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Author Topic: The Case of Christopher Cervini  (Read 2165 times)

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Offline NiceTexasGuyTopic starter

The Case of Christopher Cervini
« on: July 19, 2013, 11:16:35 PM »
I knew better than to subject myself to the opinions of everyone who had an opinion on the Trayvon Martin case (found here: The Case of Trayvon Martin) but in the interest of fairness, I thought I should start this thread so everyone could express themselves on the merits of the case against Roderick Scott and their outrage over any injustices they believe occurred.

You're welcome.

What's that?  You never heard of the Christopher Cervini case?  Well, that's difficult to believe.  Maybe this will help:

 Christopher Cervini Case


Once again, you're welcome.
« Last Edit: July 19, 2013, 11:22:25 PM by NiceTexasGuy »

Offline Cyrano Johnson

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Re: The Case of Christopher Cervini
« Reply #1 on: July 19, 2013, 11:52:40 PM »
Quote from: NiceTexasGuy
I knew better than to subject myself to the opinions of everyone who had an opinion on the Trayvon Martin case

Good to see you starting us off on a constructive note!

I've actually been wondering why we haven't heard more about the Cervini case; the right has got to be absolutely dying for something to take attention off Trayvon Martin and deeply resentful of (and perhaps concerned by) the spotlight that case is still shining on Stand Your Ground laws and racial biasing. The unfortunate timing of a Florida black woman being handed twenty years for firing in the air in the same week that Zimmerman was acquitted has made the optics even worse. So why isn't Cervini's name blaring constantly from every conservative news outlet? Why aren't we hearing more determined attempts at gotcha arguments and "where is the outrage" tactics? We know they could do it if they wanted to.

Admittedly there's the problem that the cases are hard to portray as similar: unlike Zimmerman, who was facing a lone kid with a bag of Skittles, Roderick Scott found himself actually confronting a group of genuine delinquents -- guilty of more than just wearing hoodies -- in the midst of actual criminal activity. But airbrushing details like that out shouldn't in itself shouldn't pose too much of a problem to the same people who so energetically worked to demonize Trayvon.

I think the real problem is that bringing up Roderick Scott would sit too awkwardly with too many conservative pieties, especially when racial biasing is already under the lens. Mentioning that there was no national hue and cry just reminds everyone that unlike with Scott, it took national outcry just to get Zimmerman into a courtroom. After that, well: does one bring up the case and demand Roderick Scott be pilloried? You have to square that with the idea that the right is supposed to love the man who defends his home with a lawful firearm... and it would be awkward to be seen appearing to imply that such self-defense should only apply to the white (or at least other-than-black) man. Does one bring up the case and say that Roderick Scott deserves his freedom for the same reason George Zimmerman did, that he was confronting thuggery and doing what he had to do? Then you're lining up against the grieving family of a white teenager shot by a hulking black male. This would have the benefit of somewhat confusing the "other side," but at a huge expense of ill-will and divisiveness in the Republican ranks.

It's a no-win, really; there just isn't an angle for using Cervini's death in this manner that doesn't look somehow self-contradictory and hypocritical. No wonder they haven't tried to run with it, and most right-of-center commentary is not trying to tie the two cases together. Since the two cases are in fact not comparable anyway, I think it's to the ultimate good fortune of Cervini's family that they're spared the dubious honour of having their grief appropriated for a national game of political Calvinball.

EDIT: I would add to this that I don't believe either Cervini or Martin should be dead, and I do believe that both of their deaths are ultimately indictments of America's ubiquitous firearms culture. I am firmly in the nobody should be shooting kids camp. But then, I'm one of those darned leftists, so I would say that...
« Last Edit: July 20, 2013, 12:04:28 AM by Cyrano Johnson »

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Re: The Case of Christopher Cervini
« Reply #2 on: July 20, 2013, 12:22:53 AM »
First: This is a tragedy. A young boy died in a stupid, avoidable incident; that is always cause for mourning. That said: Your source is wildly inaccurate (or at least disagrees with every other source).

