Thursday, September 26, 2013

In Florida, Zimmerman Walks While Black Woman Who Fires Harmless Warning Shot Gets 20-Years.

Marissa Alexander has been reprieved from having to serve a 20-year stretch in a Florida penitentiary for having fired a warning shot during an argument with her abusive husband.   Under Florida law, any use of a handgun in the commission of an offence nets a mandatory 20-year sentence.

A Florida appeals court said the trial judge erred in instructing the jury that Ms. Alexander had to prove beyond a reasonable doubt the shot was fired in self-defence.   The standard, under Florida's 'stand your ground' law requires merely that the defendant raise some reasonable doubt.   When you think about it, that's a pretty low standard on which to escape liability for killing someone.


Elliott Taylor said...

This case is just the sort of scenario that is populating the USA's new slave class, non-violent offenders sentenced under ridiculous minimum sentence laws for victimless crimes.

According to, crime in that state is at a 40 year low yet they house more than 100,000 inmates, and about 10% of them are imprisoned in privately run facilities who then have a ready pool of very cheap labor to offer to Fortune 500 companies.

The next time you're talking to a call center worker it might be someone incarcerated under such an unjust law, a virtual slave.

It sickens me.

The Mound of Sound said...

Certainly in the 70s, possibly even into the 80s, we used to condemn China for using prison labour. We considered it a form of penal slavery and an unfair advantage over our paid workers.

It wasn't too long after that before the Americans followed suit.

And, yes, it is sickening.

LeDaro said...

Mound, now we're talking. Zimmerman was let off for self-defence and idiotic law 'stand your grounds'. My foot. The police was on the bastard's side and Trayvon Martin was black.

He also got away for pointing his gun at his wife and father-in-law. This shithole should be in the slammer house rest of his life.

The Mound of Sound said...

The point is, LD, that Florida's "stand your ground" law has such a low threshold of proof that, without clear evidence to contradict the killer, it's really easy to raise provided you shoot your victim at reasonably close range.

You don't have to prove you were in danger, merely that it's possible that you were. Establish that mere possibility and you have established the reasonable doubt that entitles you to the stand your ground exemption.

LeDaro said...

Mound, I believe police did the screwing up.

Now the black lady could not use the same law and get out of the jail. Why? Colour of skin and poverty. Also she could not afford the expensive lawyers. That is why, I believe that, justice is bought whether is in U.S or Canada.