While Truth Was Pulling Her Boots On: “Don’t You Dare Kick That Dog!” II

By Bob Stone

“If a child lives with hostility, he learns to fight.”  – Children Learn What They Live by Dorothy Law Nolte

On November 6th, if you were paying close attention, you would have noticed a story about Mike Brown’s mother putting her true feelings about peacefulness, equal justice and transparency on display when she asked the police not to disclose that she’s under investigation for felony robbery and assault.   In fact, an investigative reporter, seeking said “transparency,” had to procure a court order to get the report released.

According to the newly released Ferguson police report, several people, including Brown`s paternal grandmother, Pearlie Gordon, were selling ‘Justice for Mike Brown merchandise.’

Then at about 1:20 pm, cars pulled up and 20-30 people “jumped out” and “rushed them.”  One of those people was Michael Brown`s Mom, Lesley McSpadden, who is quoted yelling, “you can`t sell this s%$&.”

The report says Gordon was ‘repeatedly struck in the back of the head by an unknown subject’ and ‘knocked to the ground.’  The report adds that McSpadden ‘then ran up and punched (Gordon).’

What can one say but “a child learns what he lives.”

“That’s disingenuous!  Just because McSpadden is under investigation for felony robbery and assault it doesn’t follow that Mike Brown was violent too” I can hear the Brown supporters say.

It just warms my heart to hear Brown supporters use logic and reason to support their claims; as opposed to demanding an indictment based on ideology rather than facts and evidence.     And while McSpadden did raise Mike Brown, I do agree that one should not be judged based on “the company you keep fallacy.”     Thus we can also dispense with this nonsense:

There are racist cops in Ferguson;

Officer Wilson is a white cop in Ferguson;

Officer Wilson shot an unarmed black man;

Therefore, Officer Wilson is a murderous racist.

But if we can’t simply say that Officer Wilson is a murderous racist, then the question arises … how did we get here?   How did we get from a cop assaulted by a robbery suspect that got shot in the hand while fighting for control of the officer’s gun, ran off, stopped, turned and advanced on the officer while his gun was drawn —  to nationwide protests about a racist cop executing an innocent black kid who had his “hands up?”

How could so many people recite a story that’s not supported by the forensic evidence?

How indeed.

Back when I wrote “Don’t You Dare Kick That Dog: In Defense of Officer Wilson” I briefly discussed the problem of “Distorted Retrospective Eyewitness Reports”:

The advent of social media has vastly decreased the time it takes for any remotely reliable eyewitness pool to be spoiled.  Social media can now operate as a substitute for the official identification process in the post identification feedback effect.   (See also Dr. Elizabeth Loftus and Misinformation Effect)   A recent article in the Wall Street Journal examines a similar phenomenon in the field of clinical research.    If the eyewitnesses do not remain “in the blind,” so to speak, taking to Facebook & Twitter, etc., to discuss what they saw, the authenticity and reliability of those potential eyewitness statements will plummet. Consider that there’s a shooting resulting in death in the middle of a street and before any sort of investigation is carried out, before any official statements have been taken, people are taking to Twitter and texting their opinions about what happened—the Rashomon Effect  gone viral.   When you combine that with the added detail of a white cop shooting a black man in a community rife with racial tension, and add to that national media attention, how long before the eyewitness accounts suffer from confirmation bias or the damaging effect of confirming feedback?

Little did I know at the time there was someone on scene with motive and opportunity, i.e. access to all three primary witnesses, to COMPLETELY distort the truth of what happened that day while creating the “hands up” meme that would eventually form the basis of all the protests and vitriol against Officer Wilson.

Meet Anthony Shahid.

Shahid v Stenger

As a means of introduction, here are a few excerpts from a 2003 article (long, but highly informative)  by Jeanette Batz for the Riverfront Times: “Who’s Afraid of Anthony Shahid?”

Professional agitator:

Shahid is “a professional agitator … who makes even his allies reach for water.”

“For years, Shahid has involved himself in virtually every controversial city police shooting and court decision affecting African-Americans.”

“By St. Louis standards, [Anthony Shahid]’s an attention-seeker who shoves aside the boundaries other people have set for themselves, inflaming situations that should be handled with civilized restraint.”

Well versed in police interference:

“It’s said that on at least one occasion, [Shahid] goaded onlookers to take [a] suspect back from the police, nearly starting a neighborhood riot.”

Friend and political ally of former Mayor Freeman Bosley Jr.; hired to represent Dorian Johnson: 

Dorian Johnson and Freeman Bosley

“In the early 1990’s “when [Bosley] campaigned for mayor, Shahid provided extra security; and after Bosley won the election in 1993, Shahid went to work for the city, helping defuse gang problems in parks and recreation centers.”

Longtime “cohort” of Anthony D. Gray; (who supervises the Pine Lawn Police Departmen that issued 17,000 tickets and 23,000 warrants) hired to represent the Brown family:

“Shahid organized a press conference for Operation SUFYR — Stand up for Your Rights– uniting African-American police officers, firefighters and other public-safety workers. “White police officers shoot black police officers,” he charged. “We are family. We are united. We stand together. To attack any of us is to attack all of us.” He was joined by an old cohort, attorney Anthony D. Gray, who, as SUFYR’s advisor, called for a full-scale investigation into alleged violations of SUFYR members’ rights.”

Doesn’t like white people:

“The Reverend B.T. Rice, pastor of New Horizon Church, hears Shahid’s name and murmurs, “Oh boy.” Then he recovers. “We’ve agreed about issues that needed to be addressed. Where we disagree is, I think he generally has a view where he just doesn’t like white people. There’s a disdain there.”

“Disdain” is an understatement.  Anthony Shahid is a full blown cop hating racist.

