Monday, April 28, 2014

The Hard Truth From Orlando

You know, I'm somewhat torn about the murder trial going on in Minnesota of the 65-year-old who is accused of first-degree murder in the shooting deaths of a pair of teenagers who broke into his home. The prosecution says the man lay in wait for the pair after they'd broken into his house (and others) several times to steal to support their drug habits. The prosecution alleges that because he lay in wait and because he made sure to kill them both with a final shot to the head, he exceeded the right of protecting one's home and elevated it to what amounts to an execution.
Do I think the pair of idiots had it coming? I think if you break into someone's house, you're begging to get hurt. Doing it more than once, especially the same house, you're increasing your odds dramatically of getting caught or worse. In this case, it proved to be worse.
Breaking into someone's house to steal, vandalize, or just for a kick is not "a mistake." It's a choice of criminality. I found it interesting that the grandfather of the male victim, Brady, referred to his grandson's criminal acts as "a mistake." It kind of shows where grandpa's mentality is -- and why his grandson wouldn't think breaking into houses with his girlfriend (or whatever she was) to support a drug habit was a big deal.
It's probably the arrogance of the homeowner that has prosecutors and other law enforcement seeking criminal penalties for deliberately killing this pair of dirtbags. There would be no question of a justifiable shooting if not for the final and very considered shot to the cranium of both burglars. And it's that arrogance, more than the final shots, that will convict him.
I like to ask myself, if I were in his shoes, having been burglarized more than once by the same knuckleheads, would I have been waiting with a gun in the basement? For sure. I'd probably have made it easy for them to get in, too. And I would've shot them like the crazy little animals they were. I would not have made that final kill shot to the head if I knew I'd already gotten in a couple of good injuries. Frankly, if I wanted them dead at that point, I'd just go hide in a corner until they stopped breathing and pretend I thought I heard a third and maybe a fourth person moving around and was afraid to call or come out.
Mind you, that would also be an act of homicide, but kind of tough to prosecute.
On the other hand, dead men tell no tales. When you have a living victim, it turns into a "he said/she said" and probable civil cases that will wreck you as surely as the initial criminal act. When you are the sole survivor, you can spin that story however you like within the forensic evidence. Your best option if you're going to use lethal force is to make sure that it's lethally done so that yours is the only voice heard. The homeowner did that; he just didn't do it smart.
Maybe it doesn’t say much about me as a human being, but my sympathy for those "kids" is zero, because whatever happens with the shooter, you won't see those teenage deadbeats committing crimes anymore -- and the community will probably never recognize what a relief it is that they're gone.
   Florida Cracker 


Life with no parole. But there will be an appeal in part because:  "Judge Douglas Anderson excluded evidence about the teens' histories from the trial, including court documents that showed Brady had broken into Smith's house and garage before. Brady and Kifer were also linked to another burglary; stolen prescription drugs were found in the car they were driving." Innocents?

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