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In my foreign land, murder is OKFollow

#1 Mar 21 2012 at 8:50 AM Rating: Decent
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http://www.cnn.com/2012/03/21/justice/florida-teen-shooting/index.html?eref=mrss_igoogle_cnn

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Outrage over the killing of an unarmed Florida teen rippled nationwide as supporters planned more protests Wednesday and a petition demanding the shooter's arrest amassed nearly 1 million signatures.

Trayvon Martin was fatally shot on February 26 while walking to the house of his father's fiancee in Sanford after a trip to a convenience store.

George Zimmerman, a neighborhood watch leader, said he killed the teen in self defense.

...

Zimmerman has not been arrested or charged in the killing of the black teenager. A police report describes him as a white male, but his family says he is Hispanic.

The February 26 shooting occurred when Zimmerman -- who was patrolling the neighborhood -- saw the teen walking home after buying candy and a drink at a convenience store.

...

Florida's deadly force law, also called "stand your ground," allows people to meet "force with force" if they believe they or someone else is in danger of being seriously harmed by an assailant, but exactly what happened in the moments leading up to Trayvon's death remains unclear.



I remember reading about this law a long time ago and being horrified, knowing any dumb Florida redneck with a gun could blow my head off if I so much as looked at him funny, and get off with "self defense." I'm not sure when it went into effect, but I won't be surprised when incidents like these happen again and again.
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#2 Mar 21 2012 at 8:55 AM Rating: Excellent
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That Zimmerman was kind of like Batman, except without the money, the morals, the costume, the questionable taste in sidekicks, or evidence of crimes.
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#3 Mar 21 2012 at 9:05 AM Rating: Excellent
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lolgaxe wrote:
That Zimmerman was kind of like Batman, except without the money, the morals, the costume, the questionable taste in sidekicks, or evidence of crimes.


So just the form fitting suit then?

(on topic I'm really glad I'm not down there for this one).
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#4 Mar 21 2012 at 9:47 AM Rating: Decent
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Quote:
Florida's deadly force law, also called "stand your ground," allows people to meet "force with force" if they believe they or someone else is in danger of being seriously harmed by an assailant,

Quote:
During the incident, the teen started to run, Zimmerman reported.

Quote:
When he said he was following, the dispatcher told him, "We don't need you to do that."


Yeah, the guy is probably a racist and this is likely flat out murder. Why was he carrying a firearm on a neighborhood watch patrol anyway? I'm a proponent of gun ownership rights and such, but this is a classic example of why concealed carry (assuming Zimmerman even had a CC permit) is generally a bad idea. The police should arrest the @#%^er and send him to trial, IMO.
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You guys keep tossing facts out there like they mean something.


#5 Mar 21 2012 at 9:53 AM Rating: Excellent
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What pisses me off about the absurd "self defense" notion is that Zimmerman had been following the kid in his car for a while before he finally confronted the driver about it. Not only that, the 911 dispatcher was ordering him not to get involved.

That makes Zimmerman the aggressor. Even imaging there was a fight (which all witnesses seem to deny), Zimmerman started the fight. So I guess that's good to know--if I live in Florida, all I need to do is start a fight to justify murdering someone.
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#6 Mar 21 2012 at 9:57 AM Rating: Good
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BrownDuck wrote:
I'm a proponent of gun ownership rights and such, but this is a classic example of why concealed carry (assuming Zimmerman even had a CC permit) is generally a bad idea.
I don't believe some random Joe off the street should be allowed a concealed carry permit, but I'd probably shoot someone if they tried to take mine away.
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#7 Mar 21 2012 at 10:00 AM Rating: Decent
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lolgaxe wrote:
BrownDuck wrote:
I'm a proponent of gun ownership rights and such, but this is a classic example of why concealed carry (assuming Zimmerman even had a CC permit) is generally a bad idea.
I don't believe some random Joe off the street should be allowed a concealed carry permit, but I'd probably shoot someone if they tried to take mine away.


Justify the difference between yourself and a random Joe...
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#8 Mar 21 2012 at 10:02 AM Rating: Good
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He's had extensive training on how to use it and in dealing with high-stress situations?

[EDIT]

I actually do think this is a real difference. If Average Joe wants to be allowed to carry a concealed weapon, he should need to be cleared to do so through something more significant than a 3 day waiting period and a background check.

Edited, Mar 21st 2012 12:03pm by idiggory
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#9 Mar 21 2012 at 10:05 AM Rating: Excellent
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BrownDuck wrote:
Why was he carrying a firearm on a neighborhood watch patrol anyway?


I'd love to know what the answer to this is as well. I have a brother-in-law who runs a private security company, and they've never felt the need to go beyond pepper spray. It's not like it seems like that scary of a neighborhood or anything.

