Drug Policy

The Ryan Frederick Trial: Jurors Deliberate

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Yesterday, both sides in the Ryan Frederick trial made their closing arguments. This morning, the jury will begin their deliberations.

Ryan Frederick is the 28-year-old Chesapeake, Virginia man facing murder charges for killing a police officer during a drug raid (see this wiki for more on Frederick's case). Prior coverage of his trial here

If you've been following the case, I'd encourage you read coverage from the Virginian-Pilot, and from the local Tidewater Liberty blog.

Some wrap-up odds and ends from the last few days of the trial:

• Last week, the defense called seven of Frederick's neighbors, one of whom was outside the night of the raid. All said they heard no police announcement, though neighbors did testify about hearing the battering ram.

• There's more significance to the neighbors' testimony than merely whether or not Frederick should have heard an announcement, though that's obviously important. The state made Frederick out to be a big-time drug dealer. Police informant Steven Wright said he bought marijuana from Frederick dozens of times over just a few months. That's dozens of drug deals from just one guy. Yet the police affidavit notes that surveillance on Frederick's home showed no unusual activity. And Frederick's neighbors—people who you'd think would want a hardened, drug-dealing, cop-killing neighbor out of their community—have not only defended him in the media, they've testified in his defense at his trial.

• The Virginian-Pilot's John Hopkins has done a splendid job covering this case. I've rarely seen a local reporter cover a botched raid so well. Hopkins refused to take police statements about the raid at face value. He did his own reporting, and uncovered some significant flaws in the case. At the start of the trial, Special Prosecutor Paul Ebert put Hopkins on his witness list, which effectively barred Hopkins from the courtroom, which meant he could no longer report on the case. But Ebert never called Hopkins to testify. Sneaky way to get a good reporter off your butt.

• The person who could shed the most light on the truth in this case never testified. That would be Renaldo Turnbull, the informant/burglar that Hopkins and I interviewed. That he didn't testify isn't surprising. He wouldn't have been helpful to either side. The state would have to deal with his revelations to Hopkins and I that the police were encouraging their informants to illegally break into homes to collect probable cause. Once the judge ruled before the trial that the search warrant for Frederick's home was valid, Frederick's attorneys no longer had much of a reason to bring up Turnbull's allegations. They would have had to deal with a guy who's still facing a host of his own criminal charges, and is at the mercy of the state. There's also obviously a huge risk to the defense in going after the integrity of the police, particularly the integrity of the cop your client admits to shooting.

If there's ever an outside investigation of the issues that have surfaced in this case (and there really should be), Turnbull ought to be the first person investigators speak to, and the first to whom they grant immunity.

• Frederick's biggest problem is that in the interviews he gave with police shortly after the raid, he misled them about growing marijuana. I could be mistaken, but from what I can tell, he didn't out and out lie—he said there were no marijuana plants in his home at the time of the raid, and there weren't. But he neglected to say he had plants before the break-in by the police informant three nights earlier.

It's not difficult to believe that Frederick both legitimately feared for his life the night of the raid (fearing, perhaps, that informant Steven Wright and friends had come to harm him), and realized that if he admitted in those interrogations to both killing a cop and growing marijuana, his days were numbered.

Of course, Frederick wasn't obligated to talk to the police at all that night. And he certainly wasn't obligated to implicate himself. But that he did talk but then wasn't forthcoming about growing marijuana will almost certainly hurt his credibility with the jury.

• Oddly, at the same time, the recordings of those police interrogations could also save Frederick. They clearly show a frightened, nervous, confused man, who weeps and vomits when he contemplates that he's just taken another life. They don't depict the enraged, calculating cop killer prosecutors tried to make Frederick out to be.

• Yesterday, the judge decided to allow the jury to consider lesser charges for Frederick, including first and second degree murder, and voluntary and involuntary manslaughter. The prosecution consented to adding the lesser charges.