Quote
A neighborhood watch man, an adult carrying a concealed weapon, shot and killed an unarmed teenage boy and was just found not-guilty by a jury after two days of deliberations.
There are two lies in this opening statement alone. Roderick Scott was not a neighbourhood watch man - this statement appears to have no purpose but to draw false equivalence to the Zimmerman case - and he was not carrying a concealed weapon. In fact, he specifically drew his weapon, assumed a shooter's stance, and gave them a verbal warning that he was armed and had called 911 - and was then attacked, upon which he fired his weapon. Other key differences:

-Roderick Scott had not been obviously and suspiciously following the boys beforehand, in a move that would make them nervous and paranoid.
-He also hadn't been specifically told not to do what he was doing, let alone escalate the situation, by police.
-Scott was dealing with three people; this clearly makes the use of a force multiplier at least more justifiable.
-The boys Scott was confronting were actually in the process of committing a crime; he had grounds to suspect them other than their skin colour.
-Roderick Scott immediately called 911 a second time, advised the authorities that he had shot someone, and gave a statement of what had transpired.
-Scott appears to have been taken into custody and charged immediately, not following a two-month delay and massive national outrage.
-Scott testified at his own trial, and this testimony was overall extremely consistent with the statements he gave to 911 and to the police following his arrest.
-On the other hand, the witnesses for the defense were remarkably inconsistent.
-Cervini's family retained two lawyers and filed the initial paperwork to press a civil lawsuit against Mr. Scott in 2010, but did not follow through. Best guess based on this is that their attorneys advised them that they basically didn't have a case. Given the much lower bar of evidence in civil court, this is... pretty damning.

Oh, and this happened in 2009. It's more than a little hypocritical to wait until a case has mostly fallen off the radar - until primary sources are unavailable for key facts - and then ask why nobody's hearing about it. I'm not even going to touch the racist dogwhistles and false equivalences all over your source.
« Last Edit: July 20, 2013, 12:28:10 AM by Ephiral »

Offline NiceTexasGuyTopic starter

Re: The Case of Christopher Cervini
« Reply #3 on: July 20, 2013, 12:23:23 AM »
Good to see you starting us off on a constructive note!

 ;D

Well, here's my response to that:

The public pressure and outrage is the reason it came to trial at all; the Sanford PD originally tried to sweep it under the rug. And one has to admit that when someone gets fatally shot, a trial is usually in order. So while I get your misgivings about the role of the public arena, its functions are not all negative.

But let's be real. There would have been no need for a public outcry to get the case into a courtroom had the roles been reversed, and Martin had stalked, confronted and shot Zimmerman. There would have been no question of the "self-defense" rationalization saving Martin in a scenario where that happened. Had Martin hunted some poor bastard down and seen fit to blow him away for having the temerity to defend himself, the people who have defended Zimmerman's actions would have pilloried him, and an all-white jury would have buried him deep in a hole for life with the same facility with which it saw fit to acquit Zimmerman.

Anyone who tells me they are in doubt about any of the above points? I do not believe them, point blank. If the Martin case performs any function at all, it should be to lay to rest the "post-racial America" myth.


Look familiar?  You seem like a well-spoken intellectual guy, but can you really believe the police department would "sweep it under the rug" or that in 2013 America a prosecuter would not prosecute a case because the "victim" was black?  Even if he or she wanted to, do you think they would think they could get away with it?  It sounds like something Jesse Jackson or Al Sharpton would preach.  Please tell me you're not a fan.

And because I did read far enough to see your comment about the roles being reversed, I figured I'd throw this out there.

Someone from outside the U.S. made the comment about being on the outside looking in.  The fact is, everyone was on the outside looking in (unless they were one of the investigating officers, prosecutors, judge, defense attorneys, or jurors, they were on the outside looking in.)

