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Old June 12, 2012, 09:04 AM   #76
tws92E05
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Having been in law enforcement for over 20 years in the area where this occurred I have been following this case very closely. I have been and always will be a huge supporter of concealed carry here but this guy hurts the cause for everyone.

One of the issues that the defense will have to prove will be was Rodriguez' actions reasonable. He threw out all the scripted phrases of standing his ground and he was in fear of his life. BUT if you are in fear of your life would a reasonable person continue to stand their ground and film for several more minutes leading up to the shooting. A reasonable person will most likely retreat to a safe distance even though they are not obligated to do so. By standing your ground in a situation in which you are claiming to be in fear of your life doesn't hold water here. When you are in fear of your life it is one of two choices no more no less. Fight or Flight. He did neither for 3 or 4 minutes. Instead of one of those choices he phoned the police again and continued to film.

The defense says Rodriguez will take the stand in this case which I highly doubt but if he does I think like the video it will hurt his case of self defense. A first year law student will be able to blow gapping holes in his self defense strategy.
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Old June 12, 2012, 09:15 AM   #77
Bartholomew Roberts
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Except the way the Texas law is worded, the jury is not allowed to consider whether he could have retreated in determining whether his actions were reasonable IF he qualified for the SYG protection.

The jury must find that he was in a place he had a legal right to be (i.e. not on Danaher's property) and that he did not provoke the confrontation. If Rodriguez cannot show those two elements to the jury, then the jury can consider whether or not a reasonable person would have retreated in that circumstance - and if the jury gets that far, I am pretty sure Rodriguez is going to prison.

Although I suppose that based on the testimony the jury could conclude that Rodriguez went there looking for an excuse to use his gun and could find his fear unreasonable without considering the retreat issue, though I think that would be a tough needle to thread.

More testimony from yesterday reported by the Chronicle: http://www.chron.com/news/houston-te...of-3626044.php

Rodriguez's neighbor Pete Fornols testified that the day prior to the shooting, Rodriguez had used some foul language to describe Mr. Danaher, so apparently there is some pre-existing anger there, at least on his side. Fornols also testified that Rodriguez called him 13 times that night trying to get him to help complain about the music.

Last edited by Bartholomew Roberts; June 12, 2012 at 10:35 AM.
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Old June 12, 2012, 09:37 AM   #78
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Like all senarios, there will be kooks testing themselves and abusing perfectly good laws written for honorable reasons.

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Old June 12, 2012, 03:32 PM   #79
Bartholomew Roberts
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Both Sides Rest Their Case

The prosecution finished its case today with the testimony of the widow of Kelly Danaher, which apparently had the jurors crying.

http://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/s...trial-16550563

The defense made a motion to dismiss the case claiming they had clearly shown all the elements of self-defense. The judge denied the motion and the defense decided not to call ANY witnesses.

It seems to me that Mr. Rodriguez is looking at a very high probability of prison as a result of his choices that night.
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Old June 12, 2012, 03:48 PM   #80
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Quote:
One neighbor, Terri Hackathorn, told jurors Tuesday that Rodriguez bragged about his guns and told her one could avoid prosecution in a shooting by telling authorities you were in fear of your life and were standing your ground and defending yourself.
-- That's in one of the stories. Sorry I lost the link. We were discussing if they would hear that.

Interesting side note, from the reports that his CHL instructor said things like this in class (in a link somewhere) - would the instructor be liable in civil court? Could the shooter (from the clink) sue the instructor?

Mods - sorry if this is diversion. Not my forum.
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Old June 12, 2012, 04:27 PM   #81
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I do not believe the CHL instructor would be in any danger of being found of wrongdoing
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Old June 12, 2012, 04:39 PM   #82
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I think most instructors use a pretty standard liability-damage waiver.

I do, and everyone I know who teaches does. Won't stop someone from suing, of course, but it will stop them from winning.

Morally, we're no more liable than the gun manufacturer.
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Old June 12, 2012, 07:52 PM   #83
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bartholomew Roberts
...The defense made a motion to dismiss the case claiming they had clearly shown all the elements of self-defense. The judge denied the motion and the defense decided not to call ANY witnesses...
It'll be interesting to see if the jury gets self defense instructions.
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Old June 12, 2012, 08:26 PM   #84
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The whole case is interesting, and I think the entire world must be following it. That link to the Houston Chronicle article took forever to load.

My read at this stage is that his only chance will be to appeal based on ineffectual representation during the trial. I imagine a motion to dismiss is probably standard operating procedure, but to then rest without calling any witnesses when the motion is denied simply astonishes me. If the attorney for the defense genuinely believes that video is going to help his client, then I know a defense attorney who got sold some bad dope.
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Old June 12, 2012, 08:53 PM   #85
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aguila Blanca
...but to then rest without calling any witnesses when the motion is denied simply astonishes me. If the attorney for the defense genuinely believes that video is going to help his client, then I know a defense attorney who got sold some bad dope.
Unless any witnesses he might be able to call would be worse.
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Old June 13, 2012, 07:43 AM   #86
Bartholomew Roberts
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank Ettin
It'll be interesting to see if the jury gets self defense instructions.
I am thinking they will get to see it, though I am interested in how it will be worded and whether he will get SYG instructions. Apparently there was enough controversy over the instructions that they delayed the closing arguments until today in order to work them out. So the jury should start deliberating today as well.