Shahid in KKK outfit2

He describes himself on his Twitter page as an “Activist, Agitator and Servant of Allah.”  Here’s a sampling of his “wisdom”

Shahid - Crop-white folks DNA as DEVILS

Shahid - Crop-White Folks in Ferguson are the real ISIS

Shahid - Crop-Ya'll got some hell to pay white folks, hope you're ready

But what does Anthony Shahid have to do with the three primary witnesses at the scene?   How did the three primary witnesses, two of which, as shown in their FBI interviews, lied to the media about seeing any of the “tussle” in the car with Wilson, end up telling the same story?   It turns out that The Conservative Tree House and its commenters, i.e. the same site that discovered the excited utterance (discussed here) regarding Brown advancing on Wilson while he was firing, also discovered that Anthony Shahid is the one who started the “hands up” myth.

Shahid and Dorian Johnson (Full Video Here)

Johnson and Shahid first TV interview WITH TEXT

Shahid with Piaget Crenshaw, Tiffany Mitchell & Mike Brown’s Mother

Crenshaw, Mitchell, Shahid & McSpadden

Anthony Shahid starts the “Hands Up” movement.   (Note how Shahid keeps his focus on the protesters that he’s just trained; rather than the camera)

Shahid Promoting Piaget Crenshaw

So the next time you hear “hands up, don’t shoot” just remember that the man who concocted the story of a racist white cop executing an innocent black kid; the man with the racist motive and opportunity to harmonize the statements of the three primary witnesses to bolster his fiction; the man who got Freeman Bosley Jr. to keep Dorian Johnson’s story straight; the man who started the “hands up, don’t shoot” meme; the man ultimately responsible for the falsehood that flew from Ferguson to Washington D.C. and round the world while truth [was] pulling her boots on — was a cop hating racist street activist named

Anthony Shahid.

Shahid in full regalia protesting stenger

This entry was posted in Constitutional Law, Courts, Crime, Evidence Law, Jurisprudence, Law Enforcement, Legal Analysis, Legal Theory, Uncategorized, United States. Bookmark the permalink.

91 Responses to While Truth Was Pulling Her Boots On: “Don’t You Dare Kick That Dog!” II

  1. Shahid should be arrested for instigating riots and tampering with witnesses. It all makes sense.

  2. Bob Stone says:

    In a parallel universe perhaps. And in that universe I wonder if Dorian Johnson is charged with felony murder.

  3. A professional shit disturber draws your ire and yet a public official and officer of the court puts his thumb on the scale at the GJ and you offer nothing but weak defenses that he (McCulloch) “did his job” by effectively killing any chance of judicial review.

    Interesting.

    I could swear that oath includes language about upholding the integrity of the justice system.

    Of course, that kind of impartiality in pursuit of equal due process doesn’t apply when the one facing sanction is a member of said justice system.

    Right?

    Look, Bob, it doesn’t upset me that you’re defending Wilson or loathing Shahid (he’s truly a POS and media whore who you actually aid by giving him this much attention), but the fact you don’t see the problem with the way McCulloch handled the GJ?

    Makes me wonder how you got that huge blind spot.

    Justice is supposed to be blind, not peaking out from under the blindfold and tipping the scales when a cop (or a pol or a corporation or the wealthy etc.) are the ones in the dock.

  4. Bob Stone says:

    Gene,

    Even Jeffery Toobin, who was leaning for months that Wilson committed an act of cold blooded murder, concluded that no indictment was the proper outcome due to the overwhelming amount of forensic evidence supporting Wilson’s story.

  5. Slartibartfast says:

    Bob,

    Would a good police officer have:

    a) Put his vehicle in Park instead of drive once he had backed up to confront Mr. Brown?

    b) Left his vehicle without having backup or at least receiving confirmation it was on the way after Mr. Brown had left the immediate vicinity of his vehicle?

    I don’t want to kick your dog—I want him to be put down (i.e. fired and given a fair trial to determine if he is criminally liable for his obvious negligence). Are you willing to shoot your dog, Bob? Or do you just think all police officers have a license to kill?

  6. bigfatmike says:

    OK, I think I understand the point being made here: we should not ask questions about Wilson or McCulloch because after the fact some people associated in some way with Brown did bad things or said bad things including some things that insult white people.

    OK, that is one point of view. I am sure there are some readers who will think that makes perfect sense.

  7. Really, Bob. And who made Toobin judge and jury?
    That’s as bad as failing to realize that McCulloch usurped their job too.

  8. Toobin is a tool and this threadster’s haughty bias is is begging that we suffer fools.

    Cant wait to see the thread on th demonic 12 year old; and how the Utah police state killing statistics are the things that would make Governor Wallace smile and J Edgar rise from the grave.

  9. nivico says:

    “…you don’t see the problem with the way McCulloch handled the GJ?”

    Folks were complaining that he was potentially too biased (because of his father’s murder) to be the one to make the determination whether to charge or not, so he sent the matter to a grand jury to make the determination instead and gave them all of the same raw information he would have had at his disposal to make the call.

    So what’s the problem…???

    Keep in mind, too, that McCulloch also has a duty to protect the rights of the accused.

  10. Bull chit!

    Duty to protect the rights of the accused!

    Where in tbe sam hell secret RWNJ plybook did you grab that biased and totally full of (conflict of interests

  11. Where are these slingers of arrows of incredulity coming from?

  12. Protecting the rights of the accused does not encompass dumping evidence on a grand jury with no framing, explanation or charges to consider.

  13. Also consider that McCulloch went to great lengths to essentially mount a defense of Wilson at the GJ, effectively forcing them into the role of judge and jury, ignoring the role of the grand jury in our legal system.

  14. McCulloch should be sanctioned if not disbarred and he should be fired for such gross dereliction of his duties.

  15. blouise17 says:

    I’m sorry but some of this stuff Bob comes up with make me smile. I remember all the crap people were writing and saying about MLK, Malcolm X, Andy Young, John Lewis, etc. etc.

    Here’s some inflammatory statements from that time that may also cause you to smile with me.

    ‘Over the past several years, I must say, I have been gravely disappointed with such white ‘moderates.’ I am often inclined to think that they are more of a stumbling block to the Negro’s progress than the White Citizen’s Counciler or the Ku Klux Klanner.”’ MLK

    For a different perspective: Malcolm X commented that because of the March, “The late President has a bigger image as a liberal, the other whites who participated have bigger liberal images also, and the Negro civil rights leaders have now been permanently named the Big Six (because of their participation in the Big Fix?)… but the black masses are still unemployed, still starving, and still living in slums… and, I might add, getting angrier and more explosive every day.”

