<< News Scan | Main | News Scan >>


Martin/Zimmerman, Grand Juries, Media

| 1 Comment
A few scattered notes from the last few days on the continuing controversies in the Martin/Zimmerman case.

The special prosecutor has decided not to take the case to the grand jury.  AP story is here.  What does that mean?  Not much.  The grand jury was once considered a key protection, and for federal cases it is enshrined in the Fifth Amendment, but the institution is largely obsolete and most states have made it optional.  California's law was upheld by the US Supreme Court way back in 1884, and the grand jury indictment clause remains one of the few provisions of the Bill of Rights not "incorporated" and applied to the states.  The AP story indicates that the decision to pass on the grand jury rules out a first-degree murder charge in Florida, but this case was highly unlikely to be first-degree murder anyway.

William McGurn in the WSJ asks "What Would Atticus Do?" in light of the recent 50th anniversary of the film version of To Kill A Mockingbird and the showing of the film at the White House.  The parallels are not as obvious as some think, McGurn says.

NBC News has fired the producer who made the infamously distorting edit of the Zimmerman phone tape.  Erik Wemple at the WaPo's media blog discusses whether it was error or intentional distortion.  He notes, "Effort would be required to contrive a more injurious abridgement of the tape, at least as far as Zimmerman's interests are concerned. The prima facie outrageousness of the editing, in fact, convinced a vocal group that NBC had acted deliberately -- that it was out to tar Zimmerman."  Even so, Wemple says, "I am not pitching a tent in the 'deliberate' camp. I've seen too many errors over the years, and I know how simple carelessness can come off as a conspiracy."

1 Comment

I've seen many errors over the years as well, but in order to believe the editing in this case was unintended, you have to be delusional.

Leave a comment