Well, unless you're black I guess... Smiley: rolleyes
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#10 Mar 21 2012 at 10:08 AM Rating: Good
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BrownDuck wrote:
lolgaxe wrote:
BrownDuck wrote:
I'm a proponent of gun ownership rights and such, but this is a classic example of why concealed carry (assuming Zimmerman even had a CC permit) is generally a bad idea.
I don't believe some random Joe off the street should be allowed a concealed carry permit, but I'd probably shoot someone if they tried to take mine away.
Justify the difference between yourself and a random Joe...
I don't believe in giving justifications, really. What one person believes is justifiable another might not. I firmly believe in escalation of force. If you come at me with your fist, I'm going to slug you with a blunt object. You come at me with a blunt object, I'm going to shoot you. My justification for it is that every time my company goes to the range for weapons training or qualifications, or there needs to be an armed escort of some sort (a VIP or a detained individual) there needs to be a security detail to escort it, for which I'm part of, and having a second weapon hidden in case of trouble makes me feel safer.
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#11 Mar 21 2012 at 10:19 AM Rating: Excellent
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BrownDuck wrote:
lolgaxe wrote:
BrownDuck wrote:
I'm a proponent of gun ownership rights and such, but this is a classic example of why concealed carry (assuming Zimmerman even had a CC permit) is generally a bad idea.
I don't believe some random Joe off the street should be allowed a concealed carry permit, but I'd probably shoot someone if they tried to take mine away.


Justify the difference between yourself and a random Joe...
He's a GI Joe.
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#12 Mar 21 2012 at 10:20 AM Rating: Excellent
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Oh no no no, there are plenty of people in the Armed Forces who shouldn't have CC permits. Hell, there are plenty of people here that I'm baffled at being allowed to carry anything sharper than a spoon.
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#13 Mar 21 2012 at 10:31 AM Rating: Excellent
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I just wanted to make a joke about you being a GI Joe rather than a Random Joe.
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#14 Mar 21 2012 at 10:35 AM Rating: Excellent
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And knowing is half the battle.
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#15 Mar 21 2012 at 10:50 AM Rating: Good
While I'm outraged by this, I don't know if they'll be able to prove beyond a reasonable doubt it wasn't self defense. That + Florida's dumb law might make it even harder to convict Zimmerman of murder.

Racism is a motherfucker.
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#16 Mar 21 2012 at 11:05 AM Rating: Good
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#17 Mar 21 2012 at 12:46 PM Rating: Good
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lolgaxe wrote:
BrownDuck wrote:
lolgaxe wrote:
BrownDuck wrote:
I'm a proponent of gun ownership rights and such, but this is a classic example of why concealed carry (assuming Zimmerman even had a CC permit) is generally a bad idea.
I don't believe some random Joe off the street should be allowed a concealed carry permit, but I'd probably shoot someone if they tried to take mine away.
Justify the difference between yourself and a random Joe...
I don't believe in giving justifications, really. What one person believes is justifiable another might not. I firmly believe in escalation of force. If you come at me with your fist, I'm going to slug you with a blunt object. You come at me with a blunt object, I'm going to shoot you. My justification for it is that every time my company goes to the range for weapons training or qualifications, or there needs to be an armed escort of some sort (a VIP or a detained individual) there needs to be a security detail to escort it, for which I'm part of, and having a second weapon hidden in case of trouble makes me feel safer.


If you're part of a company security detail, that's one thing, but on the street in public, in general, I give you no more credability to carry a concealed firearm than this guy or any other. I don't even think off-duty police officers should carry them. The simple fact of the matter is that people make judgement errors. Outside of official police, military, or security duty, I simply think it's dangerous for anybody to carry a concealed firearm. Training or not, there's too much potential for misuse. We are all human, after all.




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You guys keep tossing facts out there like they mean something.


#18 Mar 21 2012 at 1:46 PM Rating: Excellent
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There's a report of a possibility of a racial slur being yelled and recorded during the 911 call. If that's the case, there's grounds for a hate crime investigation.

Not sure if anyone heard the transcript of the phone call that the teen was actually having when Zimmerman finally caught up with the kid. The kid was already freaked out that Zimmerman was following him. And he started running and thought he lost him. Zimmerman caught up with the kid. The girl heard Trayvon ask Zimmerman why he was following him, then she heard shoving and the connection went dead.

Deadly force used in self-defense is generally only acceptable when you have a reasonable belief that deadly force will be used against you. This kid was trying to get away from Zimmerman, Zimmerman followed him (after the police dispatcher told him not to), and it appears that Zimmerman is the one that initiated any kind of physical contact.

I think his self-defense theory is really weak. I think Zimmerman already had it in his head that he was going to confront who he thought was a unwelcomed punk in his gated community and he called 911 preemptively to cover his ass and justify to himself that he could confront Trayvon. He was told police were dispatched and he shouldn't follow Trayvon anymore. Did he mean to kill Trayvon? I don't think so, but since he had a gun, it's going to be argued that when you're in possession of a gun, you have the intention of using it.

ETA: The national neighborhood watch organization was also very quick to point out that whatever organization Zimmerman claims he's part of is not a recognized group of the NNW.

ETA2: Seminole County released 46 other calls that Zimmerman made to 911 in the months before Trayvon's death. They are all reports of suspicious people in the community and every suspicious person was African-American. If that's true, I believe that Zimmerman's actions were racially motivated.

Edited, Mar 21st 2012 12:47pm by Thumbelyna

Edited, Mar 21st 2012 1:15pm by Thumbelyna

Edited, Mar 21st 2012 1:17pm by Thumbelyna
#19 Mar 21 2012 at 1:51 PM Rating: Decent
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Omegavegeta wrote:
While I'm outraged by this, I don't know if they'll be able to prove beyond a reasonable doubt it wasn't self defense. That + Florida's dumb law might make it even harder to convict Zimmerman of murder.


On the flip side though, the law was specifically written for cases like this. Loud voices shouting assumptions aside, we don't really know what went on that night. I don't think that those leaping to conclusions and launching into civil action are really helping matters either. Zimmerman was legally licensed to carry that gun. He was on a neighborhood watch patrol. The law was written to give people in that position the benefit of the doubt so that they aren't automatically arrested and charged in cases just like this.