  16. michaelbeaton says:

    After spending way too much time reading vol1 of Kicking the Dog by Bob and the subsequent comments, and then tracking the back and forth in the last post of his where he assiduously propounds the one or two shibboleths of his belief against all comers and all points – it is apparent, to me at least, that Bob is not one to be engaged with. It is not an exchange of ideas, and he is “covered in plastic” impervious to any thoughts that may crack his grip on his reality.

    I wonder if this new rambling post will spark another round of endless attempts to get Bob to see the predicates of his dogmas. It seems unlikely. But who knows…

    Whatever value there is in all this seems to me to come down to exampling the power of core propositions to define the boundaries and contours of all subsequent thought. A practicum in logical fallacies.
    The argument and discussion being waged with Bob is not being held at the level of facts empowered by the motive of the pursuit of the truth… There is a truth and a set of facts predetermined. All that follows is farce. It may be fun, but it is futile.

  17. Bob Stone says:

    Gene,

    It was a seasoned (i.e. experienced) grand jury that had been sitting for months, DECIDING ISSUES OF PROBABLE CAUSE, before this case came along.

    GRAND JUROR: Tell us those three again. One is committed the offense?

    MS. ALIZADEH: Probable cause to believe that he committed the offense, which means that he met all the elements of that offense. You remember that from your grand Jury days. And you must find probable cause to believe that Darren Wilson did not act in lawful self-defense and you must find probable cause to believe that Darren Wilson did not use lawful force in making an arrest. And only if you find those things, which is kind of like finding a negative, you cannot return an indictment on anything or true bill unless you find both of those things. Because both are complete defenses to any offense and they both have been raised in his, in the evidence.

    • michaelbeaton says:

      @chuck re

      Make no mistake, Wilson would have been provided with excellent attorneys for his defense.

      Why is this? The way you word this it sounds like it would have been a defense team out of the ordinary. Is that what you meant? If so , who would be doing the providing? And why would they be so intent on getting this quality of representation?

      From the language of your post it seems this issue would have, and already has, taken on larger proportions than the simple event. Is that your read? meaning?

  18. michaelbeaton says:

    @Gene et al.. re

    McCulloch should be sanctioned if not disbarred and he should be fired for such gross dereliction of his duties.

    Does this action by the Grand Jury conclude any further action by the State, or the family to pursue this matter any further in the legal system? Ie, Is there an pathway of appeal when the prosecutor declines a case, or as in this case, fails to get a GJury indictment?
    If the criminal path is closed is there any other recourse to get a day in court for this matter?

    It does seem to me that with the State taking on the burden of criminal justice that there should be some way around a local level block to justice as exampled in this case.
    Just curious.
    ~michael

  19. Bob Stone says:

    “And who made Toobin judge and jury?”

    Just illustrating how the forensic evidence changed minds.

  20. randyjet says:

    The thing that blows Wilson’s testimony away is the video of the two white construction workers, one of whom SAW Brown getting shot and was outraged. That he fired TWELVE shots, and missed when Brown was running away, says it all. I looked at the blood spots, and the distances, and Brown was not any closer when he dropped than about 20′ from the point where Wilson was shooting. Sort of hard to hit him with his fists at that distance.

  21. michaelbeaton says:

    for fun then this from the original post

    to COMPLETELY distort the truth of what happened that day while creating the “hands up” meme that would eventually form the basis of all the protests and vitriol against Officer Wilson.

    Or maybe there is a different basis for ALL of the protests…. Maybe it is the FACT that he killed a kid. Full stop.

    From there one might reasonably adduce factors of racism, the strange necessity of 12 shots, a complete inquiry into the nature of those shots, and the larger context of Police v. Citizen – especially Black citizens … and all the other points raised by the other posters.
    It just may be that there are other reasons to have provoked the protests and the rage and the overwhelming sense of injustice.

    Your rhetoric , Bob, though you are certified by others (in the other Kick the dog post) as being one of the smartest guys in the room… seems… weak. Not particularly smart or insightful… But, certainly , a clinic on how not to think about important issues.

  22. Bob,

    Still not addressing that what McCulloch did was in essence a defense for Wilson, are you.
    The “seasoning” of the grand jury doesn’t have a goddamn thing to do with it.
    That’s the #400 gorilla you are simply refusing to see here.

  23. Bob Stone says:

    RJ,

    The construction worker with the hands up was the one who said Wilson was backpedaling as he was shooting. You don’t backpedal and fire if there’s not someone coming at you.

    And when Brown finally dropped he was closer than 20 feet to Wilson; who was also backing up while firing.

  24. Bob Stone says:

    “Still not addressing that what McCulloch did was in essence a defense for Wilson, are you.”

    I did address it Gene. I even quoted you from a seminar on NY Grand Juries; one of their functions being to act as a safety valve.

    It wasn’t a document dump like one would get from a large law firm in a civil case.

    From what I’m reading, McCulloch’s assistant DA’s didn’t “dump” anything.

  25. As I have stated in other discussions, I reserve making a decision on guilt or innocence until all the facts are in and tested in court. Nobody is guilty of anything until a Petit Jury says they are, not a Grand Jury.

    Having said that, I think the DA was more than disingenuous about the manner in which he presented the evidence to the Grand Jury. I almost choked on my drink when he explained he had presented a number of witnesses who were not even at the scene, but only knew what they had read or heard. McCulloch knew damn well that testimony would NEVER be allowed in any courtroom. He used them as what psychologists call “distractors.”

    Stage magicians use distractors when doing slight of hand tricks. Throw everything up to and including the kitchen sink at them, so the truth becomes lost in all the static. If McCulloch were honest, he would have shown the GJ the key elements of his case in chief as a prosecutor, then let them decide if he had enough to convict.