On the one hand, this would seem to show that the prosecution isn't all that confident in its case (which, if true, would be one of the few signs of intelligence they've shown in two weeks). On the other hand, allowing for lesser charges also gives the jury the option of holding Frederick culpable for (a) growing marijuana, and (b) killing a law enforcement officer who had come to his home because of that marijuana, while at the same time giving them the sense that they're punishing the police for poor procedure, and the prosecutors for their insulting performance in court. 

If I had to make a prediction, I'd say the jury convicts on both the drug and gun charge, and convicts Frederick of some sort of manslaughter. The state didn't prove distribution (their only evidence that Frederick grew the marijuana for anything other than personal use was testimony from their lying informant), but I could see the jury wanting to punish Frederick for lying to the police. A murder charge in Virginia requires proof of malice, and the only evidence the state offered of malice, again, came from informants with criminal records who were shown at trial to be repeated liars. Frederick's taped interrogations, on the other hand, clearly show remorse.

Whatever the jury decides, this is an ugly tragedy all around. And entirely preventable. Amazing how paternalism can so quickly manifest itself as bloodshed. The last couple of weeks have embodied so many of the insidious elements of the drug war, from the home invasions to the informant tips and shoddy police investigations to the jailhouse snitch testimony and the chilling, horrifying feeling that with one life ended and another effectively ruined, we've been through all of this before. And it's just a matter of time before we go through it all again.

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  1. Radley notes that the prosecuters consented to the lesser charges. Did the defense have to consent to? I’m thinking RF has a very good chance to walk away from a Capital murder charge if that’s all he’s facing.

  2. too? &*$#!

  3. I still have a bad feeling about how this will turn out for Frederick. I hope I’m wrong.

  4. This agnostic is saying a prayer this morning.

    “God, time for you to show up. Thanks.”

  5. I know a jury’s like a box of chocolates, but when faced with mutually exclusive alternatives, I think they tend to choose both…

    So I’d expect the lesser charges too–effectively saying that he might not be guilty of what the prosecutor said, but he’s guilty of something!

    Avoidable tragedy though, yeah, no doubt about that.

  6. I hope for an acquittal, but fully expect a Voluntary MS conviction.
    I went back through Dr. Tabor’s excellent coverage of the trial and found this in the capsule of RF’s testimony:
    “[Frederick] got home at 7:00 (the police testified he didn’t get home until 8:00)”.
    If they know what time he arrived home, doesn’t that mean they were sitting outside when he pulled up? Why in the hell not grab him as he is walking from his car to his front door rather than wait 30 min (or whatever amount of time) and ram his door??

  7. Your fourth bullet has “Frederikc’s” typed.

    I think that no matter what level of charges he is convicted of, he is going to do prison time because his sentencing will reflect that a cop died. I can also see him being hassled by all enforcement types during his stay. Good luck Mr. Frederick.

  8. If the jury has the option to split the difference, they almost certainly will. I predict Voluntary. Which has the dual effect of a) destroying Frederick’s life, and b) convincing the police that everyone is against them (which will result in more brutality and aggression in the future.)

    It’s only a successful compromise if everyone ends up unhappy.

    And Radley’s right, this whole tragedy was preventable at about 5 different steps.

  9. Did the defense have to consent too?

    His “defense” doesn’t deserve the name.

    He’s going to be convicted of something, and it’s better for him to be convicted of straight-up murder; the options for appeals, and the likelihood of one of them succeeding, are much better.

    His “defense” just sent him to prison for decades, with no hope of winning his way out.

    And they know it.

  10. OK, let’s say I’m on this jury. I want to convict on the drug and gun charges (because I’m compelled to respect the law in this trial whether I agree with the laws or not), time served is enough for me on those charges. Say everyone else wants to convict on the voluntary manslaughter charge as well as the drug and gun charges. If I stand my ground, is this considered a hung jury even if we agreed on two charges and not on the third? If not, why not, and if so, what happens next?

  11. I feel that he should be aquitted of murder and AT BEST, be convicted for In-voluntary Manslaughter.

    However, u never know w/juries.

