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tv   Erin Burnett Out Front  CNN  April 11, 2012 7:00pm-8:00pm EDT

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charged with second-degree murder in the shooting death of 17-year-old trayvon martin. our coverage of this news story continues on "erin burnett outfront" right now. i'm tom foreman in for erin burnett. outfront tonight, breaking news. george zimmerman is behind bars after weeks of protests, outrage and demands for action, he has been arrested and charged with second-degree murder in the shooting death of 17-year-old trayvon martin. florida state attorney and special prosecutor angela corey announced the charges against the 28-year-old neighborhood watchman in sanford, florida. >> today we filed an information charging george zimmerman with murder in the second degree. a capias has been issued for his arrest. with the filing of that information and the issuance of a capias, he will have a right to appear in front of a magistrate in seminole county within 24 hours of his arrest and, thus, formal prosecution
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will begin. >> corey has been conducting her own investigation into the shooting separate from that of the sanford police department. shortly after she announced the arrest, trayvon martin's family spoke. >> thank god. [ applause ] we simply wanted an arrest. we wanted nothing more, nothing less. we just wanted an arrest, and we got it. and i say thank you. thank you, lord. thank you, jesus. secondly, i just want to speak from my heart to your heart, because a heart has no color. it's not black, it's not white, it's red. and i want to say thank you from my heart to your heart. >> zimmerman, according to the prosecutor, turned himself in and is in custody being held without bail, although she would not say where. our martin savidge is in
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sanford, tonight, where it all began. marty, thanks for joining us. what are people saying on the street there tonight? is there any real reaction to this? >> reporter: the reaction, tom, is kind of muted. we're actually on the edge of goldsboro, the historically black community here in sanford. there have been some who have gone by honking their horns, shouting zimmerman arrested, but this is the first step in a long process. many will say what a strong decision the state attorney, angela corey, made in bringing charges here, but there are a lot of supporters of trayvon martin and his family who say, you know what, it never would have gotten to her hands had it not been for the protests many, many people who came out and marched on this community and many other places across the country. you remember it was the sanford police department that originally handled this case and originally decided not to charge george zimmerman initially, even though their investigation was ongoing. it was only after the large hum on cry that the governor appointed angela corey that got
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us to this day so that's what the supporters of the trayvon martin family will most definitely say. >> the family and some of their supporters made a point of that very thing, talking about how the protesters came out and had all this response. all that said, though, the argument can also be made that one of the reasons it's taken so long is that the case is not cut and dry. do you hear any concern about people on the street that, look, even if you get to the first level of this, getting to the next one, a successful prosecution, is a totally different matter? >> reporter: it is indeed. no, you're absolutely right. because of the unique nature of the law, stand your ground here in the state of florida, because before it even will get to a trial, it will have to go to a judge who will have to contemplate the very issues and consequences of that very specific law. some would say a very lenient law when it comes to the issue of if a person feels threatened or in jeopardy and the ability to use lethal force to protect their own li. that is the argument george zimmerman has put forward and
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what the police department said. so you're right, that's why in this community the supporters of trayvon martin realize it's just the first turn of the wheels of justice. there is a long way to go before we see what the final resolution is. >> one last question very quickly, marty, here. you've talked to a lot of people in the community. what do you think the response is going to be there if, as i suspect the defense will, they come around and say we need a change of venue, precisely because there have been marches, protests, so many people saying you must arrest this man and do something about him? >> reporter: yeah. well, i think that that's putting the cart a little bit before the horse. but here in this community they realize that it's a very sensitive nature. most people do think that there will be a change of venue granted at some time. it will go somewhere else in florida. however, everybody in the state of florida, you would be hard pressed to find somebody that has not heard something and made an opinion. it's not that somebody can be chosen that's never heard of the
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case, it's whether the person can listen to the evidence and make a impartial verdict. that, they say, can still be found in the state of florida. >> all right, thank you very much, martin savidge. good reporting out there. we appreciate it. we're joined right now on the phone by the new attorney for mr. zimmerman, mark o'meara who is joining us now. we just found out this afternoon that he's representing mr. zimmerman. mr. o'maura, tell me your reaction. >> again, she charged with second degree but she knows the evidence and i don't yet so it's tough for me to comment on what i haven't seen yet. we'll have to wait until the process works through. >> when you say you're surprised by that charge, why? >> well, because again, she knows the evidence but that type of crime would suggest that he did something truly unlawful and i think the evidence so far suggests that there was at least question and controversy over what happened. but quite honestly we really do need to wait to see what the evidence tells us. >> have you had much time to really look over the case at
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this point or are you really that new to it? >> no, i truly am that new to it. i've seen only what's been shown in the media and no other contact with the case. it's really difficult for me to speak at all authoritatively about the evidence and it wouldn't be proper. >> i assume you've had a chat with mr. zimmerman. without getting into the attorney/client privilege, can you give us a sense of his mood? >> well, i think he's troubled by the fact that the state decided to charge him, but we're still going to prepare a defense. and i think that understanding what he has in front of him, he's doing okay. >> would you say at this point the key issue here is a question of self defense? certainly that's what we've been led to believe so far. >> it seems that way to me from everything that i've seen from the media. certainly that's going to be one facet of the defense. i just have no idea yet. >> what is the next step right now, mr. o'mara?