    It is not up to the prosecuting attorney to decide guilt or innocence. He gets paid to prosecute cases. Because of his legal chicanery, the evidence will never be tested in a courtroom, where it could be cross examined by both sides. Just guessing, but methinks McCulloch did not WANT the evidence tested in a courtroom. Why? I have no idea–only he knows. Did McCulloch take a dive on this. No doubt in my mind.

    Make no mistake, Wilson would have been provided with excellent attorneys for his defense. There would have been scorched-earth cross examination of witnesses and forensic evidence alike that would have made General Sherman proud.

    Speaking of forensic evidence, that needed to be cross examined too. It is not as if the physical evidence may only say one thing. It can often be interpreted in multiple ways. Sometimes, we discover that evidence has been manipulated in the lab. That does not happen very often, but it does happen. For a horrible example of lab hijinks, recall the Fred Zain matter in West Virgina. One of my specialties is to assist attorneys in preparing for Voir Dire and cross of opposing experts. It can get really hot in that kitchen.

    Now, as in the Rodney King case, perhaps the DOJ will move in and take a shot at a civil rights violation. It may get to court yet, despite McCulloch, not because of him.

  26. Again with the 20 feet thing.
    Still not understanding the Tueller experiment.
    You keep saying that like it’s supposed to be impressive – numbers always sound impressive – but if you understand that experiment, you’d understand that repeating it makes you sound like a hack who thinks the audience is composed totally of rubes. Brown was unarmed. The Tueller experiment shows that in a gun versus knife situation, if the knife wielder is within 21 feet, they can still stab the shooter before going down.

    Brown was unarmed.

    But please feel free to keep repeating that number as if it were magic.

    It’s kinda funny.

  27. That’s quaint. Quoting NY law for a MO case.

  28. nivico says:

    “Where in tbe sam hell secret RWNJ plybook did you grab that biased and totally full of (conflict of interests”

    Um, the United States Constitution and the American Bar Association’s Model Rules of Professional Conduct:

    Amendment XIV
    Section 1.
    All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the state wherein they reside. No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.

    Amendment V
    No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a grand jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the militia, when in actual service in time of war or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

    Advocate
    ABA Rule 3.8 Special Responsibilities Of A Prosecutor
    The prosecutor in a criminal case shall:
    (a) refrain from prosecuting a charge that the prosecutor knows is not supported by probable cause;

    ABA Standard 3- 1.2 The Function of the Prosecutor
    (a) The office of prosecutor is charged with responsibility for prosecutions in its jurisdiction.
    (b) The prosecutor is an administrator of justice, an advocate, and an officer of the court; the prosecutor must exercise sound discretion in the performance of his or her functions.
    (c) The duty of the prosecutor is to seek justice, not merely to convict.

  29. You are now engaged in an argument you cannot win. McCulloch screwed the pooch so to say. That’s the argument being put forth and you are failing to refute it in your desperation to make this sound like justice. It’s something alright, Bob. But justice ain’t it.

  30. One more thing. Because of the way this has been handled from the gitgo by McCulloch, Officer Wilson did not get the chance to walk out of a courtroom with his head high, saying “I told you so.”

    Instead, he will have this cloud of disbelief and suspicion hanging over his head the rest of his life. He is radioactive, with regard to future employment.

    • randyjet says:

      Chuck has an interesting take on this I had not thought of. By making it impossible to get a trial, the prosecutor may have done Officer Wilson more harm than good. To me it is obvious that Wilson had no intention of arresting Brown. His background and actions will never be tested in court. So we are all left to draw our own conclusions.

  31. Ooo.

    Yeah. I know all that, nivico. But the prosecutors job at a grand jury is to present evidence in an unbiased manner and let them decide if the charges sought are merited, not ply them with almost exclusively exculpatory evidence. The time for a defense isn’t at the grand jury. It’s for the judge and petite jury where proper cross-examination can be had.

  32. nivico says:

    “But the prosecutors job at a grand jury is to present evidence in an unbiased manner and let them decide if the charges sought are merited, not ply them with almost exclusively exculpatory evidence.”

    He presented EVERYTHING, every shred of evidence and witness testimony there was, to the grand jury. That’s as unbiased as it gets.

    Now some of you are wanting to say that his bias was in not cherry picking the evidence and presenting only incupatory evidence to the grand jury…. hello, oxymoron. Your logic is that his bias was that he didn’t bias the jury?!

    Anyhoo, as you state, the evidence is “almost exclusively exculpatory” … kinda speaks for itself now don’t it.

  33. MichaelB,
    Wilson would have been defended by the city and the insurance carrier, for one thing. I also have no doubt the police union would have been involved. Websites like PoliceOne would likely have had fundraisers. The upshot is that Wilson would have been well represented. There are attorneys and experts who are willing to offer their services pro bono on cases that interest them. This is one of those kinds of cases.

  34. Bob Stone says:

    In our criminal justice system, the Government retains “broad discretion” as to whom to prosecute. United States v. Goodwin,457 U. S. 368, 457 U. S. 380, n. 11 (1982); accord, Marshall v. Jerrico, Inc.,446 U. S. 238, 446 U. S. 248 (1980).

    “[S]o long as the prosecutor has probable cause to believe that the accused committed an offense defined by statute, the decision whether or not to prosecute, and what charge to file or bring before a grand jury, generally rests entirely in his discretion.” Bordenkircher v. Hayes,434 U. S. 357, 434 U. S. 364 (1978).

    This broad discretion rests largely on the recognition that the decision to prosecute is particularly ill-suited to judicial review. Such factors as the strength of the case, the prosecution’s general deterrence value, the Government’s enforcement priorities, and the case’s relationship to the Government’s overall enforcement plan are not readily susceptible to the kind of analysis the courts are competent to undertake. Wayte v. United States, 470 U.S. 598 (1985)

    https://supreme.justia.com/cases/federal/us/470/598/case.html

  35. Bob Stone says:

    On Prosecutors Not ‘Directing’ the Ferguson Grand Jury

    By Andrew C. McCarthy
    November 24, 2014 4:38 PM

    “There are many cases in which it is possible to establish probable cause but where it would be highly unlikely to prove the case beyond a reasonable doubt. In normal cases, prosecutors do not waste their time indicting cases that technically satisfy the probable-cause standard if they know the chance of conviction at trial is slim to none.