    An aquittal may anger the DRUG WARRIORS too much. The Drug warriors justify the use of the HACHO CAMACHO PARA-MILITARY approach because people like Ryan Frederick may shoot back at them.

    The real problem exists in the apprehension process. A blogger above asked the question why did they wait until he went in the house.

    Most people, confronted by the police are going to cooperate. No realy point in running away. The more cooperation you do with police/da the lesser time you may get (HOPEFULLY). Either way, if police has to chase you, use violent tactics to apprehend you, the charges will be greater…AND THEIR GONNA GET U. Almost 99% of the people being saught after are eventuallhy apprehended.

    The Para-military tactics used in the Ryan Frederick case should be reserved for hostage and standoff situations. The VAST majority of these drug raids (especially for marijuana) don’t require paramilitary. Simply pulling them over with POLICE lights and with UNIFORMED police offers will do 99% of the time.

  12. The VAST majority of these drug raids (especially for marijuana) don’t require paramilitary.

    Nope because drugs make people irational and violent.

  13. Special Prosecutor Paul Ebert put Hopkins on his witness list, which effectively barred Hopkins from the courtroom, which meant he could no longer report on the case. But Ebert never called Hopkins to testify. Sneaky way to get a good reporter off your butt.

    This pisses me off.

    And, of course, there is no way to “prove” it.

  14. His “defense” doesn’t deserve the name.

    What makes you say that? From what I’ve read, Broccoletti has done very well. I’m not sure what he could have done differently.

    Also, keep in mind, we don’t see everything that goes on. I’m sure there are lots of things the state did the Broccoletti objected in briefs that aren’t public–or at least haven’t been reported on.

  15. Oh, Juanita, my sweet prohibitionist. Your writing is poetry to my ears, and your reasoning as clear and unmuddied as an azure sky. Be mine, my love. I know that J sub D is my rival for your affections, but I will vanquish him and win your heart.

  16. “Nope because drugs make people irational and violent.”

    True, but the people who become irrational and violent are the ones trying to stop the drug users, not the users themselves. Like you, Juanita.

  17. The only tragedy here is that a man’s life will be ruined for simply defending himself against masked armed invaders. No one forced the officer to take part in this invasion, he did it voluntarily. I’ll save my sympathy for the real heroes.

  18. Cases like this would be an awfully good use of the Civil Rights Division of the DOJ.

  19. Sorry, Jammer. Ryan Frederick is a straight white male. He has no civil rights.

  20. How do we know that he was growing marijuana in his garage? Didn’t a criminal break into his house? Are we to believe that the criminal was willing to break in, but drew the line at planting evidence?

  21. Paul Ebert put Hopkins on his witness list, which effectively barred Hopkins from the courtroom,

    That sounds like something Hopkins should litigate. Ebert attacked his first amendment rights by fraudulently claiming that Hopkins was going to be called as a witness.

    -jcr

  22. JCR, there are lots of reasons for people to go after this prosecutor. I hope he gets it good.

  23. “What makes you say that? From what I’ve read, Broccoletti has done very well. I’m not sure what he could have done differently.”

    Looking from the outside, I’m kinda sorry to see there are lesser charges available. If the prosecution didn’t think they could get a murder conviction, I’d rather they only charged him with what they thought they could convict him on instead of giving the jury a whole series of goalposts.

    If I were the defendant, however, considering that there’s a dead cop for the jury to consider, at the end of the day, it might be a relief to think there were more possibilities than just setting me free or the worst case scenario…

    So, yeah, we don’t know what’s gone on between the defendant and his lawyer.

  24. Since RF admitted to killing a cop and growing pot, I would think his defense has done a pretty fair job. The defense is certainly more aware of the jury make-up than we are. RF is not going to end up on death row. This could be the best play possible. Outside of challenging the prevailing kop-kulture, which would be dangerous in the south, I’m not sure what else could be done. Appeals will likely follow any conviction.

