From an interview with RedBeard Right a year ago:
Luckily he’s got a strong self-defense case because they not only managed to assault him multiple times but they also charged him as a group, which juries at least tend to see as evidence of intent. And the guy he shot first — well, maybe the second guy he shot — he had a pistol in his hand. Kyle shot him in the arm, the arm that was holding the pistol, but it looks from the video that was posted that he was getting ready to put a round in Kyle’s head.
I think this is going to be a very, very short court case if it even makes it into court. I think Kyle is going to walk, I think the D.A. is going to regret this grandstanding because I think the countersuit is going to be vicious.
As I pointed out elsewhere, the prosecutors intended to bully Kyle into taking a plea because then they would get Leftist-friendly headlines like they did with the McCloskeys.
Instead, he resisted, and the ensuing trial went about as badly as one would expect. The so-called weapons charges misread American law, since across the country kids under 18 have hunting rifles. The charges the Left hoped to bring there failed because it is common practice to have rifles in the region, and those who owned local businesses necessarily felt threatened by riots which the police refused to control.
Of course, to New York and San Francisco liberals this seemed horrifying: people just carrying around guns, how could that be? In much of the world, wild animals are still a threat, and when you are far from the police, you rely on weapons to defend yourselves. Also precedent: no one prosecuted any Roof Koreans during the LA Riots, so it’s an established de facto principle of law that this is acceptable behavior.
Part of the problem for the prosecution here was that they were trying for first-degree murder charges, a basically insane presumption when there is any question of self-defense. They did not raise the one legally relevant issue which is provocation, namely that by taking to the streets with a rifle, Kyle might have issued an invitation to violence. That case would be shaky at best because it seems like the cops gave up and half of the people wandering around had weapons.
As I have pointed out before, when you defund the police or make them afraid Rotherham-style of being accused of “racism,” cops step back and let citizens solve the problem as they always have: with gunfire.
The case of Ahmaud Arbery will hinge on the same issue:
Travis McMichael called 911 after claiming to see Arbery walk into an open home that was under construction in the Satilla Shores subdivision. Surveillance footage from the home shows Arbery walk inside, look around and leave.
Travis and his father Gregory McMichael armed themselves and chased after the 25-year-old in Travis McMichael’s pickup truck. They said they thought he was a burglary suspect after a string of thefts in the neighborhood.
The suspects claimed to police that they acted in self-defense during the confrontation that resulted in Arbery’s death. Travis McMichael testified that Arbery struck him and was trying to grab his gun.
In this case, people in a neighborhood got tired of the police doing nothing about a string of burglaries, and noticed that Ahmaud Arbery went “jogging” in his boots and wandered through the house where he had no legal reason to be, looking for something to steal.
They cornered him, and he fought back, so they shot him. In this case, they have a clear self-defense case since Arbery attacked, but it will be mitigated by the question of what they did to bring about that situation, similar to the provocation question never raised by the moron D.A. in the Rittenhouse case.
In both cases, Leftists motivated by revenge decide to go for the most extreme penalties they can, forgetting that they are trying to prove that Kyle Rittenhouse and the Arbery defendants went out onto the street intending to provoke someone into attacking them so that they could kill him.
Legally, we have a bit of a history with provocation:
Legally adequate provocation is said to exist if the defendant was reasonably provoked into a heat of passion. One could interpret this ambiguous language as requiring what I call “act reasonableness,” a finding that a reasonable person in the defendant’s shoes would have responded or acted as the defendant did. An unscientific survey of model jury instructions used in the fifty states, however, indicates that only a few states require act reasonableness. Most states require what I call “emotion reasonableness,” a finding that the defendant’s emotional outrage or passion was reasonable. An example of “emotion reasonableness” is found in Illinois’ model jury instructions, which tell jurors that legally adequate provocation is “conduct sufficient to excite an intense passion in a reasonable person.”
Usually this is part of the defense on a self-defense case: “Judge, he called him a fat sheep rapist and made fun of my small penis, so I shot him.”
In this case, it is part of the prosecution case designed to invalidate a self-defense case: “The defendant provoked the deceased into attacking him so that he could shoot them, which makes this murder one and not self-defense.”
Prosecutors can claim that Arbery was cornered by three men, much as Rittenhouse was, and reacted similarly but lost. This will probably still not fly because he had an option other than attacking, in that these guys were cornering him and calling the police.
An ordinary citizen waits for the police in that situation, or flees if he can. Once he attacks, he is taking the law into his own hands, and as they say, possession is nine-tenths of the law.
If I were on these juries, I would acquit in both cases. Rittenhouse defended a city that the police had stopped defending; the Arbery defendants made the collar that police were unwilling to investigate or execute.
Now that he is officially not guilty, Rittenhouse will be tempted to sue for defamation. I hope he does because I think he can at least win a fat settlement, but he has to avoid some pitfalls.
If he sues the prosecutor first, he will give the various news outlets a defense: “well we just reported based on what the prosecutor said.” That will be fatal to his case.
Instead, he should sue the media first on the theory that biased reporting known to be factually inaccurate to the reporters, their editors, and the boards of these publications whipped a segment of the population into rage, and prosecutors were relying on that.
This theory allows him to sue the various news outlets which deliberately mis-stated the case, even in some cases implying that he shot Black people or that his assailants were unarmed, and force them to settle.
They will settle because if he goes to court and wins the case, he will have set a new figure for the cost of defamation. That means that everyone who is defamed by media will sue for that amount and likely win it.
If the media settle, they avoid having a legal precedent for lawsuits about defamation that allow people without such high-profile lawyers to sue and win.
At that point, Kyle can sue the D.A. for having failed his due diligence in investigating these media reports, at which point the prosecutorial misconduct including refusal to pass on a video at full resolution will come into play.
If we get really lucky, since the pendulum has gone to the other side from America considering BLM to be innocent victims and instead we see them as pointless vandals and aggressors, all of these suits will go to trial and be wins.
Defamation generally requires a set of conditions:
To prove prima facie defamation [to avoid having the case dismissed – Ed], a plaintiff must show four things:
1) a false statement purporting to be fact;
2) publication or communication of that statement to a third person;
3) fault amounting to at least negligence; and
4) damages, or some harm caused to the person or entity who is the subject of the statement.
The third point is most important here. That false statement can be false by negligence, which is what happens when a fact “should have been known” to be false if minimal due diligence were conducted.
If a reporter goes out and finds a voice sympathetic to his political views, takes that as fact, and looks no more deeply, he is not only a failure of a reporter but negligent in what he is reporting.
Kyle can point to a search engine for damages, since it will be hard for him to find normal employment after this. He can also direct the jury toward the case of George Zimmerman, who was media-vilified and has not had a normal life as a result.
The rest pretty much write themselves. If more of these cases go through, the media will be forced to be accountable for the first time in decades, which is why Trump suggested re-writing defamation law to make such suits easier.