Zimmerman Prosecutors Demand Investigation Of Defense Counsel Over Daughter’s Instagram

225px-Instagram_logoAngelaCoreyProsecutors in the George Zimmerman trial are facing a collapsing case and renewed question over whether Angela Corey succumbed to the political pressure and overcharged the case. The prosecution’s case has thus far been a disaster and many are now questioning whether charges should have been brought at all, let alone charged as second degree murder. For some inexplicable reason, the prosecutors led with Rachel Jeantel, who was one of the least compelling witnesses that they could have called from earlier perjury to ever-changing testimony. Now Angela Corey (right) and her office appear to be turning toward alternative areas of prosecution involving the daughter of one of the defense counsel.

Don West, who took apart Jeantel’s conflicted testimony on the stand, took his daughter out for ice cream and she posted on Instagram a picture with the caption: “We beat stupidity celebration cones #zimmerman #defense #dadkilledit.”

Prosecutors have asked for an inquiry on the basis that witnesses should be treated with respect. However, such rules apply to counsel not their progeny. West insists that he was not aware of the message.

The photo was actually taken the day before the cross examination.

I fail to see why the prosecutors would not accept the word of opposing counsel, particularly given the fact that this is his daughter.

Given the earlier allegations of withholding evidence in the case, the prosecutors should show a bit more judgment in my view. Of course, they have been busy presenting what appears a case for acquittal.

I have long been critical of Corey’s charging of the case as second degree murder and concerned that this was a case where public pressure influenced the prosecution. The video of Zimmerman’s account and the supporting testimony of these prosecution witnesses were known to Corey before the charges. Yet, she pursued second degree murder in what would be viewed as a difficult case even for manslaughter. I would leave counsel’s daughter alone and focus on the disaster unfolding in court.

Source: ABA Journal

259 thoughts on “Zimmerman Prosecutors Demand Investigation Of Defense Counsel Over Daughter’s Instagram”

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  7. I did a writeup on how the defence’s own timeline destroys their case.

  8. If Trayvon was on top of GZ (as is Zim’s testimony); then the upward bullet and resulting blood splatter would have been telltale on GZ’s clothes.

    A man with something to prove, was told to stand down. George ignored the issues and information that police were en route and pursued a teenager with a loaded gun.

    We can argue the semantics on the legal wranglings of 2nd Degree Murder versus Manslaughter 1 or 2 – all you want. That doesn’t change the fact that an innocent is dead and the man who did it was benefiting from a cover up; until we managed to get 2 million signatures on Trayvon Martin Mother’s petition.

    He is culpable and must be held accountable, for the sake of the good order of society. Otherwise the lack of civility will be met with much greater civil unrest than you can possibly fathom.

    For the resulting protests will not be localized only;
    if bad faith results in a NG verdict.

  9. Malisa,

    Speaking for myself, I don’t consider any of the factors that you list in coming to a manslaughter belief.
    I simply think that Zimmerman is an incompetent with a gun. He killed someone because he screwed up bigtime.

    If it could be proven that he had the gun drawn on accosting Martin, I would go for M2.
    At the very least he decided to get out of a fight that he had started by drawing his gun and shooting. This might be regardead as “callous indifference” (M2), but it seems a grey area. It is possible that he was genuinely in terror – even though he had been the instigator.

    He might actually feel sorry/horrified that he killed, but will not express this as he feels it would weaken his position.

    Whereas he might be a very unpleasant and unlikable person, this on its own does not promote manslaughter to M2 in my mind.

    I just had a look at the livestream starting up.
    West is warning of some issues to do with the instructions around the lesser charge of manslaughter.

    Oooh! West also want the word “defendant” to be deleted and replaced with “George Zimmerman” 🙂
    Dear o dear! Whether such things should be in ALL CAPS or not…. WTF?

    Have none of these people ever done this before?

  10. Gene H, I always thought the lesser includeds were included. I don’t know how peculiar Florida actually IS but we who have been blogging about the case for over a year (most of us) presumed lesser includeds were in there, as they almost always are for almost all really big offenses. THe issue is that there is no evidence that what he already admitted to doing fits the description of any of the lesser includeds.

    This goes right back to the debate about “over charging.” For what Z did, anyone who thinks under Florida law there was not enough evidentiary basis for murder-2 has not studied the four interviews in which Z described his own actions.

