Caterpillars, moths, butterflies, and all creatures great and small;
There is lots of news.
This afternoon, officials began identifying the 14 victims of the San Bernardino mass shooting. The Huffington Post has posted the information. One victim leaves behind 6 children.
The New York Times is keeping a running format on investigation updates.
Also this afternoon, Twitter suspended George Zimmerman’s account. It appears that he was in a relationship with a woman in Kentucky, and they broke up. Zimmerman went on a revenge-porn campaign, posting nude photos of her on Twitter along with her address and phone number. The Daily Dot has screenshots and the story.
Just some thoughts on this dreary, cold day.
It is hard when loved ones die from disease or old age. It is horrible when loved ones die from an accident. It is devastating when loved ones are killed by others. Those left behind always seem to have a feeling of guilt, but that’s mainly from being helpless. I’ve said on this blog many times that death does not discriminate. It doesn’t care about age, gender, or the color of skin. Money might buy medical care to extend life, but it cannot bribe death when the time comes. That sense of helplessness runs deep.
When loved ones are killed, people look to the justice system. The only comfort that comes from that is the sense of juries and judges acknowledging right from wrong. However, what juries hear and see is painted by their own hearts and minds. People are not computers programmed to process data without bias.
There are times when there are no words sufficient in bringing comfort to the hurting, to those who have lost loved ones, the ill, the tired. There are times when I feel that there must be more – something I can do, and not merely say. If I had the power of resurrection, I would walk through the hospitals, the morgue, the graveyards, calling out names and saying, “Come forth.”
Today, because I feel that there are no words sufficient to directly comfort the living, I will address their loved ones who have gone on. Read the rest of this entry
3 1/2 Minutes is a documentary movie about the Jordan Davis’ murder. For a background on the film, click here to see our previous article. The documentary was presented at the Sundance Film Festival and has won the Documentary Special Jury Award for Social Impact. Jordan’s parents, Lucia McBath and Ronald Davis, spoke at the acceptance.
“I am grieved that these continuing stories are everyday matters swept away,” HBO Documentary Films president Sheila Nevins said in a statement. “By bringing this powerful film to HBO audiences, we hope to elevate the national conversation around these tragic issues.”
HBO has secured the film’s television rights.
Here’s the award announcement and acceptance.
Here’s the trailer for the movie.
At Sundance, the premier independent film festival, the documentary titled 3 ½ Minutes will take the screen in Utah. Minette Nelson wanted to document a story that would continue the discussion on race and gun violence with a focus on Florida, but she wanted a story that was not as well-known as the Trayvon Martin story. Her son told her about Jordan Davis. She read everything she could about the killing and mailed Ron Davis, Jordan’s father, in April 2013.
“My letter stated that I felt that Jordan’s case could be exemplary of what is wrong with post-racial society in America and that Jordan was no different from my son. Thirdly, that if there had been no gun in the equation, Jordan would’ve gone home safely to his bed that night.”
The 2013 festival’s award for best cinematography went to Marc Silver for the film, “Who Is Dayani Cristal?” Marc Singer directed “3 ½ Minutes.” He has a promotion for the film on his website.
The man who was found guilty on three counts of attempted 2nd degree murder, firing a missile, and 1st degree murder, for killing 17-year old, unarmed Jordan Davis, has been sentenced.
Michael Dunn will spend the rest of his life in prison without parole, plus 105 years.
Dunn gave a half-ass apology, stating;
“I want the Davis family to know I truly regret what happened. I’m sorry for their loss,” If I could roll back time and do things differently, I would. I was in fear for my life and I did what I thought I had to do. Still, I am mortified I took a life, whether it was justified or not.”
As soon as a video of the sentencing hearing is available, I’ll update here.
Closing arguments concluded yesterday evening. The State conducted effective closing argument, incorporating the use of Power Point. The defense however, talked for about 80 minutes, often being redundant, and took statements out of context.
Judge Healey is bringing in the jury to give them instructions, and then they start deliberations. We will be on verdict watch.
To watch the jury receive instructions, and if they have any questions for the judge, and when they announce that they have reached the verdict, use any of the following links.
JUSTICE FOR JORDAN DAVIS!
It is day 5 of the retrial of Michael Dunn for 1st degree murder. Court ended yesterday with the defense bringing on character witnesses. Then, the judge and attorneys started going over jury instructions.
