It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.

 

Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.

 

I Saw the Kate Steinle Murder Trial Up Close (Alternate Juror Speaks Out)

page: 1
8
<<   2 >>

log in

join
share:

posted on Dec, 6 2017 @ 07:31 PM
link   
Alternate Juror defends jury in Steinle trial

I found this a fascinating read. In these high profile trials there's often a lot the public doesn't know, despite the tons of coverage they receive in the media. Much of the article is him defending why the murder charge wasn't upheld, and I completely agree. I've agreed for a while that the evidence didn't support a murder charge, and that's not the jury's fault. I have been critical of the jury in other threads, but this piece makes me much more sympathetic to what they were facing. In fact, it casts some serious doubt to me on whether the prosecutor really did his best to obtain a conviction. I encourage anyone interested in the case to read the article, but here are some of the parts I'd like to highlight (emphasis mine):


These are some of the facts that were laid out to us: Zarate had no motive and no recorded history of violence. The shot he fired from his chair hit the ground 12 feet in front of him before ricocheting a further 78 feet to hit Steinle. The damage to the bullet indicated a glancing impact during the ricochet, so it seems to have been shot from a low height. The gun, a Sig Sauer P239 pistol, is a backup emergency weapon used by law enforcement that has a light trigger mode and no safety. (The jury members asked to feel the trigger pull of the gun during deliberation, but the judge wouldn’t allow it, for reasons that aren’t clear to us.) The pixelated video footage of the incident that we were shown, taken from the adjacent pier, shows a group of six people spending half an hour at that same chair setting down and picking up objects a mere 30 minutes before Garcia Zarate arrived there.


He immediately follows that up with this:


There is a reasonable interpretation here that favors the defendant: He found the gun at the seat, picked it up out of curiosity, and accidentally caused it to fire. As a scared, homeless man wanted by immigration enforcement, he threw the gun in the water and walked away. The presumption of innocence, as stated in the jury instructions, required the jury to select this interpretation because it is reasonable and favors the defendant.


I know I said I was gonna go easy on the jury, but this is the only part I can't agree with them. I don't find that very reasonable at all. That sounds rather naive to believe that. So there were 6 people there, for about 30 minutes, picking up and putting down random objects the jurors couldn't identify because of the quality of the video. If it's supposed that the gun was there already, does it sound reasonable to you that none of these 6 people would have found it and either taken it (if they were criminals) or reported it to the authorities (if they were decent citizens)? It seems to me no matter who they were, the odds that the gun would simply be left there are remote. To me this doesn't favor the defendant, even if you presume innocence it casts doubt on his story that he found the gun there. If I were the prosecutor I would have spent a lot of time on this point.

There's more:


But why the manslaughter acquittal? Most of the confusion I've encountered has been over this part of the verdict, and it does seem to me personally that manslaughter is the appropriate charge for Steinle’s killing. However, given the evidence and the law presented in this trial, it is clear to me that the jury made the right decision.

The involuntary manslaughter charge that the jury was read included two key requirements: 1) A crime was committed in the act that caused death; 2) The defendant acted with "criminal negligence"—he did something that an ordinary person would have known was likely to lead to someone's death.


Here's the key part:


The jury members were not free to select the crime for part (1)—they had to use the one chosen by the prosecution, and the prosecution chose that crime to be the "brandishing," or waving with menace, of a weapon. As a juror, I found this choice puzzling, because the prosecutor presented absolutely zero evidence of brandishing during the trial. I don’t think we even heard the word “brandishing” until it was read as part of the charge during the jury instructions at the trial's end. No witnesses ever saw the defendant holding a gun, much less brandishing it. Given that baffling choice by the prosecution, the manslaughter charge was a nonstarter for the jury. Had a different precursor crime been chosen—for instance, the unlawful possession of a firearm by a felon—the outcome might have been different.


That is shocking to me. I really can't blame that on the jury. That sounds like serious incompetence on the part of the prosecutor. Now I'm still relatively new here but I am usually very skeptical of conspiracy theories, but I have a hard time believing that's even a mistake honestly. It sounds like exactly what you would do if you wanted to throw the case. Completely overcharge him on murder that you know the evidence doesn't support, spend the whole case focused on that, and attach a condition to the lesser involuntary manslaughter charge that you're never even going to attempt to support with evidence.

There's still more. First he says this:


Even in that case, however, it is not clear to me that part (2) of the manslaughter charge was proved. Only a single particle of gunshot residue was found on the defendant’s hands, which seems to support his repeated claim that the gun was wrapped in some sort of fabric when he picked it up and caused it to fire. If he did not know the object was a gun, it is a stretch to claim that it was criminal negligence for him to pick it up.