A quick highlight of some of the testimony so far:

1. The man who is laughing who rushed Rodriguez is Johnson, a Houston firefighter. He had a blood alcohol level of 0.27 when he was tested. He was injured severely enough that they put him into an induced coma, and the combination of alcohol and coma apparently came with a fair amount of memory loss of the incident.

For me, it highlights the difficulty of trying to control a crowd of drunk males, regardless of whether they are friendly to you or hostile.

2. We heard from many of Rodriguez's neighbors. All of them testified for the prosecution, including ones Rodriguez tried to get to help him with his complaint.

3. Ken Ellis, one neighbor, testfied there were four shots fired total. Two close together and then two separate shots a little later. He also testified that this was the first time there was a party at this place in three years, so I am not sure where the preexisting hostility that Rodriguez had for Danaher mentioned in other neighbor's testimony came from.
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Old June 13, 2012, 09:31 AM   #87
Glenn E. Meyer
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In another trial, a noticeable delay between shots was used by the prosecution to claim this indicated a premediated kill shot. Chris Cox reported on the case in the American Rifleman.

Wonder if this was mentioned?
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Old June 13, 2012, 03:00 PM   #88
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Interesting point, Glenn, but I seriously doubt the prosecution could prove that the delayed shot (if indeed there was one) is the shot that killed the victim.

My prediction: he won't get off for justifiable homicide. If I were a juror, I'd probably vote for manslaughter, given the fact that both sides appear to be at fault.
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Old June 13, 2012, 05:25 PM   #89
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my opinion

this guy is guilty of excessive force not murder...he had chance to retreat but,stayed... when given a clear order to stop and stay put ,you might want to do as you are told to prevent being shot,but on the other hand dealing with stupid drunks and numb brain cells guess what...drunk always lose...if I'm on a jury and the real facts and all the facts are presented ,I would vote not guilty....now that being said the dispatcher should have a car respond code 3 when she heard the word gun......and the dispatcher knew the disturbance call had elevated from loud music to a physical confrontation ....
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Old June 13, 2012, 05:41 PM   #90
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The jury should be returning a verdict soon.
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Old June 13, 2012, 06:38 PM   #91
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its people like this that mis-use our laws that make it hard for us to defend ourselves. a gun is a tool to be used to protect yourself or others. not as an intimidation factor to get some partyers to turn down their music.

imo (from what i saw and heard) thats murder. if he was gonna be so in fear of his life he shouldnt of gone in the first place. and the fact that he took a gun with him shows me he was on an ego check and was wanting to justify killing someone.
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Old June 13, 2012, 06:42 PM   #92
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nighthawk681
this guy is guilty of excessive force not murder...
He's guilty of either murder or manslaughter because someone died by reason of his acts. That is, of course, unless the jury exonerates him finding his use of force to have been justified or finds the shooting to have been an excusable accident. The jury finding his actions to have been justified seems unlikely, and an excusable accident finding seems extremely unlikely.

In any case, we'll probably know fairly soon.
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Last edited by Frank Ettin; June 13, 2012 at 07:07 PM. Reason: clean up grammar
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Old June 13, 2012, 06:52 PM   #93
Bartholomew Roberts
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The jury has been deliberating since around 1pm with a break at 4pm. Still no word. KHOU has a reporter live-tweeting the trial.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nighthawk681
..if I'm on a jury and the real facts and all the facts are presented ,I would vote not guilty....
So what are the REAL facts that would lead you to that not guilty vote?
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Old June 13, 2012, 06:58 PM   #94
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Looks like it's decided...

http://www.khou.com/home/Prosecutor-...158947685.html

I only skimmed, but I didn't see what the decided charge was.
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Old June 13, 2012, 07:04 PM   #95
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Originally Posted by myshoulderissore
...I only skimmed, but I didn't see what the decided charge was.
First paragraph of the story (emphasis added):
Quote:
HOUSTON—A jury has found a retired Baytown firefighter guilty of murder in the killing of his neighbor in a dispute over loud music....
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Old June 13, 2012, 07:19 PM   #96
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Oh, snap... My skimming skills leave a bit to be desired, I see...
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Old June 13, 2012, 07:29 PM   #97
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I'm relieved to hear the verdict.
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Old June 13, 2012, 07:38 PM   #98
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The jury forgot to include the charge of gross stupidity

His tone doesn't sound anything like the few people I've heard first hand who were truly in fear of their life.

His video didn't do him any favors IMHO.

The jury did their job.
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Old June 13, 2012, 08:52 PM   #99
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good call.HE WAY outstepped his bounds.He is a flat out killer.Shooting someone over loud music?Im glad he's going to prison.
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Old June 13, 2012, 09:48 PM   #100
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Gang,

Just spend today reading about this whole thing.

The Idiot bragged about ways to get around the SYG law and kill someone, he brought a gun to ANOTHER persons house to argue with them, displayed the gun, and he shot the guy after 'someone lunged at him'.

So yea, I'd convict him of murder (as they did.) And personally I say it was an easy case. I would not loose a minute sleep convicting this guy.

The SYG law was designed for those minding their own business and someone comes up and assaults them. It was NOT to go around provoking fights and then 'standing your ground'.

Well he paid the price for his arrogance and blood lust.

Happy Huntsville he goes.

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