I will confess I avoided this case like the plague, because I knew exactly what would happen, and I couldn't bear to watch.  So unlike everyone else in America, I'm not intimately familiar with all the "facts" of the case.  I do know, however, that the police don't always make an arrest right away.  The more serious the case, the more likely it will be sent to the prosecutor to make sure all the ducks are in a row before a warrant is issued.  I might also point out this is particularly true in cases where the guilt of the accused is in question.  And since it turned out the guy was found not guilty, that would sort of confirm the decision of the cops not to arrest.

But hey, we're not here to discuss the Martin/Zimmerman case, are we?  Because, you know, I'm really not interested in doing that.

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Re: The Case of Christopher Cervini
« Reply #4 on: July 20, 2013, 12:30:15 AM »
can you really believe the police department would "sweep it under the rug" or that in 2013 America a prosecuter would not prosecute a case because the "victim" was black?

EDITED FOR GREATER CLARITY: Well, it's a matter of record that Sanford PD initially tried to avoid laying charges, I promise I didn't make that up. (Those scare quotes around "victim" are classy, BTW.) Now, you may have your opinions about why that happened, but the fact of that happening isn't in dispute, and it was not a case of their lying in wait to build a case and then arrest the perp; they wanted to accept Zimmerman's assertion of self-defence and leave it at that. They only changed course in the face of public outcry. And yes, it's probably pretty clear that I think race was a factor in that initial decision, just as race was a factor in the campaign of posthumous vilification that was subsequently levelled at Martin when the case was brought to trial.

(Oh, and since you've familiarized yourself with my comments in the Martin thread, you probably already know that "this is 2013 and racism is over" rhetoric cuts little ice with me. I won't repeat myself about the whys and wherefores of any of that, I stated it at sufficient length already.)

Quote
But hey, we're not here to discuss the Martin/Zimmerman case, are we?  Because, you know, I'm really not interested in doing that.

I'm glad to hear that. Though admittedly it's a little curious, then, that most of your reply is about it? Well, never mind.
« Last Edit: July 20, 2013, 12:58:59 AM by Cyrano Johnson »

Offline Ephiral

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Re: The Case of Christopher Cervini
« Reply #5 on: July 20, 2013, 12:51:31 AM »
I will confess I avoided this case like the plague, because I knew exactly what would happen, and I couldn't bear to watch.  So unlike everyone else in America, I'm not intimately familiar with all the "facts" of the case.  I do know, however, that the police don't always make an arrest right away.  The more serious the case, the more likely it will be sent to the prosecutor to make sure all the ducks are in a row before a warrant is issued.  I might also point out this is particularly true in cases where the guilt of the accused is in question.  And since it turned out the guy was found not guilty, that would sort of confirm the decision of the cops not to arrest.
So... why did it take five days to have a grand jury indict Scott on a charge of second-degree murder, of which he was found not guilty? Your logic... doesn't appear to hold.

EDIT:
Well, I just did that because it appears he wasn't really the victim, and I didn't want to imply he was.
Your use of "the" victim implies that you think there was one. Is this correct? If so, who?
« Last Edit: July 20, 2013, 01:01:35 AM by Ephiral »

Offline NiceTexasGuyTopic starter

Re: The Case of Christopher Cervini
« Reply #6 on: July 20, 2013, 12:54:11 AM »
(Those scare quotes around "victim" are classy, BTW.)

Well, I just did that because it appears he wasn't really the victim, and I didn't want to imply he was.

Offline NiceTexasGuyTopic starter

Re: The Case of Christopher Cervini
« Reply #7 on: July 20, 2013, 01:01:18 AM »
So... why did it take five days to have a grand jury indict Scott on a charge of second-degree murder, of which he was found not guilty? Your logic... doesn't appear to hold.

I'm not sure what you mean.  The job of the grand jury is not to determine guilt or innocence, but to determine if there is sufficient evidence to bring a case to trial.  Often it's seen as another step in the process that affords the defendant another chance at not being prosecuted, and often it's a method by which the prosecutor "passes the buck" and let's someone else decide whether a case goes to trial. 

