Tuesday night review of the Dunn trial

February 11, 2014

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Good afternoon:

Final arguments begin tomorrow at 10 am EDT and will last most of the day.

Both sides rested their cases today.

Judge Russell Healey began the day by granting the State’s motion for an order prohibiting the defense from presenting expert testimony regarding acute stress disorder to explain why Michael Dunn did not call 911 to report the shooting. He said it would not be relevant or helpful for the jury to decide whether he killed Jordan Davis in self-defense.

Michael Dunn testified and it was a disaster.

The State rebutted his testimony with his fiancee Rhonda Raurer, who denied that he ever told her that the boys in the vehicle had a weapon. She also contradicted his claim that he initiated contact with law enforcement after the shooting by calling a neighbor who is a federal law enforcement official.

The State also played a 45-minute video of detectives Musser and Oliver interviewing Dunn to show that they did not pressure him into giving them a statement.

What did y’all think of today’s dramatic testimony and what do you think the jury will decide?

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Liveblogging Michael Dunn trial defense case

February 11, 2014

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Good morning:

We will be live blogging the Michael Dunn trial today and watching the proceedings via live stream link at First Coast News.

I recommend opening two browser pages, one for the blog and the other for the live stream. Size each one half-size so that you can view them side by side.

Court resumes at 8 am.

We are in the defense case.

Defense has possibly 2 more witnesses to call:

Doctor John Abuso, who is supposedly an expert regarding reactions by juveniles to extremely stressful situations, and possibly the defendant.

Here’s my take on Dr. Abus, who would presumably testify that fleeing from a shooting scene and ordering a pizza after attempting to kill four teenagers in an SUV is a normal human reaction (H/T to Lurker for the snarky remark):

Many thanks to Blushed Brown for providing a link to John Abuso’s website.

He has a D.Min after his name that I assume to be a Doctor of Divinity. He also claims to be an ordained minister.

Where he went to school to obtain his degree is not listed.

He lists no articles published in professional peer reviewed journals.

He claims to be:

Lic. Marriage & Family Therapist
Clinical Member AAMFT
Clinical Member ATSA

AAMFT is the American Association of Mariage and Family Therapists.

ATSA is the Association for the Treatment of Sex Offenders

He also claims to have received advance training in Ericksonian hypnotherapy.

I am not seeing any evidence of a scientific or medical basis to what this man does.

By almost any standard that I can imagine, this guy is not qualified to express a science or medical based opinion regarding any matter in this case. Therefore, his testimony should be excluded under Rule 702 as not helpful to the jury to decide an issue of that nature in this case.

Because there is no evidence of self-defense admitted into evidence, I do not believe Judge Healey will give a self-defense instruction unless Dunn testifies.

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Please I am pleading for donations. We have received less than a dozen for less than $200.

We are not going to be able to pay our rent and electricity for this month without reader donations.

Fred


Liveblogging Michael Dunn trial

February 10, 2014

Monday, February 10, 2014

Good morning:

We will be live blogging the Michael Dunn trial today and watching the proceedings via live stream link at First Coast News.

I recommend opening two browser pages, one for the blog and the other for the live stream. Size each one half-size so that you can view them side by side.

Court resumes at 9 am.

The trial began a week ago today with jury selection.

A jury of twelve with four alternates was selected and sworn in Wednesday.

Opening statements and the presentation of evidence began Wednesday afternoon.

We had a full day of witness testimony on Saturday.

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Seriously, folks we are not getting much of a response to our request for donations and I am not exaggerating when I say we need them desperately.

This is our 885th post.

Fred


Saturday night review of the Dunn trial

February 8, 2014

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Good afternoon:

Some pretty dramatic testimony and some fencing between the lead detective and defense counsel.

This is your chance to weigh in and tell us what you think or ask questions.

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Seriously, folks we are not getting much of a response to our request for donations and I am not exaggerating when I say we need them desperately.

This is our 882nd post.

Fred


Michael Dunn trial special Saturday session

February 8, 2014

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Good morning:

We have an unusual Saturday session scheduled for today, pursuant to the jury’s request, in the Michael
Dunn case. They also asked Judge Russell Healey to schedule a Sunday session, but he declined to do so. Evidently the jurors do not like being sequestered and want to get this trial over so that they can return to their normal lives.

I understand the fear that jurors beliefs regarding guilt or innocence may be tainted by outside influences, but I nevertheless believe that they are adults and we need to trust them and take them at their word that they will disregard and disengage from any situation in which their judgment may be tainted.

When they take the juror’s oath to well and truly decide the case according to the evidence and the instructions, they become officers of the court. I believe judges and lawyers should accord them the same respect that they accord to each other rather than treat them like potential juvenile miscreants who must be watched at all times. Therefore, I oppose sequestration in all cases, unless extraordinary dangerous circumstances exist that reasonably require protecting the jurors.

Such circumstances do not exist in this case or in any of the recent cases where jurors have been sequestered.

In Washington State where I practiced law for 30 years, the courts for the most part abandoned sequestration without the sky falling.

I would rather have a happy jury than an angry, impatient and resentful jury.

What do you think?

Court resumes at 9 am, EDT, which is about 40 minutes from now.

Get some coffee and join us for what should be an interesting day of testimony.

We will be live blogging the trial via live stream hosted at the Global Grind.

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Please consider making a donation today to show your appreciation for what we do

Thanks,

Fred


Open Thread

February 3, 2014

Monday, February 3, 2014

Good afternoon:

Day 1 of jury selection in Michael Dunn case ended today with 36 people excused for cause with 46 reporting back tomorrow at 1 pm and 30 new people will be brought in at 8:30 am to fill out a questionnaire and be individually questioned by counsel and the court.

The public and the media have been prohibited from being in the courtroom until after jury selection is concluded and counsel are ready to make their opening statements.

The reporters have been placed in a separate room with audio of the hearing piped in. The audio did not work very well. At times counsel’s questions could not be heard and at other times juror responses were inaudible.

All in all, this was exactly the wrong way to dispel suspicions that the outcome of this trial is rigged.

After the dreadful result in Trayvon’s case that was due in no small part to screwed up jury selection by the prosecution regarding B37, I expected Angela Corey would insist on openness to defend her reputation and the reputation of her office.

For those who are inclined to believe that the fix in, you probably do not need any additional evidence.

Nevertheless, there is additional evidence. I refer to Dunn’s jailhouse phone calls.

Corey has effectively buried them for the time being, despite an order from the Court of Appeals to disclose them.

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This is our 874th post. Please make a donation. We need money to keep going.

Fred


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