  25. The lesser charges option spells doom in my opinion. Because Frederick is not technically squeaky clean, the jury will most likely feel compelled to convict him for something. Even if it’s involuntary manslaughter, he goes to jail and has his life totally fucked up.

    Let’s hope at least one person on the jury has the balls to say “this is wrong” and refuse to convict.

  26. Neighbors willing to testify against drug dealers? You’d better explain your reasoning to the NYPD on why Gotti’s neighbors were so willing to testify against him. Perhaps this also explains why there are so many citizens in drug infested ghettos bravely taking the stand against the drug dealers in their neighborhoods.

    So this guy was a drug dealer. The evidence shows he was cultivating drugs on a scale not for his own use. Perhaps he was running a charity operation for druggies?


  27. Let’s hope at least one person on the jury has the balls to say “this is wrong” and refuse to convict.

    You know, I always count on this…and it never seems to come true. The jury system lately bullies any single juror that disents. Even the judge starts calling you names. People end up just getting frustrated and give in to the crowd.

    There’s a reason why Judges/Prosecutors never want people convicted to serve in juries…you know why.

  28. Can anyone answer my question at 10:21am?

  29. My guess is he’ll get involuntary manslaughter plus the drug and gun charges.

    Also, I don’t believe the defense has any say on which charges the prosecution and judge allow the jury to consider.

    Plus, Hopkins and his employer should sue the prosecutor.

  30. Nick, IANAL, but my understanding is that the jury votes on each charge seperately, so they could convict on some and acquit on others. What happens next is that both sides will have an opportunity to appeal.

    Radley, et als, remember that Frederick’s attorney is representing his client’s overall interests. He’s not representing the broader interests of the libertarian community. If Frederick gets convicted of lesser charges, even if Frederick is innocent, he may choose to not appeal to avoid the risk of having the appeal go against him and his client getting even more jail time, harsher charges, etc.

    It really depends on whether the prosecutors will be happy with conviction on lesser charges.

  31. Nick | February 3, 2009, 10:21am | #

    OK, let’s say I’m on this jury. I want to convict on the drug and gun charges (because I’m compelled to respect the law in this trial whether I agree with the laws or not), time served is enough for me on those charges. Say everyone else wants to convict on the voluntary manslaughter charge as well as the drug and gun charges. If I stand my ground, is this considered a hung jury even if we agreed on two charges and not on the third? If not, why not, and if so, what happens next?

    Each charge is seperate. This happens all the time. That is, say there are six charges in a particular trial. It’s not terribly unusual for conviction on two charges, aquittal on two charges, and a hung jury on the last two. The prosecution can then try the last two again if they feel like it.

  32. Yeah I have a legal question for the reasonites. The prosecution decided to ADD lesser charges which the jury can convict RF of.

    Why wouldn’t they do that all the time? Why would you choose to go balls out with Murder 1 or whatever when you could also charge everything down to misdemeanors just to hedge your bet?

    Does adding other charges make it less likely for the jury to convict on the highest count?

  33. I have a dream that the jury acquits and the judge immediately asks the bailiff to arrest Ebert on contempt charges for the shit he’s pulled. Then a disbarment hearing follows shortly, followed by a lawsuit from Frederick that allows him to ease some of the pain he’s been put through.

  34. Anonymous-10:43

    Bravo! Bravo!

    Why should one have any empathy for the storm trooper who got his? If you want to be a troglodyte terrorizing folks you should be prepared to die.

  35. The evidence shows he was cultivating drugs on a scale not for his own use.
    _______________________________________
    really it was for less than his own use. 8 plants = 4 females. a female of great genetics veged for a month then flowered for 8-9 weeks yields about a zip per plant, so 4 ounces for 3 months, that is personal use, he prolly used 4 zips in 2 months. and unles he had a cycle going he was producing at max 12-15 zips per year. and that would be growing continously!

  36. Does adding other charges make it less likely for the jury to convict on the highest count?

    Not sure about jury behavior, but numerous studies (psychology and economics) have found that people are far less likely to avoid extremes if a middle option is given.