I suspect it varies by state, but in many places the prosecutor has the option of bypassing the grand jury, either in their decision to prosecute, or to not prosecute.  Probably a lot of the time the prosecutor uses the grand jury as the scapegoat.  After all, they are politicians, right?

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Re: The Case of Christopher Cervini
« Reply #8 on: July 20, 2013, 01:04:35 AM »
Well, I just did that because it appears he wasn't really the victim, and I didn't want to imply he was.

So is it also your opinion that Cervini wasn't really the victim -- sorry, the "victim" -- of a shooting? The way I'd use the term, even someone shot in alleged self-defense is still the victim of a shooting.
« Last Edit: July 20, 2013, 01:06:01 AM by Cyrano Johnson »

Offline Ephiral

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Re: The Case of Christopher Cervini
« Reply #9 on: July 20, 2013, 01:05:42 AM »
I'm not sure what you mean.  The job of the grand jury is not to determine guilt or innocence, but to determine if there is sufficient evidence to bring a case to trial.  Often it's seen as another step in the process that affords the defendant another chance at not being prosecuted, and often it's a method by which the prosecutor "passes the buck" and let's someone else decide whether a case goes to trial. 

I suspect it varies by state, but in many places the prosecutor has the option of bypassing the grand jury, either in their decision to prosecute, or to not prosecute.  Probably a lot of the time the prosecutor uses the grand jury as the scapegoat.  After all, they are politicians, right?
The grand jury step comes after the police step. If it is prudent and reasonable for the police to wait two months before issuing a warrant in a case as severe as second-degree murder when there is a question of guilt (and a not-guilty verdict is evidence that there was a question of guilt), then why is a second-degree murder case in which it took five days to shoot right past that and into the next step of the process when there was a question of guilt (evidence: not guilty verdict) not massively unfair to the defendant?

Offline NiceTexasGuyTopic starter

Re: The Case of Christopher Cervini
« Reply #10 on: July 20, 2013, 01:29:20 AM »
So is it also your opinion that Cervini wasn't really the victim -- sorry, the "victim" -- of a shooting? The way I'd use the term, even someone shot in alleged self-defense is still the victim of a shooting.

Sorry, I was just trying to make that distinction that the apparent (to some people) victim was actually not the victim of what he was apparently the victim of.  Laying the Zimmerman trial aside for a moment and talking about words and political agendas in general, I am on the verge of taking issue with the idea of calling an agressor shot in self defense the "victim of a shooting" ... is a wife beater a victim of marriage?  If someone is shot trying to steal my sh*t, I'd have to call it a self-inflicted wound, since they made the decision to place themselves in harm's way.  So yeah, the victim of a self inflicted wound.  I can go with that.

If it's that important to you I can modify my post.


The grand jury step comes after the police step. If it is prudent and reasonable for the police to wait two months before issuing a warrant in a case as severe as second-degree murder when there is a question of guilt (and a not-guilty verdict is evidence that there was a question of guilt), then why is a second-degree murder case in which it took five days to shoot right past that and into the next step of the process when there was a question of guilt (evidence: not guilty verdict) not massively unfair to the defendant?

I don't know.  I didn't follow the Zimmerman case because I knew what it would turn in to, so I'm not familiar with the timeline.  I am familiar with the concept of deciding each case on its own merits, and I know that cases that appear to be similar are never identical.  I also know that the general public is usually not privy to what goes on behind the scenes.  Conspiracies being formulated in dark smoke filled rooms?  Attorneys trying to make a deal?   Prosecution performing a more thorough investigation or trying to obtain additional evidence?  I don't know, and neither do a whole lot of other people with stronger opinions than mine.  I'm just on the outside looking in.

