I shot a video with Frank Taaffe soon after the hearing ended Tuesday. I know, I know - he is a controversial character who draws admiration from some and disdain from others, but he had something interesting to say, so please hear him out. It pertains to Jose Baez; no stranger to controversy himself.
I do want to say something about the hearing, though. Aside from matters dealing with discovery, voice identification, witness testimony and depositions, the most important thing to come out of it was the judge’s order pertaining to two defense motions in particular. One was the MOTION TO MODIFY CONDITIONS OF RELEASE, a 74-page whopper that ultimately went nowhere, and the other was the MOTION FOR CLARIFICATION OF ORDER SETTING BAIL, that also failed to budge the judge. After hearing arguments from both sides, she promptly denied the motions without further explanation.
Did it surprise me? Yes and no. I expected a denial, but I didn’t think the decision would come so quickly. However, the bottom line is that George Zimmerman lied about his second passport and he lied about the money he had in the bank when he talked to his wife in code while in jail, and when he sat silent in the courtroom as she lied in open court. While Mark O’Mara, his defense attorney, respectfully told the court that his client has complied with all court orders, I thought about what Zimmerman was supposed to do other than follow the letter of the law. That’s what any person under court order is supposed to do; it goes with the territory, so what makes him special?
O’Mara argued that evidence now surfacing completely exonerates his client of any crime. OK, fine, but save it for another day — the day George Zimmerman stands trial for the murder of Trayvon Martin. This was a day to prove his reliability; that you could trust George no matter where he is. Like he’s paid his dues. Well, he hasn’t paid his dues and he deserves nothing more than anyone else under the same conditions. He should not be pampered.
Also, O’Mara tried his best to rewrite history and turn Zimmerman into the real victim; a victim of racism. Baloney. If that’s the case, then the best place for him to be would be within the confines of beautiful Seminole County, 345 square miles of frolicking fun; safely tucked away, instead of roaming the countryside and risk being caught by all those delusional mobs of black monsters out to get him. Thank God they don’t exist in Seminole County.
Since the hearing, news has surfaced that (then) Sanford police detective Chris Serino made many revisions to the police report before he submitted it to State Attorney Norm Wolfinger’s office. Serino was the lead detective on the case and in his initial report, he recommended that Zimmerman be charged with second-degree murder. After several revisions he settled on manslaughter. All of this was done within a five-hour period.
In the end, the general consensus of the Sanford Police Department was to write a recommendation — any recommendation — and pass the buck up to the State Attorney’s Office. Pressure on the police department from national civil rights groups was mounting, and they wanted it out of their hands.
But will this revelation hurt the prosecution and help the defense? In my opinion, it shows a department in disarray. Several Sanford police officers have already come out in favor of Zimmerman, so in this sense, it may help the defense, but the big problem facing them is that the State doesn’t need Sanford. They’ve got much larger support in the FDLE, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. Their guns are much bigger than Sanford’s, and that’s the agency that did the brunt of the investigation that led to the charge against Zimmerman. Bernie de la Rionda will be relying on FDLE, and it might be necessary to debunk the Sanford Police Department for running a slipshod organization that couldn’t make up their minds on anything. Heck, their police chief was fired over the mess, but in my opinion, he was more of a fall guy. So much for that. I don’t expect this new story to have much of an impact either way.
Here is the interesting video interview with Frank Taaffe. Also, he invited me up to the Retreat, which I accepted, and gave me the 50 cent tour; well worth the price. That will be unfolded in my next post.