Saturday, February 23

Blackwell's Own Goal -

Trayvon Martin Shooting;
George Zimmerman Accused . . .

The leitmotif of Friday afternoon's court session was the state's Star Witness #8. I followed the live-streamed proceedings on my laptop, but the quality of the audio I received was rather poor.

The Defense Team fielded two principal motions. The first motion was an effort to depose Benjamin Crump who was being represented by Bruce Blackwell. The second motion was an effort to get the addresses of Witness #8 and several other witnesses as well.

Benjamin Crump's role in this matter is highly ambiguous. I would describe his role as that of a deus ex machina because it was he who inserted Witness #8 into this case. If it weren't for Benjamin Crump, there would be no DeeDee. Her entry into this case was critically contingent upon Benjamin Crump producing the largely unintelligible tape recording of her alleged ear witness of the incident. The problem with this is that deus ex machina is not a legally-defined role.

Bruce Blackwell argued that his client Benjamin Crump should be immune, exempt, and insulated from deposition. And, according to my best understanding, Blackwell, at one point, argued that Crump's role was that of a Qui Tam, which I did not find credible at all. From where I sit, Crump's role appears to be, at best, that of a friend of the court or amicus curiae. It is what it is and quite simply just that.

As far as Don West's questions about the provenance of Witness #8 which can impact upon DeeDee's authenticity and veracity, Blackwell seemed to argue that such discourse would be privileged "work product." Thus, as a direct result of Blackwell's argument, DeeDee herself now appears to have been the "work product" of Benjamin Crump who may have entirely manufactured her.

Blackwell bloviated to such a degree about this that I believe he scored an "own goal" with it. In using this "work product" concept, Blackwell seemed to have completely rubbished DeeDee's credibility altogether. At this point, Tinker Bell might be more credible.

One is obliged to wonder why Blackwell was trying so hard to shield Crump from scrutiny concerning the provenance of Witness #8 - the obvious probability would be: because Crump suborned this witness. I hope that's not true.

I agree that DeeDee's identity should be protected and I expect her to testify in court in silhouette behind a screen. It's my impression that she speaks only an African American subculture patois, a dialect which is so distinctly different from mainstream American English so as to be incomprehensible to 300 million other Americans. Thus, DeeDee is entitled to be furnished with a court-appointed interpreter.

I agree that her address should be shielded from the Media and the random Public, but it is my understanding that the law clearly affords Defense access to it.

In the end, Judge Nelson ruled that Defense may not depose Benjamin Crump because he has nothing relevant to contribute. I think he does have relevant information about the provenance of this magic rabbit he pulled out of his hat which directly impacts upon the authenticity and veracity of Witness #8, but I won't miss his deposition, since Blackwell has already all but destroyed her credibility anyway.

This case has suffered mightily in the Public's understanding from shoddy reportage which mostly looked like the product of some exotic Institute of Propaganda. Even a year later, some reporters still haven't accurately nailed down the basic "W" issues.

Thus, I was happy to see that TV Station WKMG in Orlando commissioned a competent person to write a summary of this hearing which is distinguished by the absence of such batsh*t crazy nonsense. Kudos to this organization! I can only hope that other news organization will now follow suit. It's about time; don't you think?!

:: WKMG Summary of Hearing ::

:: TalkLeft Discussion of Hearing ::


Tuesday, February 19

Hole In The Wall Furor -

A Banksy mural called Bunting Boy which was hacked off a wall in north London is being put up for auction in Miami with a guide price of $500,000 to $700,000, much to the consternation of local residents across The Pond.

:: Guardian :: - - ::WSVN ::

:: BBC :: - - :: Haringey ::