*****

Also, sorry if y'all were planning on playing all night, but I gotta go to bed.  Have a good night.  8-)

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Re: The Case of Christopher Cervini
« Reply #11 on: July 20, 2013, 01:33:50 AM »
I don't know.  I didn't follow the Zimmerman case because I knew what it would turn in to, so I'm not familiar with the timeline.  I am familiar with the concept of deciding each case on its own merits, and I know that cases that appear to be similar are never identical.  I also know that the general public is usually not privy to what goes on behind the scenes.  Conspiracies being formulated in dark smoke filled rooms?  Attorneys trying to make a deal?   Prosecution performing a more thorough investigation or trying to obtain additional evidence?  I don't know, and neither do a whole lot of other people with stronger opinions than mine.  I'm just on the outside looking in.
So it is your opinion that these two cases are not even remotely equivalent, and as such should not be compared? I take no issue with that position, but the fact that you opened by talking about the Zimmerman case and your sole source on the Scott case was explicitly and entirely about comparing them makes this highly dubious.

Offline meikle

Re: The Case of Christopher Cervini
« Reply #12 on: July 20, 2013, 02:04:22 AM »
The premise of this thread is perhaps the most blatant display of intellectual dishonesty I've encountered on this forum.

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Re: The Case of Christopher Cervini
« Reply #13 on: July 21, 2013, 10:32:49 AM »
I see, understand, and respect what you are attempting to do.

Giving a comparison to two cases that seem similar is always wonderful. However, the reason the public's out cry was so great in comparison for this case isn't because of the case itself. I doubt that I would have heard as much about it and I live about an 8 minutes drive from Stanford via the tolls. The case, in my honest opinion, was as solid as one could make it. The investigation leading up to it is what grinds my gears as well as the arrest that took place after the nationwide public outcry.

A question about the case of Cervini:

Did they not arrest the shooter immediately?
Did they try to cover up evidence/ try to brush over the fact that this happened?

Did it take a national public outcry to get this case to court?

The Zimmerman trial wasn't what made this a big deal. It wasn't what brought national attention to Stanford, FL. It was the public outcry that it took to get a man arrested for the murder of a teenager and put on trial. Because it's not up to a police officer (who has lost his job as I learned) to decide if a man should be released based on self-defense. It's up to a Grand Jury and then a courtroom. That seems to have been followed in the Cervini case, unless I'm missing something.

Offline Callie Del Noire

Re: The Case of Christopher Cervini
« Reply #14 on: July 21, 2013, 11:47:33 AM »
I see, understand, and respect what you are attempting to do.

Giving a comparison to two cases that seem similar is always wonderful. However, the reason the public's out cry was so great in comparison for this case isn't because of the case itself. I doubt that I would have heard as much about it and I live about an 8 minutes drive from Stanford via the tolls. The case, in my honest opinion, was as solid as one could make it. The investigation leading up to it is what grinds my gears as well as the arrest that took place after the nationwide public outcry.

A question about the case of Cervini:

Did they not arrest the shooter immediately?
Did they try to cover up evidence/ try to brush over the fact that this happened?

Did it take a national public outcry to get this case to court?

The Zimmerman trial wasn't what made this a big deal. It wasn't what brought national attention to Stanford, FL. It was the public outcry that it took to get a man arrested for the murder of a teenager and put on trial. Because it's not up to a police officer (who has lost his job as I learned) to decide if a man should be released based on self-defense. It's up to a Grand Jury and then a courtroom. That seems to have been followed in the Cervini case, unless I'm missing something.

Looks to be about right. The issue of due process was done in this case. There are a LOT of telling similarities BUT you're right Rogue.. due process seems to have been done better in this case than in the Martin case. No 'backdoor buddys fixing things' sort of vibe at the beginning.

BUT I bet if it HAD hit the headlines it would have drawn national attention. Mostly it was a matter of national visibility at the right time. Had it come up like the Martin case with similar parallels in the break of due process it would have gone national as well.

Dont' think it would have lasted as long.. because the cops involved did right.

