Mark Dayton says George Zimmerman "went way beyond what was necessary"

Categories: Guns, Mark Dayton
GeorgeZimmerman.jpg
Zimmerman might be innocent in a court of law, but he's guilty in the court of common sense, Dayton suggested.
Yesterday, in his first public comments on the George Zimmerman case, Gov. Mark Dayton offered up a qualified argument for why he thinks Zimmerman probably should've been convicted of some sort of crime for the shooting death of Trayvon Martin.

SEE ALSO: Rep. Tony Cornish blames "liberal media" for hyping unrest following Trayvon Martin verdict

While acknowledging he doesn't have all the information the jury did, Dayton said his "personal opinion" is that "Mr. Zimmerman went way beyond what was necessary in the situation."

Dayton also connected the Trayvon Martin tragedy with his own 2012 decision to veto an expansion of Minnesota's so-called "Stand Your Ground" law. That bill, authored by Tony Cornish and passed by the then-MNGOP controlled Legislature, would've broadened the circumstances under which gun owners could lawfully use deadly force without first being obligated to try to retreat.

In a Minnesota with more robust Stand Your Ground protections, Dayton said, there could be "more severe penalties in Minnesota for shooting somebody else's dog in your backyard than there would be... for shooting a human being."

However, Andrew Branca, a Massachusetts lawyer and the author of The Law of Self-Defense, told Policy Mic that Stand Your Ground laws had no bearing on the Trayvon Martin case.

"At the moment George Zimmerman used deadly force in self-defense his attacker was pinning him to the ground and reaching for his gun," Branca said, citing his interpretation of testimony during Zimmerman's trail. "Under such circumstances no reasonable avenue of self-defense exists, so there is no duty to retreat even absent 'stand your ground.'"

But Dayton suggested that legalities aside, the issues involved in cases like Zimmerman's should also be analyzed through the lens of common sense.

"We have to use common sense here," Dayton said, according to a Star Tribune report. "People have a right to protect themselves. On the other hand, we have a sanctity of life that I think we all believe in."

-- Follow Aaron Rupar on Twitter at @atrupar. Got a tip? Drop him a line at arupar@citypages.com.

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26 comments
swmnguy
swmnguy topcommenter

Now that the criminal trial is over, this will get interesting.  Zimmerman benefited hugely from the support he got from the right-wing media.  His attorneys were able to smear Trayvon Martin by proxy, at arms' length.  They've done that now; there's no more they can float via Rush Limbaugh etc.  The Limbaugh / Drudge smear of homophobia was pretty much the last straw there.

But now that the criminal case is over, the gloves are off for the Martin family.  The prosecution played this one uncharacteristically close to the vest.  Usually US prosecutors play huge to the media, to taint the jury pool.  Look at Mike Freeman.  He should have every case he prosecutes throw out, if not for preferential treatment from Minnesota judges, the way he violates all the ethics of his profession.  But the Florida judge kept the prosecution in line, and forced them to actually try the case with the evidence they had, and within the very strict limits of admissibility under Florida criminal law.  Interestingly, those limits don't apply in many cases where the defendants are black, but whatever.  The criminal part of this case is over.

Now all the uglier aspects of Zimmerman's past are fair game.  The assault on the cop.  The domestic assault and orders for protection.  The cousin who accused him of sexual molestation, and of anti-black bigotry.  The simple fact (which was irrelevant under Florida criminal law) that the armed Zimmerman initiated the confrontation.  All that will be admissable in a civil case, while Zimmerman's attorneys have already done their worst.

Unfortunately for Zimmerman, the people who sent him money over the past year know how this works, too.  Once the higher standard of criminal procedure has been passed, then it's time to settle up.  And while Zimmerman was able to create reasonable doubt, he can't get past preponderance of evidence.  And no doubt the publicity-seekers who provided the money know this and will move on fast.  The teenaged black male is already dead.  Zimmerman can't kill him again, and he won't be convicted for that.  Zimmerman's usefulness to that constiituency is at an end.   