    The case in Ferguson is not normal. Because of the highly charged atmosphere — irresponsibly stoked by the Obama administration (especially its Justice Department) and other racialists and rabble-rousers — the prosecutors are not taking it upon themselves to make the decision that the case does not merit being indicted. They are thus presenting a case to the grand jury that ordinarily would not be presented — in essence, dropping it in the lap of the grand jury, the community’s representatives, rather than being on the hook themselves for the decision. Presumably, prosecutors have also resigned themselves to taking the case to trial if the grand jury decides to file charges . . . even if prosecutors believe the case is a loser at trial.”

    http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/393392/prosecutors-not-directing-ferguson-grand-jury-andrew-c-mccarthy

  36. Bob Stone says:

    “…if there is bias in the system, it is almost certainly against Officer Wilson. In most cases where prosecutors decide not to charge a crime, they do not present the case to the grand jury in the first place. Moreover, the prosecutorial discretion not to seek an indictment is informed by the standard of proof that applies at trial.”

    http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/393392/prosecutors-not-directing-ferguson-grand-jury-andrew-c-mccarthy

  37. He also went out of his way to present the evidence in an exculpatory light, nivico.

    That wasn’t his job.

    That wasn’t the place.

  38. Oh yeah. The National Review isn’t known for having any sort of political bias. 🙄

  39. Bob Stone says:

    “Oh yeah. The National Review isn’t known for having any sort of political bias.”

    Cognitive dissonance much?

    Or do you have a rebuttal for the actual content of the article; which merely recites what’s known by all prosecutors.

  40. Bob Stone says:

    And I’m still waiting for a schematic of your ““subvert due process to deny equal protection” phrase.

    What does that mean?

    How does a prosecutor ““subvert due process to deny equal protection” when he exercises prosecutorial discretion because he knows he has no chance of winning at trial?

  41. Credible source for opinion much? I don’t read the National Enquirer either.

    As for equal protection? Why don’t you ask the Brown family if they feel the equal protection of law was applied when the prosecutor decided to mount a defense in the grand jury?

  42. nivico says:

    “That wasn’t his job.”

    ABA Standard 3- 1.2 The Function of the Prosecutor
    (c) The duty of the prosecutor is to seek justice, not merely to convict.

  43. nivico says:

    “As for equal protection? Why don’t you ask the Brown family…”

    The prosecutor is an advocate of the court, not an advocate of the Brown family.

  44. “It is the grand jury’s function not ‘to enquire … upon what foundation [the charge may be] denied,’ or otherwise to try the suspect’s defenses, but only to examine ‘upon what foundation [the charge] is made’ by the prosecutor. Respublica v. Shaffer, 1 Dall. 236 (O. T. Phila. 1788); see also F. Wharton, Criminal Pleading and Practice § 360, pp. 248-249 (8th ed. 1880). As a consequence, neither in this country nor in England has the suspect under investigation by the grand jury ever been thought to have a right to testify or to have exculpatory evidence presented.” United States v. Williams, (90-1972), 504 U.S. 36 (1992).

    Even Scalia knows that what McCulloch did was wrong.

    And you, of all people, know how much I hate having to agree with Scalia.

  45. Nor is he an advocate for Wilson, nivico.

    Yet that is exactly what he acted as in the GJ.

  46. Bob Stone says:

    “Credible source for opinion much? I don’t read the National Enquirer either.”

    Far less opinion and far more statements of fact regarding prosecutorial discretion. But, you didn’t read it; so how would you ever know.

    “As for equal protection? Why don’t you ask the Brown family if they feel the equal protection of law was applied when the prosecutor decided to mount a defense in the grand jury?”

    Really Gene? The EP clause applies because of the Brown Family?

    Care to cite me a case where the Supreme Court replaced law with family vendetta?

    The Brown family is not the People; and you know it. Yet you have me making this inane argument to counter your silly statement. Why?

  47. How about I just cited you a case that arguably shows McCulloch denied equal protection by presenting a defense for Wilson in the grand jury, Bob.

  48. “As a consequence, neither in this country nor in England has the suspect under investigation by the grand jury ever been thought to have a right to testify or to have exculpatory evidence presented.”

    And yet, that is exactly what happened here. The result? Tampering with due process and denying equal protection for the Brown family because Wilson is a dog of the state and some dogs are more equal than others, aren’t they, Bob.

  49. Bob Stone says:

    United States Attorneys’ Manual:

    9-11.233 Grand Jury

    Presentation of Exculpatory Evidence

    In United States v. Williams, 112 S.Ct. 1735 (1992), the Supreme Court held that the Federal courts’ supervisory powers over the grand jury did not include the power to make a rule allowing the dismissal of an otherwise valid indictment where the prosecutor failed to introduce substantial exculpatory evidence to a grand jury. It is the policy of the Department of Justice, however, that when a prosecutor conducting a grand jury inquiry is personally aware of substantial evidence that directly negates the guilt of a subject of the investigation, the prosecutor must present or otherwise disclose such evidence to the grand jury before seeking an indictment against such a person. While a failure to follow the Department’s policy should not result in dismissal of an indictment, appellate courts may refer violations of the policy to the Office of Professional Responsibility for review.

    http://www.justice.gov/usao/eousa/foia_reading_room/usam/title9/11mcrm.htm#9-11.233

    You were saying?

  50. Or is that kind of impropriety okay because it rendered the result you wanted?

  51. Bob Stone says:

    Time for TV. Signing off.

    “There was only one road back to L.A., U.S. interstate 15. Just a flat-out high speed burn through Baker, and Barstow, and Berdoo. Then on to the Hollywood freeway straight into frantic oblivion. Safety… obscurity… just another freak in the freak kingdom. We’d gone in search of the American dream, it had been a lame fu(k around. A waste of time. There was no point in looking back. Fu(k no, not today, thank you kindly. My heart was filled with joy. I felt like a monster reincarnation of Horatio Algier, a man on the move, and just sick enough to be totally confident.” — H.S. Thompson

    “Goodnight Austin Texas; wherever you are!”