Let the police do their investigation. I suspect there's more to this than we've heard so far.

Quote:
Racism is a motherfucker.


Yes, it is. But there is absolutely zero evidence that race was at all a factor in this case despite what appear to be massive efforts to make it appear so.
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#20 Mar 21 2012 at 2:23 PM Rating: Good
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No evidence? You really don't get your news from anywhere.
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#21 Mar 21 2012 at 2:24 PM Rating: Excellent
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gbaji wrote:
Omegavegeta wrote:
While I'm outraged by this, I don't know if they'll be able to prove beyond a reasonable doubt it wasn't self defense. That + Florida's dumb law might make it even harder to convict Zimmerman of murder.


On the flip side though, the law was specifically written for cases like this. Loud voices shouting assumptions aside, we don't really know what went on that night. I don't think that those leaping to conclusions and launching into civil action are really helping matters either. Zimmerman was legally licensed to carry that gun. He was on a neighborhood watch patrol. The law was written to give people in that position the benefit of the doubt so that they aren't automatically arrested and charged in cases just like this.

Let the police do their investigation. I suspect there's more to this than we've heard so far.

Quote:
Racism is a motherfucker.


Yes, it is. But there is absolutely zero evidence that race was at all a factor in this case despite what appear to be massive efforts to make it appear so.


The teen fled the scene. The killer chased him (despite a 911 dispatcher directive not to) and gunned him down. This much is known fact. Racially motivated or not, the man should be arrested for murder. The courts can decide his whether he's guilty or not.
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You guys keep tossing facts out there like they mean something.


#22 Mar 21 2012 at 2:31 PM Rating: Excellent
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gbaji wrote:
Loud voices shouting assumptions aside, we don't really know what went on that night. I don't think that those leaping to conclusions and launching into civil action are really helping matters either. Zimmerman was legally licensed to carry that gun. He was on a neighborhood watch patrol. The law was written to give people in that position the benefit of the doubt so that they aren't automatically arrested and charged in cases just like this.


This has certainly taken on a life of it's own. Yay 24 hour media... Smiley: rolleyes

It sounds like the Federal Govt. is more involved now which hopefully can alleviate any problems with meddling local officials. I'm content to wait and let them investigate things, and more than willing to fall into the 'innocent until proven guilty' crowd.

I still want to know why he felt he needed a handgun for patrolling a gated community though. It just doesn't strike me as dangerous enough to justify it from my distance. I imagine he has his reasons though, and I'm sure we'll hear them in time.

Thumbelyna Quick Hands wrote:
ETA2: Seminole County released 46 other calls that Zimmerman made to 911 in the months before Trayvon's death. They are all reports of suspicious people in the community and every suspicious person was African-American.


Smiley: facepalm

Well that won't help his case. Smiley: oyvey
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#23 Mar 21 2012 at 2:38 PM Rating: Excellent
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someproteinguy wrote:


Thumbelyna Quick Hands wrote:
ETA2: Seminole County released 46 other calls that Zimmerman made to 911 in the months before Trayvon's death. They are all reports of suspicious people in the community and every suspicious person was African-American.


Smiley: facepalm

Well that won't help his case. Smiley: oyvey


Not going to help his case either that there was an eyewitness (teen walking his dog) who saw two figures that night. He says that even though it was very dark, he saw one figure lying on the ground yelling for help with another figure standing over him. Unfortunately the dog got away from him right then and when he went to grab for his dog, he heard a gun shot seconds later and the screaming stopped. If that's really true, that right there is literally the smoking gun.

ETA: The police department also did a shoddy job of investigating this. A narcotics detective was sent to the scene instead of a homicide detective. No drug or alcohol test was given to Zimmerman which is standard in any investigation of a death. It appears that the police department took everything Zimmerman said at face value without an actual investigation into what occurred. There are reports that the police department even changed or slanted their witness accounts. When witnesses came forward saying they heard a young boy scream, they were told that it was Zimmerman screaming for help and at least one witness is saying the police made that assumption.

ETA2: And the police drug tested the teen's body instead. Oh, and even though they recovered the teen's cell phone that night, no one went through his phone to immediately contact his family, much less the teen's girlfriend that should have show on the most recent call logs that they were on the phone just minutes before he died.

Edited, Mar 21st 2012 2:06pm by Thumbelyna

Edited, Mar 21st 2012 2:31pm by Thumbelyna
#24 Mar 21 2012 at 2:57 PM Rating: Good
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Thumbelyna Quick Hands wrote:
someproteinguy wrote:


Thumbelyna Quick Hands wrote:
ETA2: Seminole County released 46 other calls that Zimmerman made to 911 in the months before Trayvon's death. They are all reports of suspicious people in the community and every suspicious person was African-American.


Smiley: facepalm

Well that won't help his case. Smiley: oyvey


Not going to help his case either that there was an eyewitness (teen walking his dog) who saw two figures that night. He says that even though it was very dark, he saw one figure lying on the ground yelling for help with another figure standing over him. Unfortunately the dog got away from him right then and when he went to grab for his dog, he heard a gun shot seconds later and the screaming stopped. If that's really true, that right there is literally the smoking gun.


I couldn't even imagine being that teen. I have no clue how you get over watching someone being executed in cold blood (which is what it appears to be, regardless of if it was so).
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#25 Mar 21 2012 at 2:59 PM Rating: Decent
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idiggory, King of Bards wrote:
No evidence? You really don't get your news from anywhere.


