tv CNN Newsroom CNN February 15, 2014 4:00pm-4:31pm PST
versus michael dunn, the verdict as to count two, we find that he is guilty of at a tempted second-degree murder, and we find that the defendant discharged a firearm in the commission of the offense. verdicts as to count three, we the jury find the defendant guilty of attempted second-degree murder and lesser included offense. we find that the defendant discharged a firearm in the commission of the offense. verdict as to count four, we, the jury, find the defendant guilty of attempted second-degree murder a lesser included offense, and we find that the defendant discharged a firearm in the commission of the offense. verdict as to count five, we the jury find the defendant guilty of shooting the victim as said.
this is signed by the foreperson and dated february 15th, 2014. >> does anybody need the jury polled? >> yes, your honor. >> juror, one, are these your two and correct verdicts? >> yes. >> and juror two, are these your true and correct verdicts? >> yes. >> and juror three, are these your true and correct verdicts? >> yes. >> and juror number four? >> yes. >> and juror, five? >> yes. >> and juror nine, are these your true and correct verdicts? >> yes. >> and juror ten, are these your true and correct verdicts? >> yes. >> and juror 11, are these your true and correct verdicts? >> yes. >> and juror 12, are these your true and correct verdicts? >> yes. >> ladies and gentlemen of the jury, i have said it several times, and i need to say it again, that i thank you for your time and patience throughout the last almost two weeks. there is never going to be words that i could ever express to you to tell you how grateful i am,
and that we all are for your service, your consideration and dedication to this process. it's been a long 13 days, i believe now, and when you came on monday, you recognized that obviously you were here for jury service, and you had a civic duty to perform, and you have embraced that. i truly appreciate that. i have watched you throughout the last two weeks, and i know how hard it has been for you, and how difficult it has been for you, but you have performed your duty s wiies with the abso utmost of professionalism. you are why this justice system is the great neaeeat eest in th. so from all of us, let me again, extend my gratitude and thanks. and before i dismisyou, i want to advice you of distinct privileges that you have as jurors, and i have alluded to
this, i believe back monday or tuesday of last week. and this is the last jury instruction i will read to you. no juror can be required to talk about the decisions that occurred in the jury room except by court order. for many centuries our society has relied on the juries for consideration of difficult cases. we have recognized for hundreds of years that a jury's deliberations, discussions, and votes should remain their private affair as long as they wish it. therefore, the law gives you unique privilege not to speak about the jury's work. although, you are at liberty to speak with anyone about your deliberations, you are also at lib liberty to refuse to speak to anyone. a request to discuss either your verdict or your deliberations may come from those who are simply curious from those who might seek to find fault from you and from the media or elsewhere. it will be up to you to decide whether or not to preserve your
privacy as a juror. you should know that your decision whether to talk about your experience is entirely yours. it is an individual decision. you do not have to vote on this as a group. please remember though that my order regarding the confidentiality, your confidentiality, your identity remains in effect. that order remains in effect until further order of the court. so i want you to keep that in mind. if you were to decide that you wanted to speak to someone about the case, whether it is family, friends or the media, i would ask you to please not identify any of the fellow jurors. because of the publicity that has surrounded this case, i am also asked to advice you that if you wish to speak to the media today, we can arrange for a court administrator to make a
courtroom available for you, courtroom 7, for you to be interviewed if that is your desire. basically, we will take you through a back hallway and into the adjacent courtroom where you can be interviewed either on camera or off camera and you can be interviewed either with your voice recorded or not. that is your choice if you decide to do that. you don't have to. you can just decide that you want to collect your belongings, and we will transport you back to the hotel to collect the remainder of your belongings, and allow you to then go home. keep in mind that if you decide to speak to the media, either tonight or at any time, then the confidentiality of your identity, then, obviously, would not any longer be in effect. so, i tell you that, and then you can tell the bailiff when you are excused from the courtroom as to whether or not you want to be interviewed
today, and if that is your choice, fine, we will arrange for it, and if not, we will have transportation for you back to the hotel. again, ladies and gentlemen, let me thank you for your willingness to be a part of the justice system and for your dedicated service in this case. at this time, you are released, and i wish you a safe trip home and godspeed. all right. mr. dunn, your having been convicted of counts two, three, four by a jury. you are remanded to the custody of the state where you have been
pending sentencing in the case. i assume that he is entitled to a presentencing investigation report? >> yes, your honor. >> and so we will order that and for you who do not know, it takes about a month to prepare. my intention is to set this case for sentencing and additional consideration on march the 24th unless somebody tells me they have an objection. it is set on that monday to pick a day later in the week for actual sentencing. other than that, i'm not sure what else there is to do this evening. >> judge, i would like to be clear that counts two, three, four and five. >> i hope i said that, but yes, it is guilty as to counts two, three, four and five.