But then he appears to contradict himself in the next paragraph (my emphasis):


The jury did convict Garcia Zarate of the separate charge of illegal possession of a firearm, which indicates that the members felt it to be an unreasonable conclusion that he didn’t know he was holding a gun. He was in the seat where he claims he found it for about 20 minutes prior to the shooting, and he made some statements during interrogation that seemed to indicate that he had known what the item was. Without the benefit of being able to re-examine the evidence during deliberation, I’m not sure that I would consider that evidence to constitute proof beyond a reasonable doubt, but knowing these jurors, I would trust them to have made an accurate judgment if the manslaughter charge had survived the first requirement.


This seems to support part of what I had been saying in the other thread (I was wrong on some details), that the jury didn't seem to believe he didn't know it was a gun, otherwise they would have acquitted him on the possession charge too. So if the prosecutor hadn't attached the ridiculous brandishing condition to the involuntary manslaughter charge, I feel it's quite possible this jury would have convicted him of involuntary manslaughter. I feel the jury was a bit naive in believing he found the gun after 6 people had been in that area for an extended time just before the shooting, but that's not really critical to the involuntary manslaughter charge anyway. They did right given what they had. I really have to lay the blame solely on the prosecutor, whether intentionally or unintentionally it was a helluva blunder.




posted on Dec, 6 2017 @ 07:53 PM
link   
This guy should not have walked.

Felon, and stole federal property.( A firearm).

Even more interesting that California is a state that has the felony murder rule.

There are people rotting in prison for being in possession of federal property alone.



posted on Dec, 6 2017 @ 07:55 PM
link   

"A federal grand jury indicted Jose Inez Garcia-Zarate today for being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition, and for being an illegally present alien in possession of a firearm and ammunition," according to a statement released by the Department of Justice.


townhall.com...

10 years.



posted on Dec, 6 2017 @ 07:58 PM
link   
a reply to: face23785


I feel the jury was a bit naive in believing he found the gun after 6 people had been in that area.


The last of those 6 people could have been the one who left the gun there, maybe.



posted on Dec, 6 2017 @ 08:09 PM
link   
The murderer is a pos and never should have walked. End of story. F#ck your feelings. I don't give a f#ck about any sob story.


Edit: Pro tip how about not firing a gun in a public place in the first place. I hope he rots in prison for the other charges.

edit on 6-12-2017 by Perfectenemy because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 6 2017 @ 08:15 PM
link   
edit: stupid ats quoted the wrong person
not sure why it even matters who left the gun there other then to question and possibly charge them with a crime aswell.
edit on 6-12-2017 by TheScale because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 6 2017 @ 08:20 PM
link   
The first thing you need to know is, there are no "incompetent prosecutors" only seriously corrupt ones. Having dated a lawyer for a while, who served on a superior court and state supreme courts, just know there is no "Law" there is interpretation perspective, of which both are up to you to sell properly to a jury or judge (who is also in on it).

Do not ever count on it being a Jury of your peers. They are hand picked and made sure to be the dumbest mother F****rs that ever walked the face of the Earth most of the time. If your Lawyer is equally skilled, or better, you will get a good selection, hopefully.

Human beings



posted on Dec, 6 2017 @ 08:23 PM
link   

originally posted by: Perfectenemy

Edit: Pro tip how about not firing a gun in a public place in the first place. I hope he rots in prison for the other charges.

If the man fired it deliberately, nobody here said that he did, and who owned the fecking gun in the first place.



posted on Dec, 6 2017 @ 08:37 PM
link   

originally posted by: smurfy

originally posted by: Perfectenemy

Edit: Pro tip how about not firing a gun in a public place in the first place. I hope he rots in prison for the other charges.

If the man fired it deliberately, nobody here said that he did, and who owned the fecking gun in the first place.



ask the sfpd and why they havent tried to roundup those 6 guys and question or charge them with a crime. oh thats right its san fran the city of rainbows and unicorns just ignore the bums and feces



posted on Dec, 6 2017 @ 08:38 PM
link   
a reply to: face23785

Having been on jury duty, I can see this happening.

You are really backed into a corner on what you are deciding. If you have sat there for days/weeks listening to the same stuff over and over but then get to deliberation with new concepts being throw your way, what then?

From the outside, it sounds like the Prosecutor could have made something stick.



posted on Dec, 6 2017 @ 08:52 PM
link   

originally posted by: neo96
This guy should not have walked.

Felon, and stole federal property.( A firearm).

Even more interesting that California is a state that has the felony murder rule.

There are people rotting in prison for being in possession of federal property alone.



You're completely correct...blame the prosecution. All along I have been saying that the prosecution/the state did not present a clear cut case with any sort of reasonable attempt to garner a conviction. It was a haphazardly thrown together trial, IMO. But in this country, sometimes guilty people walk and innocent people are convicted.