  52. Bob,

    You know as well as I do that presentation is where the spin gets traction. Disclosure can be had without all the grand standing by letting Wilson testify for hours and by how the disclosure is framed versus how the incriminating evidence is framed (which in this instance was practically not at all). The job is to present the evidence to the GJ, not to favor exculpatory over incriminating (or vice-versa). Quite simply, you’ll never see the wrong done here because you got the result you wanted.

  53. And again, I’ll remind you:

    The injustice here was denying the day in court where the evidence could be cross-examined.

  54. Elaine M. says:

    Bob Stone says:
    November 26, 2014 at 9:44 pm
    Gene,

    Even Jeffery Toobin, who was leaning for months that Wilson committed an act of cold blooded murder, concluded that no indictment was the proper outcome due to the overwhelming amount of forensic evidence supporting Wilson’s story.

    **********

    How Not to Use a Grand Jury
    BY JEFFREY TOOBIN
    11/25/14
    http://www.newyorker.com/news/news-desk/use-grand-jury

    Excerpt:
    Would Wilson have faced charges if he had been treated like every other suspect in McCulloch’s jurisdiction? We’ll never know—and that’s the real shame of this prosecutor’s approach.

  55. nivico says:

    United States v. Williams, (90-1972), 504 U.S. 36 (1992)

    Gene,

    The court concluded in this case that a prosecutor is ~not required~ to present exculpatory evidence to the grand jury.

    It did not conclude that a prosecutor ~may not~ present exculpatory evidence to the grand jury.

    BIG DIFFERENCE!!!

  56. Elaine M. says:

    Six points: How Ferguson prosecutor defended grand jury’s decision
    http://www.cnn.com/2014/11/25/us/ferguson-grand-jury-mcculloch/

    “I thought of his statement in two parts. The first part was an extended whine and complaint about the news media and social media, which I thought was entirely inappropriate and embarrassing,” said CNN legal Analyst Jeffrey Toobin.

    “I did think it was appropriate for him to go through the evidence, but frankly it was hard to follow and I think a lot of us are going to have to go through the evidence itself and see whether his conclusions are justified,” he said.

  57. Regarding prosecutors and grand juries. Of course, the prosecutor can handle a grand jury pretty much any way he or she wants to. As a public defender once commented, it is the ultimate example of ex parte.

    Jim Kitchens of Mississippi is a former District Attorney. He was in private practice for a while, but now sits on the Mississippi Supreme Court as a Justice. Jim is a long-time dear friend of mine. He gained some fame by holding his nose long enough to represent Byron de la Beckwith, the racist nutcase who killed Medgar Evers. If you saw the movie Ghosts of Mississippi, he was portrayed in the movie by actor Bill Smitrovich. He once shared with me how hard it is to keep a Grand Jury from indicting a person. Seems there was a case some detective wanted to present to the Grand Jury. Jim said it was a bogus case, but he had to fight hard to explain to the GJ why the case was unwinnable for the state and was based on things other than evidence. His point was that if a GJ fails to present a true bill, the prosecutor must work to get that outcome.

    I have not talked with Justice Kitchens in several years. I would really like to hear his take on the Ferguson Grand Jury.

  58. You should write for the Enquirer; you most certianly have proven yourself worthy and qualified for the fine barkles ye and they expound.

  59. bettykath says:

    The content of this thread is certainly consistent with what one would find at the Conservative Treehouse. It’s not what I would consider to be a reliable source. I had thought that Bob would be quite comfortable there. Guess he is.

    An important point to consider: If the gj had returned an indictment, what kind of prosecution would McC have put on? Since Wilson hasn’t been through a trial and since there is no statute of limitation on murder, there is no concern about double jeopardy if a different prosecutor decides there is enough evidence to try him. I hope Wilson takes that thought to bed with him every night.

  60. mespo727272 says:

    Let’s see if I understand the logic of the article:

    There are bad people around Michael Brown and close to him.
    Michael Brown must then also be bad.
    Since he’s bad, his family and the public deserve no trial to determine if he was unlawfully shot down in the street by the police officer while he was unarmed.

    Is that about it?

    Fascinating.

    • bigfatmike says:

      That seems pretty close to me, except I think you left out the part about some of the bad people saying things that might insult and hurt the feelings of white people.

  61. mespo727272 says:

    Bfm:

    Duly noted and adopted.

  62. Elaine M. says:

    Unorthodox police procedures emerge in grand jury documents
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/seemingly-unorthodox-police-procedures-emerge-in-grand-jury-documents/2014/11/25/48152574-74e0-11e4-bd1b-03009bd3e984_story.html

    Despite Wilson’s un­or­tho­dox practices, transcripts appear to show that prosecutors treated him with greater deference than they showed some other grand jury witnesses.

    Prosecutors, who led the inquiry, regularly grilled witnesses, testing their memories and going to great lengths to discredit some.

    But in questioning Wilson, prosecutors were far more gentle and at times seemed to be guiding his answers.

    At one point, a prosecutor asks Wilson: “So you got out of the car, you are running, you are telling [Brown] to stop; is that right?

    “Correct,’’ Wilson responds.

    “And he’s not listening?’’ the prosecutor asks.

    “No,’’ Wilson says.

  63. Bob Stone says:

    bettykath: “The content of this thread is certainly consistent with what one would find at the Conservative Treehouse. It’s not what I would consider to be a reliable source. I had thought that Bob would be quite comfortable there. Guess he is.”

    Bettykath,

    I don’t know where the issue of reliability comes in; since they’re not an independent investigative body. It’s simply a motive driven blog that gathers news and misc from the internet and comments on it.

    As for my being “comfortable” there, I actually had an entire series of posts deleted simply because I argued that Putin wasn’t necessarily the bad guy in Ukraine. I simply said to imagine if the red states won control of the presidency and congress in a proper election and the people living in the blue Washington D.C. decided to take over the entire country (blue and red states) in a coup.