  37. Tonio-

    One can not get more time if one loses his appeal. One has already been sentenced by the time the appeal is decided.

  38. Yeah I have a legal question for the reasonites. The prosecution decided to ADD lesser charges which the jury can convict RF of.

    Why wouldn’t they do that all the time? Why would you choose to go balls out with Murder 1 or whatever when you could also charge everything down to misdemeanors just to hedge your bet?

    Does adding other charges make it less likely for the jury to convict on the highest count?
    ___________________________________________
    The lesser charges are added when on the face it looks like the pros will not get a conviction on the greater charge, thats why they were added at the end, and not at the beginning, the prosecuters feel they will not get a guilty on murder 1 so the included lessers to widen the net and make 1 count stick, that is the only reason to do it at this time. Yes i hope the jury has some modecumk of education and sense and returns a not guilty on all counts, but i do not see it happening, although i think he did nothing wrong. My guess id he gets popped for manslaughter and does 5-10 in total

  39. Someone help me out here, what’s the advantage in acting the way Frederick did as opposed to doing your best to kill every cop on your property?

    Either way, your life is ruined.

    Doing 10-20 years in prison followed by a lifelong bar on owning firearms and voting coupled with severely reduced job opportunities, and probably constant police harassment is (to me anyway) just a more protracted death sentence.

  40. And one more thanks to Balko and the man at tidewater liberty for keeping us updated on this travesty of justice, as no local or national media are covering this. i have written letter to the editor, letter to NORML to get coverage of this and so far not a peep. great work Balko GREAT WORK!

  41. ev | February 3, 2009, 12:01pm | #

    Does adding other charges make it less likely for the jury to convict on the highest count?

    Sometimes, yes. It’s a judgement call. Frequently, the jury wants to convict the defendant, but on a lesser charge. Depending on the circumstances, they may perfer to convict on a higher charge than they really want to because they don’t want to let the defendant be released, if they don’t have a choice of a lesser charge. The fact they added lesser charges seems to me to mean the prosecution figures they have screwed up and that line of thinking won’t apply in this case.

  42. Have some of you forgot the concept of JURY NULLIFICATION?

    It is one’s duty to always acquit defendants charged with any drug “offenses”.

  43. Brendan Perez | February 3, 2009, 12:13pm | #

    Someone help me out here, what’s the advantage in acting the way Frederick did as opposed to doing your best to kill every cop on your property?

    Either way, your life is ruined.

    Doing 10-20 years in prison followed by a lifelong bar on owning firearms and voting coupled with severely reduced job opportunities, and probably constant police harassment is (to me anyway) just a more protracted death sentence.

    Well, the thinking here is that Frederick didn’t know he was killing a cop; he thought he was being robbed and was protecting himself. That is, he didn’t want to kill anybody, period.

  44. Cases like this would be an awfully good use of the Civil Rights Division of the DOJ.

    Let’s see of Obama and Holder have any inclination at all to move the ball forward on civil rights and police abuse.

    I’ll be very pleasantly surprised if they do. Just like I’ll be pleasantly surprised if Obama calls off the med pot raids.

  45. Have some of you forgot the concept of JURY NULLIFICATION?

    __________________________________________
    Actually Mike, this must be learned, as i have found out that in courts you will get held in contempt for even trying to mention jury nullification, and if you are a prospect for the jury, if you state you know what it is you will be disqualified. It exsits, but it is not mentioned under penalty of punshiment in courts. you must study and know your own duty, and keep it to yourself, as the judicial system tries its hardest to keep this concept under wraps, and actually tells you its your duty to convict according to law wether you agree or not. when in reality a bad law would be nullified through this process.

  46. Yes, kudos to Radley. He deserves some mighty big props.

  47. Well, the thinking here is that Frederick didn’t know he was killing a cop; he thought he was being robbed and was protecting himself. That is, he didn’t want to kill anybody, period.

    True.

    I forgot that he probably didn’t find out until he was already in custody.