Zimmerman's screwed.

blacksheep
blacksheep

The coward who hid under his desk because of an alleged terror threat has the audacity to disregard the decision of a jury who spent 2 weeks listening to actual evidence.

And, you idiots elect him to govern your state!

k2yeb
k2yeb topcommenter

I love how people that disagree with the verdict treat those that differ as idiots. Good work digitalprotocol...you are the pot calling the kettle black no matter which side of the fence you are on. You my friend, are the one that needs to go back to the 9th grade and read up on the laws. The laws need to be changed, the verdict was fair.

Dave2
Dave2

Right after condemning the Zimmerman verdict Dayton says: (but) "People have right to protect themselvs". When would that be Gov, ....right after you've been beaten to death?

mingtran
mingtran topcommenter

RIVETING NEWS

kennyX
kennyX

@swmnguy Apparently the concept of "facts" has escaped you. He was acquitted based on FACTS. The FBI determined that there was NO racial prejudice whatsoever. 

Do you even think for yourself or do you let MSNBC and Mother Jones do that for you?

YOU are the reason why this nation is going down the toilet. You ignore facts and common sense and let emotions dictate your thoughts. So should we hang Zimmeman based on what YOU think? In that case, why don't we bring back lynchings and public hangings....after all, that type of "justice" was based on  public opinion. Is that the type of "justice" you want in America? 

But you are correct. Zimmerman is screwed. He will never be able to live a normal life again. He will have the "justice seekers"; aka the New Black Panthers and other hate groups (such as the NAACP and ACLU) put a bounty on his head. These racist hate groups will wallow in the glory of Zimmerman being shot dead. And you know it will happen. Give it a few weeks. 

White America: WAKE UP! Soon you will become a victim of Obama's anti-white agenda. It has already in progress. And it will only get worse!  

MicheleBachmann
MicheleBachmann topcommenter

@blacksheep Zimmerman didn't listen to the cops and as a result an unarmed child was shot walking home.   If you don't listen to the cops and an unarmed child with no criminal record ends up dead you are a murderer and I don't care what the stupid law in Florida says.   That is common sense.  George Zimmerman is a killer.  He stalked and shot an unarmed teen.  

digitalprotocol
digitalprotocol topcommenter

@k2yeb the verdict is fair if your some fat fuck with a gun. i dont think race is an issue with this. some fat loser tracked a teen with a gun, bullet chambered. he confronted the kid and a fight ensued and then shot the kid. 

he couldnt take a beating...he is a pussy



MicheleBachmann
MicheleBachmann topcommenter

@Dave2 I think anyone with a brain knows not to disobey the police, stalk a child, and then shoot them down in their own neighborhood.  No matter what the stupid laws say Zimmerman is a killer.   

digitalprotocol
digitalprotocol topcommenter

@mingtran glad to know the governor isnt a complete fool


mingtran, if you keep reading and studying you can get your grade 9 too

swmnguy
swmnguy topcommenter

@kennyX  Oh, and Keny:  You prove in your response that you do not understand the definition of the word "fact" in law.  It's not the same as in common usage, or science.  "Fact" in law, means more or less, "Whatever both sides in a case will agree to, as approved by a judge."  So it's entirely possible that we could agree for the sake of a court case that the Sun revolves around the Earth, that the sky is chartreuse when clear, and Seven is not UP, and if a judge says it's OK for the purposes of the case, it's all "Facts."  So, not exactly compelling, nor useful for people to live their lives.

swmnguy
swmnguy topcommenter

@kennyX  Keny, it would be a lot easier to respond to you if you hadn't already told us you are a synthetic click-bait troll persona.  It's like arguing with a mannequin.

Your comment is a poor effort.  It's meaningless.  You throw out some silly ad hominem attacks about MSNBC and Mother Jones, as if 1) there's any thread there, and 2) I have contact with either one? 