and the sentencing is in tcours of that week? >> yes, your honor. >> i would assume at that point in time or shortly thereafter we'll have some indication from the state as to how you want to proceed with the regard to count one? >> yes, sir. >> okay. anything else from the state? >> at this time? >> yes, ma'am. while we are doing that, mr. strolla, anything that you can think of? >> judge, the date of the 24th, is that intended to looking at my calendar, and possibly contact your honor for that date? >> i understand that you may have other obligations having been here for two weeks. and so, that is when i'd like to do it, but if it presents a distinct difficulty or problem for you, let me know hopefully next week so we can then change
the date to when everybody can live with it, an convenient for everyone. i also while we are at it was informed that there was an objection filed to magistrate sampson's report and recommendation regarding the jail phone calls. i believe that then is going to require a hearing. i don't't know to what extent, . strolla, you want to be a part of that, but if you do, i will allow you to be appearing by phone, and ms. cory will be here, and perhaps you could get in touch with the interveners to see if they actually want to have a hearing or how they want to proceed.
>> and we look forward to the hearing, your honor. >> yes, i understand. >> and i will copy mr. stroll l.strolla with that date. >> yes. and the next date is march 24th, at 9:00 a.m., and we will vacate this room and go back to courtroom 305. okay. there you heard the verdict. here's the verdict. mistrial of count one which is the first-degree murder account. attempted second-degree murder, guilty, which is the attempted mu murder of the three teenagers and one of the three teenagers in the car. count two, guilty. on the attempted murder. count four, and that is second degree murd, and guilty again on the attempted murder of the teenagerers again, and then hurling a deadly missile, and i'm joined by paul callan, cnn
legal analyst and joey jackson. >> and a long time. >> he was convicted of everything but killing jordan davis. the three teenagers were not harmed in the shooting, but they are still alive. >> the only logical explanation for the verdict is that the jury hung on whether he acted in self-defense and firing the fatal shots into jordan davis, but remember, there was a second volley of shots direct ed ed to car, and those are the attempted murder counts that the jury convicted on and of course for firing into the car. so ironically, you have a hung jury on the main issue, and whether jordan davis' death was caused by his action and firing on the fleeing vehicle, and they convicted on that. >> well, it is very interesting that someone e-mailed me, and they said, how can he be found guilty of attempted murder and then not be found guilty of killing someone? >> because of paul's explanation, and the first
things first. this is the process at work, don. right, what we have is a democratic process to invite the jurors to be fair and partial and do the best they can on the trying circumstances. so i do applaud the jury, and they did not get to the first count. i has happened. it has happened to you, paul, and happened to me where you have a hung jury, and the reality is that they took their time to argue this, but as to the rational and logical argument to this, when it comes to jordan davis, was he inside of the car at the time of the shot fired? was he inside or outside of the car or stepping out? that is the issue, and did he represent a threat to michael dunn? they evaluated that and they were torn as to whether or not he was justified in shooting and killing him. that is going to represent a hung jury, but as paul said, he had a volley of the shots, and we heard throughout the course of the case, the surveillance tape, and you heard the surveillance tape, and the pop, pop, pop, and you heard it, additional shots.
