Florida woman sentenced to 20 years for warning shot

BullgatorBullgator MemberPosts: 393 Member
I still can't help thinking there's something about this case I'm missing. It just doesn't add up.

http://www.cnn.com/2012/05/11/justice/florida-stand-ground-sentencing/index.html?hpt=hp_t3

Replies

  • GunnerK19GunnerK19 Senior Member Posts: 1,083 Senior Member
    "has gained the attention of civil rights leaders who say the AFRICAN AMERICAN (my emphasis) woman was persecuted because of her race."

    Gawd, I absolutely HATE that description!

    The woman was likely born in the US, so she is a black American, not an "African American"; I was born in the US, of Irish descent, but yet I'm considered White, not "Irish American"...
    I'm a Conservative. How conservative? Only Alex P. Keaton has me beat.

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  • QuinianQuinian Senior Member Posts: 707 Senior Member
    I agree Gunner.

    20 years?! Holy crap man! Granted I'm no legal expert but at worst she should get like public endangerment and unlawful discharge of firearm or something which is little more than a slap on the wrist by comparison right? Personally I don't think she should be charged with anything even though I don't agree with warning shots.
  • Big ChiefBig Chief Senior Member Posts: 32,990 Senior Member
    Same prosecutor as the TM case. seems a little odd, but they said she went back into the house from the garage and fired into a wall into a room where children were. However, he tried to strangle her, maybe if she would have shot him then, it would have been justified, I dunno. Looks like the prosecutor is trying to appear impartial going after blacks and whites (like she did to Zimmerman). She was applauded for that by blacks, but not for this case.

    http://www.cnn.com/2012/05/11/justice/florida-stand-ground-sentencing/index.html?hpt=hp_t3

    (CNN) -- "Saying he had no discretion under state law, a judge sentenced a Jacksonville, Florida, woman to 20 years in prison Friday for firing a warning shot in an effort to scare off her abusive husband.

    Marissa Alexander unsuccessfully tried to use Florida's controversial "stand your ground" law to derail the prosecution, but a jury in March convicted her of aggravated assault after just 12 minutes of deliberation.

    The case, which was prosecuted by the same state attorney who is handling the Trayvon Martin case, has gained the attention of civil rights leaders who say the African-American woman was persecuted because of her race.

    After the sentencing, Rep. Corrine Brown confronted State Attorney Angela Corey in the hallway, accusing her of being overzealous, according to video from CNN affiliate WJXT.

    "There is no justification for 20 years," Brown told Corey during an exchange frequently interrupted by onlookers. "All the community was asking for was mercy and justice," she said.

    Corey said she had offered Alexander a plea bargain that would have resulted in a three-year prison sentence, but Alexander chose to take the case to a jury trial, where a conviction would carry a mandatory sentence under a Florida law known as "10-20-life."
    'Stand your ground' plea rejected

    The law mandates increased penalties for some felonies, including aggravated assault, in which a gun is carried or used.

    Corey said the case deserved to be prosecuted because Alexander fired in the direction of a room where two children were standing.

    Alexander said she was attempting to flee her husband, Rico Gray, on August 1, 2010, when she picked up a handgun and fired a shot into a wall.

    She said her husband had read cell phone text messages that she had written to her ex-husband, got angry and tried to strangle her.

    She said she escaped and ran to the garage, intending to drive away. But, she said, she forgot her keys, so she picked up her gun and went back into the house. She said her husband threatened to kill her, so she fired one shot.

    "I believe when he threatened to kill me, that's what he was absolutely going to do," she said. "That's what he intended to do. Had I not discharged my weapon at that point, I would not be here."

    Alexander's attorneys tried to use the state law that allows people to use potentially deadly force anywhere they feel reasonably threatened with serious harm or death.

    But a previous judge in the case rejected the request, saying Alexander's decision to go back into the house was not consistent with someone in fear for her safety, according to the Florida Times Union newspaper.

    A jury convicted Alexander in March and Judge James Daniel denied her request for a new trial in April.

    Daniel handed down the sentence Friday after an emotional sentencing hearing during which Alexander's parents, 11-year-old daughter and pastor spoke on her behalf".
    It's only true if it's on this forum where opinions are facts and facts are opinions
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  • JayhawkerJayhawker Moderator Posts: 14,942 Senior Member
    Quinian wrote: »
    I agree Gunner.

    20 years?! Holy crap man! .

    I keep telling folks that warning shots are a bad idea....
    Sharps Model 1874 - "The rifle that made the west safe for Winchester"
  • Big ChiefBig Chief Senior Member Posts: 32,990 Senior Member
    Jayhawker wrote: »
    I keep telling folks that warning shots are a bad idea....

    It appears that way, but she wasn't "Standing her ground" because she got out of the house to the garage returned and could have got away. Also, FLA law about using a firearm in the commission of a crime came into play that has mandatory sentencing. Of course, it could have been just a misdemeanor, if anything.

    Politics are in play here and/or the woman really wasn't believable by the jury which only took 12 minutes to convict her!
    It's only true if it's on this forum where opinions are facts and facts are opinions
    Words of wisdom from Big Chief: Flush twice, it's a long way to the Mess Hall
    I'd rather have my sister work in a whorehouse than own another Taurus!
  • blueslide88blueslide88 Member Posts: 273 Member
    That's about it Big Chief. I lifted this quote from the story:

    Alexander's attorneys tried to use the state law that allows people to use potentially deadly force anywhere they feel reasonably threatened with serious harm or death.