Yes. No evidence. As in aside from people speculating that it might have been racially motivated and repeating that speculation, there's no actual evidence that racism played any role at all. Wild speculation that he said "f-ing coons" during the 911 call turned out to be just that: wild speculation. So other than the fact that the victim was black, what evidence is there that racism was a factor?
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#26 Mar 21 2012 at 3:02 PM Rating: Decent
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BrownDuck wrote:
The teen fled the scene. The killer chased him (despite a 911 dispatcher directive not to) and gunned him down. This much is known fact.


Also, that there was a physical altercation and struggle prior to the gunshot going off. The victims girlfriend's account confirms this. Now, perhaps a 28 year old 240lb man ran down a 140lb 17 year old, or perhaps there's more to the story than the simplistic version you're hearing from one side?

Quote:
Racially motivated or not, the man should be arrested for murder. The courts can decide his whether he's guilty or not.


Perhaps there should be an investigation first? Just a thought.
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#27 Mar 21 2012 at 3:04 PM Rating: Good
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gbaji wrote:
idiggory, King of Bards wrote:
No evidence? You really don't get your news from anywhere.


Yes. No evidence. As in aside from people speculating that it might have been racially motivated and repeating that speculation, there's no actual evidence that racism played any role at all. Wild speculation that he said "f-ing coons" during the 911 call turned out to be just that: wild speculation. So other than the fact that the victim was black, what evidence is there that racism was a factor?


First of all, I'd like a cite that it was just wild speculation.

Second of all, Thumbelyna pointed out that he seems to have been profiling blacks for quite a while.

Finally, we have yet to see ANY reason to believe that the teen was "suspicious" for any reason other than the fact that he was black.

[EDIT]
Quote:
Also, that there was a physical altercation and struggle prior to the gunshot going off. The victims girlfriend's account confirms this. Now, perhaps a 28 year old 240lb man ran down a 140lb 17 year old, or perhaps there's more to the story than the simplistic version you're hearing from one side?


Last I checked, the testimony from several unconnected witnesses is not "one side".

Furthermore, we have no reason to believe that the kid initiated any attack. And, if he did, he was justified in doing so because (in virtue of STALKING him), Zimmerman had definitely presented himself as a threat.

Edited, Mar 21st 2012 5:06pm by idiggory
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#28 Mar 21 2012 at 3:15 PM Rating: Default
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someproteinguy wrote:
I still want to know why he felt he needed a handgun for patrolling a gated community though. It just doesn't strike me as dangerous enough to justify it from my distance. I imagine he has his reasons though, and I'm sure we'll hear them in time.


You could also ask why Martin felt he needed to duck and hide because a car was driving down the street too. Given that he's in a gated community and it should be pretty safe, the odds that someone driving down the street is intending you harm is pretty darn low, right? Isn't it possible that both men allowed their own perceptions to run a bit wild here? What if the sequence was something like this:

Zimmerman sees a guy walking along the street and slows down to take a closer look. Martin sees a car slowing down and ducks down a sidewalk. Zimmerman thinks this is suspicious and loops around to the next row of houses. Martin sees the same vehicle there and confirms his suspicion that someone is after him and changes direction again. Zimmerman sees this as confirmation that Martin is up to no good and loops around again. Martin sees him yet again and really believes this guy in the car is up to no good, so he takes off running. Zimmerman chases him. At some point, there's an altercation. Perhaps Martin at this point believes his life is in danger, and turns to fight. Zimmerman sees his attempt to fight as a threat to his life and draws his gun. There's a struggle. Gun goes off. Martin is dead.


Something had to have happened beyond the norm on Martin's part. It's not like lots of people (yes, even black people) don't walk through that community every day. If Martin had just walked down the street normally, I doubt any of this would have happened. The absolute worst would have been Zimmerman swinging by, asking him if he lives in the area, Martin saying he did, and both going about their business. If I ran away every time some neighborhood watch or local busy body stopped and asked me who I was and why I was somewhere, I'd have been in a whole hell of a lot of stupid altercations as well. I suspect that this was a tragic escalation on both sides. But I'd rather we let the police investigate and find out if there's evidence of something more than that before assuming anything.
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#29 Mar 21 2012 at 3:38 PM Rating: Good
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You're kidding, right? No, really? No, you're just that willing to twist evidence? I see.

The car was following him for an extended period, going the same speed he was. After he LOST the car, it caught up to him and followed him more.

This is confirmed by the accounts of the 911 calls (Zimmerman's) and the testimony of his girlfriend, who he was talking to on the phone.
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#30 Mar 21 2012 at 3:43 PM Rating: Excellent
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gbaji wrote:


You could also ask why Martin felt he needed to duck and hide because a car was driving down the street too. Given that he's in a gated community and it should be pretty safe, the odds that someone driving down the street is intending you harm is pretty darn low, right? Isn't it possible that both men allowed their own perceptions to run a bit wild here? What if the sequence was something like this:

Zimmerman sees a guy walking along the street and slows down to take a closer look. Martin sees a car slowing down and ducks down a sidewalk. Zimmerman thinks this is suspicious and loops around to the next row of houses. Martin sees the same vehicle there and confirms his suspicion that someone is after him and changes direction again. Zimmerman sees this as confirmation that Martin is up to no good and loops around again. Martin sees him yet again and really believes this guy in the car is up to no good, so he takes off running. Zimmerman chases him. At some point, there's an altercation. Perhaps Martin at this point believes his life is in danger, and turns to fight. Zimmerman sees his attempt to fight as a threat to his life and draws his gun. There's a struggle. Gun goes off. Martin is dead.


