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  1. 30 Dec '11 08:35
    Off death row, largely because the victim's widow threw in the towel.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/12/08/us/execution-case-dropped-against-convicted-cop-killer.html?_r=1

    But he's still in prison.

    Based on my reading, I think he most likely pulled the trigger, although if it was based on an impulse while watching his brother be beaten by the officer, I don't think it should be a death penalty case even though a police officer was the victim. Then again, I don't believe in the death penalty.

    But I do believe he's guilty of murder sans "special circumstances."

    On the other hand, the trial was seriously mishandled by the judge. Whether the witnesses who said they saw or heard another person running from the scene was evidence of innocence was really up to the jury and not the prosecution or the judge. He is entitled to a retrial in my view, though I personally don't find the evidence compelling - based upon what I've read. Still, I would reserve absolute judgment until I heard the testimony - something the jury did not hear.
  2. 30 Dec '11 14:07
    Read your link but I couldn't find where it stated he watched his brother being beaten by the police officer.
  3. Standard member sh76
    Civis Americanus Sum
    30 Dec '11 15:26 / 3 edits
    Originally posted by Kunsoo
    Off death row, largely because the victim's widow threw in the towel.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/12/08/us/execution-case-dropped-against-convicted-cop-killer.html?_r=1

    But he's still in prison.

    Based on my reading, I think he most likely pulled the trigger, although if it was based on an impulse while watching his brother be beaten by the officer, I eserve absolute judgment until I heard the testimony - something the jury did not hear.
    I don't think he's entitled to a re-trial. He almost certainly pulled the trigger and the jury found the same. The prosecution had a parade of witnesses that saw him do the shooting and that placed him at the scene, witnesses that he confessed shortly after the murder and forensics indicated that it was his gun that did the shooting.

    Once a jury finds a person guilty, there is a presumption of guilt and not a shred of evidence of innocence has been shown. He's as guilty as OJ (and that's pretty darn guilty).

    I think it's great that they're dropping the death penalty effort. First, the death penalty doesn't do much good and I'm perfectly happy if it's abolished. Second, the "free Mumia" movement will die a slow death (so to speak) now that it's lost its urgency. Let the murderer spend the rest of his life in prison where he belongs.

    Edit:

    Can any guess who said this:

    "Mumia [the campaigning Pennsylvania journalist who was sentenced for the shooting of a police officer and has been on death row since 1982] probably killed that guy. There, I said it. That does not mean he should be denied a fair trial or that he should be put to death. But because we don’t want to see him or anyone executed, the efforts to defend him may have overlooked the fact that he did indeed kill that cop. This takes nothing away from the eloquence of his writings or commentary, or the important place he now holds on the international political stage. But he probably did kill that guy."


    ?

    Hint: It wasn't exactly a right wing sympathizer.
  4. 31 Dec '11 00:50
    Originally posted by boonon
    Read your link but I couldn't find where it stated he watched his brother being beaten by the police officer.
    It didn't, but it's a contention of the defense, and the prosecution does not deny that Faulkner Cook "no less than three times" with a long object which, according to the witnesses, could have been a flashlight or a nightstick. The prosecution argues that Cook struck Faulkner first.

    Ironically, the "defense" is actually a poor one in my opinion, unless you're conceding the killing and fighting the special circumstances finding.
  5. 31 Dec '11 20:19
    Originally posted by sh76
    I don't think he's entitled to a re-trial. He almost certainly pulled the trigger and the jury found the same. The prosecution had a parade of witnesses that saw him do the shooting and that placed him at the scene, witnesses that he confessed shortly after the murder and forensics indicated that it was his gun that did the shooting.

    Once a jury finds a pers ...[text shortened]... kill that guy."[/quote]

    ?

    Hint: It wasn't exactly a right wing sympathizer.
    I don't practice a lot of criminal law, and I certainly don't know the law in Pennsylvania, however, I'm certain that in California there's no "presumption of guilt" at any phase. I assume that you're referring to the policy favoring jury verdicts, in which you only question the evidence if the Appellate Court finds that there was an abuse of discretion, a very rare occurrence. However, if evidence was improperly excluded either through improper court ruling or prosecutorial misconduct, the only issue is whether the evidence would have been material to a jury decision and not whether it, by itself, proves innocence. I would hope that no court system operates with a presumption of guilt requiring proof of innocence at any phase, and I really doubt that would meet the due process requirements federally.

