Pro-Tip: Shooting Fleeing Women in the Back is NOT Self-Defense

Hey folks, One of the conditions of using deadly force in self-defense is that one be facing an imminent threat of death or grave bodily harm. That definition of imminence is well captured by Black’s Law Dictionary: Immediate danger, such as must be instantly met, such as cannot be guarded against by calling for the assistance of others or the protection of the law . . . Such an appearance of threatened and impending injury as …

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Detroit Front Porch Shooting case: Day 2 End-of-Day Wrap-Up

Hey folks, This afternoon saw testimony from two additional Dearborn Heights law enforcement officers, Tim Zawacki and Mark Parrinello. Highlights of this afternoon’s events included a request by the Prosecution for sanctions against the defense for a mention earlier this morning of general crime in the Wafer neighborhood. A pretrial ruling excludes such generalized mention of neighborhood crime unless a foundation can be established of Wafer’s personal knowledge of specific crime events (e.g., the defense’s …

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Detroit Front Porch Shooting case: Day 2 Mid-Day Wrap-Up

Hey folks, The State’s case against Wafer proceeded through several more witnesses today, including additional officers on scene as well as dash-cam video from a “Scout” patrol car, witnesses to McBride’s single-vehicle car crash some hours before the shooting, and the 911 dispatcher who took Wafer’s call. To me the most relevant bits of testimony came at the start and end of the morning, both having to do with the notion that Wafer’s firing of …

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Detroit Front Porch Shooting case: Day 1 End-of-Day Wrap-Up

Hey folks, In addition to the two reporters and the photographer identified in the mid-day wrap-up–Gina Damron (@ginadamron) and Elisha Anderson (@elishaanderson), and the photographer Mandi Wright (@DetroitMandi), =all with the Detroit Free Press– we also make extensive use here of the Twitter feed of a fourth reporter, @oralandar_DN with the Detroit news. In summary of the afternoon, the state brought two witnesses: Carmen Beasley, the woman whose husband’s parked car was struck by Renisha …

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Detroit Front Porch Shooting case: Day 1 Mid-Day Wrap-Up

Hey folks, I had been told by that by order of trial judge Dana Hathaway there is no live streaming of the second degree murder trial of Theodore Wafer, the Detroit man who shot and killed Renisha McBride, a young black woman who was on his front porch in the early morning hours of November 15, 2013. Later I was informed that live streaming WAS available, but first the connection was so bad it was …

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Jury Selection Begins in Detroit Front Porch Shooting of Black Woman

Hey folks, Jury selection begins today in the murder trial of Detroit homeowner Theodore Wafer, as reported in the Detroit Free Press. Wafer shot and killed Renisha McBride, a 19-year-old black woman, on his front porch. Wafer is claiming self-defense. The most recent news in the Wafer case was the June 27 denial by trial judge Dana Margaret Hathaway of defense requests to have McBride’s cell phone texts and a map illustrating local crime incidents admitted …

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Trial Begins of Joseph Walker, NJ Cop Involved in “Road Rage” Killing

Hey folks, Today begins the trial of black New Jersey police officer Joseph Walker over the “road rage” killing of white victim Joseph Harvey (Jury selection begins in road-rage murder case). Unfortunately, it does not appear that this case will be televised, as were the Zimmerman and Dunn trials in Florida, and as a result there seems no opportunity for the kind of live coverage we were able to conduct in those cases. For full …

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No Second Self-Defense Immunity Hearing for Marissa Alexander

Marissa Alexander has been denied a second shot at a self-defense immunity hearing (often incorrectly referred to as a “Stand-Your-Ground’ hearing), reports by First Coast News. Under Florida’s self-defense immunity statute (FL 776.032 Immunity from criminal prosecution and civil action for justifiable use of force) a person claiming self-defense can seek immunity from criminal prosecution and civil suit.  To do so they generally request a hearing in court in which they present their evidence in support …

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Florida prosecutors fail in effort to deny self-defense immunity to black male shooter

Hey folks, New post up at Legal Insurrection: Florida prosecutors fail in effort to deny self-defense immunity to black male shooter. Check it out! 🙂 P.S. I’m pleased to announce that the National Rifle Association–where I have been a Life Member and Instructor for more than 20 years–has informed me this week that they will begin stocking “The Law of Self Defense, 2d Edition” in the NRA Store. Inventory should be in place by the …

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The Zimmerman Files: Aggregated day-by-day live coverage & analysis

Hey folks, A year after the trial in which George Zimmerman was unanimously acquitted by a jury in the shooting death of Trayvon Martin, misinformation continues to abound. Whether the misinformation is being spread inadvertently or — as is too often the case — as a result of intentional disinformation campaigns, the only antidote is the truth. Many of you will recall that I was graciously invited by the well-respected legal blog Legal Insurrection (LI) …

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