South Carolina Officer Charged With Murder

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  1. #46

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    Quote Originally Posted by JokersWild24 View Post
    I gotcha; sorry if it came off otherwise. I don't think he should use that one, but maybe he will. The video looks like the taser is on the ground behind him and that it's what he goes back and picks up, then drops back beside the body.

    IMO, it may sound crazy, but one of the best things the officer can probably do for himself is to take the stand and be a good witness on his own behalf. I know that sounds strange, and can see how it's kind of risky, but with the right attorney, a very good one, they could maybe personalize him to the jury and find a way for them to relate to him. With some good jury selection people and a favorable enough draw, that could be a difference in softening some of the blow.
    In other words, go for a life in prison sympathy type of defense rather than the death penalty.
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    Quote Originally Posted by halfback20 View Post
    Agreed, but what exactly are you talking about re: mental state?
    There are defenses to murder/homicide where mental state can be taken into account to show that there wasn't the requisite intent to commit the crime, rather it was an act of passion, where the perpetrator didn't have the time to cool down. Rather they just shot out of rage. In school, they related this defense to finding your wife with another man and killing one of them. I would think that fearing for your life would excuse a murder charge where you shoot someone, while fleeing, who had just put you at risk of death. However, here, I would doubt that it would work here due to the extensive training that police officer's receive to deal with crisis. Of course, the next murder trial that I am a defense attorney at will be my first, so take my view w/ a grain of salt.

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    Quote Originally Posted by lawildcat View Post
    In other words, go for a life in prison sympathy type of defense rather than the death penalty.
    Depending on the circumstances, the best way to go if you strictly want to do that would be plea bargaining.

    What I was going for was more toward what mexitucky said with a mental state, something like that. Have him on the stand and make him go through what he's thinking at the time, tell how dangerous the job is, give some reasons why he was legitimately afraid, things like that.

    I did a bad job of explaining it, but he probably needs to take the stand if he's wanting to go to trial and fight it all the way. He obviously doesn't have to do that, but it's probably his best move if it goes to trial.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JokersWild24 View Post

    I gotcha; sorry if it came off otherwise. I don't think he should use that one, but maybe he will. The video looks like the taser is on the ground behind him and that it's what he goes back and picks up, then drops back beside the body.

    IMO, it may sound crazy, but one of the best things the officer can probably do for himself is to take the stand and be a good witness on his own behalf. I know that sounds strange, and can see how it's kind of risky, but with the right attorney, a very good one, they could maybe personalize him to the jury and find a way for them to relate to him. With some good jury selection people and a favorable enough draw, that could be a difference in softening some of the blow.
    I made the comments about Tennessee v Garner before I noticed him picking up the taser and dropping it by the victims body.

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    After the Brown riots, my Facebook feed sure did.

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    Difficult video to watch knowing what was coming. Glad they moved swiftly on the officer.

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    Quote Originally Posted by halfback20 View Post
    I made the comments about Tennessee v Garner before I noticed him picking up the taser and dropping it by the victims body.
    Gotcha. It's all good. It's tough to tell on the video for 100% that he's doing that in the video, but it definitely looks like that's what's going on and there's not really an explanation for what would be happening otherwise.


    Quote Originally Posted by halfback20 View Post
    Agreed, but what exactly are you talking about re: mental state?
    The three most common mental states are purposefully, knowingly, recklessly. Those kind of go in descending order of seriousness and will often categorize the crime in order of degrees/severity. It's, say, first degree murder to purposefully/intentionally kill someone (think pre-meditation), but it might be third degree murder (and a lesser charge of manslaughter) to be the person who drives 100 in a school zone who hits and kills a kid (though they didn't intend to kill anyone, they just put everyone at risk).


    Kind of a quick and dirty:

    Purposefully (often equated to 'intentionally', though the Model Penal Code just uses 'purposefully') means that you perform an act that causes a certain result. Example would be a criminal who shoots someone and the person who gets shot is the exact person the criminal intended to harm. The opposite would be something like manslaughter where someone is just hammered out of their mind and hits a pedestrian. They didn't have a purpose of (or the intent to actually) kill that person, so it's going to be a lesser manslaughter charge.

    Knowingly involves the nature of the conduct itself and someone being aware of the circumstances that exist. Knowingly can also be implied if someone should have been aware that there was a high probability that something is going on and they purposefully ignore those/deliberately don't learn the truth. The last part is best exemplified with drug trafficking: someone comes to you in an airport and offers you $100,000 to take a suitcase through customs and is acting very suspicious. You should know that there's probably something illegal going on, so even though you purposefully don't ask them what's in it because you don't want to know, you may still have acted knowingly.

