Posted by Bob Lord
I caught a little bit of the Randi Rhodes show while driving last week. She was all over the upcoming George Zimmerman trial, and dead sure that George Zimmerman was gulity. She was armed with all sorts of logical arguments. Rhodes can be as off the charts wrong as Limbaugh or Hannity, but in this case her basic logic wasn't bad.
And if an omniscient being told me I had to bet one way or the other, I'd bet Zimmerman is guilty, that he killed Trayvon Martin in cold blood, not in self defense.
But that's not what the upcoming criminal trial is all about. In the trial, the issue will be whether the State proves its case beyond a reasonable doubt.
And when the cops screw up, reasonable doubt is almost baked in the cake.
That's why O.J. walked.
In Zimmerman's case, how do the cops who released Zimmerman after questioning him, and allowed him to roam free for a month afterward, explain their decisions in a way that points to guilt beyond reasonable doubt without making themselves appear corrupt or incompetent? What if the defense asks the questioning officer if Zimmerman's demeanor suggested he was guilty? If the answer is no, consider the follow up questions on the training cops get on detecting guilt or innocence, and how the average juror will react to that line of questioning.
Add to the mix the lack of an eye witness and the natural prejudices of the jurors that no amount of care in jury selection will eliminate, and the State has a virtually impossible job.
If this case were not high profile, Zimmerman likely would have received a plea agreement he wouldn't pass up.