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Twitter and the mad hysteria

Well I knew it would happen when the verdict came through.

Of course nobody took into consideration why they reached that verdict and who is really to blame. You see in life sometimes we have to make awful decisions, decisions about people we love, and those decisions are made after careful and thorough thought.

One of those decisions is whether to take another persons life, and I don’t mean by criminal act, I mean by having to decide whether to turn off a life-support machine or whether to not allow resuscitation, or in the case of Casey Anthony whether to send a person to their death.

The jury were spoken about in such horrid terms on twitter.  And even a so-called criminal Profiler vented her anger at the verdict without paying attention to the laws she was taught in her Criminal Justice degree.

The laws of the land that state the onus is on the prosecution to prove the case that someone has committed a crime.  The Prosecution have to show the jury, how  it was committed, the evidence to prove that person is involved, when it was committed and much more before a jury can deliberate on a verdict.

Of course some of the mass hysteria was led by Pat Brown herself with tweets like this.

and

not forgetting this one

and this

What Pat Brown refuses to accept, is the Prosecution set the benchmark too high.  They were asking the jury to convict that person which would have resulted in them being sentenced to death.

On reading an excellent analysis of the trial in the NY Daily News, I think that article definitely sums up why Casey Anthony was found NOT GUILTY.

The headline itself speaks the truth – Casey Anthony trial was a case of overzealous prosecution: Death penalty was a bar too high.

The article states the following:

How could the jury possibly find Anthony not guilty of murdering her daughter, Caylee? Wasn’t Anthony a sociopathic party girl who didn’t want to be a young unwed mother, so she killed her own daughter in cold blood?

That is certainly the image of her portrayed by the prosecutor and the news media during the course of the highly publicized trial. But while the public and the media generally blame Anthony for Caylee’s murder, the jury was unconvinced by the prosecutor’s case against her – and there are several understandable reasons why.

It must be remembered that the burden of proof on the prosecution of any trial is guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. That is a very high hurdle to clear in a criminal case, especially one involving the grave allegation of murder.

Haven’t I said that above, the Prosecution have to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt?  And the next paragraph is so very true, the Prosecution took a gamble and raised the benchmark.  The benchmark set by the Prosecution was none other than the Death Penalty if found guilty. The article continues:

Against Anthony, the prosecutor employed an extremely high-risk strategy by charging her with first-degree murder and, in addition, asking for capital punishment. This strategy meant that all of the jurors had to be willing and prepared to apply the death sentence if, in the end, they believed that Anthony was guilty of the premeditated murder of her daughter. But before that, they had to be convinced of her guilt in order to do so, and that strenuous burden of proof weighed heavily on the state throughout the trial.

The next paragraph speaks about the Death Penalty, it says:

Indeed, capital punishment is a very difficult decision for a jury to reach in a first-degree murder trial, even when there is direct forensic evidence of the crime – such as, for example, the murder weapon with the defendant’s fingerprints on it.

And with regards to the evidence in the Anthony case the article continues by saying:

But in this trial, however, the state had only a “circumstantial” case against Anthony, meaning that none of the evidence linked Anthony directly to Caylee’s murder. Although it is not impossible (Scott Peterson, convicted in 2004 of killing Laci Peterson, being a notable exception), juries rarely convict or invoke the death penalty in first-degree murder trials when all of the evidence is circumstantial.

In just about every case, jurors like to see the “smoking gun.” But in this case, the most convincing evidence was the “smell of death” and presence of Caylee’s hair in the trunk of Anthony’s car that showed postmortem growth (i.e., occurring after death). Although powerful, it was still circumstantial evidence.

I can see why they reached that decision, I think if I was sitting on that jury I would have reached the same conclusion.  However on saying that, if the Prosecution had not sent the benchmark so high and gave me an alternative charge then perhaps my decision would not have been the same.

The jury were asked to sentence a person to Death and if they had got it so wrong and it was later proven that, even though Casey Anthony was a bad mother, someone else was responsible or it was a tragic accident and they failed notify the authorities and the sentence did not warrant the Death Penalty it would have been too late to bring Casey Anthony back if she had already been executed.

To take another person’s life is something none of us want to do, but to make a decision that results in someone losing their life and you then learn that your decision was wrong, is something that none of us want to do.  That is why we err on the side of caution at times.  And that is what this jury did.

It wasn’t the jury’s fault they returned that verdict it was the Prosecutions fault for setting the benchmark so high that they had no alternative but to go with “Not Guilty” as the case had not been proven beyond a shadow of doubt.

I sit firmly on the fence with regards to the Death Penalty.  If it can be proven beyond a shadow of doubt and there is strong forensic evidence to prove that person is guilty, then I do wonder at times whether it would be best to have a Death Penalty rather than burden the taxpayer’s  by using their taxes to keep this person in prison for life.

However on saying that, what if by chance the Prosecution did get it wrong? It is too late to do the right thing, nobody can bring back the dead. And a family would have lost a loved one who was in fact innocent, should new evidence emerge to prove that they never did commit such a heinous crime.

So on the death penalty sorry I can’t decide one way or another.  There is good and bad for both sides of the argument.

So the truth is the jury were not to blame it was the prosecution for setting the benchmark way to high for the evidence they were going to produce in Court.

As much as this case is unconnected to the disappearance of Madeleine McCann, I have decided to highlight the behaviour of Criminal Profiler Pat Brown simply because she is now attaching herself to this case and trying to influence people into thinking the McCanns are as guilty as sin.

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One comment on “Twitter and the mad hysteria

  1. […] The jury in that case did NOT and could NOT be swayed into finding a guilty verdict as Juror Number 3 explained in this post (Twitter and the Mad Hysteria). […]

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