    You know, I detect a certain tone in a lot of people who really advocate for a lesser charge than murder 2. That tone is a bit offputting in view of the fact that it wants to align with Z’s actual thoughts, observations and assertions about the VICTIM in letting him off easier than murder-2 would let him off. It seems that people who kind of agree that THEY would not like Trayvon in THEIR neighborhood can find it less murderous of Z to have killed him for being in HIS. That’s where I think the real problem lies. Let’s look at that.

    How man people who think this case was overcharged think any of the following:

    1. After all Trayvon Martin DID look suspicious. (Include Geraldo Rivera)

    2. He probably was on drugs or something, like Z said. (Most whites over 50 who did not go to four-year colleges or any colleges)

    3. He should have answered Z’s questions politely. (ditto)

    4. He should not have been in Sanford; he was suspended from high school. (Most of Sanford)

    5. He was probably up to no good. (Suspicious people in general, overly suspicious whites in particular)

    6. Why did it take him so long to get home from the 7-11? (ditto)

    etc. etc. They all think, in one way or another, that by being in the wrong place at the wrong time and by looking wrong and possibly by acting wrong, even if Trayvon Martin DID NOT beat Z within an inch of his life, Trayvon was “asking for it” so it shouldn’t be blamed all the way on Z.

    That’s where this case is making its mark on our society.

    There’s also a bit of hauteur, it seems to me, in finding it a bit silly of me and others who react more or less as I do to this case to become so involved in the presumed hatred of Z. (I admit to that hatred but many of my colleague-bloggers do not and I respect their own self-identity that way.) That gets my back up. Let me tell you WHY I hate George Zimmerman:

    A. He presumed, and still presumed, that he had/has more right to be alive than, say, Trayvon Martin or me.

    B. He sought out the trouble he brought upon himself and yet he got so much help in his predicament that the assistance spent on him could have supported a small third-world country for a week.

    C. He is not sorry in any way, shape or form for what he has done in spite of the fact that he killed someone he had no right to stop and frisk,, much less kill.

    D. He is an abuser. He is a control freak. And he attracts attention with a very annoying “poor me” demeanor combined with a distinct “I’m a choirboy … cop … authority … judge … bigshot … warlord” aftertaste. And that is exactly the kind of person to whom our courts are abuser-friendly.

    STILL, I believe he will be convicted of Murder-2.

    Dennis, I was tired, sorry, I probably misremembered which comment I was responding to. Respectful greetings.

  11. I’ve always seen it as a manslaughter issue – unless the prosecution had something about his background and communications around the issue.

    One effect of the primary charge being M2 might be that this might lead the jury to consider the lesser charges more ‘thinkable’ than would have been the case if they had been the primary charge.
    In theory this should not be possible, but….

    I think that the unexplained gap after the NEN will count majorly against Zimmerman’s credibility in the eyes of a jury.
    The gap opens up credibilty for the DeeDee/Dilligard account.
    Her account gains credibility because all of Zimmermans recorded accounts unabiguously deny such a gap. The gap is an objective fact arising from the timestamps of the NEN and 911 – all from the same computer system.

    People might say that Zimmerman’s injuries are consistent with his story.
    They are – but they are also consistent with a fight that started with him accosting Martin.
    No witness supports a narrative of Martin approaching and attacking Zimmerman.
    One witness supports a narrative of Zimmerman approaching and accosting Martin.

    I am looking forward to seeing MOM’s long board with his timeline. How is he going to disguise the gap? If he has to address it, he will have to assert that Zimmerman stood still at RVC for those 2 minutes before heading for his truck. That will simply be an asertion on his part – but not on Zimmerman’s part.
    I hope the prosecution crucify him on that gap.

    As far as I can see, Zimmerman’s only hope of walking without penalty is a view of some crazy Florida law that goes “He thought he was in danger of death/serious_damage so it was ok to kill, regardless of the circumstances that led to the situation”.

  12. Lawyers to debate lesser charges in George Zimmerman murder trial

    “Jurors in the George Zimmerman murder trial are scheduled to return at 1 p.m. Thursday to hear closing arguments in the well-publicized case. But before then, lawyers will debate one of the trial’s most important issues: the jury instructions, and whether the judge will allow jurors to consider lesser charges.