For one thing, you take a collaboration between Microsoft and NBC and think there's something "Left" about that?  That right there tells me you know nothing about politics, or ideology, or corporatism.  That is simply a silly thing to toss out there.

"Mother Jones" magazine has historically been an actually Left publication, but it, like "The Nation," has been taken over by the corporate outreach arm of the Democratic Party.  It still does some good reporting, but compromises its historical values and objectivity through its growing dependency on that corporate-tainted affiliation to the Democratic Party.

So your taunts are pointless and more confusing than anything else.

Once you get to my comments on the Zimmerman situation and what actually awaits this guy in the real world, you agree with me!  So why did you start out with the silly taunts that didn't make any sense in the first place?  You discredited yourself, then you started to make a point?  Why?

Then of course you get back to the usual straw-man and projection arguments so typical of you guys who won't or can't take a reasoned position. Because the NAACP and the ACLU examine racial divides in America, they're the real racists.  Yawn.  We tolerate this kind of weak reasoning from college sophomores because they're young and might learn better as they go on.  When it's the basis of argument for half the population, it's no longer cute, nor acceptable.

"I" want lynch-mob violence?  You're just making stuff up, as usual.  I'm comparing the relative rules of evidence of civil and criminal court.  Do you have anything to add to that conversation, or not?

C'mon, Keny.  This website needs a good clickbait troll.  But it's going to take a lot more brainwork than you typically put out.  Maybe I should get a new e-mail address and take on the task.  If you don't get it together maybe I will.  Cinblueland is just some meathead who used to be in the military and thinks that entitles him to something.  Mingtran is just a name-calling racist.  You've got potential.  But you're lazy.

kennyX
kennyX

@MicheleBachmann The police are not the same as 911 operators. Are you really that stupid? Oh yeah, you are. Forget it.

mingtran
mingtran topcommenter

Your ignorance is humorous young learner. Keep riding the cool train.

k2yeb
k2yeb topcommenter

Do you know mingtran? Or are you just in general an internet troll?

kennyX
kennyX

@swmnguy Then can you explain to me why Trayvon's Facebook posts were not included as evidence of his past behavior? Remember the so-called Judge removed that from testimony. Yet, Zimmerman's past was all out in the open. Are you trying to tell me that the Judge had no bias? 

kennyX
kennyX

@swmnguy I will not even respond to your mindless dribble. But let's get down to the nitty gritty. Zimmerman was declared guilty in the court of Public opinion before the trial even started. And who instigated the Public opinion? I'll tell you one damn thing. It wasn't Fox News. Go read the pre-trial articles on Mother Jones and MSNBC (and other Liberal media) They all had the same war cry: GUILTY! Can you at at least agree with me on that part? And let me ask you something. And I want an honest response. That is all I ask of you just to prove my point. For arguments sake. If you you were selected as a juror for this case...and if the very same evidence was presented to you as were the real jurors, what would have your verdict been? And explain to me why?

mingtran
mingtran topcommenter

You poor little guy. I can't imagine what it would be like to not be able to form opinions on my own, to have everything spoon fed to me. You and MB are some of the least aware characters ever assembled. Your purpose is to follow, not lead. Stop pretending

MicheleBachmann
MicheleBachmann topcommenter

@kennyX @MicheleBachmann Of course an evil stupid coward racist like you thinks like that.  It doesn't matter though since you are an idiot who no one listens too. 

kennyX
kennyX

@MicheleBachmann Ghetto thugs deserve death. They contribute nothing to society other than crime.

kennyX
kennyX

@MicheleBachmann A thug 17 y/o is not a "child". Are you really that stupid or just trying to pretend?

MicheleBachmann
MicheleBachmann topcommenter

@fdsa Yes.  I mean the unarmed child walking to his parents house that was shot by the criminal with a history of violence.  

digitalprotocol
digitalprotocol topcommenter

@k2yeb i know him through our mutual internet exploits...who are you?

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