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whi when do you go to court? >> there will be a bond motion tomorrow where a judge will hear some of the facts of the case and decide how and under what conditions to release mr. zirmmzir zimmerman. >> what do you expect after that, which i assume at some point is he'll enter a plea. >> well, he'll enter a plea of not guilty which any defendant would do at this point. then we go through discovery, which will give us a lot more information than we have now. >> do you have any kind of idea what kind of time schedule will be on for that? you obviously have a very steep learning curve at this point. >> absolutely. but i intend to get caught up to speed very quickly. the state has to get discovery the next fit15 days. we'll work through it. >> are you concerned at all about the degree of public attention this case has had and in particular areas like sanford where there have been marches in
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the street and rallies and people calling for justice? >> yes. any high-profile case adds a lot of extra elements to it and extra problems to it. whether or not the case can be tried in seminole county is one and the fact that it gets so much focus and so much attention. people tend to overanalyze and microanalyze and every decision is suggested to have significance. it's just part of a lengthy process that's just now getting started. i do need to run. i don't mean to cut this short, but i actually have many people right outside my office waiting for me to walk out the door. >> as well i can imagine. mark o'mara, thanks for joining us here. we'll check in with you in the future. thanks for being with us. next on outfront, our breaking news coverage of george zimmerman's arrest. we bring in our legal experts to break down the case further. another big story we've been following, north korea. the window to fire that rocket is now open. how soon before liftoff, and will it bring us into a brave,
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that doesn't taste gluten free. together, the elements of science and the human element can solve anything. solutionism. the new optimism. we have live pictures right now there as mark o'mara, who we spoke to moments ago on this program holding a press
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conference down there in florida where he's talking about this case. he is the new attorney representing george zimmerman. to recap what he told us, he's very new to the case right now. he's trying to figure out what they're going to do. he's certainly going to plead self defense. his client will certainly plead not guilty. there are some concerns about venue, whether or not they can get away from this glare of publicity around the case and find a jury that they think can be fair in this case. he says it's going to be very complicated for a while here. for the next couple of weeks he's going to be a very, very busy man. we'll be busy monitoring his press conference and try to bring you more of his comments from that later on to bolster what he told us a short while ago. there are two sides to every story and of course every trial. the story of george zimmerman is no different. when he finally does get his day in court, his defense loiawyers and prosecutors will have a mountain of evidence at their finger tips. joining me are sunny hostin and paul callan right now. i'm going to ask you two to play
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two sides of the fence on this because this case is going to be one of those the whole country watches. let me start off, first of all, with the question of defense. paul, let's talk about the evidence for the defense here. it seems to me there are a couple of points that are in the defense's favor to a degree. zimmerman's physical shape upon the arrest. the police said he indeed had a bloody nose, a bloody back of his head, the back of his shirt was wet as if he were rolling on the ground. this is his defense, he was attacked, put on his back, he was defending himself. secondly, his cooperation with police. he didn't try to run, get rid of the murder web on or do any of those things. are those the cornerstone of your defense? >> those are very strong points of the defense. zimmerman is going to say that he's captain of the watch really, which is a group that's a security group within the gated community. he sees this strange individual. he had never seen trayvon martin before walking on a dark night, rainy night, into the community.