as to the other shots, there was a continuous course of conduct, but clearly some break there where the jury perhaps in the initial volley may or may not have been justified, but as to the second volley of shots, they did not apparently think that he was justified at all, and that what led to the attempted murder charges sticking and ultimately a declaration of guilt and to the firing into the car. >> and you to also look at the potential serious sentence that he will face under these laws. under florida law, because it is gun charges and very serious charges as i am calculating it, if the sentences are consecutively, there is a range of 60 years in prison that dunn could face. healey, this judge has a reputation of being a tough sentencer, but most of the cases are low sentencing cases. >> and was it consecutive? >> well, why consecutive, and that means 20 years for one
teenager and then another and another and you stack on the time. this is of course, clearly seen is as independent criminal acts. committed on the one and the other and the other and stacking up 60 years. and would they are retry him? and there is a issue to retry him, because jordan davis' family deserves for a jury to make a declaration of his conduct, but the issue is would it be necessary to do it? if he is in jail for 60 years, is it practical -- >> 47 now, and he would be out -- >> yes. and that is why you will see the pros couture hold back, because if the sentence is concurrent, then it is 20 years, and she would say, we will retry on first-degree murder, and she has nothing to lose by that, and then he is facing life in prison, and of course, this is a controversial verdict. >> and i will get to mark o'mara and holly hughes. holly firstt.
>> okay. they got it right. and actually, he is facing up to 75 years, don, because it is 20 on each of the attempted murders and up to an additional 15 on the firearm. and joey nailed it when he talk talked about the consecutive time. because it is not one action that affected one young man, but it is an action that could have killed four young men, and each one of them deserves justice. and so that the state is absolutely going to seek the consecutive time, and he is basically looking at the life sentence, and what they will do is that if they don't retry him, they will push him to plead guilty, and maybe to a second de gr degree murder, and in consideration for some concurrent time. so, they are going to get a verdict on jordan davis whether it is by retrying the whole thing for the top count or trying to get this defendant to plead guilty to a murder charge, and saying, we will let you plead guilty to the second if you in fact admit that you did it, and we will give you concurrent time. so the jury did it, and they
worked so hard to get here. >> mark o'mara? >> yes. how are you, sir? well, a couple of things. under the florida law with the separate cases, they are consecutive and the statue is quite clear that he is looking at 60 years minimum, and additional 15 years. so he is going to get a 60-year sentence. and now can they and should they retry the case? at this point, it is really almost moot as far as the additional punishment, but certainly the davis family will want to retry just to prove up it was a murder of their son. but on the pragmatic side, 60-year sentence is a life sentence. no reason for dunn not to go to trial again on the underlying first-degree murder charge, because he has knotting the -- he has nothing to lose. and the state can also offer in something that is a global plea less than 60 years na he has
that he has to otherwise get to get a plea on the first-degree murder case. but i think that we will have a retry on the first-degree murder case, because the davis family deserves it, and they can't do anything but other than retry the case. >> okay. mark o'mara, standby. benjamin crump, trayvon martin's family attorney, and he is going the jail for a long time, michael dunn, but what we have a verdict for now is the attempted mu murder toef other three teenagers, and he is not going to jail for murdering this young man. i think that many people are happ happy that he is going to be spending is a long time in jail, but why does that kind of bother me that they can't e reach a verdict on whether this was murder or not. am i wrong in that, for that feeling that i have? >> no, don. it is bittersweet when you think about it. he is going to jail for a long
time, but on the ultimate question of jordan davis and the value of this young black teenager's life, it remains a question. i will say that i felt in fear of a young black teenager, and it could be an imaginary fear or innuendo, but that seems to be enough to grant you immunity under stand your ground or self-defense or whatever you want to call it, because it is a society issue. it is an issue that we have demonized young black males, and we say that they are gangsters and thugs, and seems like anybody who can come up with a fear, it was a hoodie with trayvon, and loud music with jordan, and with what is it going to be nex time when a young black male winks at somebody and they kill, and say, i felt in fear of my life, and