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Re: The Case of Christopher Cervini
« Reply #15 on: July 21, 2013, 11:56:45 AM »
The Zimmerman trial wasn't what made this a big deal. It wasn't what brought national attention to Stanford, FL. It was the public outcry that it took to get a man arrested for the murder of a teenager and put on trial. Because it's not up to a police officer (who has lost his job as I learned) to decide if a man should be released based on self-defense. It's up to a Grand Jury and then a courtroom. That seems to have been followed in the Cervini case, unless I'm missing something.

It isn't... but in Florida, that doesn't mean what you would think. Because stand-your-ground laws in general, and Florida's in particular, are ludicrous.

Quote from: Florida Statute 776.032
Immunity from criminal prosecution and civil action for justifiable use of force.
(1) A person who uses force as permitted in s. 776.012, s. 776.013, or s. 776.031 is justified in using such force and is immune from criminal prosecution and civil action for the use of such force, unless the person against whom force was used is a law enforcement officer, as defined in s. 943.10(14), who was acting in the performance of his or her official duties and the officer identified himself or herself in accordance with any applicable law or the person using force knew or reasonably should have known that the person was a law enforcement officer. As used in this subsection, the term “criminal prosecution” includes arresting, detaining in custody, and charging or prosecuting the defendant.
(2) A law enforcement agency may use standard procedures for investigating the use of force as described in subsection (1), but the agency may not arrest the person for using force unless it determines that there is probable cause that the force that was used was unlawful.
Text taken from here.

TL;DR: I am not a lawyer, but it appears that they were actually following the law as written by cutting him loose. Because in Florida, apparently the law is more concerned with advancing gun rights than ensuring due process or the service of justice.

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Re: The Case of Christopher Cervini
« Reply #16 on: July 21, 2013, 01:44:08 PM »
First thing: I'm going to put out there that I don't know enough about the Martin/Zimmerman situation to have much of an opinion about the specific case at all. I grok many of the subtexts because I'm already familiar with them, and I absolutely regret that a teenager is dead. Parents have had to bury their son, and no matter what kind of son it was, that's always a tragedy. That's about as far as my opinion goes on this specific case.

In general, though, I'm a little disquieted by the cycle that has been (once again) displayed here. It goes something like this:

1. Crime happens. Public finds out about crime.
2. Alleged perp is brought to trial.
3. Public opinion is both riveted and filled with schadenfreude, usually because the public has already decided that the alleged perp is guilty, guilty, guilty.
4. Jury acquits.
5. Public howls with outrage because justice wasn't done.

The ones off the top of my head are Casey Anthony, OJ Simpson, and of course Mr. Zimmerman. We know, intellectually, that the public and the media often do not see all parts of an investigation. We know that not every lead and clue gets disseminated through the press. By the nature of our judicial system, that evidence is introduced at court unless the evidence is shown as being irrelevant, poorly put together, unsupported, etc. So in general, by the nature of our judicial system, the jury will see more - much more - than your average public. The jury is often sequestered to avoid media bias, they're not supposed to discuss the case with others until deliberation time...

... so why does the public still get outraged about cases like these? Repeatedly? Why do we get outraged when the jury, which supposedly has all of the evidence, doesn't come to the conclusion we want them to? Why do you think that is?

I'm not interested in discussing the OP's desire to talk-about-Trayvon-without-really-talking-about-Trayvon, whatever he tries to dress it up as, but I am interested in this particular quirk of public opinion. Is it as simple as saying the public thinks it knows better?

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Re: The Case of Christopher Cervini
« Reply #17 on: July 21, 2013, 01:48:31 PM »
Never mind the fact that the same said public will often do whatever it takes to avoid serving on a jury.  *smirk*  (Of course, having the 'OMG, can't you see he's guilty?!' attitude would probably get them excused for cause anyways.)