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he thinks he doesn't belong there. when he tries to approach him, he eventually calls the police. when the police say back off, he in fact does back off. turns and starts to walk back towards his vehicle. it's at that point that he's jumped from behind by trayvon martin, knocked to the ground and pummeled. now, remember martin is a 6'1" football player. he's a weight lifter, he's obviously in great shape. he's pounding and pounding against zimmerman. zimmerman reaches for the gun and fires to save his own life. that's the defense. >> the prosecution over here wants in. >> really, really? how do you respond to that version of the story? >> the bottom line is to be sure that angela cory, the prosecutor, who just charged george zimmerman with second-degree murder knows a lot more about the facts that i know sitting right here and that tells me she has a lot of evidence to prove second-degree murder beyond a reasonable doubt. what do we know? we know that george zimmerman was the first aggressor. he is not entitled to the stand
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your ground defense. he was told to stand down. he was told not to follow trayvon martin. trayvon martin was unarmed. george zimmerman was armed. >> i'm going to interrupt you for a minute because we're going to dip in to this presser we mentioned with mark o'mara. >> all of emotions are running high in all of central florida, but we'll see. as we get closer to the point where we're resolving it, we don't even know if we'll have a trial. >> what's going to happen tomorrow in a seminole county court room. >> my hope, if i can get back in and finish the work, we'll have a bond hearing motion set by a judge. an initial appearance will be held and at that point the judge can consider what to do with the then existing bond schedule of no bond, which is what seminole county has a a bond schedule for second-degree murder and that we can convince him or her that a bond is appropriate. >> what time is the hearing? >> it's not set yet. i think that they -- >> 1:30 when they normally have it? >> maybe at 9:00, maybe at 1:30. i do not know yet.
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>> mark, his former attorneys made him sound a little frantic. how did he sound to you? how was his voice? >> he is troubled by everything that has happened. i cannot imagine living in george zimmerman's shoes for the past number of weeks. only because he has sort of been the focus of a lot of anger and maybe confusion and maybe some hatred. and that's got to be difficult. i mean truly it must be frightening to not be able to go into a 7-eleven or into a store and literally to be in effect a prisoner wherever he was. so that would trouble all of us and i'm sure that he's wearing some of the fallout from that. >> did he sound okay, though? did he sound like he's lost it? >> he was rational to me. he understood what i was saying, i understood what he was saying. we're communicating well. we'll see. i have no idea other than that. >> some people describe it as
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going rogue and wasn't returning calls and putting up a website. did you have that conversation, like if i'm going to represent you, we've got to do this my way? >> i think mr. zimmerman and i have a good understanding of what i can offer to him and how he can best allow me to be a good lawyer for him. and i think that there may have been some misunderstandings or confusions or maybe even some inaccuracies with the way the last couple of days went from sunday to tuesday. that doesn't sit well with me. >> what advice did you give him today? >> stay calm, listen to my advice. >> which was what? >> which is to stay calm. as i give you advice in the future, i sort of am the professional in doing this. and i'm only going to give him good advice after i think it through and we'll be working together. he's obviously a significant part of the defense team. there's a lot that he can do to keep things on track as well. he seems very willing to listen
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and to, you know, do what we have to do to move forward. >> are you going to visit him tonight or wait until tomorrow? >> again, he's in law enforcement custody right now so i don't have as much free access to him. they are going to grant me access as soon as we are within the same geographical area and i'm presuming that's going to happen hopefully tonight, but i don't know that. >> mark, as this moves forward, what do you do to make sure that he stays safe? >> i don't know. you know, the first thing is i reach out to the community and say he's been charged, he's been arrested, he's a criminal defendant now. let the process work. do not -- let's not prejudge anyone any longer. let's just let the process work. there is a lot of high emotions. maybe some of them have been -- since there has been an arrest, let's just let the process work. the worst thing that can happen
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in this case is that it doesn't get tried properly where it's supposed to. because then no matter what the results are, it's not going to be a proper result. dw give us our chance to do it the way it's supposed to be done. >> have they said if he's going to be confined in seminole county? >> i would presume because of the some of the high emotions of the case they will have him in protective custody. that they will keep him safe and separate until we figure it out. >> are you worried about yourself? >> no, i don't believe so. i'm a criminal defense attorney. i'm doing a job. he is a client who has a lot of hatred focused on him right now. i'm hoping that the hatred settles down now that we're sort of moving forward. i truly hope none of it is focused on me. quite honestly without getting on a soap box, this is what i'm supposed to do. he's been charged with a crime. we have rules, we have laws, we
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have constitutions. the victim's family has absolute rights to be involved in the process. he has rights to his own safety and to the case being tried properly in front of a judge, jury, prosecutor, negotiations, whatever. it doesn't need to be tried with somebody hating him or throwing, you know, something somewhere. let's just try it where it's supposed to be tried. >> would you expect bond to be set and a reasonable bond that they could afford? would that be normal? >> i would say if you looked at a percentage, that bonds are normally granted in shis second-degree murder cases. we do know there are questions, just from what the media has stated, but there are questions about how it happened. so i think that also lends to the suggestion that maybe he should be out. i want him out because i need him out to help me in my defense. so very selfishly i want him around so i can have free access to him. because he's an integral part.
