be either guilty of Murder Two, or a shining example of what's a clear cut case of self defense.
     
  9. quagmire macrumors 603

    quagmire

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    #9
    I wouldn't be surprised if Martin did throw the first punch. Zimmerman was following him and possibly felt threatened so he defended himself. From Zimmerman's perspective it looks like it is an unprovoked attack and he defended himself, but Martin was defending himself from a stalker.

    The situation wouldn't have happened if Zimmerman didn't follow him. But, I don't know how I would vote because you have two reasonable perspectives. The only issue is I can't prove Martin's perspective because he is dead and can't explain why he may have thrown the first punch.
     
  10. .Andy macrumors 68030

    .Andy

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    #10
    Not guilty in my mind. Not enough evidence to prove beyond reasonable doubt. As I said in the other thread he'll unfortunately both have to live with killing somebody and the ramifications of being involved in such a high profile case. Effectively two lives were lost that night :(
     
  11. Renzatic Suspended

    Renzatic

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    #12
    This is pretty much what I think about it. Zimmerman probably felt he had a good reason to follow Martin, and Martin had a good reason to believe he needed to defend himself. Neither one of them knew the other by sight or reputation. From their subjective perspectives, they were both strange people acting strangely.

    Zimmerman was the neighborhood watch, cruising the neighborhood after a series of break-ins. He sees someone he hasn't seen around before, walking around surprisingly casually in the rain after dusk. From his perspective, he had ever reason to be suspicious.

    Martin was simply a kid visiting family who lived in the neighborhood. He was just out walking home after picking up some iced tea and skittles from the store, talking to his girlfriend on the cell the whole while, until he notices someone slowly...slowly following behind him in his car. He has just as many reasons to be suspicious as Zimmerman.

    It's a weird situation for both of them. One based entirely on misunderstandings and nearly pointless suspicions, and one that ended up being handled in the worst possible ways.
     
  12. MegamanX macrumors regular

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    May 13, 2013
    #13
    I would say Zimmerman is guilty of man slaughter. He broke many MANY of the rules of neighborhood watch.
    If he is let off he better be banned from neighbourhood watch as he broke any of the rules.
    It is clear Zimmerman followed the guy and went against watch the dispatcher said. His refusal to go where they said to go was pretty bad. Zimmerman is a nut case and it is pretty clear he used his knowledge of the law to try to get himself off the hook for murder.
     
  13. Renzatic Suspended

    Renzatic

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    #14
    He'd only be guilty of murder if you assume Z went after M with malicious intent, rather than suspicion.

    Here are the two ways it could've played out in my mind:

    Zimmerman approached Martin despite being told otherwise. In his mind, he was justified in doing so. Unfortunately, he probably went all gung ho and stupid about it, which scared Martin, and made him think he was in danger. This is why he attacked Zimmerman, who then felt threatened himself by said attack, and thought he had to use his gun to save his own life.

    Here, Z is guilty of voluntary manslaughter. Even though he thought himself justified to use his gun in self defense, he instigated the situation that eventually led to him killing Martin. The whole thing wouldn't have happened if he did as he was told.

    The other way would be Zimmerman's story. He was following Martin, as per his job, but never confronted him. Instead, he found Martin waiting for him as he was walking back to his car, who got in his face about following him, which probably made Zimmerman spit some 'tude back at him, escalating the situation, and they ended up getting into a nice little brawl.

    Here, Zimmerman would be justified in using his gun, because he was confronted by Martin, who then started a fight. You don't have to like the fact he used a weapon against an unarmed kid (and I wouldn't blame you if you didn't), but he's in the right according to the law.

    Problem is, none of us know exactly what happened that night. All we have is Zimmerman's side, and a bunch of conflicting eyewitness accounts that could easily point to either scenario depending on how you look at them.
     
  14. bradl, Jul 7, 2013
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2013

    bradl macrumors 68040

    bradl

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    #15
    IIRC, and mccrain or other lawyers here can correct me here, isn't 2nd Degree Murder the same thing as involuntary manslaughter? And also, isn't the only difference between murder 1 and murder 2 just premeditation?

    If so, then manslaughter and Murder 2 are one in the same. Finally, is reasonable doubt needing to be proven for Murder 2? Last I remembered, it did not.

    So I'm not going to really answer this right now until those questions are resolved, because either Zimmerman is not guilty, or guilty of 2nd Degree Murder. The way things sound, though, I'm leaning more towards guilty. Of what, is the exact question.

    BL.
     
  15. Renzatic, Jul 7, 2013
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2013

    Renzatic Suspended

    Renzatic

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    #16
    I think Murder 2 is an accidental killing during a malicious situation. Like if someone robbing a liquor store pushes the owner down a flight of stairs during his getaway attempt, and he ends up cracking his head open and dying. Most of the time, I believe Murder 2 is tied in with other crimes, and rarely ever pops up by itself.

    Voluntary and involuntary manslaughter are different, lesser charges because they don't assume malicious intent. They're used for irresponsible actions that ended up costing someone their life.

    edit: Here you go. Murder 2 defined.
     