    I’m fully aware of the extreme right and extreme left mindsets; thank you very much.

  64. bettykath says:

    It’s the folks in the Conservative Treehouse that “outed” 2 or 3 young women as “DeeDee”, Trayvon Martin’s friend. They were obsessed with her. Their “outings” were all incorrect. I think they finally concluded, at least until she appeared at the trial, that she didn’t really exist.

  65. Mike Spindell says:

    As Mespo puts it:

    “Let’s see if I understand the logic of the article:
    There are bad people around Michael Brown and close to him.
    Michael Brown must then also be bad.
    Since he’s bad, his family and the public deserve no trial to determine if he was unlawfully shot down in the street by the police officer while he was unarmed.
    Is that about it?
    Fascinating.”

    This is exactly what you are doing Bob and that’s taken in the best possible light. Less charitably one might say it is a startlingly bizarre obfuscation of the issue and indicative of a vindictive mindset on your part in a lame attempt to justify what has become an untenable position.

    You first presented a piece from “The Smoking Gun” about a purported incident involving Brown’s mother and a seller of T-Shirts. That the site is somewhat less than reputable offers no problem for you since you will grasp at any straws to prove your tenuous musings. Then you produce a long article from that well-known newspaper the “Riverfront Times” that view Mr. Shahid in a shady light. You then continue in the same vein and you do it for one simple reason. Though repeatedly asked you are not able to supply a good answer for the only relevant question in this case which many of us have continually addressed to you time and again. What is the rationale for Wilson to have shot Michael Brown multiple times? As these pieces go on Bob you seem to be getting increasingly desperate and I can understand that, because your premise lies in shreds around your clay feet, shredded by your own lack of logic.

  66. Bob Stone says:

    mespo727272: “Let’s see if I understand the logic of the article: There are bad people around Michael Brown and close to him. Michael Brown must then also be bad.”

    No Mark. The McSpadden story was the hook to disabuse readers of the association fallacy.

    Just as I did here:

    “Do you know what Trayvon Martin, Emmett Till, Sgt. Major Dan Page and all the other anecdotes about racism and class warfare in Ferguson or the rest of the country have to do with the actual guilt or innocence of Officer Wilson? Absolutely nothing—unless of course you’re a sucker for the association fallacy.”

    I believe you wrote an entire article about Sgt. Major Dan Page and the Ferguson P.D. didn’t you.

    And I believe I already commented on this a few days ago, but for the life of me I can’t find that comment anywhere now.

    mespo727272: “Since he’s bad, his family and the public deserve no trial to determine if he was unlawfully shot down in the street by the police officer while he was unarmed. Is that about it?”

    You left out what I actually wrote about;

    a cop hating racist activist that hijacked the primary witness pool at the scene and fabricated a meme that’s contradicted by the forensic evidence as well as the other witnesses that weren’t part of his group; e.g. Michael Brady.

    I thought you’d enjoy the religious hypocrisy Mark; seeing how Mr. Shahid holds himself out to be a “servant of Allah” and yet went ahead and pissed on Exodus 23:1-2

  67. Bob Stone says:

    bettykath,

    I don’t know anything about a “Dee Dee” and I already told you about being censored there. All I did was give credit where it was due.

  68. mespo727272 says:

    My article about the racist cop was designed to point up the reason some in Ferguson didn’t trust the police force. It said nothing about Wilson’s guilt or innocence — nor should it.

  69. Bob Stone says:

    Resolving Cognitive Dissonance

    Illustrated by Mike Spindell

    Mike: “You first presented a piece from “The Smoking Gun” about a purported incident involving Brown’s mother and a seller of T-Shirts. That the site is somewhat less than reputable offers no problem for you since you will grasp at any straws to prove your tenuous musings. ”

    Instead of actually evaluating his thought process and conclusions, Mike has chosen to demean the source of the information giving rise to dissonance.

    He demeans the Smoking Gun; however, his dissonance got the best of him, since I actually quoted a story from Fox2now news in St. Louis

    http://fox2now.com/2014/11/05/police-investigating-assault-felony-robbery-following-fight-among-michael-browns-family/

    The Smoking Gun simply had the actual official documents scanned to their site. And we all know how notoriously unreliable official police department incident reports are:

    http://www.thesmokinggun.com/file/brown-family-brawl

    “Less charitably one might say it is a startlingly bizarre obfuscation of the issue”

    Indeed.

    Mike: “Then you produce a long article from that well-known newspaper the “Riverfront Times” that view Mr. Shahid in a shady light.”

    Mike not only dismisses an article simply for being published in a paper he’s not familiar with, but draws conclusions about it without having actually read it; since if he did read it, he would have seen that it showed Shahid in a rather good light; as an activist that’s rough around the edges but gets things done for the black community.

    Mike: “You then continue in the same vein and you do it for one simple reason. Though repeatedly asked you are not able to supply a good answer for the only relevant question in this case which many of us have continually addressed to you time and again.”

    And that ONLY RELEVANT QUESTION, per Mike Spindell, is “what did Mike Brown do to deserve being shot?” And I told him, I’m working on an article about that.

    “As these pieces go on Bob you seem to be getting increasingly desperate and I can understand that, because your premise lies in shreds around your clay feet, shredded by your own lack of logic.”

    Yes, I’m so illogical.

    Thanks for playing Mike.

    • Mike Spindell says:

      Bob,

      You’re the one playing…..With yourself and I mean that metaphorically. This piece is an example of a classic smear job and as such has the weight of lint. Why would any intelligent person take it seriously.?

  70. Bob Stone says:

    “It said nothing about Wilson’s guilt or innocence — nor should it.”

    I know that. And I’m sure you knew it too.

    But that’s not how it actually plays out; is it Mark?

    Tell me Mark, without Anthony Shahid, how does the Brown shooting become a racial issue?

  71. Elaine M. says:

    Bob,

    Can you explain to us how it’s only because of Anthony Shahid that many people think Michael Brown’s shooting is a racial issue? That thought wouldn’t have occurred to anyone else except him?????