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i hope he'll get a bond. that's out of my hands and up to a judge something but you'll ask for one? >> absolutely. >> do you feel like in some ways zimmerman is better off being charged, to let the system work? this is what people were screaming about. >> oh, i think he'l be better off if they decided not to charge him. understandably, again, she had all the evidence and i trust her to have been a good prosecutor. i'm not going to second guess her decision when i don't have any of the evidence. i'm not going to be presumptuous and say she's wrong. she's a good prosecutor, we'll see what happens. >> when will you get it? >> basically 15 days within the date that this has happened, we'll start having an information flow. >> i'm mark o'mara, the new attorney representing george zimmerman in this highly contentious case down in sanford, florida, we've been covering for so many weeks now. i want to return to our conversation with sunny host inand paul callan. we were talking about the two sides of this thing. what's going to happen on the prosecution side and on the defense side.
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paul, you went over some of the defense. on the prosecution side, it seems to me some of the high points the prosecution has up front is that trayvon martin was unarmed and he wound up dead. >> right. >> zimmerman's pursuit of martin, this notion that he was at some point following him. it is not clear what happened in this intervening time, whether he continued following him. he says he didn't. he says that martin came after him but we don't know that. an also the victim's age. all of those it would seem to me in terms of the prosecution are going to be positive points. >> i think so. of course the fact that trayvon martin, as you mentioned, was unarmed, was where he had a right to be, visiting his father and his father's fiancee, in florida. and i think, again, to be clear, we know a little bit about what happened here, but the fact that he has been charged with second-degree murder tells me that there is a lot more information that the prosecution will have to bring to prove a second-degree murder. >> let me ask you a question about that.
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that may indeed tell us something, but it took them a long time to reach this point after the police said there was no charge there. doesn't that also tell us something? >> i don't think it took them a long time actually. we know that angela corey got this case about three weeks ago. that is not a long time to investigate thoroughly, with the help of the federal government. >> but my point is the initial prosecutors did not come up with the charge. >> what's strange about it is, i think, we have the initial prosecutor involved in the case and he's taken off the case. we don't know why. the only decision that he made was to convene a grand jury to continue the investigation, but a second prosecutor is appointed when public uproar arises that there was not an immediate arrest. >> that's because the sanford police department, paul, issued a police statement saying that they were prohibited, prohibited -- >> from making an arrest. >> from making an arrest. >> in new york city, adas ride cases every day. no conflict of interest. there's a back story we have to know. >> let's ask about some of the other evidence. their witness statements.
