In the last installment, I said that it was the coach who sent the prosecution team in to try to win a game that never should have been played. The police had determined they didn’t have probable cause. The highly respected state’s attorney who had responsibility for the case, Norman Wolfinger, apparently agreed. When the plaintiff-orchestrated cause celebre created public outcry, Wolfinger scheduled the matter for the grand jury.  But Florida Governor Rick Scott turned it over to Angela Corey, the state’s attorney for the Jacksonville area, to act as special prosecutor.

Some have blamed Scott for this. I can’t, at least not at this time. “The perception is the reality,” it’s said, and when the people who elected them cry out for a deeper investigation, those in charge have a duty to act. This is, in part, what the grand jury is for. While I think it should have been left in Wolfinger’s capable hands, I can understand Scott’s decision. His choice of Ms. Corey, however, is open to question in hindsight.

I gave Ms. Corey the benefit of the doubt as I watched this case unfold. I had hoped she would simply present the evidence to the grand jury. When she didn’t, instead indicting on her own, it was inescapably obvious why: she had to have known that the grand jury would refuse to indict, once they had seen the evidence.

The job of the defense is to be a zealous advocate for the defendant. The prosecutor’s role is different. She is supposed to be the minister of justice, every bit as responsible for exonerating the innocent as for aggressively prosecuting the guilty. It is an egregious breach of prosecutorial ethics to, for example, prosecute for Murder a man who the evidence shows is telling the truth about acting in self-defense. And of course, there is the very serious breach of both rules and ethics encompassed in withholding evidence from the defense, a matter which in this case is still hanging in the air.

The right is unhappy with the special prosecutor. National Review had this to say about Ms. Corey:  The left apparently isn’t too thrilled with her either, as seen in the Daily Beast, here: .  Her fellow attorneys seem, for the most part, to be aghast at how she has handled the Zimmerman case, as seen here in law professor Jonathan Turley’s blog: .

The most damning moment for Ms. Corey in this case was her commentary to the press after the acquittal. A prosecutor should respect the system, and the jury’s verdict.  The man she assigned to spearhead the state’s case, Bernie de la Rionda, obviously understood that.  One journalist asked both of them to describe the defendant and the deceased in a single word.

De la Rionda chose the words “lucky” for defendant George Zimmerman, and “victim” for the deceased Trayvon Martin. He knew how to straddle the line.  Despite Zimmerman’s ordeal, a lot of people think anyone who is facing life in prison and gets set free is “lucky.” And “victim” is the term that is generally and automatically used for someone who is killed.

But Corey described the young man who was shown by the evidence as the one who started the fatal battle as “prey,” and the man the jury had just found Not Guilty of Murder as “murderer.”

The difference is profound. It doesn’t just show her to be a bad loser, it shows her to be utterly contemptuous of the jury, and the system she is sworn to serve.  Her answer was simply egregious.

There are those who believe that Ms. Corey took the case and tried to destroy Zimmerman’s life because, in the cases mentioned in the links above, she had lost voter support in the African-American community and thought that prosecuting Zimmerman would be a good political move. If one accepts that, it begs the question, “How did that work for ya, Ms. Corey?”

What some call “the next Trayvon Martin case” – a white guy who wound up shooting a black teen in Jacksonville after an argument that began with the latter and his friends playing loud music in an adjacent vehicle – falls into Ms. Corey’s jurisdiction.  The Florida Civil Rights Association  has called for the case to be taken out of Angela Corey’s hands, because they think after the Zimmerman case, she doesn’t have enough credibility to prosecute this one.


  1. I read that she actually called Harvard Law School to complain about Professor Dershowitz saying she was an idiot who should be disbarred. The school would not take her call and referred her to the information office. The story goes that she threatened to sue for defamation. Not a case she would have won either. The fired IT director’s lawsuit will reveal much, including her total incompetence and evil spirit. See

  2. First GZ was victimized by TM. Then GZ was victimized by the judicial system, the media and the race baiters. His life is pretty much ruined right now. But it may get worse, he may get victimized by an avenger of TM. GZ preserved his life, but his quality of life has been eroded. I hate it when the good guys lose.

  3. Sorry, Mas, but I have to disagree on Gov. Scott’s culpability on this. You write that he has to listen to the outcry from the people who elected him. I’m calling BS on that as I doubt there was any of that crowd marking a ballot for Rick Scott, either in the last election or any future election. This was political pandering on its face in order appease a group that likely would have turned to the streets without such appeasement. He increased his culpability by naming a known loose cannon to the job of special prosecutor. He had the choice of letting the grand jury system work and get political cover from that.

    He chose…poorly. He likely won’t see another successful run for FL political office.

