I’ve read the latest accounts of the latest day of proceedings in the Jian Ghomeshi sexual assault case and I’ve seen enough. This trial is rapidly turning into a disgrace, based on the reports I’m seeing from the trial about the two accusers’ sharing of 5,000 emails. And the accusers’ stories are being demolished under cross-examination. I’m not a Ghomeshi supporter by any means but right now it sure looks like the Crown is going down in flames.
If you want the straight goods on today’s proceedings, read what Christie Blatchford reported in the National Post. Blatchford says this trial “threatens to bring the administration of justice into disrepute.” That sums it up.
I have tried to stay informed on the happenings of the Jian Ghomeshi sexual assault trial in Toronto, but given that this case is not being televised it is very hard. As I have said before, Twitter does not measure up for court coverage, but it’s the best we can do in Canada, the land of media restrictions.
So I have mainly been keeping up on the trial through reading newspaper accounts from Christie Blatchford and the like on the Internet. And also from what little we’ve seen on the TV news.
All I can tell is that the only thing being proved so far in the case against Ghomeshi is that if you ever get in trouble with the law in Toronto you should call Marie Henein.
Henein just did quite the job demolishing the testimony of the first accuser of Ghomeshi, pointing out inconsistency after inconsistency. And it sounds like the second accuser’s testimony is being carved up, too, by Henein.
From an outsiders’ perspective, it kind of looks like the Crown’s case is going down in flames. Yet to me, Ghomeshi still doesn’t look like he’s an innocent man in all of this.
So I don’t know what is going to happen, ultimately. All in all, I just find this case depressing on a lot of levels. For one thing, the subject matter is sexual assault, which I find distasteful subject matter to begin with. What mainly depresses me, though, is the real possibility we may not see justice served at the end of it all. I suppose we won’t know the answer to that until after this case is over.
The first day of opening statements is in in the Sen. Mike Duffy fraud trial, and the media coverage was a circus in every possible way. All the Ottawa press corps is just salivating at the thought of covering this trial.
There was obviously no shortage of places to go for the day’s live coverage — coverage which, I should point out, was a hassle to follow because there were absolutely no cameras allowed inside the courtroom to speak of (boo!). But there were plenty of them outside and those provided nothing in terms of meaningful information about the opening statements — just shots of Duffy and other people going in and out of the court.
Plus, trying to follow the live updates by using #duffy hashtag on Twitter was frustrating because while about half the posts were semi-useful ones from news people, the rest were the usual stupid idiot comments posted by idiots. No surprise there.
I am still following the verdict watch in the Jodi Arias penalty phase retrial, out of boredom.
The thinking from these trial pundits and “legal analysts” is this could be looking like a hung jury. The jurors came back into court today and the judge issued “impasse instructions” and basically told them to try harder to reach a verdict.
So they tried. Tomorrow, they will try again.
How much longer they keep up the attempt, I don’t know. It may not be for much longer, as a lot of the speculation out there is the jury could be declared hung as early as tomorrow.
In general, the Twitterati is freaking out over the proceedings. I am now convinced most of those following this case are the “vigilante”-type folks who want to hang everyone, because I noticed quite a few comments on Twitter from people who said they also watched the Casey Anthony trial and were worried this trial would be yet another letdown result. Of course, the Casey Anthony case was a totally different set of facts, so that tells you all you need to know about these trial junkies.
As far as I can tell nothing less than “justice” will do for this crowd, and by justice I don’t mean a “fair trial.” No, they want the book thrown, and no other result is acceptable.
I am thinking this group makes up the vast majority of the audience for almost every major trial out there — the “hang-em-high” crowd. Either that, or they’re the only ones who are vocal about it — everyone else is either laying low or doesn’t care. Or maybe they have real jobs and cannot be bothered for that reason(!). By the way, this penalty phase case isn’t even being televised right now. This is basically the usual Twitterati reacting to what they read on Twitter again.
Personally, I cannot be bothered to rant and rave on Twitter about this or any other case, I’m simply not that fired up about it. Anyway, that is all for tonight. We’ll see what happens with this jury tomorrow in the Arias case.
As I have mentioned before, this is a big time for major court cases in the USA. The guilty verdict came down in the American Sniper murder case, and now we are waiting to find out what sentence Jodi Arias will get for the murder of Travis Alexander. This is, of course, the retrial of the penalty phase down in Phoenix. In any event, there was no decision again today, so the jury are back Tuesday.