that is what we are dealing with. and it is not representing black males, you know. when you are a black male, it goes with you everyday and every night, so that is what we are trying to stress here. we love our children, too, and we want them to be able to walk in peace and drive in peace, and get to be children. >> yeah. >> the thing here -- here's the thing, and i have been rolled up on by people, and i have said it on television before, and in my own neighborhood, and i lived in atlanta, and predominantly white neighborhood and affluent neighborhood out there, and put it out there, and what are you doing here? and my first initial reaction is, what the hell are you doing here? this is my neighborhood and i pay taxes here and who are you to -- >> be careful, don. >> and who are you to ask me what i am doing here, and if i have a reaction that you think is intimidating, then you have the right to pull out a gun and
shoot me? hell, no, you don't have that right. that is why i am bothered by this and that is what bothers me. go ahead. go ahead. >> don, don, as an american citizen, you have that right, but as black males and black people in america, and other minorities and hispanics as well, it is somehow if you kill us, that the justice system isn't equall. it is almost as if your life is less valuable, and that is troubling as a black person and as a lawyer that the rules are different. it is not equal, because if it were eequal, i believe that michael dunn would have been con vick odd of the first-degree murder, because, again, reverse those facts. if jordan davis kills michael dunn and goes home and has pizza and a glass of wine --
>> that is what bothers me. >> where in america is he going to be exonerated? >> that is it. that is it, and i know, listen, i nknow he is going to jail and i'm not second guessing the jury, and very hard work, but there is something that just do doesn't fit, and it does not smell right, and when someone says there is something that is not sitting right, this is not sitting right. i am told that before and after the verdict you were praying, and i know you were crying, but were you praying? what were you doing? >> i was praying, because i said if they don't sentence him, and he is exonerated completely, a lot of people are going to be heart broken again, and they are going to have no faith in the system, and what do we tell our children? what do we tell our sons and daughters about the system that says that if you are killed, and even though you did nothing
wrong, the people are not going to be held accountable, what do we tell our children? >> what do we tell our children? again, here, he is going to jail, and holly hughes says 75 years, and i know it is 20 year s to run con vek youtively, but because of the additional time because of the firing a weapon, he could be also retried. and thank you for warning me, benjamin crump, because i did forget i was on tv. >> and for the family of trayvon and jordan davis, extend your prays and wishes and don, we have to keep talking about the tough issue, because it does matter when we talk about this, tough issue of race, and it matters, and because hopefully, the next person who has somebody
playing the loud music, they are not going to say i'm going the take the law into my own hands, because if you do, we have to as a society say, we are going to hold you accountable whether that child is plaque, white, -- that child is black, white, hispanic, you cannot kill another person. >> absolutely. >> thank you. >> and ashleigh banfield, the host of "legal view" noon ea eastern on cnn, and you have been paying close at the tension to this, and following it, and what do you think of the verdict, ashleigh? >> well, i'm not surprised actually about the being hung up on that first. but what i am trying to wrap my head around if if they were hung up first versus second or second versus manslaughter, because i could see the jury battling over the issue of perhaps the first reaction that the defendant has is something closer to what he
described as the self-defense, but then he went, you know, wild, wild west after that, and u ultimately they decided on something more serious for the three other teenagers, so i would love it if they would speak publicly and you heard the judge say that is nothing that they have to ever ever do, and they are not compelled to speak, and i always love to get inside of the jury's mind when they do speak publicly and answer the questions, and we will find out out shortly if they are going to do that. but i dare say they know it is high profile and may not want to be a part of it. but in all due respect to you, d don, and i can hear and feel and see your outrage and see you in the office everyday and we talk about these things privately when we are in the office, but i want everyone to take a deep breath and realize what the jury was presented and not what went on on television, and none of us was there, and so what we have to respect is that the jury was