    Zimmerman, now 29, is charged with second-degree murder in the shooting of Trayvon Martin, 17, an unarmed African American, on Feb. 26, 2012. Zimmerman, a neighborhood watch volunteer in a gated community in Sanford, Fla., had called police to report Martin as a suspicious person and followed him. He maintains that Martin attacked him when he got out of his car, and that he shot the teen in self-defense.

    Prosecutors have asked Judge Debra S. Nelson to allow the six-person jury to also consider “lesser included charges,” such as manslaughter and aggravated assault. Second-degree murder requires the prosecution to prove that Zimmerman bore “ill will, hatred or spite” when he killed Martin, whom he had never seen before that fateful night. Allowing jurors to consider the lesser charges would be a way for prosecutors to hedge their bets.”

    Seems like even the prosecutors realize the applicability of the manslaughter charge.

  13. Malisha,

    Don’t forget to include Mike Appleton in your disagreement. You can gloss over where I explained the differences in evidence required for the disparate charges all you like if it allows you to shout about how depraved Zimmerman is to your eye. The facts remain that this was from an evidence standpoint a slam dunk as a manslaughter trial. Pushing for depraved indifference for the higher charge just might result in Zimmerman walking and double jeopardy applying. That’s the gamble in over charging. Charging to best evidence, not the outcome you might desire, is the better strategy, but especially in a case like this one where forcing a plea was a pipe dream from the start.

  14. Actually, there was NO EVIDENCE put on, in the trial, that Trayvon Martin either punched Zimmerman OR smashed his head on the concrete. That is, not a single statement was entered into evidence by any witness sworn in saying either “I saw Trayvon Martin punch [or slam] Zimmerman[‘s head].” Period. The stories Zimmerman had told police about being punched and having his head slammed were entered into evidence but not for the truth of the matter stated — only as statements that had been made by Zimmerman to the police, and on which he had not been cross-examined.

    HAD HE wanted to swear to the truth of the matter that he was either punched by Trayvon Martin OR had his head slammed into the concrete by Trayvon Martin, he could have. Or if he had any witness who had seen either of those two things happen — and who did not recant — and who got sworn in and testified to that or any part of it, much different story.

    As it stands, however, here is what has been sworn to:

    Ear-witnesses have said that they heard a scream they identified as Zimmerman, whether it was in person or recorded.

    Eye-witnesses have said they saw Zimmerman on the ground both over and under Trayvon Martin and both of them were struggling. Not a single one of those witnesses committed him or herself to saying Trayvon Martin punched Zimmerman or slammed his head on concrete.

    Expert witnesses said it was possible that Trayvon Martin could have punched Zimmerman up to three times but other expert witnesses said that none of Zimmerman’s DNA appeared on Martin’s knuckles or hands.

    Expert witnesses said that small injuries on Zimmerman’s head could have been made by contact with concrete — but not very much contact with concrete and not very much force involved in that contact.

    What you have, then, is essentially no clear and convincing evidence of a beating administered to Zimmerman by anyone that night, much less by Trayvon Martin.

    Put that together with the evidence that is uncontrovertible: Zimmerman saw Martin and described him as “real suspicious” and “up to no good.” He admitted that he called him a f*cking punk and is recorded saying, “These a55holes, they always get away.” He admitted following him, later changing his wording so that he denied “following” him but said he was “going in the same direction.” He then described a preposterous scene where the unknown real suspicious f*cking punk springs out from behind bushes (that are not there) demanding, “You got a f*cking problem homie?” which he then changes to “You got a f*cking problem” without the additional “homie” epithet. (Couldn’t remember, when specifically asked.)

    A fight ensues.

    Is there anyone who does not understand that IF a fight ensued, the person exercising his constitutional right of self-defense was Trayvon Martin, and not “homie”?

    Gene H, Mespo, I respectfully and very vigorously disagree with your characterization of this as manslaughter. If you think the whole thing was devoid of depraved mind regardless of human life and malice and ill will, on Zimmerman’s part, I shudder to think of what WOULD amount to depravity, malice and ill will in the world you would like us all to inhabit.

    Darren, you don’t accidentally kill someone you chase down while you’re packing a loaded gun, who tried to run away from you and who would have been stopped and questioned by the police within a few minutes in any case. Just how accidental can an accident get when you set up circumstances to promote it? If I were totally drunk and drove down the freeway suddenly pulling a U-turn and heading into traffic without my lights on in a rainstorm, surely an accident would occur, right? Would it be only an accident on MY PART?

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