Something had to have happened beyond the norm on Martin's part. It's not like lots of people (yes, even black people) don't walk through that community every day. If Martin had just walked down the street normally, I doubt any of this would have happened. The absolute worst would have been Zimmerman swinging by, asking him if he lives in the area, Martin saying he did, and both going about their business. If I ran away every time some neighborhood watch or local busy body stopped and asked me who I was and why I was somewhere, I'd have been in a whole hell of a lot of stupid altercations as well. I suspect that this was a tragic escalation on both sides. But I'd rather we let the police investigate and find out if there's evidence of something more than that before assuming anything.


Trayvon Martin lived in Miami and was visiting his father and his father's girlfriend who lived in that gated community. He didn't know the area that well and so I wouldn't be surprised if he was be ducking for cover if he saw the same car (Zimmerman's car) passing him multiple times. Zimmerman claimed that Martin attacked him when Zimmerman slowed down to look at a street sign because he wasn't sure which street he was on. I find that claim ludicrous because he's appointed himself the neighborhood watch captain and he doesn't know his own neighborhood?

When Martin tried to lose Zimmerman and found that Zimmerman was chasing him, his girlfriend who was on the phone with him heard him say "Why are you following me?" At that point, she heard shoving and the connection ended. That doesn't sound like he turned to fight Zimmerman.

Zimmerman was already told by police dispatch that he shouldn't follow Martin and to allow the police responder to handle it. He did not. By all accounts it appears that he initiated, he escalated, and the police botched the investigation after that boy's death.


#31 Mar 21 2012 at 3:53 PM Rating: Excellent
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Somehow, even if the law ends up allowing a tragedy like this to be legal, you'd think that arrest, questioning, and thorough investigations would be the way to approach it.

Someone killed another person. Even if it ends up being a legal killing (strange way to say that...), the person doing the killing should be held until it is investigated and determined legal. Now I'm not saying they should be held in "Federal Pound-Me-In-The-Ass Prison" but a simple detention area. Even if in the end all the purpose served was to show people and the society as a whole that so called "self defense" killings are not and should not be taken lightly. It would hopefully give some solace to the killed individual's family, that a proper investigation was made and the person was held, and deter the killer from making the decision so easily.
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gbaji wrote:
someproteinguy wrote:
I still want to know why he felt he needed a handgun for patrolling a gated community though. It just doesn't strike me as dangerous enough to justify it from my distance. I imagine he has his reasons though, and I'm sure we'll hear them in time.


You could also ask why Martin felt he needed to duck and hide because a car was driving down the street too. Given that he's in a gated community and it should be pretty safe, the odds that someone driving down the street is intending you harm is pretty darn low, right?


It sounds like their behavior set off alarm bells with each other, and there's plenty of "he said she said" that seems to be around these days. I'm assuming all that will get worked out in the end. But still the gun thing, it's probably just me but I don't know.

I mean, bad neighborhood? Yeah, ok.
Somewhere it'll take the local sheriff 30 minutes to drive out to you? I'll buy that.
Sanford FL? Well never been there, but I got the impression it was a nicer suburb.

Just seems like an odd place to have a gun as part of an unofficial neighborhood watch. I mean if I lived somewhere like what I imagine it to be, I'm not sure I'd be comfortable with a "security" person having a gun there.

But don't know the place that well I guess...
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#33 Mar 21 2012 at 4:06 PM Rating: Decent
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idiggory, King of Bards wrote:
gbaji wrote:
idiggory, King of Bards wrote:
No evidence? You really don't get your news from anywhere.


Yes. No evidence. As in aside from people speculating that it might have been racially motivated and repeating that speculation, there's no actual evidence that racism played any role at all. Wild speculation that he said "f-ing coons" during the 911 call turned out to be just that: wild speculation. So other than the fact that the victim was black, what evidence is there that racism was a factor?


First of all, I'd like a cite that it was just wild speculation.


Um... In the linked article in the OP?

Quote:
Heated debate has erupted over whether Zimmerman used a racial slur during the 911 call, a recording of which was released this week.

"We didn't hear it. However, I am not sure what was said," Sgt. David Morgenstern of the Sanford Police Department said.

A top CNN audio engineer enhanced the sound of the 911 call and several members of CNN's editorial staff repeatedly reviewed the tape, but could reach no consensus on whether Zimmerman used a racial slur.


So audio engineers enhancing the tape can't determine if a racial slur was used, yet random people hearing the tape concluded that he did and repeated that so much that it created a "heated debate". That's kinda the definition of "wild speculation". Someone hears a word that they can't make out and "speculate" that it might be racist. They repeat that speculation. Others pick it up, assume it's true (as Thumb did in her earlier post in fact), and others hearing/reading that form their opinions based on a reported "fact" that is not factual at all.

Quote:
Second of all, Thumbelyna pointed out that he seems to have been profiling blacks for quite a while.


Strange that you didn't demand a cite from her. No wait. It's not strange. It's completely consistent with your incredibly biased demand for such citations. Here's some actual data

Quote:
This afternoon six of the calls made by George Zimmerman were released by theSeminole County Sheriff's Office.