  48. SpongePaul-

    Yes. I think you are right. We need a revised version of 12 Angry Men where one juror persuades the rest to nullify.

  49. At the start of the trial, Special Prosecutor Paul Ebert put Hopkins on his witness list, which effectively barred Hopkins from the courtroom, which meant he could no longer report on the case. But Ebert never called Hopkins to testify. Sneaky way to get a good reporter off your butt.

    How the fuck is this legal?

    I’ve always hated folling trials, because I enjoy pretending that we live in a country governed by the rule of law, and it’s not fun to see my imagined world shattered by reality…

  50. One can not get more time if one loses his appeal. One has already been sentenced by the time the appeal is decided.

    Libertymike: You’re right, of course, that the defendant can’t get a worse deal if he appeals.

    However, can’t the prosecution appeal and get a harsher sentence, etc? Realize that wasn’t covered by what I wrote above.

  51. Tonio-

    Generally speaking, no. However, I do believe that there might be some exceptions-for example, with mandatory minimums? Not sure. There was a case (US Supreme Court) a couple of years ago that changed the law with respect to mandatory minimums and sentencing guidelines.

  52. Update:

    The jury asked for the tape of interview on scene, the door, and a layout of the house.

    Can’t be sure, but asking for the tape leads me to believe there is at least one person who bought the prosecution’s opening statements.

  53. Have some of you forgot the concept of JURY NULLIFICATION?

    Jury nullification is a double edged sword. KKK sympathizers in the Old South were famous for practicing their own brand of it when whites were prosecuted for crimes against blacks. And would you really want a pro-cop jury to be able to “nullify” laws against police brutality?

  54. A quick review of the relevant law:

    In VA homicide cases, malice may take four forms: intent to kill, intent to inflict serious bodily injury, recklessness or extreme disregard for human life or abandon or depraved heart and felony murder.

    Murder is unlawful killing with malice (as defined above) aforethought.
    2nd degree is any intentional killing
    For 1st degree there must be premeditation. This can occur in seconds so long as there is some thought prior to the killing. Look for motive and time which can not really be shown in this case.
    Capital murder is 1st degree plus aggravation exceeding mitigation – murder of cop is a huge aggravating factor.

    Felony murder is Commission of predicate felony that causes a death.
    VA applicable felonies: Arson, rape, sodomy, object penetration, robbery, burglary, abduction or attempt to commit any of these. Growing pot is, somehow, not on the list.
    Felony murder is punishable as 1st degree murder.

    Felony homicide – Accidental killing in the commission of any felony not listed above. May be unique to VA. Prosecuted as class 3 felony.
    There must be a causal connection between the death and the felony. In VA, the res gestae – close connection in time and causation – must be proven.

    Manslaughter is unlawful killing without malice aforethought
    Voluntary manslaughter is intentional killing in the heat of passion following adequate provocation which might cause a reasonable person to lose control. Reaction to assault and adultery are common examples. Defendant must have been actually enraged.
    Involuntary manslaughter – criminal negligence (VA) or recklessness. Defendant acted with awareness that death might have been a result.

    Misdemeanor manslaughter – accidental killing during the commission of a misdemeanor.

    Usual disclaimer: the writer is an VA attorney but the above is for entertainment purposes only. Seek a licensed attorney for legal advice.

  55. The jury asked for the tape of interview on scene, the door, and a layout of the house.

    Can’t be sure, but asking for the tape leads me to believe there is at least one person who bought the prosecution’s opening statements.

    Hard to say. The on-scene tape makes the prosecution’s opening claim that he was drug-crazed killer an obvious lie.

    Voluntary manslaughter is intentional killing in the heat of passion following adequate provocation which might cause a reasonable person to lose control.

    Easy for the jury to land on, unless they buy the justified self-defense argument.

  56. I just listened to the interview that RF gave after the shooting. did anyone else notice when he says he grabbed his gun because his house was broken into a few nights before, the detective says “WE KNOW” so right there the trial should have been over. but that just proves the cops lied, and the interview seems like the cops are playing CYA!