Should the guy have been in this country? Found a gun? Caused the gun to fire? Killed someone in the process? No to all of those. But there had to have been a single charge which the DA could have gotten to stick...right? Apparently not.



posted on Dec, 6 2017 @ 08:54 PM
link   
a reply to: neo96

If convicted on both counts, is that possibly 20 years, or is 10 the upper limit, period?

This individual reminds me of nuisance bears and there are lessons to be learned from the proper handling of nuisance bears. The first time a bear gets into someone's trash, fish and game or AK State Troopers investigate the incident to ensure the homeowner wasn't improperly handling their trash. The second time it happens, the bear is tagged and relocated. If a tagged bear gets into someone's trash, it is euthanized as a nuisance animal. If, at any point through this, the bear attacks a human or destroys property, it is immediately euthanized as it is obvious the bear is beyond redemption and poses a threat to the peace of the community.

Take from the nuisance bear lesson what you will, but people like Jose Inez Garcia-Zarate, who have proven time and time again to have zero respect for borders and laws are the human equivalent of a nuisance animal.



posted on Dec, 6 2017 @ 09:00 PM
link   
a reply to: face23785

Very good analysis



posted on Dec, 6 2017 @ 09:17 PM
link   

originally posted by: smurfy

originally posted by: Perfectenemy

Edit: Pro tip how about not firing a gun in a public place in the first place. I hope he rots in prison for the other charges.

If the man fired it deliberately, nobody here said that he did, and who owned the fecking gun in the first place.




Why did he touch the gun in the first place? Stupidity is not an excuse. I read that he tried to shoot at a seal and missed. I wish he shot himself instead.



posted on Dec, 6 2017 @ 09:22 PM
link   

originally posted by: burdman30ott6
a reply to: neo96

If convicted on both counts, is that possibly 20 years, or is 10 the upper limit, period?

This individual reminds me of nuisance bears and there are lessons to be learned from the proper handling of nuisance bears. The first time a bear gets into someone's trash, fish and game or AK State Troopers investigate the incident to ensure the homeowner wasn't improperly handling their trash. The second time it happens, the bear is tagged and relocated. If a tagged bear gets into someone's trash, it is euthanized as a nuisance animal. If, at any point through this, the bear attacks a human or destroys property, it is immediately euthanized as it is obvious the bear is beyond redemption and poses a threat to the peace of the community.

Take from the nuisance bear lesson what you will, but people like Jose Inez Garcia-Zarate, who have proven time and time again to have zero respect for borders and laws are the human equivalent of a nuisance animal.


But but he was such a nice guy. Apparently being PC is more important then preserving lives. Great job. I'm rooting for ICE that they deport every criminal and illegal alien they can find. Do it the legal way or you have to go back where you came from.
This case of injustice is pissing me off.



posted on Dec, 6 2017 @ 09:25 PM
link   


There is a reasonable interpretation here that favors the defendant: He found the gun at the seat, picked it up out of curiosity, and accidentally caused it to fire.


There is nothing reasonable of picking up a gun that's just lying around. Getting your fingerprints on it is the dumbest thing you could ever do. What an imbecile.



posted on Dec, 6 2017 @ 09:30 PM
link   
He is guilty of negligent homicide at the very least.

But for his illegal presence in this country this tragedy would never have happened. I blame California's illegal laws that allow criminals to go free instead of having the deported as they should be.



posted on Dec, 6 2017 @ 09:32 PM
link   
a reply to: kelbtalfenek



You're completely correct...blame the prosecution. All along I have been saying that the prosecution/the state did not present a clear cut case with any sort of reasonable attempt to garner a conviction.


This is because California would rather apologize for illegal aliens than seek justice for actual American citizens. I would not be surprised if the prosecution gave this a half-assed attempt from the get go.



posted on Dec, 6 2017 @ 09:34 PM
link   
a reply to: neo96
Thats the tune I have been singing since the acquittal. At least they got him for ten, better than nothing.



posted on Dec, 6 2017 @ 09:39 PM
link   

originally posted by: TheScale

originally posted by: smurfy

originally posted by: Perfectenemy

Edit: Pro tip how about not firing a gun in a public place in the first place. I hope he rots in prison for the other charges.

If the man fired it deliberately, nobody here said that he did, and who owned the fecking gun in the first place.



ask the sfpd and why they havent tried to roundup those 6 guys and question or charge them with a crime. oh thats right its san fran the city of rainbows and unicorns just ignore the bums and feces



Don't you know Americans are on the path of losing "commonsense " these days. Sad about that woman.



new topics

top topics



 
8
<<   2 >>

log in

join