Ninja wrote:Are you kidding me? We've got an adult in a car, at night, following a juvenile on foot who, as it turns out, was a visitor to the area and unfamiliar with his surroundings, but had every right to be there. The juvenile is aware that he's being followed, and then the adult gets out of the car and there's some kind of confrontation. That's a juvenile who has a reasonable fear that he's about to be subject to a forcible felony of some sort or another. Especially when we find out, in absolute fact, that the adult was carrying a gun, and the juvenile got murdered with that gun. C'mon son.
This is exactly the kind of scenario that this law was designed to address. The FL legislature wanted to deal with this type of situation with a presumption of innocence for the putative victim rather than requiring proof. But even under that approach they could have written it to require more than just a reasonable belief. And they could have written it to require a felony in progress rather than just imminence. And they could have put various conditions on exactly which forcible felonies would qualifiy.
They didn't. This law was written to require only an arguable hunch that some shit might be going down before you murder someone who might present some vague threat to you. And in this case the demographics didn't play out like the designers intended (I'm assuming, based on reaction), but it would have been applicable if things had turned out differently, and it is still relevant to the overall situation because both parties can't claim self defense.
Keep in mind that you're arguing essentially the same standard for a gentleman who did in fact employ deadly force during a confrontation that he himself instigated, and his reasonable belief was based on head wounds sustained that required no more than bandaids to patch up (and even that assumes that his account of the situation is completely accurate). If reasonableness and immenince would be at issue for Mr. Martin, then they're at issue for the defense too.
This is why the laws that you advocate for are stupid and cowardly.
What makes you say Trayvon was "unfamiliar with his surroundings?" Wiki article states, "Martin had visited his father's fiancée at Twin Lakes several times."
So, okay, you don't like the concept of "presumed innocence" even though it dates back to Roman Law, is contained in among other things English Common Law and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and is a cornerstone of the American justice system.
Sorry, but you can't use the fact that Zimmerman had a gun as part of your theory that Martin had a reasonable fear unless you can show that Martin knew Zimmerman had a gun. There's been absolutely no evidence that he knew about the gun until either the moment he got shot, or immediately beforehand at the soonest.
Absolutely false that the Florida law only requires an "arguable hunch that something was going down" in order to shoot someone. You can't defend that statement in the slightest because it's simply not contained in the law. You might want to check how the term "reasonable belief" is defined in self-defense laws. I suggest before you argue how bad you think a law is that you familiarize yourself with it.
I see you have chosen to subscribe to the prosecution's absurd insinuation that a person is not justified in using deadly force unless they have already suffered life-threatening injuries. Well, there would be a self-defense law that absolutely no one would follow!
Yes, reasonableness and imminence ARE an issue for Zimmerman. I think if your head is in the process of being slammed into concrete, that's "imminent" enough to satisfy any reasonable person. Imminent means "about to happen" but if you want to re-define the word to mean "in progress?" Okay, in this case it WAS in progress.