    What is undisputed is that there were witnesses who, with various details, say they saw a fourth individual or heard the running footsteps in the alleyway leading away from the scene. The trial judge apparently decided to exclude some of the evidence because it wasn't in his mind credible (such as one witness who had been convicted of fraud), and the alleyway audio witnesses because it could have been anybody running from the shooting. But it's not his call. I'm not exactly impressed with what I've read in the pro-defense literature, but as a juror I would want the opportunity to hear the examination and cross-examination of the witnesses and decide their weight and relevance myself, in the context of the entire case, to resolve on my own whether the evidence left me with reasonable doubt. The defendant is entitled to that, and a result-oriented judge should not be allowed to impede that right.

    That being said, I am quite uncomfortable with the cult around this guy, and lack of skepticism on the part of many on the left. There are plenty of exceptions. I don't know who is the author of your quote, but it could easily be a number of them. Probably the leftist individual who has taken the most crap over it is Marc Cooper who edits The Nation Magazine.

    http://motherjones.com/politics/2000/02/whats-mumia-got-do-it

    http://motherjones.com/politics/2000/02/mumia-pro-and-con-0
  6. Standard member sh76
    Civis Americanus Sum
    31 Dec '11 23:45 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by Kunsoo
    I don't practice a lot of criminal law, and I certainly don't know the law in Pennsylvania, however, I'm certain that in California there's no "presumption of guilt" at any phase. I assume that you're referring to the policy favoring jury verdicts, in which you only question the evidence if the Appellate Court finds that there was an abuse of discretion, a v whats-mumia-got-do-it

    http://motherjones.com/politics/2000/02/mumia-pro-and-con-0
    The author I quote is Michael Moore.

    http://www.counterpunch.org/2003/10/17/michael-moore-proclaims-mumia-quot-did-it-quot/
  7. 01 Jan '12 00:13
    Originally posted by sh76
    The author I quote is Michael Moore.

    http://www.counterpunch.org/2003/10/17/michael-moore-proclaims-mumia-quot-did-it-quot/
    Okay, that one actually surprises me.

    Looks like he got slammed for it too.

    http://www.counterpunch.org/2003/10/17/michael-moore-proclaims-mumia-quot-did-it-quot/

    Well, good for him. Anybody willing to state a principle against his material interests (he could have lost book sales over this), I'll give the person credit whether I agree with him or not.
  8. Standard member sh76
    Civis Americanus Sum
    01 Jan '12 00:22 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by Kunsoo
    Okay, that one actually surprises me.

    Looks like he got slammed for it too.

    http://www.counterpunch.org/2003/10/17/michael-moore-proclaims-mumia-quot-did-it-quot/

    Well, good for him. Anybody willing to state a principle against his material interests (he could have lost book sales over this), I'll give the person credit whether I agree with him or not.
    I remember reading that quote originally in his book (IIRC) "Dude, Where's my Country"?

    It's part of a list of "10 things liberals got wrong" or something to that effect. It's been a long time since I read the book and I don't own a copy, but I seem to recall some other fairly startling "admissions."

    Edit: the "slamming" was from a self-serving author, so I don't put particularly much stock in it.
  9. 01 Jan '12 08:45
    Originally posted by sh76
    I remember reading that quote originally in his book (IIRC) "Dude, Where's my Country"?

    It's part of a list of "10 things liberals got wrong" or something to that effect. It's been a long time since I read the book and I don't own a copy, but I seem to recall some other fairly startling "admissions."

    Edit: the "slamming" was from a self-serving author, so I don't put particularly much stock in it.
    No, but considering the flack Marc Cooper caught with threatened boycotts against Nation Magazine (from people who don't read much anyway), I wouldn't be surprised if there was a bit more out there.