Friday, December 18, 2015
Starting late tonight and for the next 10 or so days I will be so lucky to have visiting grandchildren and great grandchildren plus all my kids and spouses including “Oh-Hellers” here for the holidays. Fortunately not all at the same time, but Dawg will also have company. Obviously I will not have time to blog
As fillers today some notes from print/internet media: "Today’s world!" USA Today “San Bernardino came on the heels of Colorado Springs, which came on the heels of Roseburg, Ore., which came on the heels ... It's been a year. We're edgy. But it was a bit of a gut check for many Thursday when the happiest place on Earth announced it was installing metal detectors. The three major theme parks in Orlando have installed metal detectors for the holiday season, reflecting heightened security nationwide, Roger Yu reports . Additionally, Disney said it will have more uniformed law enforcement officers and specially trained dogs on patrol in key areas. They will also stop selling toy guns and won't allow them brought into the parks. Tom Schroeder, a spokesman for Universal, said the company is "testing metal detection because we want our guests to feel safe when they come to our theme parks." No one would disagree. Safety? Yes. The sad feeling at the end of an era? Perhaps.”
As reported in the Times : “The trial of the first Baltimore police officer in the death of Freddie Gray ended in a hung jury on Wednesday, an unexpected twist that complicates the cases against five other officers facing charges in a fatal police encounter that prompted violent unrest here last spring.
“a weary-looking jury of seven women and five men filed into his (the Judge’s) wood-paneled courtroom. They had sent him a note after 16 hours of deliberations to inform him they were deadlocked on all four charges, including manslaughter”.
The mistrial could complicate the other prosecutions; Officer Porter is considered a material witness in their case against the driver of the van, Officer Caesar R. Goodson Jr., who is scheduled to go on trial Jan. 6 with the other cases to follow.
The trial of the officer, William G. Porter, was to be the opening to — and a critical building block for — a six-part legal proceeding on the fatal encounter between the police and Mr. Gray
The Porter trial was closely watched by Black Lives Matter activists across the country, who viewed it as a barometer of whether it is possible to convict police officers. Yet its racial dynamics were complex. Officer Porter is black; so are Judge Williams, who made a career of prosecuting police officers as a lawyer with the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division, and Marilyn J. Mosby, the tough-talking state’s attorney who brought charges against the six officers, three black and three white. Seven of the 12 jurors were black.”
Although there was some attempt to incite the crowd waiting for the verdict; common sense prevailed and the city remained quiet that night. Some of the quoted comments:
“DeRay Mckesson, a national leader in the Black Lives Matter movement who lives in Baltimore, said he was heartened by the outcome. “This is a hung jury, it’s not an acquittal,” he said. “That’s important. The prosecution resonated with the jury in some capacity — and that is undeniable.”
“Justice is not a verdict,” the mayor said. “Justice is a process that we have to protect.”
A lawyer for the Gray family, Billy Murphy, called the outcome “a bump on the road to justice.”
My opinion, this was not a failure of the legal system to produce justice which all too often to aggrieved minorities “justice” only means a guilty verdict, otherwise right or wrong the system as failed.
Instead, it proved that an American Jury can come to mixed conclusions and not be swayed by emotion or racial prejudices in finding a verdict