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Judge Rules Defense Can Use Trayvon Martin Tweets 848

theodp writes "The NY Times reports a judge in the second-degree murder case against George Zimmerman has ruled that Trayvon Martin's school and social media records should be provided to the defense. Judge Debra S. Nelson said Martin's Twitter, Facebook and school records were relevant in the self-defense case. In those instances, showing whether a victim 'had an alleged propensity to violence' or aggression is germane, the judge said. The defense also got permission for access to the social media postings of a Miami girl who said she was on the phone with Martin just before the shooting. Time to update the Miranda warning to include: 'Anything you Tweet or post can and will be held against you in a court of law'?'"
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Judge Rules Defense Can Use Trayvon Martin Tweets

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  • by Pinhedd ( 1661735 ) on Saturday October 20, 2012 @02:53PM (#41715941)

    That's true about the defendant, but we're talking about the victim here. It's much easier to get character evidence entered about the victim than it is about the defendant.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday October 20, 2012 @03:09PM (#41716051)

    Yeah, because everyone who listens to hip-hop or trains MMA is a violent thug! Maybe he played some violent video games too! They should dig up his Call Of Duty account and see how many kills he has! Or maybe he has an Orc character in that satanic WoW game!

  • by niko9 ( 315647 ) on Saturday October 20, 2012 @03:18PM (#41716117)

    Even if the kid was bragging about breaking into houses, and even if Zimmerman was aware that Martin broke into houses, that doesn't clear Zimmerman: A citizen with evidence of somebody else's criminal behavior that isn't in immediate danger is supposed to notify the police, not shoot the alleged criminal.

    What I'm assuming they're claiming they're after is evidence that Martin was a violent person who was likely to have responded to Zimmerman by assaulting him.

    Zimmerman has always articulated from day one that he shot to stop the active attack. That he only got out of his car to give the relevant information to the 911 dispatcher of Martin's whereabouts. That Martin came back to confront ZImmerman, threw a punch and continued to beat him while he was supine on the ground. Being on the ground with an attacker actively slamming your head into the concrete pavement is reason enough for using deadly force to stop and attack.

    Zimmerman has never said that he shot Martin for looking suspicious. The media has latched onto speculation --as if it were fact-- that ZImmerman merely shot someone for walking around. The media has put forth the accusation that Stand Your Ground laws allow for this to happen legally when nothing could be further from the truth.

    P.S. Guess which state was the first to enact a Stand Your Ground Law? California. Yes. Hardly the red state bastion of the NRA.

    Here's a very informative video about what Stan Your Ground laws are really about: []

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday October 20, 2012 @03:32PM (#41716193)

    And maybe you got rid of your best candidate because of prejudice based on what he does in his private life. You're part of the worst scum of this Earth. Fuck you.

  • by Artifakt ( 700173 ) on Saturday October 20, 2012 @04:52PM (#41716733)

    A bit hyperbolic, but it touches on several essentials. The causes of Martin's suspensions have been revealed repeatedly, and they are not violence related, but some people on Slashdot are willing to post speculations that there's something beyond that. When you keep looking for the thing that bolsters your opinion, and it's just not there, just maybe it's time to question your opinon instead of doubling down on it.

          Beyond that, there was a point where the police locally knew a few things and only those things, for certain. At later times, other facts came to light, and the situation became more complex, but in the first few hours after the shooting, there was a definite point where all the police had to go on were these facts:
    1. They knew they had a homicide, and who did it.
    2. They knew that the person who did it was claiming it was justifiable self defense.
    3. They knew there were major flaws in the shooter's story - changes in the range the encounter supposedly took place at, changes in what the suspect said to dispatch, what he claimed dispatch said to him, how the deceased person had attacked him, what blows were thrown, what blows landed where, and so on. They knew that their possible murderer had repeatedly changed his story.

          So why didn't they charge him right there and then?

            All debate about what has been revealed weeks or months later ignores this simple question. There was a definite point where George Zimmerman was a strong suspect for a charge of 1st degree murder. Most detectives would have been willing to insist on holding him for at least the standard 24, and go before a judge to apply for a warrent to search Mr. Zimmerman's home. Many would have been willing to get the judge up at 3 AM, if needed, on the strength of what they had at that particular point. Why not in the Martin case?

  • Re:*walks on by* (Score:3, Interesting)

    by hairyfeet ( 841228 ) <> on Saturday October 20, 2012 @09:03PM (#41718333) Journal

    There have been at least 2 witnesses come forward and said they saw martin bashing Zimmerman's head against the ground, and the video the police took clearly shows blood and torn skin on the BACK of Zimmerman's head. Add to this it was over 85 degrees that night yet he was bundled up in a black hoodie and the reason he was in FLA in the first place was getting kicked out of his former school for theft?

    I'm sorry but there is plenty of doubt in this case. mark my words after seeing all the evidence the jury will acquit, which will then be followed by "flash mobs" screaming "justice for Trayvon" while they go on a looting and violence spree, just like they did the day of the funeral. How justice and looting go together damned if I know, but that's what will happen.

  • Re:Hard to say? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by khallow ( 566160 ) on Saturday October 20, 2012 @09:18PM (#41718419)
    Yes, the man getting his head slammed into the concrete repeatedly was clearly at fault. To answer your question, which of these actions you mention is considered sufficient provocation to warrant an assault that could have killed Zimmerman? To the contrary, you can claim self-defense even in such a case. Else you're claiming that one can have an even broader category of legal actions than the existing Florida law for killing someone.