  4. Besides ‘travesty’ and ‘kangaroo court’, the term that comes to mind about this case is ‘witch hunt’… but until then my understanding was that the witch ain’t the one supposed to do the hunting!

  5. Corey chose to bypass the grand jury, as did Janet Reno when prosecuting a police officer for a 1989 shooting in Miami. And, obviously, for the same reason: the grand jury might recognize a justifiable homicide when it saw one. Re: the Jacksonville case, the linked article says that the defendant has been charged with first degree murder. But it sounds as if the incident was an argument that escalated into a shooting. If so, wouldn’t manslaughter (or, at most, second degree murder) be a more appropriate charge? Some commentators have said that Zimmerman was over-charged, and now Corey is already doing the same thing in another case. That indicates a flat learning curve.

  6. Satan’s Angel should be disbarred and made to pay all Mr Zimmermans expenses including protective services, and identity change if needed.

  7. What some call “the next Trayvon Martin case”

    I read some news stories on the Dunn/Davis case, which from my quick perusing of news, is most certainly NOT like the Martin case. I find it amazing how many media outlets STILL portray the Zimmerman case incorrectly as a man gunning down an unarmed teen unprovoked. I especially find it reckless that they all say “well, if only there was a witness to the Trayvon Martin fight, the outcome would be different.”

    I tend to believe at this point that these reporters willfully twist their stories, they cannot be this ignorant.

    Mas, what is your opinion of the Dunn/Davis case, if you have one?

  8. Thanks for this article (again). I had been waiting for this one. Unril this, I did not know anything about Corey, and was not aware of her post-trial remarks. I believe that in some states she might be subject to sanction by the Bar, if not the court. Sad that a person who seems to demonstrate such a lack of substance and weakness of character at a critical time can be allowed to maintain a position of authority for any length of time … Not surprising in this day and age, but sad.

  9. Steven S, I have no opinion yet on the Dunn>Davis shooting; not enough information released yet.

    Eddie, 10mm always had great self-protection potential with the right ammo (relatively light and fast), but most of the full power ammo was overpenetrative, and the FBI load was no more effective than 180 grain .40 S&W.

  10. Bart, while your point regarding the governor’s culpability may (or may not) have been part of the mix, you seem to imply that he should respond only to those citizens who may have voted for him. Once he is elected, however, a governor — ideally — owes responsiveness to all citizens of the state, not just the ones who put him in office. Many politicians don’t seem to recall this principal, but that is the theory, anyway.

  11. Corey needs to be dis-barred, and criminally tried for with holding evidence, and civily tried for slander of Mr Z…she should pay a very step price for her misuse of OUR justice system………

  12. I think I heard Bernie de la Rionda call Zimmerman a coward for not taking the stand. For that remark he should be disbarred. However I think the law suits are far from over in this mess. As for Gov Scott, I drop this mess on Scott for his interference . Forget voter cry out, they didn’t vote for Scott and they won’t.

    If holder tried to intimidate Scott, Holder should have been told stick it in your ear. This is Florida business.

    I would like to see Dershowitz lead the charge against the prosecution and the news networks. Yes it would be my tax dollars he would collect for Zimmerman. However I would gladly sacrifice tax dollars in payment for good and just payment of damages and would enjoy seeing the prosecution disbarred and serve some time.

    As CCL holder this has shown me that my idea of avoiding places of problems as much as possible is a good one. However there are sometimes trouble will find you.

  13. When Corey choose to bypass the grandjury her intentions was obvious to hang Zimmerman not zeek justice. Her reputation is also questionable at best.

  14. Beg to differ with you Mas (a first for me). I DO hold Gov. Rick Scott largely responsible for the fraudulent prosecution of Zimmerman. The case was already scheduled for review by a grand jury, only weeks after Corey jumped the gun (no pun intended) and indicted Zimmerman directly. The state caved in to mob rule and threats of riots and should have instead urged the public to let it play out via the grand jury process, shortly thereafter.

  15. Eddie,
    I saw your question under the last post and I was able to empathise with your question. I am far from having Mas Ayoobs understanding of ; what caliber, what round, what load, but Mas did help me choose my preffered self defense round. If you go to the backwoods home and look at his old articles ( a treasuretrove of great information, worth much than you will pay for the read thanks to the good folks at Backwoods Home) you will find an article, I think that it might be called ” Choose your ammiunition , police style” . I may have been wrong on the title, I hope someone corrects me if I am wrong. It is a classic that every new hand gunner and maybe some old hand gunners should read. That article lead me to my preferred caliber and gave great information .
    I am thankful that Mas has shared his thoughts, insights and perspectives on what works and why it works without giving a blanket answer for all situations.I spent a month of saturday afternoons reading what Backwoods Home put on the web and I am better off for it. I hope the best for you in your choices and I hope tbat you never have to use the choice that you make.
    Now Back to the conversation.sorry for the rabbit trail .