In four of the recordings Zimmerman called police to report "suspicious" persons — all of whom were black — in or near the Retreat at Twin Lakes neighborhood.


and...

Quote:
Records show Zimmerman, 28, called the cops 46 times between January 2011 and Feb. 26.

Many of the calls appear related to his crime-watch volunteer role. The most frequent reason for his calls — nine times — was to report a suspicious person, according to Sanford Police Department records released last week.


So the "all of whom were black" refers only to 4 of the calls. Which were specifically those in which the suspicious people were black. Cart leading horse. Of the 46 calls, 9 of them were for suspicious people. 4 of whom we know were black. Hardly the implication made by Thumb (and repeated by you).

This isn't evidence of racism. It's cherry picking of the facts in order to make people think that there was racism involved.

Quote:
Finally, we have yet to see ANY reason to believe that the teen was "suspicious" for any reason other than the fact that he was black.


So because you personally haven't had an alternative reason put in front of your face, it's ok to just assume it was because he was black? Seems like a bit of a stretch to me.

Quote:
Quote:
Also, that there was a physical altercation and struggle prior to the gunshot going off. The victims girlfriend's account confirms this. Now, perhaps a 28 year old 240lb man ran down a 140lb 17 year old, or perhaps there's more to the story than the simplistic version you're hearing from one side?


Last I checked, the testimony from several unconnected witnesses is not "one side".


You're not reacting to the testimony from those witnesses though. You're reacting to selected parts of their testimony being repeated by what can accurately be called a "side" of the issue and which seems to primarily be acting emotionally rather than rationally.

Quote:
Furthermore, we have no reason to believe that the kid initiated any attack. And, if he did, he was justified in doing so because (in virtue of STALKING him), Zimmerman had definitely presented himself as a threat.


And if he did, Zimmerman was justified to defend himself. Obviously, neither you nor I know every detail of what lead to that altercation. The difference is that I'm not making broad assumptions about it, while you (and a whole hell of a lot of other people) are. You're reacting to and repeating statements made by people who are themselves repeating emotionally laden half-truths. Try stopping, taking a breath, and seeing if you can get more information and make a more informed decision.
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#34 Mar 21 2012 at 4:08 PM Rating: Good
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I don't even think off-duty police officers should carry them.
I disagree. I don't believe I should be allowed to carry when I'm in civilian garb, or even in uniform but not on any security detail or the such (though, just like my job: I don't have to believe in something to take advantage of the benefits), but law enforcement? It might be rare, but not unheard of for officers to be attacked when just out and minding their own business because the assailants believed a wrong was done against them. Both real and perceived injustices, and I believe that the chance of misuse is much lower (considering the lengths you have to go to just to get a concealed permit in NYC: finger printed, weapon registrations, background and security checks, and justification as far as I remember. They're not exactly the easiest pieces of paper to get. The fee is, admittedly, negligible. All things considering, I kind of doubt Zimmerman even had a CWP, but that's besides the point) than the possibility of retaliation, or at the very least equally likely, and would err on the side of caution.

Really, if anyone should have it, it should be law enforcement, off and on duty. I see it the same way as soldiers in war zones. Just because you're off duty doesn't mean the potential for violence against you for what you are isn't there. Everyone else is highly debatable.
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#35 Mar 21 2012 at 4:23 PM Rating: Decent
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TirithRR wrote:
Somehow, even if the law ends up allowing a tragedy like this to be legal, you'd think that arrest, questioning, and thorough investigations would be the way to approach it.


He was detained and questioned by police though. Are you arguing that charges should be filed for manslaughter automatically in any case where someone shoots another person?

Quote:
Someone killed another person. Even if it ends up being a legal killing (strange way to say that...), the person doing the killing should be held until it is investigated and determined legal.


Wait until the emotions of this specific case fade and then read what you just wrote. We have a whole set of rules that require that the law must be applied the exact opposite (guilty until proven innocent). The police must provide sufficient evidence of a crime to detain someone until a full investigation and/or trial occurs. Otherwise, the most they can hold someone for is 72 hours (this may vary from state to state). There are very very good reasons for that restriction on police powers.

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Now I'm not saying they should be held in "Federal Pound-Me-In-The-Ass Prison" but a simple detention area. Even if in the end all the purpose served was to show people and the society as a whole that so called "self defense" killings are not and should not be taken lightly. It would hopefully give some solace to the killed individual's family, that a proper investigation was made and the person was held, and deter the killer from making the decision so easily.


Ok. Different scenario. You're in Florida and have a concealed carry permit. You're walking down the street when you hear a woman calling for help from down an alley. You run down the alley and see a man beating a woman and possibly attempting to rape her. You rush in to help and the man turns around and heads towards you threateningly. You pull out your gun and fire, killing the man.

How long should you be held in a detention center in that case? And wouldn't that sort of policy result in fewer people coming to the aid of others? See. If you just stand on the street and call 911, you're free from risk. If you get involved, you will go to jail. Hardly a reward for someone we'd normally hail as a hero, right?


You can say that those two cases are completely different, but from the point of view of the law, they are not. All the police know is that when they arrive, there's a man dead and another man with a gun claiming that the first man was threatening him. Even with a witness, for all you know she could be lying. We can always speculate that someone conspired in some way to kill someone else and make it look like self defense, and there's no way for the law to directly or immediately differentiate that.