All in all, people following this high-profile case are pretty emotional about what the outcome ought to be, and are wondering why it is taking so long to make a decision about this awful murderer.
“Why is this decision so difficult for this jury? This is a no-brainer!!” seems to be the reaction from a lot of folks. Actually, the more you think of it, though, the more you realize this case does require a brain.
Keep in mind this jury is not deciding guilt or innocence. That was decided long ago. No, these folks are deciding if she gets the death penalty! They’re deciding whether to send Arias to her death, to her grave!! Think about it.
It doesn’t surprise me that this jury is taking its time, given that the very life of this woman is at stake. And yes, Arias is a horrible individual and a criminal, but it is still an agonizing situation for this jury panel and an absolute no-win one at that. They’ll be feeling awful about themselves no matter what their decision, and beyond that, any decision they make on the death penalty will be universally condemned. If they give her the death penalty, they’ll be vilified on Twitter for pushing ahead with this death penalty barbarism. If they give her life in prison, they’ll also be vilified on Twitter for not giving her the death penalty, for letting Arias off the hook!
This jury will also be vilified if they end up a hung jury, like the last one was. So they are in a terrible spot. No matter what, nothing they do will please Twitter.
Anyway, we shall find out what happens soon enough.
As an aside, I understand a bunch of Saskatchewan Roughriders fans from frozen Canada are down in Arizona right now to take in the Arizona Coyotes game versus Anaheim tomorrow. As a bonus, I wonder if any of them plan to also check out what’s going on at the local court house at the ongoing circus that is the Arias case.
Well, this year’s Trial of the Century is over in South Africa for Oscar Pistorius, and also for those of us who stayed up late at night to tune in to it here in North America.
The sentence has been handed down. Five years in jail for culpable homicide, though lots of people are saying Pistorius got off easy. Social media is doing what social media is good at: venting outrage over the decision.
Well, if you think this is bad, you ought to see the decisions we get in Canada on a regular basis. Some of these slap-on-the-wrist sentences up here are the type that will make your blood boil. Pistorius can only wish he was sentenced in Canada instead.
The story of the sentencing here. That is it for now.
The latest Trial of the Century is wrapping up in South Africa and while the final ruling is not until tomorrow the judge has indicated that Oscar Pistorius cannot be found guilty of murder. He has been cleared of the murder charge and a decision will be announced tomorrow on lesser charges.
This pretty much removes all the drama from this trial, doesn’t it? I don’t even think I need to stay up all night to hear the final verdict. So much for this case!
I’ve had fun reminiscing lately about the OJ Simpson trial, the Trial of the Century.
But that was last century. The Oscar Pistorius murder case in South Africa is the trial of this century, and the defence has wrapped up its case today.
And not a moment too soon, because it seems like the defence case has been unravelling fast.
Last week, it was determined Pistorius was not mentally ill at the time of the killing. Since then a controversial video turned up of Pistorius supposedly reenacting the killing, and topping it off, apparently some prospective defence witnesses refused to testify.
Anyway, with the defence now resting, the Pistorius case is now adjourned for a month yet again, with closing arguments to happen at that time.
What fun! Actually, ‘what tedium’ is more like it. This case has to be setting a world record in lengthy adjournments.
The Oscar Pistorius murder trial resumes Monday with the defence calling a pathologist to testify. This ought to be good — whenever a pathologist testifies it is a big highlight at trials I have covered for the media. It is anticipated Pistorius himself will also testify at some point. That will be even better.
Of course, we had that whole delay in the trial so hopefully you used the free time to get caught up on what has happened so far. But if you are like me and had better things to do with your time, then you can check out SABC and look at what has gone on up to this point. I guess there is also supposed to be a live feed here.
Hopefully, I will be awake enough to watch it tonight, but I doubt it. While other people are gobbling up information on all that is happening in Pretoria in court, and are watching that all-Pistorius trial cable TV channel they have going, I have personally had a hard time getting into this trial. Personally, I found OJ Simpson’s murder trial was far more interesting due to the cast of characters called to the stand, but that is just me. Maybe things will get more interesting now that the defence are the ones calling witnesses. I hope so. That is it for now.
This Oscar Pistorius trial is proving to be riveting stuff. The whole world is watching and this is taking on OJ Simpson proportions — although, frankly, the cast of characters in the OJ case were far more colorful.