  16. I have to agree with Bart. At the least, Gov. Scott showed himself to be an unprincipled coward (dare I say “whore”?), not a honorable statesman.

  17. Nobody should be holding their breath waiting for any actions being taken against those responsible for this travesty of justice. The same forces that pushed this prosecution will keep anyone who could carry forward any corrective actions trembling in fear of similar persecution. Common sense has long been cowering to a well orchestrated groundswell of political correctness, while good men have stood by waiting for someone else to stand up against the tide. We have no one to blame except ourselves. We have voted our pocketbooks and not our principles for decades and now we reap the results that should have been easily seen coming. I expect it to get much worse before it gets better.

  18. I live in Tallahasse, FL (the state capitol).

    Angela Corey wants to be Governor. She needs to be Attorney general first.

    This case was all about giving her a platform with the libtards and progtards for her campaign.


  19. PS; In history men have come to realizations in their lives that led to well known statements. “as for me and my house I will serve the Lord”, “give me liberty or give me death”, our generation should come to the realization ” I have met the enemy and it is me”. I apologize, but our anger should be followed by action at the ballot box and on the public square. We have been lulled into captivity, enjoying the “free” stuff while the guards have built a cage around us. The door is about to be closed, but we are afraid to escape because we have forgot what it is like to be free.

  20. The prosecution obviously came to the conclusion that Zimmerman had been truthful about what happened between the time he left his truck and the beginning of the conflict. Had they been able to come up with a plausible alternative, they would have proposed it to the jury. Their “we speculate, you decide” strategy, and appeal to emotion, were a transparent attempt to leverage the prejudicial impact of hostile media coverage. And how about the claim that Zimmerman was struck but once, we know not how (ran into a tree, maybe?), then slipped and bumped his head on the sidewalk? They were obviously out for the “kill,” and sawed the heads off truth and justice with a rusty blade.

    As I understand that discovery dispute, Kruidbos says he sent a letter describing certain cell phone texts and images, and his lawyer subsequently determined that the letter had not been made available to the defense, resulting in the subpoena to Kruidbos. Now, I wonder if Kruidbos, in discovery, is going to be able to access all relevant communications between Corey and other parties?

  21. From what we know so far Michael Dunn/Jordan Davis is looking a lot more like Rodney Peairs/Yoshihiri Hattori than Zimmerman/Martin.

  22. George Zimmerman was offered up to a mob as a sacrifice, justice only won out by the grace of God and the support of American Patriots.
    The “low information” voters still don’t know what it all should mean to them, but they should be angry, and afraid!

  23. Angela Corey is so diabolical that when HillBilly becomes POTUS in January of 2017, she will likely make her Attorney General in the spirit of their previous choice of the equally despicable Janet Reno for that office.

  24. Sarah, that would be a good start, but we both know that will never happen. Career politicians, sadly, spend a good portion of their lives seeking /aspiring to progressively higher office, but this seems to be a career path in which the cream doesn’t rise to the top. We end up with people who are egotists, self serving, bought and paid for puppets with no ties to the people they represent. A good start would be a constitutional amendment requiring all campaign funds come from within the geographic area they will represent. Alas, these remedies will never come about as our congress refuses to exercise the checks and balances to control the excesses of the other branches. Why? because they all benefit from the status quo.

  25. Mas, on a somewhat related note, I’d really like to see a column on the ‘Insurance for Concealed Carry’ type businesses that have become increasingly popular (or at least more aggressive in their advertising) since the Zimmerman trial.

    I remember the 2nd Amendment Foundation had something like this at one point, but I get emails every other day from USCCA, Second Call, and several other (apparently new) companies that are seeking my ‘membership’. In exchange for a monthly subscription, they promise me all sorts of benefits for lawyers, moral support, advice, and so forth. On the one hand, having some insurance (of some type) seems like a good idea for someone who carries concealed, I can’t shake the feeling that anyone who advertises this aggressively is being dishonest (at best).

  26. Mas, I’ve only just recently discovered your work and this blog, and I’m terribly grateful for a reasonable look at this case in particular and self-defense in general. Do you, or anyone you know of, keep tabs on cases in which a defendant appeared to have been convicted wrongly? Especially in relation to whether the state in question was a duty to retreat state (esp no castle doctrine) or SYG state. I see a lot of arguments on various forums about duty to retreat laws being sufficient and besides what I know about SYG provisions being protective in a financial sense (more likely to save a defendant the costs of a trial and extensive legal counsel), are there specific cases in stricter states where a defendant was deemed to have used excessive force or similar?