Which is why we should allow the police to investigate and if they find something to indicate that charges should be filed, then they can do so. Rushing in, emotions running full steam, and demanding "justice" isn't really about justice at all.
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#36 Mar 21 2012 at 4:28 PM Rating: Good
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He's been following this kid for a good 2 minutes before he tells the dispatcher that the kid started to run away from him.

And go ahead and listen at 2:21 for when you get to hear his nice racial slur. It's not hard to make out, at all.
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#37 Mar 21 2012 at 4:39 PM Rating: Good
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gbaji wrote:
Wait until the emotions of this specific case fade and then read what you just wrote. We have a whole set of rules that require that the law must be applied the exact opposite (guilty until proven innocent). The police must provide sufficient evidence of a crime to detain someone until a full investigation and/or trial occurs. Otherwise, the most they can hold someone for is 72 hours (this may vary from state to state). There are very very good reasons for that restriction on police powers.


I realize what I said could be a gross infringement on rights. I sat on that post for a good while before hitting enter wondering if I should even post it. Obviously a single person talking about a single case does not a good law make, but as is it seems like a pretty crappy way for the legal system to handle self defense killings.
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#38 Mar 21 2012 at 4:59 PM Rating: Excellent
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I stand corrected on the numbers. But every call that Zimmerman made to police that day were to report "suspicious persons" were African-American.

Further, Zimmerman actually didn't even call 9-1-1. He called the nonemergency line to report. That leads me to believe that it wasn't a true emergency. If it was a true emergency, where he thought his life was threatened, he would have called 9-1-1. By law, he didn't have to follow the dispatcher when the dispatcher told him not to follow Martin. But he did anyways. If he truly thought it was an emergency where his life or his neighborhood was threatened and could justify use of deadly force, why didn't he call 9-1-1?

Have you listened to the 9-1-1 call? Zimmerman is completely calm during the call. He doesn't sound scared, never stated that he was scared, never said that he thought he was in danger. He said that Martin was checking him out, had something in his hand, and then Martin started running. That's when he started chasing after Martin. Dispatch told he didn't have to run after Zimmerman but Zimmerman did. He wasn't obliged to do what dispatch told him to do, but he did anyways. Listen to 2:22, which is where the supposed slur is said.

There are already enough witnesses to contradict Zimmerman's theory of self-defense. People found him moments after the shooting standing over the body. Witnesses were saying that it sounded like it was a young boy crying for help.

I don't believe that it was Zimmerman crying for help. I believe that Trayvon was screaming for help during the fight. I believed that Zimmerman cornered Trayvon and when Trayvon tried to get away, Zimmerman took it upon himself to try to "capture" Trayvon. He helped capture a thief once before, wanted to be a cop and he wanted to do it again.

It was not self-defense. Zimmerman initiated and escalated this situation. He was neighborhood watch and not a cop. He tried to be a vigilante and now just showed why vigilante justice can be so dangerous.

ETA: I already pointed out why there is such a fury over this situation. The police investigation was shoddy and witnesses are claiming that their statements were twisted or leading questions were used. Remember, Trayvon Martin died on February 26. It's now March 21, almost a month later. During that entire time, the one witness that the police NEVER contacted was Trayvon Martin's girlfriend. The one he was on the phone with just seconds before Zimmerman caught up with him. What excuse is there for the police not to cover that glaring hole in their investigation? If the police did their job correctly, Zimmerman's self-defense theory would have have been weakened weeks ago.

I will say that I am going to wait to see what the autopsy results say about Trayvon Martin's body. If the autopsy comes out that he had no marks (and I should Smiley: lol with that phrase in this forum) to indicate a fight with Zimmerman, I want to see how Zimmerman can say that he was in fear for his life to justify deadly force under the Stand Your Ground law, particularly when he was already chasing Trayvon.


Edited, Mar 21st 2012 4:11pm by Thumbelyna
#39 Mar 21 2012 at 5:04 PM Rating: Decent
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Thumbelyna Quick Hands wrote:
Listen to 2:22, which is where the supposed slur is said.


There's no 'supposed' about it. He can clearly be heard muttering "@#%^ing coon" to himself under his breath. That doesn't necessarily make this a hate crime, but it does establish the fact that he was racist. At any rate, yeah, he was supposed to wait and meet the cops at the gates. Self-defense my @#%^ing ass.
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You guys keep tossing facts out there like they mean something.


#40 Mar 21 2012 at 5:09 PM Rating: Excellent
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Omegavegeta wrote:
While I'm outraged by this, I don't know if they'll be able to prove beyond a reasonable doubt it wasn't self defense. That + Florida's dumb law might make it even harder to convict Zimmerman of murder.

Racism is a motherfucker.



The kid was allegedly talking to his sister on the phone. Y'know, the phone that looked like a gun. From a distance.

There was no reasonable assumption of threat here. The kid was black, and that's it.

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#41 Mar 21 2012 at 5:13 PM Rating: Excellent
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If everyone in this thread was arguing that Martin deserved it, gbaji would be arguing that Zimmerman was a racist. It doesn't matter what anyone here says, gbaji's going to argue in the other direction. It's been this way ever since he came off his meds, or got dropped on the head, or whatever it was that's changed him so much.
#42 Mar 21 2012 at 5:14 PM Rating: Good
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How old was this kid? He looks about 16 or so. Never mind he's 17

This Zimmerman guy is what? Twice his age and weight? There's no way he was threatened here. Ridiculous.