Dunn’s previous trial took 6 days, and that included the state’s rebuttal case. Today, we just might hear from Dunn.
Here are the links to watch live stream:
As videos become available, I will embed them here.
Thanks for watching with us, and for your comments and discussion.
Justice For Jordan!
We continue following the 1st degree murder retrial of Michael Dunn. Trial is scheduled to begin at 9 a.m. EDT.
Judge Healey instructed the defense to have at least one witness for this afternoon. He expects for the prosecution to rest its case. If things go like they did last time, the defense might take a day and a half, followed by the prosecution conducting a rebuttal.
The defense plans on calling Michael Knox, who is a reconstruction consultant. He reconstructs car accidents. If you’re not familiar with Michael Knox, during Zimmerman’s trial, LLMPapa did a series of videos proving Knox wrong regarding how Trayvon Martin was shot. Rather than use garments, Knox used cardboard in his reconstruction. Our BlushedBrown wrote about it on this blog.
This time, Knox did not go on television showing his reconstruction. Judge Healey has ruled that Knox cannot use animation at trial. We’ll have to wait and see if Knox comes to court with cardboard representing the SUV, its rear seat, and Jordan Davis. Actually, we’ll have to wait and see whether Judge Healey allows Knox to testify as an “expert.”
Live stream can be accessed at the following:
Videos of today’s hearing will be embedded here as they become available. A HUGE “thank you” to Croaker Queen for taping the trial.
If you have been unable to follow the trial and want to catch-up, just click “Justice for Jordan Davis” in the top menu. The posts will appear in order with the most recent date first. Click on the title for the complete post with videos from that day.
Judge Healey is holding trial on Saturday because the jury is sequestered. Based on statements he made at the end of yesterday’s hearing, he expects for the defense to have witnesses ready on Monday.
As Judge Healey stated, things are rolling along. One reason for that is because the defense has not cross-examined all state witnesses that have testified, and its cross-examination of other state witnesses was mostly a repeat of their testimony.
I will update here with videos as they become available.
JUSTICE FOR JORDAN!
Good morning caterpillars, butterflies, moths, and all creatures great and small!
We’re following the Michael Dunn retrial.
Yesterday consisted mostly of State prosecutors going in chronological order of witnesses on the scene and law enforcement that first reported on the scene. Click here to watch videos of yesterday’s hearing.
Judge Healey plans to hold court on Saturday because the jury is sequestered.
For live stream, here are some links:
As videos become available, I’ll update here. Read the rest of this entry
The below are videos from the first day of trial. I’ve also included those of opening statements that are on the previous thread so that the entire hearing for today is on the same page.
I big “thank you” to Croaker Queen for providing the videos. Read the rest of this entry
A jury of 8 men and 4 women have been selected to serve on the Michael Dunn 1st degree murder trial for killing 17-year old Jordan Davis.
The jury consists of 10 Whites; 7 white men and 3 white women; and two Blacks, 1 Black man, and 1 Black woman.
Alternates consist of one white man, two white women and one black woman.
The jury will be sequestered. They will not be sworn-in until tomorrow morning because Judge Healey does not want to sequester them tonight.
Action News Jax reports the breakdown: Read the rest of this entry
Caterpillars, moths, butterflies, and all creatures great and small,
Jury selection in the Michael Dunn murder retrial started today. In his first trial, Dunn was found guilty of 2nd degree attempted murder for shooting into the SUV that contained passengers and the driver, including Jordan Davis. The jury however, hung on the 1st degree murder charge for Dunn’s killing of Jordan Davis. Dunn has claimed self-defense.
Dunn’s sentencing on the 2nd degree attempted murder convictions is postponed until after his retrial.
Jury selection is expected to take several days.
Please use this thread to discuss the Dunn jury selection and any other topic that you desire. When trial begins, I will open another thread for reporting and discussion.
Justice of Jordan Davis!
Hat tip to Glenn Robinson for tweeting out the article.
The article on The Root hit me hard;
Reject the “He was a good kid” or “He was a criminal” narrative and lift up the “Black lives matter” narrative. Those who knew him say Brown was a good kid. But that’s not why his death is tragic. His death isn’t tragic because he was on his way to college the following week. His death is tragic because he was a human being and his life mattered. The good-kid narrative might provoke some sympathy, but what it really does is support the lie that as a rule black people, black men in particular, have a norm of violence or criminal behavior. The good-kid narrative says that this kid didn’t deserve to die because his goodness was an exception to the rule. This is wrong. This kid didn’t deserve to die, period. Similarly, reject the “He was a criminal” narrative surrounding the convenience store robbery because even if Brown did steal some cigars and have a scuffle with the shopkeeper, that is still not a justification for his killing. All black lives matter, not just the ones we deem to be “good.”
