Archive for stand your ground

Man Shoots A Cop And Claims "Stand Your Ground" Defense

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It was only a matter of time before a person shot a cop and used "Stand Your Ground" as a defense. And where else would this happen? Of course, Florida. You go Gators!

Okay, here's the story. Back in mid-March, a robbery victim told police that someone from a home located around the 8800 block of Burning Tree Road in a Pensacola Florida neighborhood had robbed him. The thief got away with marijuana and a handgun from the residence. 

Keep in mind that currently, as also back in March, marijuana is NOT LEGAL in Florida. Who knows about the handgun? But lets move on with this true tale. From Raw Story:

Police converged on the home and saw Finkelstein — who was not the subject the police were searching for — emerge from the house’s garage. Sgt. Johnson said that he emerged from a hiding place behind a tree and identified himself as a sheriff’s deputy.

Finkelstein produced a gun and fired, striking Johnson in the leg.

Finkelstein’s attorney Brandon Moros is arguing along with his client that Johnson emerged from the shadows without identifying himself and that Finkelstein fired in self-defense. Moros contends that Finkelstein’s actions were justified under “Stand Your Ground.”

C'mon, you gotta admit you saw this coming after all of the other high profile cases of "Stand Your Ground" defense in the Sunshine State.

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Black is the New Crime

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Driving While BlackiStock

Please welcome our new guest contributor Dee. Dee is a freelance writer and passionate political junkie, living in the Central Plains with her husband and three furry puppies. She is a prolific tweeter as @DAbitty, and occasional blogger at MyLittleBits

Growing up in the South, as I did, I remember hearing stories of how unsafe parts of America were for African Americans. Following years of struggle, which at times seemed futile, and the fear that racism might never end always there, we find ourselves in ever-present danger of regression. How much have we really accomplished?

Lauren Williams of Mother Jones Magazine has listed 21 things ‘done while black’ that proved detrimental. I fear these 21 are merely drops in the bucket that is racism in the America.

Williams argues that just the color of one's skin is enough evidence to raise suspicion. Unfortunately, there is ample evidence to support her theory.

Here are 21 examples from the last five years of some of the things black people can't do without others thinking they're up to no good.

1. Listen to loud music at a gas station.

2. Walk home from a snack run to 7-11.

3. Wear a hoodie.

4. Drive after swimming.

5. Drive in a car with a white girl.

6. Appear in public in New York City.

7. Walk on the wrong side of the street.

8. Wait for a school bus to take you to your high school basketball game.

9. Drink iced tea in a parking lot.

10. Seek help after a car accident.

11. Inspect your own property.

12. Show up at your job.

13. Talk trash after an NFL game.

14. Throw a temper tantrum in kindergarten.

15. Buy designer accessories at Barney’s.

16. Buy designer accessories at Macy’s.

17. Be a 13-year-old boy.

18. Enter your own home.

19. Botch a science experiment.

20. Be a tourist.

21. Lay face down in handcuffs.

I often use the snarky hashtag #winning for things I find inexplicable…  I just can’t.

Click to read more of Lauren’s article.

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Movie Theater Popcorn Killing Cop Video Released

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By now you've heard of the case of Curtis Reeves, the accused ex-Florida cop who shot and killed a man, Chad Oulson, in a movie theater because the Oulson was texting his 2 year old daughter's baby sitter to check on her before the movie started.

I know many people are anxious to see the coming attractions, but getting into an altercation over someone silently sending a message is a bit of text rage if you ask me. But this retired cop had his reasons for shooting the unarmed texter. The dude who was doing the message sending attacked the ex chief of police -- with popcorn. Not even the box, just the contents. Perhaps it was the buttery flavored topping that caused the outrage. Hey, if the Twinkie Defense worked in the Harvey Milk murder case, why not give buttered popcorn it's chance?

But in any case, there's a dead man and a defendant now in custody. The accused shooter is looking for bail and during his hearing Friday, the DA's office provided the video of the assault.

So now you can make up your own mind by watching it. One thing's for sure, it didn't take long for the ex-cop to fast-draw his gun and shoot. Was he actually just waiting for an excuse to pop the texting man? Well, in any case, once again the familiar Florida defense is being used -- Stand your ground. And in this case, it didn't seem to sway Circuit Judge Lynn Tepper . Bail was denied.

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Cartoons of the Day- Christmas Time Is Here!

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Dave Granlund

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Jimmy Margulies

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Charlie Daniel

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Oh, Florida, You Did It Again

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escaped florida killers

Seems justice in Florida is an elusive thing. Even a conviction for murder -- and we all know how tough that is to come by with Stand Your Ground laws -- seems to be part of an open door policy. Certainly it is if your names are  Joseph Jenkins (guilty of first-degree murder in the 1998 killing and botched robbery) and Charles Walker (guilty of second-degree murder in a 1999 slaying).

These two convicted murders accidentally duped the Florida penal system and were allowed to walk out free from prison, with years left on their sentences. They're currently free.

