As noted in previous posts, to the charge of second degree murder, there are four potential verdicts. We went through the idea that George Zimmerman was the initial aggressor and did not have the right to use deadly force. We also went through the pieces of evidence, not yet talked about in depth that could be the little, unspoken details jurors use to find George Zimmerman was not the initial aggressor of the altercation and could use deadly force. Rather than go through the same pieces of evidence and discussing their credibility, let’s talk about the closings and some key points for each side.
We have now seen the prosecutors shift from what seemed like focusing on two expletive-filled phrases uttered by the George Zimmerman, to weaving together the evidence presented. This seems a good move for the prosecution as opposed to equating the expletives with the way you invite someone to dinner. Interestingly enough, it seems each side has now taken the position that they speak for an innocent party. The prosecution contending Trayvon Martin acted innocently, buying skittles and a canned drink is nothing illegal. The defense contending that George Zimmerman was innocent that evening. Is it a risk for either party to so patently contend the one who they advocate for is innocent? An interesting choice of words for both sides, from what seems to very many a very muddy case where two parties may have both made bad decisions.
The grass on the front of George Zimmerman’s feet in one of the pictures in evidence was a new idea in closing. This point was not yet discussed in questioning, outside the presence of the jury, or in any main stream media analysis. It was a moment that made me, and likely many others take pause. But, is that one piece of evidence enough? It is possible to explain away the grass merely by walking through the courtyard where the alternation took place. Perhaps, but the discussion about where the grass was on George Zimmerman’s shoes, that was a point where the state pointed out, rightfully, and credibly, how do you really jive the grass where it is on his shoes, and the statements made by George Zimmerman.
Notice, each party did not in depth discuss the testimony about whose voice was on the 911 tape. Probably a smart move by each party. Both brushed the topic, mentioning their strongest witnesses. But, despite the number of witnesses and the number of questions about this topic, neither attorney discussed in detail the impact of the testimony. Did the testimony sway your decision? Did you rely on that testimony to reach your conclusion? Probably not, essentially the testimony is a wash for both sides.
Interestingly enough, just a short day later, and watching the recaps and discussions, I don’t know if there is anything else that sticks out for me regarding the state’s closing. Is it possible that will be the same for the defenses closing? Will that be the same for the jurors? Perhaps this is a disadvantage of the prosecution closing first and on a different day. However, that is also why in our system, the state gets the last words with the jury in the rebuttal. As they state carries the burden, the state is the last to speak with the jury. This closing is Mr. O’Mara’s last shot.
One of the most powerful pieces of Mr. O’Mara’s closing was the four minutes of silence. The
power of silence is most evident, in the Courtroom. By yourself at home, you can turn on the tv or radio to quiet silence. At work, you can talk to a co-worker, flip on Pandora, or makes some copies on that unexplainably loud copier. But, in the Courtroom, don’t you dare speak, especially when there is silence. So, that four minutes where Mark O’Mara asked the jurors to sit in silence, that spoke volumes. You could see it in the gallery, the awkwardness that creeped over the public and the media. The shifting of the eyes, looking around to see, is it over yet?
The point of that exercise was to demonstrate just how many thoughts one can have in such a short amount of time. It is creative, and it demonstrates a point, a powerful one. Will that be the difference for the jurors? As posting, we still have the prosecution’s rebuttal. Then, the long and boring recitation of the jury instructions. Any predictions on how long the jury will take to reach a verdict? Any predictions on the verdict and a couple thoughts on why?
Feel free to post your thoughts, comments, or disagreements below. For any questions, or to inquire about an initial consultation contact The Law Office of Diana S. Miers, PA at (407) 603 – 6538 or visit www.dianamierslaw.com.