It caused me to think back about why, during the George Zimmerman case, I did not debate nor defend against accusations that Trayvon was a “thug.” Here we are again with Michael Brown, and there are folks trying to posture Michael as deserving of death because he was not a “good kid. “
The quote above explains what I have not been able to put in words. In essence, those arguments for justification convey that there are good Blacks who deserve to live, and bad Blacks whose lives should be cut-short. That standard is defined by people through racially bigoted eyes that are never satisfied. If they cannot find anything to use to criticize the victim, or when their attempts are proven false, they attack the family, and even attack extended families. Read the rest of this entry
Thanks so much for the update and links to newly filed pleadings.
In February, a Florida jury found Michael Dunn guilty on four of five charges in a case in which Dunn shot ten times at a car full of teenagers over a dispute that started about loud music. However, the 12 person jury could not come to a unanimous decision on the charge of the murder of Jordan Davis and a mistrial was declared on that count alone. A retrial of that count is scheduled for September 22. Dunn faces a minimum of 60 years for the other convictions. Sentencing has been delayed until after trial has concluded. Read the Rolling Stone Story here and see their appearance on Katie Couric here.
I have the honor of representing Jordan Davis’ family. A story was written about how meeting them changed me. You can find that here.
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Recently, two of the jurors in the case of Michael Dunn have interviewed with CNN. Both were asked if race was mentioned during deliberations. Both answered “no.” Then, panels discussing the interviews voiced their disagreement with the jury not discussing race during deliberations. Some online sources have also criticized those jurors. Even Jordan Davis’ father said he could not see how it didn’t come up since Dunn’s girlfriend gave credible testimony that he used the words “thug music.”
In the case of Michael Dunn, like in all other cases, the presiding judge instructs the jury to only consider testimony and evidence presented at trial. The judge also tells the jury the charges. The issue in Dunn’s case is whether he killed Jordan Davis in self-defense. Michael Dunn was not charged with a hate-crime. Read the rest of this entry
Attorney Phillips, thank you for a most informative and historical piece. I’m re-blogging to spread the word. It needs to be known and understood. Those of us advocating for change and/or appeal in Stand Your Ground laws need to understand this based on what you have written. My prayers to Jordan’s parents, and thanks to you for your good work and compassion.
My name is John Phillips. I have the honor to serve as the lawyer for the family of Jordan Davis, a teen killed by a grown man who took offense to his music, his skin color and his choice of words. Like too many others these days, Michael Dunn was empowered by the Stand Your Ground law. He fired 10 times, never called police and found comfort in believing he was on the right side of the tipped scales of justice for legal gun owners in this country.
Like my father, I am a lifelong Republican. He was from Monroeville, Alabama and my mother was from Mississippi. Like my father, I own guns. I grew up in the conservative south, even attending the University of Alabama. I worked for a stalwart member of the GOP, Representative “Sonny” Callahan while in college. I am one of the over one million concealed…
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Hat-tip to Mindyme62
ABC reports an exclusive interview with Juror Number 4, the home healthcare employee. Known as Valerie, she told ABC News that the issue of self-defense forced the jury into an immediate deadlock and prompted some shouting matches.
Valerie old ABC that the issue of self-defense forced the jury into an immediate deadlock. That led to some shouting matches. Valerie, who wanted a murder conviction, says the group knew within the first hour that they would be unable to reach a unanimous decision on the first count. Read the rest of this entry
(Quotes in this article contain profanity.)
I’m not one who writes many opinion pieces. Mostly, I like to report to inform. This time however, I feel compelled to address the most recent events. I was one opposed to the airing of Chris Cuomo’s interview of George Zimmerman. I refused to watch the interview, but CNN producers knew how to get excerpts into programming with panels who I did want to hear, such as Don Lemon and attorney Benjamin Crump. Thus, I saw some excerpts of George Zimmerman’s interview and also Cuomo address how he heard protests, but aired it anyway.
CNN moved the airing up a day early, on national Presidents Day, on the heels of the verdicts in the Michael Dunn trial, and Jordan Davis’ birthday, and during Black History month. Read the rest of this entry