The Zimmerman trial. Isn’t this a relevant analogy?

The Zimmerman trial.  Analogy. You shoot a gun into what you believe is an empty house and kill a person inside that house. You will likely face criminal homicide charges. Zimmerman, in my view, was the aggressor with a gun who by his sole, deliberate choice and act put himself into the face-to-face situation with Martin. Along the line of the house analogy, it does not matter that Zimmerman had neither expected nor intended to kill Martin. But he did. And, Zimmerman is criminally responsible in my opinion.

5 thoughts on “The Zimmerman trial. Isn’t this a relevant analogy?

  1. James,
    First of all thanks for a good estate planning blog. As a CPA I check it often. I’d like to offer a comment on the above analogy if I may. When my house jumps onto someone and will likely cause them serious injury, they have my full blessing of defending themselves. Granted we don’t (and unfortunately never will) know what verbal exchange led to the above but since it cannot be disproved beyond a reasonable doubt, that the defendant feared for this life doesn’t the presumption of innocence attach to him?

  2. Thanks for the comment. The distinction I am making is that a person carrying a weapon (for example, with a concealed carry license) arguably should not get a stand-your-ground defense if that same person (the person carrying the weapon) could have reasonably avoided the situation, but instead either walked toward or in any manner moved in the direction of the other person that results thereafter in the altercation. A concealed carry license is not akin to deputy or investigative police powers. In my view the argument is more accurately whether Zimmerman is entitled to a stand-the-ground defense in this case. He is not, in my opinion, regardless of whether he feared for his life. I will agree my position might be different if the evidence supported a conclusion that Trayvon Martin grabbed Zimmerman’s gun first without Zimmerman having exposed the gun or having in any manner first touched or handled the gun in the altercation. But, this is not the evidence in this case.

  3. James, stay with estate planning and out of criminal law. Not your game, Ray. I have a carry permit, so I should legally be required to avoid any situation where I might have to pull my gun? Spare me the pablum. This might be your personal opinion, so fine. Your articles and blogs on estate planning are great. Perhaps leave social commentary to others so it does not distract from your greatness with what you do best.

  4. Tom. I am not always correct and anyone is more than welcome to post challenging or opposing views and perspective as part of this blog. However, in the context of your comments, I am not saying nor suggesting one has to “avoid any situation where [one] might have to pull [a] gun”. On the other hand, I am suggesting one cannot purposely be the moving party, or aggressor, and by their own actions create a situation where a reasonable person otherwise would see the situation is ripe for an altercation, etc. I should not, for example, be able to get into a heated disagreement with someone in a parking lot, leave and come back to the lot with a concealed weapon, resume the disagreement, and thereafter obtain the benefit of a stand-your-ground defense if the disagreement escalates into a fight, shooting, etc. By analogy, this is my view of the substance of Zimmerman’s participation in (and aggravation of) the Trayvon Martin altercation.

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