    But a previous judge in the case rejected the request, saying Alexander's decision to go back into the house was not consistent with someone in fear for her safety, according to the Florida Times Union newspaper.


    I don't think that SYG was a factor here, though. She had escaped the threat and voluntarily returned to the scene, firing her gun in the presence, it seems, of not only her husband, but her two children also. Aggravated Assault is a serious charge in Florida. Obviously, the jury had no sympathy whatsoever.

    I agree, too, either shoot to kill under legal and proper circumstances, or don't shoot. Warning shots are nothing but trouble. She had the firearm, he was just talking, as far as we can tell. She had a clear opportunity to "escape" entirely, and she went back armed. Makes sense.
  • coolgunguycoolgunguy Senior Member Posts: 6,410 Senior Member
    That's about it Big Chief. I lifted this quote from the story:

    Alexander's attorneys tried to use the state law that allows people to use potentially deadly force anywhere they feel reasonably threatened with serious harm or death.

    But a previous judge in the case rejected the request, saying Alexander's decision to go back into the house was not consistent with someone in fear for her safety, according to the Florida Times Union newspaper.


    I don't think that SYG was a factor here, though. She had escaped the threat and voluntarily returned to the scene, firing her gun in the presence, it seems, of not only her husband, but her two children also. Aggravated Assault is a serious charge in Florida. Obviously, the jury had no sympathy whatsoever.

    I agree, too, either shoot to kill under legal and proper circumstances, or don't shoot. Warning shots are nothing but trouble. She had the firearm, he was just talking, as far as we can tell. She had a clear opportunity to "escape" entirely, and she went back armed. Makes sense.

    That is it right there. I'll say this though, there are plenty of thugs who get much less time than 20 years for actually trying to kill someone...

    Mandatory sentences were meant to circumvent activist judges who let criminals off easy...what they actually do is disallow actual juding from happening.
    "Bipartisan" usually means that a bigger than normal deception is happening.
    George Carlin
  • blueslide88blueslide88 Member Posts: 273 Member
    coolgunguy wrote: »
    That is it right there. I'll say this though, there are plenty of thugs who get much less time than 20 years for actually trying to kill someone...

    Mandatory sentences were meant to circumvent activist judges who let criminals off easy...what they actually do is disallow actual juding from happening.

    Florida's 10-20-life laws have been very successful in reducing its crime rates. It was the liberal judges who created "turnstile Justice" by which the same criminals kept getting arrested for similar crimes, again, again and again. 10-20-life put and end to that in Florida, because recidivism created it in combination with very lenient sentencing. The law was passed in 1999 at the urging of Jeb Bush in combination with a Republican legislature. The results are amazing.

    Here's a link with all the details and results:

    http://www.dc.state.fl.us/oth/10-20-life/index.html

    The 10-20-life is very harsh on firearm crime, and once that trigger is pulled in any sort of assault, its 20 years. And that's what the jury found.
  • coolgunguycoolgunguy Senior Member Posts: 6,410 Senior Member
    The 10-20-life is very harsh on firearm crime, and once that trigger is pulled in any sort of assault, its 20 years. And that's what the jury found.


    True, but the definiton of 'crime' is still just as fluid as ever, and what one person considers a crime, another considers as 'mistake'. I'm not defending what the lady did, just saying that there are folks out there who have done much worse, and served much less time after conviction. All after actually intending to commit said crime.
    "Bipartisan" usually means that a bigger than normal deception is happening.
    George Carlin
  • BullgatorBullgator Member Posts: 393 Member
    If my kids are in a house with someone I consider a threat, there's no way I'm going to retreat to safety. Not going to happen.
  • blueslide88blueslide88 Member Posts: 273 Member
    It was stated on O'Reilly (Fox) tonight, that the prosecution had convinced the jury that the shot was deliberately aimed at the husband, but missed, also endangering the children in the home.
  • TeachTeach Senior Member Posts: 18,338 Senior Member
    Ditto. She only dreamed up the "warning shot" story because she missed! The shot apparently penetrated a wall into a room where two children were, making it a lot more dangerous than a random shot into the ceiling, or something similar. It sounds llike the jury got it right.
    Jerry
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  • snake284snake284 Senior Member Posts: 21,832 Senior Member
    Teach wrote: »
    Ditto. She only dreamed up the "warning shot" story because she missed! The shot apparently penetrated a wall into a room where two children were, making it a lot more dangerous than a random shot into the ceiling, or something similar. It sounds llike the jury got it right.
    Jerry

    There's always two sides to a story, or better still, there's always more than the media says there is. Or if it doesn
    t support the media's agenda, there is always more to the story than they tell.
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  • CHIRO1989CHIRO1989 Senior Member Posts: 10,818 Senior Member
    I don't know if I would leave my kids in the house, if she would have called the cops first, if she would have shot the guy instead of missing, If she would have left with the kids, IF, IF, IF..........
    I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that they turn away from their ways and live. Eze 33:11
  • jbp-ohiojbp-ohio Senior Member Posts: 9,504 Senior Member
    snake284 wrote: »
    There's always two sides to a story, or better still, there's always more than the media says there is. Or if it doesn
    t support the media's agenda, there is always more to the story than they tell.

    There was her story, his story, and the truth. Guess which one didn't get told???
    "The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not." Thomas Jefferson
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