    I did some investigating into self-defense laws in Sweden where I’m from (assuming our strict gun laws reflect on self-defense laws) and came across a site with court case examples. The statute itself seems at first glance rather ‘permissive’ and reasonable from a self-defense standpoint, but the cases show a much different reality, especially when the force used was a weapon like a firearm or knife. In one case, the friend of a goldsmith was charged with aggravated assault and having ’caused severe bodily harm’ (US equivalent?) when he managed to overcome a robber carrying a firearm, eventually gaining control of the weapon. He spotted the other robber outside in his car reaching for what he thought was a gun, and thus fired a shot, wounding him. The injured didn’t have a gun in the car. This went all the way up to the Swedish Supreme Court where it was ruled that although self-defense was warranted he had used excessive force, considering that the situation was already ‘under control’ and firing a deadly weapon was (is always?) clearly indefensible. The threat from the other robber was not deemed to be imminent or sufficiently concrete. It was considered irresponsible to cause the injured bodily harm without first assessing the situation. The law does have provisions for ‘excess force’ if the defendant was not able to assess the situation clearly. That didn’t apply to this case.

    There was another case where a man was just barely acquitted after having used a knife against a group of attackers (causing cuts to face and throat) who were beating him up severely. He had tried to outrun them, but they caught up with him, even after the defendant had shown his knife. I believe that because it was a hate crime (Swedes against an East African immigrant), he was let go more easily.

    In general, deadly self-defense is not permissible. Especially in a case like rape where one, I suppose, would have to wait for clear signs that the rapist also intends to kill (after the rape itself has passed).

    The author of the blog post concluded that it’s always best to seek ‘other solutions’ than to reach for a deadly weapon, even in life or death situations.

    Self-defense is generally not an allowable topic on discussion forums, so I don’t have more cases to refer to than this. The prevalent attitude among people however seems to be that deadly force should not be allowed in preventing great bodily harm (ie ‘a regular, non’deadly rape’).

    Anyways, sorry for my lengthy comment. Would be interesting to know if there’s any state in the US where self-defense laws are similarly weak.

  27. Jo, I don’t know offhand of statistics on self-defense cases in which defendants were wrongly convicted. The Daily Beast article linked in Capt. Ayoob’s original blog post quoted an activist who said that battered women who kill in self-defense “usually end up in prison,” but there were no statistics cited to support that claim. Marissa Alexander, ironically, has received support from the same people who wanted to lynch George Zimmerman. I think “duty to retreat” and “stand your ground” were issues in Oregon vs. Sandoval and Commonwealth (Massachusetts) vs. Shaffer. In the latter case, a woman was convicted after shooting her ex-husband or ex-boyfriend; at the time, that state imposed a duty to retreat even in one’s own home. (Most states that have a legal duty to retreat only require it in public places.) And Ayoob’s article in Backwoods Home #65 addressed the question of defense against a rapist. Personally, I think the distinction between “deadly” and “non-deadly” rape is unreasonable. Maybe people in Sweden never heard of HIV or Hepatitis.

  28. So, Swedes are not allowed to defend themselves? Thank God I’m an American!
    Of course, the Dianne Feinstein crowd want to impose the Swedish model here and disarm us all.

  29. tom, thank you for the references.

    It’s interesting that Sweden, unlike some US states, don’t impose a legal duty to retreat (in fact no other western country seems to do that), yet they manage to impose their fascist agenda along the lines of Holder’s ‘self-defense is deadly’ statement. I think part of the problem, perhaps the main problem is that weapons useful for self-defense are banned in public places. Most people reason that you were wrong already in carrying a deadly weapon; only reason for doing so is if you ‘intend to kill someone’. No guns, knives or real pepper spray in public spaces. But ‘self-defense spray’ is allowed without a permit, whatever that is. And tactical pens. And of course, you can kick, scream and beg for you life.
    Right, the distinction between deadly and non-deadly rape is BS. It’s not like you were in a fist fight with just some physical injuries to heal. Deadly self-defense should never be deemed excessive in case of rape. It’s a violation of human rights and strangely, I see no hissing liberal feminists enraged about this utter lack of protection for their fellow women.

    Steve, while I’m not yet an American citizen, I too am relieved not to live in Sweden (for many more reasons!), but don’t let your guard down. I hear the same arguments here as I do over there. Only in Sweden, they’re the prevailing ones, but here they’re fast gaining ground.

    I agree with you. Based on the cases I reviewed, self-defense is not really allowed. Crime is rising, especially violent crime. It’s on par with the US despite the promise of a safe utopia with tight gun control laws. Out of 93 homicides, 22 were committed with a gun. Proves that there are still plenty of guns around, and that people find other ways to kill in absence of a firearm.

  30. As you age you realize that some nations have bad government thrust upon its citizens while others elect theirs.