presented two sides. and it is what they believed to be more compelling or reasonable. so no one should be angry that they are caught up in and unable to make a decision on the first verdict. nobody should hold them responsible or say that a black child or teenager can not be -- because with respect to mr. crump, it was not about loud music, but it is what mr. dunn told to court about what he perceived to be a threat. perhaps they believed his story that the music and the argument and the threats and what he thought was the image of a barrel all went into factoring the decision that he was in fear for his life. and it was not just music, or just teenagers, but all of the things, and what he told the court seemed to be compelling to some. if you listen to the television case, it is ridiculous that
there is a hung jury, but i caution everyone to go into the court a week or two or three or six to try a case, and then spout out how you feel, because it is different in the court. >> okay. ashleigh, we get the reality of the inside of the courtroom, and we talk about that, but there is also the reality of everyday life for people in this country, and you understand people don't feel that justice is served in many ways, and especially people who are underserved by the judicial system. es p pbly people who find themselves at the bottom of the justice system. >> and you know what, don, it is, and you know who is it usually -- >> and ashleigh, let me finish, please. and people bring all of that to them as laypeople, and the jury was tasked with it, and we get that, but we understand that the jurors are human as well, and they take their particular perceptions into the courtroom, and you can't say, here is the
evidence that is presented and then forget what you live with everyday. >> okay. my point is that the justice system is not set up to protect the guilty, but it is set up to protect the innocent, and so that the person that we usually see at the defensep table who does not get the benefit of the doubt which is the travesty is the young black male in our presence and many of them guilty and many of them not. and so when you see a case like this playing out with a white guy, you have to remember that they, i guess, they gave him a big presumption of innocence on the first count, right? we should hope that every juror would give every presumption of innocence to the defendant regardless of the color. sadly, we know this reality, and i'm the white guy and you are the plaque gblack guy and the b does not get the same benefit to the extent of the white guys, and maybe that is what we should be talk thing about more, and it is not the outrage of the music, but it is the music. >> and when you talk about it,
and just talking about things, and it bothers me so much, and you and i try to talk about it, and we are trying to come to an understanding from two different perspectives, and people say that you are pulling the race card, and talking about justice and people say that you are pulling the race card, but it is not. and let me tell you that it is t the third rail in this country, and people refuse to acknowledge that, ashleigh banfield. they don't want to talk about it, because it makes them uncomfortable. >> yes, without question it makes them uncomfortable. and talking about it makes them uncomfortable, and people feel like they can't be talking about it, because they are branded one way or another, but take race out of it completely, and if i'm walking down the street at night, and i see four guys walking towards me, i am crossing the street, because i fear four guys, and they are probably pretty innocent guys, and i'm just not going to take
the chance. is that a sexist or unfounded fear? well, dark streets, and single woman, and four boys being loud and boys strous, i cross the street. >> i understand where you are going, and i appreciate, and i wish that we could have this conversation all evening long, and i have to go. and remember, it is in broad daylight and happened in broad daylight in florida and not a single woman trying to cross the street, but a grown man, a grownman. and can we go back to camera one, please? i want to thank you guys for putting up with me. there are many people who disagree with some of the things that i say and many people agree, but i will always give you the truth, and it comes from my heart and from a good place. and so thank you for bearing with me, because this one, was particularly personal to me. moving on and the last time i will talk about it, and the subject at hand. i want to get now to elena machado and sunny hostin and martin savage who were down there inside of the courtroom.
what did you see, sunmy? >> well, i was inside up to the reading of the verdict, and several of jordan davis' family's members were holding on to tissues before the verdict was read. it was a very, very intense situation, and everybody was quiet and looking at the judge. looking at the jury, and trying to figure out what was about to happen. and then the verdict was read and every time that the judge read the attempted or the attempted verdicts, jordan davis' mom, you could see her with the head down. michael dunn's father also had his head down, and once the verdicts were read, you could see everybody get up and from the jordan davis family, everybody got up, and you could see some of them were holding hands and hugging, and visibly, v visibly distraught, emotionally distraught as they were leaving the courtroom, don. >> thank you, alina machado, and sunny hostin has been covering this in the courtroom as well.