liveblogging of trial of gwen araujo's killers
*** I'll mark this up and fix the typos later today, and add links, and summarize ***
i come in at 11 when the judge was giving instructions to the jury. about not basing verdict on circumstantial evidence, etc.
Not many people here in the courtroom. Most of them on what is clearly gwen's side.
Now, this is the sort of event that deep reporting, or layered reporting, would be useful. There are reporters here, and they're writing articles, but their notes might also be made public information.
i wish i'd come yesterday...
personally i'm feeling such a wave of sadness and hate. i am sitting right behind people who are beyond evil.
the judge is harry r. sheppard. he seems very fair.
the jurors are reading along, mostly, with the instructions. i notice the judge is reading very clearly and sensibly. very skillfully to make the info make as much sense as possible.
whether a witness has been convicted of a felony or not... it factors in to their believability.
what they CAN consider as evidence and what they can't.
There are around 30 people here other than camerapeople and laywers. and security.
testimony to the good char. of the defendants. good reputation or character. the questions and answers aren't evidence.
motive need not be shown.
i feel sick...
i thought of bringing kleenex, but not a barf bag.
woman i sat next to asked me to stop typing as the noise bothers her. i move to an isolated spot. she's upset (not at me obviously but at the trial )
i wish now also i'd made an effort to dress nicely? is that even possible for me considering the hair. is it important? i.e. not jeans?
now i'm looking at the jury which is 10 guys, 4 women. (suckage.)
most of them look 30-50ish.
judge is talking about aiding and abetting. the crime of the aider or abettor can be less, same, or greater than person primarily committing the crime. testimony of accomplices.
it's hard to keep all this straight. I wonder if the jury has ... simple charts of what is and isn't admissible evidence. as this long document is hard to parse.
I'm thinking about how it's important that the judge be the one to read all the instructions.
The weight and authority of their position.
if the crime of murder or involuntary manslaughter was committed, anyone who was there, they are by law an accomplice because they were there. ie, their testimony is under different rules of how you consider it. am i understanding this right?
the rules of evaluating testimony.
now here is something that is missing from basic education. it should be in early high school that you study rules of evaluating evidence.
murder first degree, second degree, involuntary manslaughter, hate crime, kidnapping. there must be specific intent or mental state... in the perpetrator...
specific intent or mental state for definition of the crime.
assault with deadly weapon,
this is lesser crime than murder or kidnapping.
"there must exist a union or joint operation... criminal intent."
what "general criminal intent". when you act in an unlawful way... er, blah blah....
oh man they just said edward araujo not gwuen. that's so disrespectful!
rules of when someone is voluntarily intoxicated, they are still responsible for their actions. ie for the effects of of the voluntary intoxication. their actions are not less criminal because they are drunk.
there's net here, but i can't see out.
Oops, it costs 7 bucks. i guess i'll pay it.
Karen talks about coming here nearly every day for quite a while.
lunch with karen and shelly. Shelly is making a documentary about gwen, the crime, and the trial. She's so right on!
karen tells a bunch of her story. how she feels from following the trial how much she wants to help teenage trans people.
We talk about teenagers. Shelley has 5 kids and knows quite a lot about parenting. Karen talks about her street-wisdom.
Karen also talks about the book she is writing or wants to write, "Crashing through Gender Barriers".
She says the closing arguments for the defense were unbelievably nuts. Well, she used a more diplomatic word than "nuts", but I can't think of it. Something about the sanctity of the home violated by gwen's gender identity or something. er yeah. The sanctity!
Shelly tells how the judge ruled that the A&G pool had to let her in as independent media. He is stern and yet fair. (as one figures judges should be...)
They both talk about the way the media covered the trial and about GenderPAC talking to AP to make guidelines about how to do journalism about trans people. It took 6 months for the media, editors, etc. to meet with them or listen, and was a slow process. They were responsive to education but it's still in progress. There are guidelines in place, but the AP reporters like Michelle ?? weren't following them. the editors, not the individual reporters, need to be convinced by the community of how to write respectfully. Not putting Gwen's name in quotes, not saying crossdresser when she identified as trans. I would say that whatever reporter conferences or continuing education exist should be targets for this sort of education. also, schools of journalism.
Shelly talks about reasons the prosecution would have to ignore gender issues, to say "edward" not gwen, etc.
we talk about teenage prostitutes in SF. about how to help people and what kind of work it is possible to do. foster parent system. youth trans projects.
back at the trial.
first degree. willful. deliberate. formed, arrived at, determined, weighing for and against course of action. what "premeditated" means. clear, deliberate intent on part of defendant to kill...
2nd degree murder defined.
time lapse between provocation and fatal blow. this is crucial. the fact of a remote provocation does not reduce the effect to manslaughter. slayer must be acting under direct influence of "heat of passion" which ... if time has elapsed for angry passion to end, and reason to return, it doesn't affect the verdict. the time is not measured by the standard fo the accused, but the time it would take the average or ordinarily reasonable person to have cooled their passion and reason to return. neither fear, nor... etc. constitute a heat of passion referred to in the law of manslaughter. (when judgement gives way to emotion.)
Murder requires malice.
Hmm... You know, when you have beaten someone up, and then afterwards you tie them up, and gag them, and then beat them up some more and kill them, er, that's a long time lapse and pretty much full of malice.
"mere preparation" - planning the offense, is not sufficient to constitute intent.
but if acts indicate intent to commit specific crime of murder... then they do.
Every person who detains another person... w/out consent... is guilty of kidnapping.
judge talks about hate crime. cause ... direct consequence, the death of the victim, without which the death would not have occurred. "cause in fact". mutliple motives. "acted in concert". group crime. personally engaged in it, also the aided and abetted. voluntarily acting in concert - does not require prearrangement. people have burden to prove this acting in concert.
there is a special form for the jury to fill out about the hate crime part.