Now how did they do it? Simple, they just forged some documents which they downloaded on the prison computer system. After printing them up, they just filled in their names on these sample release forms. Next on the to-do list was they needed a judge's signature to make this all Kosher. So whose did they use?  Why none other than Judge Belvin Perry, the infamous Casey Anthony judge who's signature is readily available on Google images.

So these two killers outsmarted the Florida Penal system. But how smart are they?

Before their release could be discovered, they went to the police in the city they were staying and registered as felons with the police department. After all, that is the law. They figured, hey, were' out. Might as well follow the rules since it looks like we're legally free, except for the required ex-con felony registration requirement. This way if they got stopped for a traffic offense and their prints or names were run, they'd come up clean. Gotta hand it to these two. If they ever get caught, they should consider writing guest scripts for police drama's, maybe CSI Miami, The Movie.

So they go on with their lives for a few weeks until one of the deceased victim's family was notified of the release by the Florida Department of Justice, something they do in Florida when a killer is set free. The family member was nervous, thinking this released convict might come to extract some revenge on the family. So they called their attorney who called the states attorney general. He looked into it and found out there was no release ordered.

The prison officials examined the documents and determined them to be forged.

The brilliant Florida Justice Department somehow ended up releasing the story BEFORE the two cons were re-arrested, and now they're on the lamb.

For an update on the story, watch below. But really Florida. Can't you get your legal sh** together?

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High School Girl Sentenced to Jail For Consensual Sex With Another High School Girl

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Kaitlin Hunt

So Florida justice is at it once again. Seems they can't be satisfied with an occasional natural hurricane, they have to brew up judicial storms of their own.

Some of the recent Sunshine State cases include the Trayvon Martin case, where at the root of it was the "Stand Your Ground" law. An unarmed boy is walking home alone, is confronted by an armed man and the boy ends up dead. The shooter's sentence, none. He's innocent under Florida law.

Then another high profile case, Marissa Alexander, 32, (who's Black and yes, that does seem to matter in Florida) fired a gun, a warning shot into the ceiling because she was afraid of her approaching, abusive  husband. She invoked the same state's stand-your-ground law but was found guilty of aggravated assault. The result, a 20-year sentence under state law.

Now comes another soon to be infamous case: Kaitlyn Hunt (female) who was an 18-year-old high school senior when she was arrested and charged for having sex with a then 14 year-old (female) schoolmate. Two high school kids fooling around but they were same sex, so now taboo enters the case.. The outcome of this teen activity? See for yourself:

UPDATE: THE VIDEO BELOW IS FROM AN EARLIER PLEA OFFER. SUBSEQUENTLY, SHE TURNED IT DOWN AND HAS GONE TO JAIL UNTIL MID DECEMBER, 2013

What if this was heterosexual activity, as opposed to same-sex? Would there even have been an arrest at all, let alone a young woman going to prison? Was this a case of a young girl being victimized or a lesbian relationship being vilified?

We're never going to know for sure, but it certainly makes you wonder what's going on in Florida. Is it the orange juice?

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Move Over, Stand Your Ground, Here Comes The Bush Doctrine

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William-Woodward-jpg (1)

Okay, deep breath. Here goes. Florida – where else.

A man, Iraq war veteran William Woodward, goes over to his neighbor’s house and shoots three victims. All three victims were unarmed men. The results of the shooting is one dead, one on life support and not expected to survive, and a third, with 11 bullet holes in him – prognosis, questionable.

Woodward was taken into custody and questioned by police. His defense? Two pronged. One was the, oh-so-familiar “Stand Your Ground defense. We’ve seen that used successfully in Florida before.

George Zimmerman

Courtesy of WESH – TV, Channel 2:

In footage of Woodward's police interview obtained by Florida Today, the 43-year-old told authorities, "we've been tormented by these people for months."

"They've made my life a living hell and my wife, we can't go anywhere without an escort," Woodward said. "We can't let our kids go outside."

Mind you this time, the accused shooter and the victims were not even in the same location at the time leading up to the shooting. Woodward was at his house, next door, and just felt he and his parents had been harassed long enough by their neighbors. He loaded his gun, walked next door unannounced, and point-blank started firing away.

Upon his apprehension, Woodward lawyered up, as you would expect, and what came out next was even more amazing than Stand Your Ground. The lawyer, speaking for his client cited The Bush Doctrine.

Raw Story notes that "the defense also cited 'The Bush Doctrine,' a foreign policy principle used by President George W. Bush to justify the invasion of Iraq," based on the premise that doing so was an effort to prevent a future attack.

That GW Bush is the gift that keeps on giving. A screwed-up economy. A huge loss of jobs. An unpaid for war. An unjustified war. Continuing questions to this country’s credibility about Syria because of his lies, and now this. A defense for unprovoked killing.

What has this country come to when they use a lying, war criminal’s record as justification for murder? The Bush Doctrine. Imagine that!

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