    Recklessly (also sometimes called wantonly) is when someone consciously disregards a substantial and unjustifiable risk that circumstances exist and that an illegal result will follow, and that disregard is a gross deviation from the standard of care that a reasonable person would follow. Example of this would be pointing a loaded gun into a crowd.

    *Some statutes require both intent (i.e., intentionally) and knowledge (i.e., knowingly).


    Mens Rea - A Defendant's Mental State - FindLaw

    Model Penal Code’s Mens Rea

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    BTW, like mexitucky, the next murder case I try will also be my first, so don't consider me a lawyer or any of what I've said to be legal advice because it's just a very rough understanding and some links.

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    Mens Rea = I learned about from watching Legally Blonde.

  10. #55
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    Last time I checked your life is never in danger when the aggressor is running away from you.

    That guy executed him in cold blood and should be thrown in with some hard pipin dudes in prison. He may last a few hours while they kick his head in.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JokersWild24 View Post

    Gotcha. It's all good. It's tough to tell on the video for 100% that he's doing that in the video, but it definitely looks like that's what's going on and there's not really an explanation for what would be happening otherwise.

    The three most common mental states are purposefully, knowingly, recklessly. Those kind of go in descending order of seriousness and will often categorize the crime in order of degrees/severity. It's, say, first degree murder to purposefully/intentionally kill someone (think pre-meditation), but it might be third degree murder (and a lesser charge of manslaughter) to be the person who drives 100 in a school zone who hits and kills a kid (though they didn't intend to kill anyone, they just put everyone at risk).

    Kind of a quick and dirty:

    Purposefully (often equated to 'intentionally', though the Model Penal Code just uses 'purposefully') means that you perform an act that causes a certain result. Example would be a criminal who shoots someone and the person who gets shot is the exact person the criminal intended to harm. The opposite would be something like manslaughter where someone is just hammered out of their mind and hits a pedestrian. They didn't have a purpose of (or the intent to actually) kill that person, so it's going to be a lesser manslaughter charge.

    Knowingly involves the nature of the conduct itself and someone being aware of the circumstances that exist. Knowingly can also be implied if someone should have been aware that there was a high probability that something is going on and they purposefully ignore those/deliberately don't learn the truth. The last part is best exemplified with drug trafficking: someone comes to you in an airport and offers you $100,000 to take a suitcase through customs and is acting very suspicious. You should know that there's probably something illegal going on, so even though you purposefully don't ask them what's in it because you don't want to know, you may still have acted knowingly.

    Recklessly (also sometimes called wantonly) is when someone consciously disregards a substantial and unjustifiable risk that circumstances exist and that an illegal result will follow, and that disregard is a gross deviation from the standard of care that a reasonable person would follow. Example of this would be pointing a loaded gun into a crowd.

    *Some statutes require both intent (i.e., intentionally) and knowledge (i.e., knowingly).

    Mens Rea - A Defendant's Mental State - FindLaw

    Model Penal Code’s Mens Rea
    I was asking what mex specifically was talking about. I'm somewhat familiar with what you explained already.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Qryche11 View Post
    Last time I checked your life is never in danger when the aggressor is running away from you.

    That guy executed him in cold blood and should be thrown in with some hard pipin dudes in prison. He may last a few hours while they kick his head in.
    I wouldn't say never, but his life definitely wasn't in danger in this case.

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    Quote Originally Posted by halfback20 View Post
    I was asking what mex specifically was talking about. I'm somewhat familiar with what you explained already.
    Gotcha. I would guess he was saying that whatever negates the form of intent required by the statute that they are charging him under is ultimately what's really his best bet, regardless of whatever charge they bring.

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    I don't know what was going on with the cop, but that's the first time I have ever seen a dead man handcuffed.
    Bad cop or good cop making a bad decision?
    Thanks for the policeman who put their lives on the line everyday for us, we appreciate you!

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    Quote Originally Posted by JAIL BIRD View Post
    I don't know what was going on with the cop, but that's the first time I have ever seen a dead man handcuffed.
    Bad cop or good cop making a bad decision?
    Thanks for the policeman who put their lives on the line everyday for us, we appreciate you!
    Someone can correct me if I'm wrong, but I thought it was pretty standard that someone is usually handcuffed if the officer has used force on them. Obviously there are situations where it probably doesn't apply, but wouldn't that be pretty standard?

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