    In other words, if someone gets in my personal space while carrying a gun on their person, then they're fair game, right?
  • by khallow ( 566160 ) on Sunday October 21, 2012 @12:31AM (#41719355)

    Florida has lower standards now than Tombstone.

    Nonsense. Even now, Florida has something like 40 justifiable homicides [] a year by civilians. That's roughly 1 such death per 400,000-500,000 people. It's just not significant for a problem that is supposedly "running amok".

    Even at Tombstone's peak population of something like 14,000 people, that would have been a justifiable homicide every three decades.

  • Re:*walks on by* (Score:5, Interesting)

    by hairyfeet ( 841228 ) <> on Sunday October 21, 2012 @05:22AM (#41720409) Journal

    What royally pisses me off is we have a fricking epidemic in this country of what i call "wolf packs" after the WWII submarine tactic of using strength of numbers as a force multiplier and its spreading like a cancer through the black inner city neighborhoods, yet thanks to the media sucking on the political correctness dick nobody will ask the simple logical question "Why?". Why is this happening, why is it nearly 100% a black inner city phenomena and what can we do to stop it?

    Its not poverty, as the poorest state in the nation, WV, is also the least likely to suffer from these wolf packs, and videos taken of these wolf packs show black teens with $200 sneakers and smartphones, its not lack of jobs as other minorities have been hard hit as well and again not seeing this behavior with them, this seems to be limited to inner city black youth between the ages of 14-35. If anyone doubts me here is a partial list of these attacks [] and note that we had one not 3 days ago!

    Personally I think its 50 years of a combination of welfare and a victim mentality pushed upon the black community by these so called "black leaders" like Sharpton who blame everything on somebody else. When you have songs celebrating "baby daddies" and leaders standing there with a straight face and claiming Ebonics is a legitimate language and you're racist if you don't accommodate it, and that getting an education is "acting white"? You are setting entire generations up to fail.

    I have to believe that this thing is gonna end up exploding, simply because nobody has the balls to speak up and point out so many black youth are heading straight for a cliff. in the previous decades you could get away with being uneducated because there was always the factory jobs, but those are gone, yet you still have women having multiple kids with multiple deadbeats and refusing to even make their children go to school. They spend all day watching TV and wanting all the expensive trappings they see, yet the community turns on them if they attempt to get an education because they are being "Uncle Toms". I truly believe this violence is gonna end up exploding and its gonna get ugly REAL fast.

    and honestly with the crime rate the way it is is anyone surprised more and more look on black teens with fear? Just look at the numbers for yourself, its truly fricking scary the levels of violence we are talking about, and for every Trayvon Martin there are a good 3 or more Wichita Massacres you never hear about thanks to our PC media.

  • Re:*walks on by* (Score:4, Interesting)

    by sribe ( 304414 ) on Sunday October 21, 2012 @11:28AM (#41721849)

    There have been at least 2 witnesses come forward and said they saw martin bashing Zimmerman's head against the ground, and the video the police took clearly shows blood and torn skin on the BACK of Zimmerman's head. Add to this it was over 85 degrees that night yet he was bundled up in a black hoodie and the reason he was in FLA in the first place was getting kicked out of his former school for theft?

    Well, first off, just because he was getting his ass kicked in no way means he did not provoke the confrontation to begin with. You don't get to start a fight and then claim self defense.

    The 2 witnesses, IIRC, saw someone bashing someone else's head against the ground, and the defense has spun that to be Martin on top.

    Maybe he was wearing a hoodie because it was raining. Maybe he was wearing a hoodie because it's a stupid teen fashion thing and he'd wear the same damn clothes whether it was 10 or 100 degrees. But what the hell does that have to do with whether or not Zimmerman started things? Nothing, that's what. It's a red herring meant to play on racial stereotypes.

  • Re:*walks on by* (Score:4, Interesting)

    by hairyfeet ( 841228 ) <> on Monday October 22, 2012 @01:46AM (#41726107) Journal

    Thank you for proving my point, its NOT a universal event, its happening in the large black communities, yet the politically correct like yourself refuse to even look at the data because we can't come up with white or asian mobs doing the same thing. News Flash..Its NOT RACIST TO POINT OUT THE NUMBERS JUST BECAUSE YOU DON'T LIKE WHAT THEY SAY but instead we'll have whole generations of black youth practically born to fail because people like you refuse to see the hard data right in front of your face.

    Again don't take MY word for it, go to the FBI's crime information website and look at the data yourself, and note that for the past 25 years they have been ordered to skew that data in the name of political correctness by counting ALL non black crime, asian, latino, middle eastern, as "white" to try to rig the numbers and you STILL have on average 8 to 1 when it comes to violent crimes committed by blacks vs committed by their new definition of white.

    I'm sorry if the data doesn't support your politically correct worldview but it don't. Again we need to find out WHY the black neighborhoods are going through this so that we can correct it, otherwise YOU are being racist because you are setting up the entire black community to be looked down upon as a failure and violent subset of the larger whole. Its just as racist as affirmative action which automatically assumes blacks simply aren't smart enough to compete without being a protected class and the underlying cause is the same, racist beliefs that you are smarter and better, they are stupider and more violent and unable to care for themselves. its classic victim mentality and its a cancer.

Who goeth a-borrowing goeth a-sorrowing. -- Thomas Tusser