Presentation on theme: "Tragedy — The Loss of Lynn Thornton Travesty — The Unjust Prosecution of Bismarck Dinius."— Presentation transcript:
Tragedy — The Loss of Lynn Thornton Travesty — The Unjust Prosecution of Bismarck Dinius
Introduction Closing Argument Themes ▪The Investigation of the LCSO & LCDA ▸ Bias ▸ Corruption ▸ Incompetence ▪Russell Perdock Is a Liar ▪The Role of the Jury ▪Boating Rules ▪The Charges — Mr. Dinius Is Not Guilty ▪Right vs. Wrong; the LCSO and LCDA Need to Learn Right from Wrong
Bias ▪# 2 Man in the LCSO ▸ Oversees Investigations ▸ Can Affect Promotions, Pay, and Termination of Subordinates ▪Hugged by Sheriff Mitchell at Scene ▪Order — No Breath Test ▪Investigators are Fellow Masonic Lodge Members ▸ John Flynn ▸ Tom Clements ▪Wrong Person Is On Trial.
Corruption ▪LCSO Officers Investigating One of Their Own ▪Failing to Report Contacts with Witnesses Who Told LCSO Officers that they Saw the Lights On ▪16-Hour Interval During Which Perdock Had Access to His Blood Sample ▪Cutting Perdock In on the Investigation ▸ The October 2006 E-mail ▸ The Higginbotham Interview in September 2008 ▸ The Flynn Interview in May 2009
Incompetence ▪Leaving the Sail Boat Unattended ▪Only Witness Slabaugh Meaningfully Interviewed Is Perdock ▸ Slabaugh Was Supposedly Brought In to Shield Against Impropriety & Improper Influence. ▪With the Exception of Dick Snyder, the Prosecution’s “Experts” Were Incompetent and Unfamiliar with Sailing ▪Granting Perdock Access to His Boat After the Accident ▪Beginning Parts of Investigation More ThanThree Years After the Accident
Perdock’s Lies ▪Lied About Preparing Son’s Breakfast ▪Lied About When He Left His Home with His Boat ▪Lied About Going to Konocti ▸ Joe Gliebe ▸ Dennis Olson ▸ Peter Erickson ▸ John Walker Yashiki-Jansen (Black Tank-Top) ▸ Myra Martinelli ▪Falsely Denied Reviewing Official LCSO Reports ▪Lied about Seeing Green
Supreme Court of the United States Duncan v. Louisiana, 391 U.S. 145, 155-156 (1968) The guarantees of jury trial in the Federal and State Constitution reflect a profound judgment about the way in which law should be enforced and justice administered. A right to jury trial is granted... in order to prevent oppression by the Government. Those who wrote our constitutions knew from history and experience that it was necessary to protect against unfounded criminal charges brought to eliminate enemies and against judges too responsive to the voice of higher authority. The framers of the constitutions strove to create an independent judiciary but insisted upon further protection against arbitrary action. Providing an accused with the right to be tried by a jury of his peers gave him an inestimable safeguard against the corrupt or overzealous prosecutor and against the compliant, biased, or eccentric judge. If the defendant preferred the common-sense judgment of a jury to the more tutored but perhaps less sympathetic reaction of the single judge, he was to have it. Beyond this, the jury trial provisions in the Federal and State Constitutions reflect a fundamental decision about the exercise of official power — a reluctance to entrust plenary powers over the life and liberty of the citizen to one judge or to a group of judges. Fear of unchecked power, so typical of our State and Federal Governments in other respects, found expression in the criminal law in this insistence upon community participation in the determination of guilt or innocence.