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Re: The Case of Christopher Cervini
« Reply #18 on: July 21, 2013, 01:51:54 PM »
Well... in this particular case, there was no way anything but a guilty verdict could possibly look fair from the outside. Any chance of that was destroyed by the conduct of the Sanford PD, who basically did everything possible every step of the way to look like they were covering it up.

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Re: The Case of Christopher Cervini
« Reply #19 on: July 21, 2013, 02:05:34 PM »
It isn't... but in Florida, that doesn't mean what you would think. Because stand-your-ground laws in general, and Florida's in particular, are ludicrous.
Text taken from here.

TL;DR: I am not a lawyer, but it appears that they were actually following the law as written by cutting him loose. Because in Florida, apparently the law is more concerned with advancing gun rights than ensuring due process or the service of justice.

.... This is why I want to move so badly... Forget the humidity and every other reason I want to leave....

*sighs* I stand corrected. Thanks for the new info Ephiral. My point was made though.

I'm going to go back to sticking my head in the ground. See you guys around.



Online Neysha

Re: The Case of Christopher Cervini
« Reply #20 on: July 21, 2013, 07:29:12 PM »
It seems to be a fairly firm rejection of the still very compelling argument of "What would happen if George Zimmerman is Black?"

With that said, there were some obvious differences. Cyrano and Ephiral covered most of the differences, but I'm also assuming that the time of the shooting there might've even been less visibility since it took place at three in the morning, and I'm assuming New York State is probably more strict on gun crime in general, or maybe (as described in the links in this thread) the crime ridden neighborhood of Greece, NY might be more proactive in pursuing gun violence then the state of Florida and city of Sanford respectively. Also from what I've read so far, it doesn't seem like there was any actual physical contact between Cervini and Scott and it was likely more plausible that Scott could still retreat and cower inside of his home since New York laws supposedly state you can only use such force from inside your dwelling or if unable to safely retreat.

Offline Ephiral

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Re: The Case of Christopher Cervini
« Reply #21 on: July 21, 2013, 09:10:01 PM »
"Being charged by a screaming person who is clearly not thinking straight and has backup" seems to fit the bill for "unable to retreat safely" to me.

Online Neysha

Re: The Case of Christopher Cervini
« Reply #22 on: July 21, 2013, 10:09:27 PM »
"Being charged by a screaming person who is clearly not thinking straight and has backup" seems to fit the bill for "unable to retreat safely" to me.

Indeed. Confronting a person armed with gun rarely is a good idea unless similarly equipped.

Offline TaintedAndDelish

Re: The Case of Christopher Cervini
« Reply #23 on: July 22, 2013, 04:17:12 AM »
With the Travon case, there's a lot of folks ( ie. Sharpton ) demanding "Justice", but it seems that what they really want is either a ruling that validates their loss or that appeases their anger. Neither of these is justice.

As for reversing races as a test to see if the case would be viewed differently, Its kind of hard to find a perfect match. Perhaps its just my perception or location, but I don't see a lot of white people claiming racism when there's a conflict between a black person and a white person. Automatically assuming that someone is being racist because of their color is kind of racist, isn't it?

Offline vtboy

Re: The Case of Christopher Cervini
« Reply #24 on: July 22, 2013, 07:36:45 AM »
Under Florida law, it was the prosecution's burden to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Zimmerman did not reasonably perceive he was at risk of death or serious bodily injury and act appropriately in self-defense when he shot Martin. The evidence of what happened between the time Zimmerman left his car and the moment he pulled the trigger was spotty at best. While there are other plausible scenarios, I don't see how  the jury's conclusion that the evidence failed convincingly to eliminate self-defense can be criticized. The jury did exactly what it was supposed to do -- it accorded Zimmerman the presumption of innocence and held the prosecution to its daunting burden of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. Though I am unacquainted with the Scott case, I trust it represents another instance in which the criminal justice system performed as it should.

Was Zimmerman's acquittal just? I don't know. But, I do know that I would much rather live in a society that, while aspiring to just verdicts, insists on legal ones.