The coverage of this case has been massive. For the domestic networks in South Africa, this is about the biggest news story they ever had there, apart from Mandela. Of course, for me personally it has been very hard to follow the trial because the testimony is going on in the middle of the night (CST), so I am having a very hard time staying up late to tune in. If you don’t catch the trial live, well, it just isn’t worth it in my book.
The SABC has been covering this thing non-stop and so have the folks at eNCA. I have to give props, though, to the online News24 coverage, which runs a live stream (usually SABC) and a live blog updating the proceedings at the same time.
Here are some links to the News24 coverage from the past week for those of you trying to get caught up with what has been happening (such as myself): Day 1 here, here and here, Day 2 here and here, Day 3 here and here, Day 4 here and here, and Day 5 here and here.
Day 6 starts shortly. Have fun, trial addicts.
And after seeing this trial all I have to say is: the Mark O’Mara defence team cleaned the clock of the prosecution. The story from CNN.
The latest trial du jour to get the attention of everyone in the US national media is the George Zimmerman second-degree murder trial in Florida. He’s the guy accused in the killing of young Trayvon Martin.
Overall, I can’t say I’ve been impressed at all by Zimmerman. It sure looks to me like he went way, way over the line in “self-defence”. Having said that, though, I really do have a bad feeling about this trial. My big fear is Zimmerman will end up walking and that we’ll end up with a repeat of the LA Riots.
Personally, I hope we get a just verdict that people will accept in the end. We’ll see what transpires. The trial resumes today.
The never-ending Jodi Arias trial is indeed never-ending. The jury deadlocked on the issue of handing Arias the death penalty during the penalty phase, and a mistrial was declared today.
That means we do this whole penalty phase all over again with 12 new jurors starting on July 18, thus assuring everyone at HLN of continued employment.
This really is getting to be a gravy train for almost all the people involved in this trial — everyone except for Arias herself and the victims’ families. In particular, prosecutor Juan Martinez has emerged as a big celebrity and will have no trouble getting big-bucks offers from private firms if he wishes to cash in. Heck, he could even end up hosting a legal TV show if he wants.
But first, of course, they have to get this nuisance called sentencing out of the way, and that is proving a bit of a hurdle at the moment.
I watched the first-degree murder guilty verdict come down today in the Jodi Arias trial, just like the rest of you trial addicts out there.
What struck me, as usually is the case with these sorts of sensational cases, were the scenes of people outside the courthouse in Phoenix. They were hundreds of them standing around, many of them on their iPhones doing their Tweeting and this and that. Then they were celebrating once the verdict was read. It was as if their team had won the Stanley Cup! Then they would cheer for the people coming out of the court house as if they were celebrities on the red carpet!
I’ve covered quite a few court cases but have never experienced this kind of thing. About the most excitement I’ve seen outside a courthouse were those times when there would be demonstrations or the like, but those instances were never on the scale of the mob scene in Phoenix today.
Believe it or not, this trial still isn’t over. I was hoping it would be, but it isn’t. The next step now is the aggravation phase to see whether Arias is guilty of cruelty, so there will be arguments by the prosecutor and the defence on that.
Of course, there is also the sentencing phase — with the jury deciding whether Arias should die by lethal injection! Imagine having to make a choice like that, folks — having to decide on someone else’s life.
So the drama is far from over. It looks like we have yet to be finished with this case yet.
The Jodi Arias death-penalty murder case has gone to the jury, and the most boring part of the trial begins — waiting for the verdict.
The first day of deliberations are over and the jury has retired for the night. HLN, who has hogged coverage of the Jodi Arias trial from day one, has this account of the day, including a complete rundown on what has happened during the whole trial, for those of you wondering what all the fuss is about.
As well, here is sister network CNN’s recap of a trial they refer to as “R-rated” and a “media circus.”
Do I detect condescension from CNN towards the Arias trial? This story may not be the most important news ever, but a lot of people are sure interested in it.
I notice the courthouse in Phoenix had to switch to a lottery system because there is so much demand for seats. Anyway, closing arguments are finally on in the Jodi Arias case. The greatest gravy train in the history of HLN and the Nancy Grace show is ending soon. About time. HLN’s trial live blog is here.
While I could feel sorry for myself for not being there to cover this sensational trial, the fact is there is going to be plenty of courtroom stuff for me to cover next week, and it won’t be quite as gruesome. So I shouldn’t complain.