Boating Rules ▪Boating Rules Violated by Russell Perdock: ▸ Rule 5: Look-Out ▸ Rule 6: Safe Speed ▸ Rule 7: Risk of Collision ▸ Rule 8: Action to Avoid Collision ▸ Rule 13: Overtaking ▸ Rule 18: Power Driven Vessel to Keep Out of Way of Sailing Vessel ▸ Rule 19: Safety in Restricted Visibility ▪Boating Rules Violated by Bismarck Dinius: ▸∅
Count 1 — Felony BUI ▪Simple Way to Decide this Charge: ▸ Ask yourselves: Has the prosecution has proven beyond a reasonable doubt that the sail boat’s stern light was off? ▸ If your answer is no, you must acquit on Count 1. ▸ This is the law, as determined by the court. ▪The Stern Light Was On. ▸ It was on, when the sail boat left Richmond Park. –Jim Ziebell (called by prosecution) –Mark Weber –Stephanie Green (former law enforcement officer) –Jeannie Strak –Julie Knight
Count 1 (continued) The Stern Light Was On. ▸ The Stern Light Was On When the Sail Boat Sailed Past Doug Jones’ Property at Bayshore. –Doug Jones (called by prosecution) ▸ The Stern Light Was On At the Time of the Accident: –Dr. William Chilcott –Brian Stole –Mark Weber ▪
Count 1 (continued) The Prosecution’s Flimsy Evidence that the Lights Were Supposedly Off ▪So-Called “Expert” Testimony ▸ Toby Baxter –Never Previously Qualified as Expert –His Photos Reveal Wave & Asymmetrical Coil Spacing –The Photos are not an Optical Illusion
Count 1 (continued) The Prosecution’s Flimsy Evidence that the Lights Were Supposedly Off (Continued) ▪The Prosecution Has Unsuccessfully Tried to Prove a Negative. ▪Not Seeing Lights ≠ Proof That Lights Were Off. ▸ Russell Perdock & Passengers ▸ The Fishermen ▸ The Young Ladies ▪The Cabin Lights Were On — Sgt. Ostini ▸ The Cabin Lights Are Visible. ▪Blending of Stern Light and Shore lights ▪Toggle Switches Change Position in Crashes.
Count 1 (continued) Alcohol Consumption ▪Mr. Dinius Was Drinking. ▪His Blood Alcohol Level Was.12 After the Accident. ▪His Sobriety Level Had Nothing to Do with the Accident. ▸ Nobody on the Sail Boat Could Have Done Anything to Get Out of the Way of the Baja Outlaw. –The Sail Boat Was Being Overtaken. It’s Only Obligation Under the Rules Was to Maintain Its Course. ▸ Perdock Rear-Ended Them. ▸ Handling a Tiller is Like Pulling the Handle of a Little Kid’s Play Wagon.
Count 1 (continued) Proximate Cause ▪Even If You Conclude, Beyond a Reasonable Doubt, that the Stern Light Was Off, Mr. Dinius Is Still Not Guilty on Count 1. ▪Russell Perdock’s Recklessness Was the Sole Cause of the Accident. ▸ Perdock was Driving at a Ridiculous Speed. ▸ Perdock had been Drinking. ▸ Perdock was Not Wearing his Glasses. ▪The Only Other Possible (Highly Unlikely and Speculative) Contributing Causes Would Have Been Somebody on the Sail Boat Turning Off the Navigation Lights, Or the Stern Light Burning Out Before the Crash. ▸ Such events would not be Mr. Dinius’ fault.
Counts 2 & 3 Misdemeanor BUI ▪Mr. Dinius Is Not Guilty of these Charges If the Prosecution Has Not Proven, Beyond a Reasonable Doubt, that Mr. Dinius Was Operating the Sail Boat. ▪Who Was Operating the Sail Boat? ▸ Mark Weber Was Running the Show. ▸ It Was His Sail Boat. ▸ Mr. Dinius Was Admittedly at the Tiller. –He Was Following Directions from the Operator, Mark Weber. ▪Mr. Weber Was the Skipper; Mr. Dinius Was a Crew Member.
Right vs. Wrong The LCSO and the LCDA Need to Learn Right from Wrong
You Can Make This Right ▪The Jury Has the Power to Correct Wrongdoing by Government Officials. ▪The District Attorney Has Prosecuted the Wrong Man. ▪Lynn Thornton Deserves a Just Result. ▸ Russell Perdock Caused Her Death. ▪You — a Jury of Mr. Dinius’ Peers — Have the Power to Tell the District Attorney, with Your Verdict, that this Prosecution is Wrong.