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we have heard on tv from some witnesses, but if you look at the police report, they talked to a lot more people there. we don't really know where that lies, do we? we don't know if there's a witness who can really say i saw. >> it new york ci-- it. >> no, we don't. obviously the prosecutor has a lot more information in her hands and hopefully she took that into consideration. >> and i myself have spoken to two of the witnesses and those witnesses told me that they heard the altercation. they believed the person screaming for help was the younger voice, was trayvon martin, and that they saw george zimmerman straddling trayvon martin. that's two of the six. >> i don't have your experience but i've been in enough courtrooms to know that any defense lawyer is going to say did you know george zimmerman? did you know trayvon martin? and you're saying out of the blue on a dark night you heard voices screaming and you know who is who? >> and that is why angela corey must mow norman we know. i suspect we'll haear about audo
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analysis -- >> or she has folded under political and public pressure. >> i doubt that. i doubt this. not this prosecutor. >> not this prosecutor? she's indicted a 12-year-old child, tried the child as an adult. >> and took a lot of heat for that. and stay the course. >> she's one of the toughest prosecutors in florida, and she's got a record for being extremely aggressive. so i want to see the evidence before we make up our mind. >> i think we'll have have to see that. a lot to talk about in this case. there will be much more as we go on. outfront ahead, the controversial law that could be at the center the george zimmerman's defense, this whole stand your ground law. more on that coming up. stay with us. [ male announcer ] this is genco services --
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george zimmerman is behind bars tonight despite the fact that he's continued to claim he acted in self defense when he shot and killed 17-year-old trayvon martin. 45 days after this tragedy happened, the attorney representing trayvon martin's family say they're starting to see some justice. >> we can take a short breath, a short breath, because we're just now getting to first base. this is only first base. >> but is the court of public opinion going to have a real impact when this case moves to the courtroom? roland martin is a cnn contributor who's been following
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this case closely and been in contact with many of the people involved. roland, what is your sense of the feeling out there this evening with these charges finally being filed? >> first of all, a lot of people are surprised that angela corey chose to go second-degree murder. many folks thought if there was going to be a charge, it was going to be manslaughter. a number of people are very pleased that this has gotten to this particular point. remember, the parents said from day one they wanted to see an arrest. and tom, people like me were outraged because the question came up how was this guy never arrested? so that's really what drove lots of the emotion, lots of the attention. not the question of, oh, he should be going to a trial, but simply how was it that he wasn't even arrested? that really was the impetus for so much of the energy and passion across this country and across the world. >> so how do you think the community feels tonight? >> well, first of all, look, i've got more than 200,000 folks on facebook and twitter. a lot of the comments are thank goodness this is taking place. now it goes to the next step.
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of course people have more questions. how does she arrive at that? is it going to be a fair process? but here's what i made perfectly clear. you can ask all of those questions, but the bottom line is very simple. if he wasn't even charged, he would never even get to the possibility of a jury hearing this. and so that's where it should take place. so we should see a trial where you have stand your ground if it comes out as part of the defense, it is adjudicated. the whole issue of self defense as well. i did reach out to joe oliver, george zimmerman's friend. he's not really commenting on this. he said allow this thing to play itself out. one of the things that he said is that he still does not believe race was a factor. bottom line, when they go to court, it's not going to be a question of race being a factor. the question is a 17-year-old was killed. how was he killed? and now people are saying thank goodness that a jury will get to hear and we'll get to see all of the evidence to have an understanding of what took place on that fateful night in orlando -- sanford, florida, i'm sorry, on february 26th.
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>> do you think there's going to be a different reaction if this goes to trial and we reach the point -- if mr. zimmerman is found not guilty in this case? >> we have no idea what the reaction will be. that's the question, people's emotions. i will say what ben crump has said and i've been saying it and others have been saying it and people should be respectful. there should be nonviolence. there shouldn't be any of this ridiculous drama out there. i don't care what the new black panthers have to say. i don't care what the kkk has to say. we have seen trials take place in this country. people know how to respond. what you do is if you don't like the outcome, there are other ways of going about it. i'll say this for african-americans, we have fought for justice for a number of decades, and we have seen things take place, 16th street baptist church, where things didn't go the way, but guess what, those folks, they were convicted some 30 or 40 or 50 years later, so sometimes you might have to wait. but i do think people will be respectful, but they will still allow their voices to be heard, which is only right, fair and just. >> i know there will be a lot of
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emotional and difficult days ahead for a lot of people in all of this. thank you for joining us. george zimmerman's defense could come down to florida's controversial stand your ground law, which roland just mentioned. it allows for the use of deadly force when acting in self defense. the law has been invoked at least 130 times in florida since it was passed in 2005. of those charged who chose that defense, only 19 people have been found guilty of a crime. joining me now, florida state senator, oscar brannon, who called for the creation of a task force to review the law in his state and bradford cohen. let me start off with you, mr. cohen, if i can. do you see that this is a referendum at all on this law? or is that something yet to be determined? >> i think that's something yet to be determined. you know, the law is a good law if it's applied properly. and i've been saying this time and time again. you know, you really need to look at the law and look at what