  57. I think the fact that he actually was growing weed helps his case. If someone breaks in steals some plants and then a few days later someone is breaking into your house you’d be justified to think it was the burglars returning for the rest of the plants and any money you have. I hate this happened to Frederick but I do think he committed voluntary manslaughter. He did after all fire through a closed door when he could have retreated. Radley do you know the sentencing guidelines for that?

  58. Bill, VA doesn’t impose a duty to retreat before using deadly force unless you were the aggressor. Adams v. Commonwealth. Also, there was a boot covered foot lodged in his door when he fired so it wasn’t a blind discharge. If the guy shot was a burglar instead of a cop, this case would have proceeded in a very different manner.

  59. Usual disclaimer: the writer is an VA attorney but the above is for entertainment purposes only. Seek a licensed attorney for legal advice.

  60. This all boils down to the dead man being a cop. If this were any other human being, particularly a suspected burglar, I assume Virginians would not push this to trial, much less charge the suspect with murder. And a jury would likely think the same way.

    Ryan has to hope there is a sensible juror who believes that A) he was justified in defending his home with a gun if the intruder were not an officer of the law and B) did Ryan know when he fired his gun that the intruder was an officer of the law. If one juror believes the answer is yes to A and no to B, the jury can at the least be hung or at most convinced the same as we all believe.

    Now, finally, if there is such a juror, we have to hope that person is not so against someone possessing or using marijuana that they are willing to look past the justice of A and B and make Ryan rot in prison for it.

  61. Tonio,

    I’ll kick your ass if you ever make another play for Juanita, the Aphrodite of trolldom.

    I mean it!

    Juanita,

    One word frees us of all the weight and pain of life:
    that word is love.

    – Sophocles –

  62. No word on a verdict yet?

    I would assume it bodes well for the defense that the deliberation is taking so long, no?

  63. “”””Hard to say. The on-scene tape makes the prosecution’s opening claim that he was drug-crazed killer an obvious lie.””””

    So obvious that only a believer of the prosecution’s opening statement would even want to review it.

    Sponge Paul and bill, That makes sense if you didn’t know who broke into your garage. Ryan admitted he knew it was Wright. Maybe Ryan thought Wright was back and brought some bad company. Not the Paul Rodgers kind. If Ryan did look out the window, he probably would have seen the van out front. Assuming the van wasn’t Wright’s, Ryan could have thought it was some one else or Wright brought friends. Since there were many break-ins in the neighborhood, (the only evidence the judge didn’t allow?), maybe Ryan didn’t have an idea who was at the door. Then again, one man can be a crime spree and since Wright broke into Ryan’s garage, Wright could be behind the other break-ins too. I have a feeling there is more to the Ryan/Wright relationship than we know. The break-in could have been Turnbull’s idea and he could be behind the neighborhood break-ins. He could also be the one Ryan feared and that’s why he shot through the door. Who knows? I am convinced Ryan didn’t think it was the cops.

    I agree with Radley on the outcome, but I’m wondering if the person(s) who wants capitol murder and won’t budge, meets the person(s) who will accept a lesser charge and won’t budge.

  64. No announcement on a verdict yet but I see the Virginia Senate approved a smoking ban in bars and resturants.

  65. Well then it could be a doublebad day in new virginia for rights of Americans today

  66. i’m predicting hung jury. all it takes is one enlightened and steadfast individual to stand against the other 11.

    i don’t agree that ryan frederick “misled” the officer who questioned him. what he said was nominally true “i wasn’t growing in there.” not at the time of the raid. citizens don’t have a duty to volunteer embarrassing information, such as…

    i was growing a week ago…
    i am anally incontinent…
    i admire adolf hitler and wish he had succeeded…
    i masturbate to hi-def images of jessica rabbit…
    i am a detroit lions fan.

  67. jury nullification

  68. “I’m not growing in there” is the statment your looking for Bruce. To say you haven’t, includes the past. But Ryan’s story is more consistant than the prosecutions, for whatever that’s worth.