  72. bigfatmike says:

    Some have raised the issue racism in the incident in Ferguson. I don’t think that racism has been proven to be a factor in the actions of Wilson against Brown.

    However, I think it is more than reasonable to question whether racism might have been a factor that influenced events.

    In the first place we know that LE shooting of African American males is wildly disproportionate to any other group. That fact alone suggest that we should examine every police shooting with the understanding that racism might have played a role.

    We know that Wilson started his career in a near by LE agency deeply troubled with racism. It is certainly fair to question whether that experience influenced Wilson’s views on LE or on African Americans in a way that might have affected his judgment in his actions against Brown.

    The racial composition of the Ferguson department is significantly under represented by African Americans. That fact reasonably raises the question of institutional racism and whether institutional racism has had any negative effects on training, the selection of tactics used against the local population, police culture, or attitudes of individual officers including Wilson.

    At this point we have no proof of what roles racism played in Ferguson. But we would be negligent if we did not question the role of racism in Ferguson.

    The role of racism in LE is the issue that so many want to ignore.

  73. Bob Kauten says:

    Wow.
    I don’t even have dignity, and these articles are beneath mine!

  74. Bob Stone says:

    BFM,

    “At this point we have no proof of what roles racism played in Ferguson. But we would be negligent if we did not question the role of racism in Ferguson.”

    Well said; but that’s not how it played out, is it?

    And that’s not how Shahid, Crump, Parks, Sharpton, et. al. portrayed it either.

    They used Officer Wilson as a means to an end by seeking to punish him for the sins of the country rather than judging him by his own actions.

    • randyjet says:

      I have to agree that the color of Brown is and was irrelevant to the events. Wilson would have kept on shooting the guy if he were white. The only thing that mattered to Wilson was that he was enraged at having been assaulted by a crook. That crook was going to be caught, dead preferably.

      That others use the color to whip up feelings against Wilson hardly matters as to the legality of Wilson shooting the kid. I am more worried about the fact that cops can and do kill us citizens with impunity and no or little oversight.

  75. nivico says:

    “The content of this thread is certainly consistent with what one would find at the Conservative Treehouse. It’s not what I would consider to be a reliable source.”

    Tell that to Florida ASA Bernie de la Rionda. He literally threw a hissy fit in open court about the work that was being done by the Treehouse on behalf of the Zimmerman defense.

    Author and columnist Jack Cashill also devoted much of his book ‘If I Had a Son’ to the crowdsourcing phenomenon taking place at the Treehouse during the Zimmerman trial that turned everyday bloggers from passive witnesses into active participants in the criminal justice process.

    Heck, the fact that you are even aware of the Conservative Treehouse is a testament in itself that the work being done there has drawn a lot of much deserved attention. They are a major thorn in the side specifically because the work they do IS reliable.

  76. blouise says:

    Wow.
    I don’t even have dignity, and these articles are beneath mine -Bob K

    LOL

    You win this thread’s intertube’s award!

  77. bettykath says:

    “Get the f*ck on the sidewalk” suggests the cop has no respect for the boys. What does he know about them besides where they are (Black neighborhood) and the color of their skin (Black). At the least Wilson is a bully.

  78. bigfatmike says:

    “The only thing that mattered to Wilson was that he was enraged at having been assaulted by a crook. ”

    That alternative had occurred to me also. I am just not sure it is a confidence builder to suggest after an altercation with LE the officer might feel he as a right to execute you because of the insult to his dignity.

  79. bigfatmike says:

    ““Get the f*ck on the sidewalk” suggests the cop has no respect for the boys.”

    I believe the racist of today are frequently far different from the ones some of us knew in our college days. That does not make them less racist, but the tells, the give-aways are different.

    A statement like “Get the f*ck on the sidewalk” may not flow from an attitude of racism. But that kind of statement made to adolescent African American males ought to make us wonder how white middle class citizens would be addressed.

    Some might observe that the statement is controversial in that Johnson and Wilson do not agree on the words used.

    But other other events raise similar questions. It has been stated that there was no attempt to provide CPR or other support to Brown before EMTs arrived. And some have made much of the caviler treatment of the body for hours after the death.

    Are these examples of a racist view of African Americans. Or are do they indicate a callous attitude in the department that borders on dereliction? We don’t know. But I think we would have to be fairly oblivious not to wonder how others, white middle class citizens, would have been treated under similar circumstances.

  80. mespo727272 says:

    Bob:

    You have an interesting writing style. First you quote a child rearing guru to say that raising a child in hostility makes the child hostile. You then regale us with a story of maternal hostility to prove what? That the child grown into a young man (Brown) is not hostile? You rejoice in disassociating your premise from the conclusion claiming you’ve disabused us of the association fallacy and then launch headlong again into the same fallacy with the story of the obviously off-center and possibly racist community activist whom you claim started the hands-up story. All this despite witness after witness in the GJ who claim to have seen just that ( see the PBS Grand Jury Witness Matrix). Personally, I’m not up for the roller coaster ride and am wondering what you are telling me about Brown’s mother and the community activist. And what any of that has to do with what happened to Michael Brown at the hand of Officer Wilson.

  81. Bob Stone says:

    “then launch headlong again into the same fallacy with the story of the obviously off-center and possibly racist community activist whom you claim started the hands-up story.”

    Mark,

    That’s not a fallacy; that is the genesis of the “hands up don’t shoot” meme that made this a racial issue.

    The first story about McSpadden provided the segue and highlighted her hypocrisy. And isn’t highlighting hypocrisy one of your favorite methods of ridiculing religious fanatics?

  82. mespo727272 says:

    Bob, he’s a religious fanatic alright but I don’t see how that bears on your thesis that trying Wilson is wrong.

  83. NBC says:

    Gene: But the prosecutors job at a grand jury is to present evidence in an unbiased manner and let them decide if the charges sought are merited, not ply them with almost exclusively exculpatory evidence.

    Your words suggest that you have not really looked at the evidence. And what is wrong if most of the evidence were exculpatory? Are you under the impression that the prosecutor should not bring such information to the attention of the GJ?

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