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it invokes. it goes back to the 1920s. it's essentially the supreme court said no man should have the auspice or run from a man raising a knife at them. was it in this case? that's something to be determined. the reason why they're looking at it is because they feel that the aggressor has some sort of advantage, which that is not what the law is about. the law does not protect aggressors. the law punishes the aggressor. the aggressor is the person who first makes the physical move. chasing someone down and then turning around and walking back to your car, you are then forbidding and not doing what the aggressor would do. you are leaving the scene and going back to the vehicle. that's the difference in this case. >> let me get to the senator here. 25 states have similar laws to this. can you explain to me in very simple language, what is the difference between this law and a simple self defense defense? >> well, i think in this law,
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what happens is we have the immunity clause, which is the clause that allowed him to walk away after it happened and didn't go to trial and then say, you know, claim self defense. also that's the type of thing that has people in an uproar. it's not that he was able to protect himself or stand his actual ground. the question is why was an arrest not made? it was a 17-year-old young man dead on the floor, and why was an arrest not made? they said they were prohibited from arresting him because there's an immunity clause and i think that's the biggest problem. >> specifically, what would you like to see reviewed within the wording of this law and the application of this law? >> well, i think we talk about that immunity clause and also they use the term "reasonable." when you say reasonable, you have to think what would a common man do. but if you have the immunity clause on top of the reasonable thing, you're saying what would be reasonable to the investigator on the scene.
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what would be reasonable to the prosecutor. you never get to find out what was reasonable to a jury of their peers, to the community, because i -- you know, i and many people believe that reasonable means what the average man would do, and the average man is why we have a jury. so i believe it should go to a jury or to a judge and that's how we determine what's reasonable. also, the immunity clause, which is what triggers that. >> mr. cohen, let me ask you something about this. when we talk about what's reasonable, i've talked to many, many professional police officers who in the heat of a moment when thing are happening quickly, they do what they think is reasonable and it turns out not to be. how do you apply that to a civilian population? >> well, certainly in this case the police officers did a full and thorough investigation. that's what they stated. and after that full and thorough investigation, they came to the conclusion that this law was applicable and that's why they didn't make an arrest. although you see mr. zimmerman actually in cuffs and back at the station, they didn't actually arrest him in terms of
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putting him into custody and having him bond out like he is now. the reasonness of the statute falls right within the law. you have these police officers who you ep trust. you entrust them to have a judgment, and their judgment call was not to make the arrest. and then to say that was was applicable, this law. >> i have to jump away from you right now and go to the senator for a final word. senator, very quickly, if you could, would you rather see this law completely rewritten, taken off the books, what, in short form here? >> for me, i do. i believe we have self defense right now, but i do understand that i serve in the legislature with a number of other people with other prospecopinions. my personally, i don't think we really need this. we have self defense. i believe in the castle doctrine. but this stand your ground i think gets us into an area of law where we start to see these vigilantes come out an things like this happen. >> senator, thank you for joining us and bradford cohen as
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well. still outfront, now that he is in custody and charged, what is next for george zimmerman and this case? you'll want to hear. stick around. were on schedule. were on schedule. the first technology of its kind... mom and dad, i have great news. is now providing answers families need. siemens. answers. [ man announcing ] what we created here. what we achieved here. what we learned here. and what we pioneered here. all goes here. the one.
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george zimmerman is expected to be in court tomorrow and how this case unfolds going forward has many of us wondering if he's going to be granted bail or can he receive a fair trial and where will the case we heard? sunny hostin and paul callan are back to help us understand this
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a little bit more and how this case will develop. paul, let me start with you. the next step in this is what? >> he'll appear before a judge in florida, maybe as early as tomorrow morning. the charges will be announced in open court. this could be a hearing where bail is in fact discussed in detail. it's more likely that the judge will put it over a little bit and there will be a bond hearing scheduled and then there will be a much more detailed argument about whether bail should be set in this case or when he should be remanded without bail because it's a murder case. >> what kind of odds do you give to that? >> you know, he turned himself in. he apparently has been very cooperative with authorities. i think it's likely that he'll get some sort of bond. >> would you want to have a client that's under this much pressure out? >> well, you want to be able to talk to your client. you want to be able to effectively represent your client, go overall of the evidence. and i think if you're the defense team, yes, absolutely you want your client not in prison. prison is a very difficult place to be under any circumstance. i visited many of them.
