This one immediately earns the tag of what could possibly go wrong? It seems that in Florida, it is common for the names of jurors to be released to the public once the trial is over. (Some of you lawyers in the crowd can help out by letting us know how common this is.) In cases where there might be substantial danger to the jurors or their families because of “emotions running high in the community”, that release may be delayed for a time, but not indefinitely. There was such a delay regarding the case of George Zimmerman in the Sunshine State, but now the clock has run out.
The names of the six-member jury panel that acquitted George Zimmerman in the shooting death of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin have been made public for the first time, after a new court order, records show.
Circuit Judge Debra Nelson, who had previously ordered the jurors’ identifying information be kept confidential, granted access to the names in a ruling March 21.
Zimmerman’s defense asked the judge in June to keep the names secret until six months after the verdict. The judge set no timeline then, but noted in her new order they have been withheld more than eight months.
Attempts to reach the jurors by phone and in-person Thursday were unsuccessful.
I’ll bet attempts to reach them were unsuccessful. If I was one of those jurors and had been watching the treatment that Zimmerman, his family and anyone who failed to condemn him sufficiently have received, I’d be on my way to another state under an assumed name, if not another country. If this trial revealed anything useful about our society, it’s that there is no shortage of people who don’t feel particularly bound to the constitutional idea of trial by jury, and will endeavor to “set things to rights” if a decision doesn’t go the way they feel it should have.
Zimmerman’s own parents have been learning that lesson the hard way, and are now looking at having to sue television personality Roseanne Barr because of it. Wait… what?
George Zimmerman’s parents are suing Roseanne Barr for tweeting their home address, which they say forced them to go into hiding for years.
Robert and Gladys Zimmerman have filed a lawsuit against Barr, accusing the comedian and actress of posting “an open and obvious call for vigilante justice,” which she intended “to cause a lynch mob to descend” on their Lake Mary, Florida, home.
“It was foreseeable that the tweets would cause Robert and Gladys Zimmerman to have to flee their house in the middle of the night and never to be able to return, have to face a descent of media and others who would seek to do harm to Robert and Gladys Zimmerman and to their home, and have to live in seclusion to protect their personal and emotional well being,” the civil complaint said.
Zimmerman also has his steps haunted on a continuing basis by both activist detractors and the media, ensuring that he can never settle back into a normal life or seek regular employment. EDIT [section removed]
So what will happen to these jurors? If they’ve been following any of these stories at all – and how could they not – they’ll know that they are sharing the “blame” in the minds of many progressive, liberal activists. Now that they’ve been outed for performing their constitutional duty to the best of their ability, will they have any peace? Or will their employers be pressured to fire them and lines of angry no justice no peace types be outside their doors day and night with torches? I’m unsure how any greater good is being served by this decision, and Florida may want to rethink that law.
EDIT: (Jazz) Two lines of the original text were removed regarding the possible sale of another painting by George Zimmerman. This item was sent in from a normally reliable source, but is unconfirmed and may have been fake.