  16. AhmedFaisal, Jul 7, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 16, 2013
  17. Renzatic Suspended

    Renzatic

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    #18
    You're leaving out two important facts that keep it from being an open and shut murder two case.

    First, we don't know who confronted who first. This is a huge point of contention that could change the entire case for everyone involved if it ever became known.

    Second, Zimmerman didn't use his gun into he was in the middle of a good fight with Martin. That means he didn't use his gun until he felt it was absolutely necessary, meaning that, depending on who confronted who first, he's either innocent and exercising his right to self defense, or guilty of manslaughter because he instigated a situation that led to him being in danger, but didn't act out of (provable) malice beforehand.
     
  18. chown33 macrumors 604

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    #19
    The underlined scenario would be first degree murder.

    Robbing a liquour store would be robbery, a felony. And according to your link:
    California lists some 20 different special circumstances that can boost a murder from second to first degree,
    ...
    or murder where the killing occurred during the commission of, aid of, or flight from certain felonies. These felonies include rape, robbery, kidnapping, burglary, arson, train wrecking, sodomy, the performance of a lewd or lascivious act upon a child under age 14, and oral copulation with a child under age 14 (Cal. Penal Code § 190.2 [West 1996]).​
    Many other states have similar statutes, where a homicide during the commission of a felony is first degree murder, even if the death was unintended.
     
  19. Renzatic Suspended

    Renzatic

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    #20
    I assumed that Murder One was intentional and premeditated, whereas Two was unintentional, but came about from malicious circumstances.

    We need a real lawyer all up ins to explain this stuff to us.
     
  20. bradl macrumors 68040

    bradl

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    #21
    This is why I was refraining from saying anything until someone like mccrain spoke up (if he does at all). IIRC, he's a defense attorney.

    BL.
     
  21. iMikeT macrumors 68020

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    California
    #22
    In my mind, Zimmerman is 100% guilty.

    In reality, it will probably be a hung jury and the prosecution won't pursue trying this case again.

    For those saying the state failed to prove their case against him, keep in mind that the prosecution's star witness, Trayvon Martin's friend who was on the phone with him moments before he was killed, was discredited by the defense. Instead of sticking to the facts, the defense instead made her appear less credible thus possibly swaying a simple-minded juror.
     
  22. Sydde macrumors 68020

    Sydde

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    #23
    mcrain fell under the banhammer, he will not be posting in this or any other thread. So, keep waiting.

    My understanding is that murder-two is always intentional, unintentional murder is manslaughter, which is sometimes called third-degree-murder. The distinction between first and second is an "aggravating" factor, most commonly premeditation or as a consequence of a felony. If, for example, you stand up from the poker table and shoot Utah Jim for cheating, you can probably demonstrate lack of premeditation (you always carry a gun around), so it would be second-degree. Conversely, you would likely get murder-one for something like drowning in a bathtub or strangulation, because you had a long time to reconsider (not take it to the bitter end).

    Zimmerman intentionally shot Martin to death, this much is not disputed. Only some mitigating circumstance like self-defense can make it not murder-two.
     
  23. Renzatic Suspended

    Renzatic

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    #24
    Gotcha. Or just about. The only thing that confuses me is that there are occasions where crimes of passion are considered manslaughter rather than murder two. Like if you're a particularly surly dude, and you come home to discover some strange guy having sex with your wife in your bed that you bought bought together on your honeymoon. You breaking out the shotgun and shooting him point blank in the chest can sometimes get you charged with either/or.

    There are obviously a lot of fine details and various laws I'm not taking into account here that makes it lean more towards one or the other here. You think it'd be fairly cut and dry, though.

    What makes it manslaughter to me is that I don't believe Z got out of his car with the intentions of shooting Martin. The only thing we have to go on is Z's word, of course, but if he had pulled his gun before the fight, M would've likely tried knocking it out of Z hand and would've been shot from a slight distance for his efforts, rather than throwing himself against it to bring Z to the ground, then getting shot with the gun pressed against his skin after he got a few good hits in.

    See, no matter what's said and done, I don't believe Zimmerman is a racist monster he's made out be who intended on harming Martin the moment he saw him.

    ...but I do think he's an idiot. He strikes me as one of those security guard types who are a little too zealous about their job, and likely had dreams of all the glory and praise he'd get for busting some hardened criminal in his neighborhood. Having the gun with him, even if it weren't out and in his hand before the fight, probably did make him feel overconfident enough to possibly approach Martin first.

    If he's guilty of anything, it's manslaughter.
     
  24. Andeavor macrumors 6502

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    #25
    If Martin was unarmed and showed no malicious or criminal intent, then shooting him is manslaughter. Period.

    Zimmerman and his attorney can twist this many times over, it's thanks to the corrupt and terribly flawed American legal system that you *can* get away with murder if you spin the story around well enough.

    Congratulations, now lets go make the 1% wealthier.
     

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