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so i think it is likely that he will receive some sort of bond. and then they have to go about the business of preparing their case and of course keeping their client safe. >> prison beats a client down too. this whole process of being incarcerated, especially an individual who like mr. zimmerman who i think has never been incarcerated before, it will beat him down, it will break his spirit. so you really want to get your client out if you can convince a judge. but it's going to be a tough argument to make. >> over the next couple of weeks, the defense lawyer, mr. o'mara will have access to all sorts of that information we talked about earlier. so he's got a very steep learning curve, doesn't he? he has to look through all of these investigations and say what does the prosecution really have and what do i defend? >> i think what's going to be in his favor in terms of florida law is he's going to get a lot of discovery and that is not always the case. i think because there was no grand jury and because she made this charging decision, the defense will know what type of case angela corey has.
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i think we will see a hearing on stand your ground. it is an affirmative defense. we heard angela corey say they are prepared to defend against that defense. sometimes they win, sometimes they lose. they appeal that hearing to a judge and sometimes they win there and sometimes they lose. so i really think that we are going to see that kind of hearing. and then we're going to find out what the prosecution has in terms of whether or not this was justifiable homicide. was he justified in shooting trayvon martin? so we're going to learn a lot of the facts of this case at that hearing. >> what was very surprising to me, shocking in watching o'mara's press conference is how timid he was in the defense of george zimmerman. >> yeah, but he just got the case. >> just got the case? he went into prison and met with his client. if his client said to him i was being attacked and i acted in self defense. >> you think he should say that right away? >> well, do you believe in your client? or do you say like he just said, well, she's a great prosecutor. >> maybe he's smart enough not
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to try this in front of all of us. >> can george zimmerman get a fair trial in sanford, florida, with the fever around this? >> absolutely. >> i think he can. it's going to be a tough jury selection process, but you'll find -- actually it's not 12 jurors down from. >> six jurors. >> i'm sure we'll find you back here again. now let's check in with anderson cooper with a look at what's ahead on 360. >> hey, tom, more on the breaking news ahead, george zimmerman obviously being charged with second-degree murder in the shooting of trayvon martin. we'll have a panel of star lawyers joining me to go overall the details. we'll talk to each of them about how they would defend or prosecute the case. we'll also speak with a close friend of george zimmerman who still thinks zimmerman did the right thing that night. the lawyer for trayvon martin's family joining me as well. keeping them honest, covering all the sides. it's effectively day two in the general election. both sides laying out their plans to win over women voters. we're checking the facts. and tonight's ridiculist. you'll see why i'm putting myself on the list again. it's all at the top of the hour,
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tom. >> "anderson cooper 360" coming up shortly. north korea's launch window is now open. just what is this rocket and how concerned should we be here in america? stay tuned. it's very important to understand how math and science kind of makes the world work. in high school, i had a physics teacher by the name of mr. davies. he made physics more than theoretical, he made it real for me. we built a guitar, we did things with electronics and mother boards. that's where the interest in engineering came from.