  69. BTW, what is the weapons charge? Did he not acquire the gun legally?

  70. what is the weapons charge

    Reading John Wilburn’s account on the tidewater liberty blog, here’s the jury instructions on that:

    To find the defendent guilty on a firearms charge, the prosecution:
    Must prove a firearm was used
    Must prove a felony was committed.

    So it looks like the firearms charge is something like ‘use of a firearm in commision of a felony’ I think in most places it would just be characteristic of a crime, or a sentence enhancement, rather than a seperate charge in and of itself.

  71. the way I’m reading the jury instructions, I’m thinking guilty on the voluntary or involuntary manslaughter, guilty on the firearms charge, not guilty on manufacture (of a controlled substance) not for personal use (the prosecution didn’t prove ‘distribution’ only ‘manufacture’.)

  72. From the V-Post: http://hamptonroads.com/2009/02/frederick-jury-asks-audio-interview-home-layout-door

    “CHESAPEAKE

    The jury in the Ryan Frederick murder trial has concluded its day of deliberations without reaching a verdict.

    Circuit Judge Marjorie A. T. Arrington sent the jury home at 5 p.m. The group will return tomorrow morning.”

  73. Now after reading the summary of the closing arguments I’m a little more optimistic (on a verdict completely exonerating Frederick). The prosecution was over the top with their assertions. and Broceletti, while he seemed to started slow, really got into a grove. And this piece of the prosecution rebuttal torqued me, and I hope it does the jury as well, if it was verbatim:

    “the police didn’t arrest him outside, because they wanted to connect him with the crime.”

    You mean all that contraband the police thought they would find in Fredrick’s *own* goddamned house wouldn’t be enough to ‘connect him’ with a crime? It’s his frickin house! Half the chicks in prison are there because even if they weren’t responsible for it, or even knew about it, they got caught with a stash of their boyfriends’ illegal crap found in the girls’ residences. WTF?

  74. Spongepaul-“Well then it could be a doublebad day in new virginia for rights of Americans today.”

    I disagree, smoking bans in restaurants is a good thing. Remember when you smoke, and blow smoke on other people your are infringing on their rights too.

    They can smoke outside or in their homes.
    (unless its a smoke bar, then that’s obvious)
    🙂

    Poor RF.
    I’ll smoke a phatty for him.

  75. Only the Senate passed the smoking ban, some expect it to fail in the house. Also they pass a law to allow firearms inside a restaurant. I’m not sure if the house voted already on that one, but I bet it will pass.

    You can bring the gun, leave the smokes outside.

  76. “””Remember when you smoke, and blow smoke on other people your are infringing on their rights too.””””

    What right are you making up now.

  77. The right to not be fucked with.

    The gun causes no harm unless it is fired. That’s why it’s legal to carry one, but illegal to shoot people. The smoke, when it is exhaled or floats off the cigarette gets everywhere. You can’t harness it. If you could, this would not be an issue.

  78. There is no right called the right not to be fucked with.

  79. LI disagree, smoking bans in restaurants is a good thing. Remember when you smoke, and blow smoke on other people your are infringing on their rights too.

    Not if I’m smoking in my home, or in my restaurant, or in a home or restaurant whose owner allows me to smoke there, and where everyone else who’s there while I’m smoking chose to be there and is free to leave if they don’t like my smoking.

  80. Initiation of force.

    If I shove you, I have attacked you. If your smoke gets on my clothes and hair without my consent or my reasonable ability to avoid (like say I was in the restaurant first, eating my meal) and into my lungs making me cough, you have attacked me. Neither are going to start a war, but they are attacks nonetheless.

    If you go into a mosh pit or I go into a smoke bar, we are not being attacked. We are participating willfully knowing the consequences. See the difference?

    That’s the right not to be fucked with. It may not be posted anywhere but it exists and has all over the world for quite some time. When attitudes and social mores change, like the disdain for smoke being everywhere, it becomes a part of the equation when it wasn’t before.

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