Edited, Mar 21st 2012 7:15pm by Nilatai
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#43 Mar 21 2012 at 5:21 PM Rating: Excellent
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Maybe Martin's phone had one of those apps that makes it sound like a light saber. That would've been threatening, right?
#44 Mar 21 2012 at 5:27 PM Rating: Decent
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idiggory, King of Bards wrote:
He's been following this kid for a good 2 minutes before he tells the dispatcher that the kid started to run away from him.


And? That's exactly what he's supposed to do. Or do you think that someone who's on a neighborhood watch patrol, upon seeing someone he believes is suspicious, should call the police and then drive off and hope everything works out ok? He kept an eye on Martin until the police could arrive. But before they did so, Martin bolted and ran. Obviously, we can question Zimmerman's choice to chase him, but nothing up to that point was wrong.

Quote:
And go ahead and listen at 2:21 for when you get to hear his nice racial slur. It's not hard to make out, at all.


I can't listen to audio tapes right at the moment, but I've read the transcripts and I've read reports from two different news outlets who've had audio experts listen to the tape. One said that they could not determine the word, the other said that it was "punks". The only reason you think it's a racist slur is because you've read dozens of posts and statements that he said "coons". So that's what you hear when you listen to the tape.

Strip away the assumptions other people are saying and just look at the facts. I know that this is hard for most people to do, but if you do this you'll realize that there isn't anything to indicate racism as a motivation.
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#45 Mar 21 2012 at 5:33 PM Rating: Good
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It's INCREDIBLY clear that he said "f***ing coon". There isn't any static or anything clouding it out, it's not even muttered. It's a joke to think he said something else.

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And? That's exactly what he's supposed to do.


No. It isn't. At all. He was told not to by the dispatcher he was on the phone with, and it's against procedure for neighborhood watches in general. You report--that's when your job ends. They are incredibly strict about this--you do not put yourself or anyone else in danger; you are not vigilantes. It's an early warning system, not a civilian police force.
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#46 Mar 21 2012 at 5:34 PM Rating: Excellent
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gbaji wrote:
And? That's exactly what he's supposed to do. Or do you think that someone who's on a neighborhood watch patrol, upon seeing someone he believes is suspicious, should call the police and then drive off and hope everything works out ok?

That's what you're supposed to do. It's what they're for.
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#47 Mar 21 2012 at 5:35 PM Rating: Good
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gbaji wrote:
Strip away the assumptions other people are saying and just look at the facts. I know that this is hard for most people to do, but if you do this you'll realize that there isn't anything to indicate racism as a motivation.
I agree in so far that I don't think there's enough proof to go shouting racism, however it does sound much more like murder than like self defense and at the very least it's suspicious and there's a need for a thorough investigation.
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#48 Mar 21 2012 at 5:43 PM Rating: Good
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idiggory, King of Bards wrote:
You report--that's when your job ends. They are incredibly strict about this--you do not put yourself or anyone else in danger; you are not vigilantes. It's an early warning system, not a civilian police force.
Actually you're fully entitled to performed a citizen's arrest, which would be where you detain an individual until the proper authorities arrive should you catch someone in the midst of a crime and escape is highly likely. Though it doesn't entitle one to shoot someone, should there be a scuffle and the individual attempting a CA feels his life is in danger, then (depending on the state) deadly force is allowed.

Note that I'm not talking about the case with Zimmerman, just saying that "report and hope for the best" isn't exactly correct when it comes to civilian organizations like neighborhood watch and such.
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#49 Mar 21 2012 at 5:44 PM Rating: Excellent
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You're really not in danger from someone who's running away. On the recording, Zimmerman was more worried that the kid was going to "escape".

"Are you following him now, sir?"
"Yeah."
"We don't need you to do that, okay?"
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#50 Mar 21 2012 at 5:57 PM Rating: Good
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WHY ARE YOU PEOPLE GETTING SIDETRACKED BY GBAJI'S RACISM BULLSHIT?

This kid was killed, regardless of if the guy was racist or not, he still murdered a child.

He needs to be put away for a long time.
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#51 Mar 21 2012 at 6:07 PM Rating: Good
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Quote:
"report and hope for the best" isn't exactly correct when it comes to civilian organizations like neighborhood watch and such.


Being allowed by law, and being what he should do are two different things. From the USA on Watch website (and here's a link to the NW page, specifically):

Quote:
Q: What is the difference between Citizens Patrol and Neighborhood Watch?
A: Citizens Patrol is mainly groups of volunteers who donate their time to work with law enforcement departments. In some cases, Citizens Patrol is directly started and funded by law enforcement agency for the specific purpose of assisting that agency with basic functions such as providing administrative help or assisting with patrolling areas with nonviolent crimes.Neighborhood Watch is a crime prevention program that stresses education and common sense. It teaches citizens how to help themselves by identifying and reporting suspicious activity in their neighborhoods to local law enforcement. . Neighborhood Watch Groups are more than the eyes and ears for police. The defining difference between Neighborhood Watch and Citizen Patrol is their evolvement with law enforcement. While both assist law enforcement their roles are different. Neighborhood Watch reports suspicious activity in their neighborhood to law enforcement. Citizen Patrol works closely with law enforcement to assist their efforts.


One of the key purposes of watches isn't to actually catch convicts, but to deter them from entering the neighborhood in the first place. Beyond that, the goal is to get police to the scene before a crime can actually be committed. The hope is that, in time, the communities will be considered risky propositions for criminals, and therefore avoided.

Edited, Mar 21st 2012 8:08pm by idiggory
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