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the other big breaking news story we're following tonight, this, the window for a rocket launch from north korea is officially open and at this very hour the best spies, rocket scientists and weapons analysts
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around the planet have all eyes on that secretive nation waiting for a rocket to blast into space. their question, are the north koreans getting closer to the ability to launch nuclear weapons at targets around the world, including the united states, or do they just want to know if it's going to rain tomorrow? north koreans say this is all about putting a weather satellite into orbit. many intelligence analysts just don't believe it. japan is taking no chances. right now it has patriot missiles deployed in tokyo as a protective measure in case the rocket comes close to their country. joining me is victor cha, a nuclear weapons expert and former director of asian affairs at the national security council under president bush. also author of the new book "the impossible state, north korea, past and future." thanks so much for being here. let's start off, tell me what we know about this rocket as it sits on the ground right now, a lot or a little? >> we know a fair amount about it. its payload is a satellite, but
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the launch vehicle for it is the technology for a ballistic missile. so they may be trying to put a satellite into orbit, but the real purpose of this is the military application, which is to develop ballistic missiles that can reach as far as the united states. >> let's talk about a few of the stats here. we know the parts of this as they developed some of their earlier missiles came in part from china, some from russia, some technology from various countries that they have assembled in different base. we have an idea that this is taller, a little more than 100 feet tall, about 176,000 pounds. and the payload could be from 200 to 1400 pounds, maybe more. these are estimates. that's a pretty sizeable rocket with a pretty good heft to it? >> yeah, i think so. the satellite could be anywhere from 200 pounds to something larger. i think it's important to remember that a 200-pound satellite, and it's a pretty small satellite, is roughly the equivalent of a one-kiloton
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nuclear warhead. >> one of the questions also has to do about the administration. i'll show it blasting off and we'll talk about this. the idea is it's going to fly south, sort of threading the needle between south korea, japan, the philippines and these two drop zones are where the first stage and second stage will be dropping off in that time if they can do it right. even though that's the size of a small nuclear warhead, getting their nuclear technology miniaturized enough to produce that kind of warhead and a rocket that will actually perform this way, that's kind of tricky, isn't it? >> i think it's tricky, but at the same time they have been working on this for quite some time. this is their third test in terms of the launch vehicle. and, you know, there are press reports now that they are digging in the same area where they conducted the first two nuclear tests. so i think what we thought before was a long-term threat in terms of their mating a nuclear warhead with an icbm, i think
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it's becoming much more of a proximate threat for the united states and its allies. >> let's fly a little longer in its flight and see what we will see. some of the things i'm told we will be watching for and people will be looking at, the color of the flames coming out as this thing takes off. my understanding, if i'm not mistaken, is this helps us know what kind of fuel is beg your pardon -- burning and also how well it's burning, is that correct? >> yes, that's correct. we know this is a liquid fueled rocket. they're finished with the fueling which means they don't want it to sit on the launch pad very long but i think you're absolutely right, we are going to try to get as much information as we can, as the united states and its allies track this missile just as the north koreans are doing the same thing. >> we'll look at the trajectory and telemetry. there will also be amateurs in places like australia and of course tremendous assets arrayed around the area to watch this
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and look at the overall performance. what do we learn from looking at things like the trajectory of this flight? what does that tell us? >> the mang thing for policy makers it will tell us is this whole question of whether they can successfully put this satellite into orbit. if they can successfully do this, then that does connote ballistic missile capability that would have immediate application. >> one of the key issues i want to raise is this notion of what happens in the end. this thing will be traveling about 17,000 miles an hour in the third stage, orbiting about 300 miles up when it tries to deploy this satellite. this is the part, if i'm not mistaken, that the north koreans really have not shown a proficiency for yet and yet this is also one of the key parts they're going to talk about weapons, isn't it? >> that is. that is one of the key parts. the other key part is the re-entry heat shield. they have been able to do this with the shorter range missiles, but we do not know yet whether they're capable of doing that with a longer range,
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intercontinental ballistic missile. >> you mentioned the notion of the satellite coming off here. one of the reports that i read earlier today is based on size and maybe even on performance, that this satellite may not be a whole lot better than telstar which we launched in 1962. when i look at that, i find myself saying would you spend all that money and risk all this international condemnation and everything else to launch a weather satellite that is simply not a big deal? what do you think? >> i mean that's a very good point. i think that's an excellent point. this is really 1960s technology. the other thing we have to remember is they want to launch a satellite, but the north koreans really do not have a space program to support it. they're not a member of the international peaceful use of space regime. so it's a real problem. >> we'll have to see how it goes. thanks for joining us with your expertise tonight. we'll keep an eye out for the launch which as we said could come any time. we'll have it right here on cnn when it happens, and we'll be right back. "enough." we're lifelock, and we believe you have the right to live free
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we just have time to recap our breaking news tonight. vaul near neighborhood watchman george zimmerman has been arrested and charged with second-degree murder for the shooting death of 17-year-old trayvon martin. he has a new cnal defense attorney, mark o'mara. trayvon martin's family said they wanted an arrest, nothing more, nothing less and they got it. george zimmerman is being held without bond tonight but is expected in court tomorrow and of course cnn will be there. that's it


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