Pronk Pops Show 35, July 6, 2011: Segment 1: The Legal Standard In A Murder Case: Prove It Beyond A Reasonable Doubt–Suspicion And Opinion Is Not Enough–Casey Anthony Murder Case–Not Guilty–Videos

Posted on July 6, 2011. Filed under: Philosophy, Politics, Radio, Videos, Violence, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , |

Pronk Pops Show 35:July 6, 2011 

Pronk Pops Show 34:June 29, 2011

Pronk Pops Show 33:June 22, 2011

Pronk Pops Show 32:June 15, 2011

Pronk Pops Show 31:June 8, 2011

Pronk Pops Show 30:June 2, 2011

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Listen To Pronk Pops Podcast or Download Shows 16-22 (Part 1)

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Segment 1: The Legal Standard In A Murder Case: Prove It Beyond A Reasonable Doubt–Suspicion And Opinion Is Not Enough–Casey Anthony Murder Case–Not Guilty–Videos

“…In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defence. …”

Amendment VI to the United States Constitution

Circumstantial Evidence

“…Circumstantial Evidence is also known as indirect evidence. It is distinguished from direct evidence, which, if believed, proves the existence of a particular fact without any inference or presumption required. Circumstantial evidence relates to a series of facts other than the particular fact sought to be proved. The party offering circumstantial evidence argues that this series of facts, by reason and experience, is so closely associated with the fact to be proved that the fact to be proved may be inferred simply from the existence of the circumstantial evidence.

The following examples illustrate the difference between direct and circumstantial evidence: If John testifies that he saw Tom raise a gun and fire it at Ann and that Ann then fell to the ground, John’s testimony is direct evidence that Tom shot Ann. If the jury believes John’s testimony, then it must conclude that Tom did in fact shoot Ann. If, however, John testifies that he saw Tom and Ann go into another room and that he heard Tom say to Ann that he was going to shoot her, heard a shot, and saw Tom leave the room with a smoking gun, then John’s testimony is circumstantial evidence from which it can be inferred that Tom shot Ann. The jury must determine whether John’s testimony is credible. …”

rea·son·a·ble doubt

Beyond a reasonable doubt is the standard of proof required in most criminal cases within an adversarial system. Generally the prosecution bears the burden of proof and is required to prove their version of events to this standard. ….


1. A feeling or thought that something is possible, likely, or true.
2. A feeling or belief that someone is guilty of an illegal, dishonest, or unpleasant action.

Casey Anthony verdict NOT GUILTY, Nancy Grace, HLN, and TruTV completely OWNED

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casey anthony trial = j chaney mason speech re- teaching you

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Casey Anthony Trial Starts Court Rejects Motions on Evidence

Will Circumstantial Evidence be Enough to Convict Casey Anthony?

casey Anthony trial verdict discussion with vinnie politan view of juror 07/05/2011

Casey Anthony Trial | Acquittal Requested & Denied

Legal Experts Analyze Casey Anthony Verdict

Jury concludes Anthony isn’t a murderer

People outside courtroom shocked after Casey Anthony verdict

Breaking: Casey Anthony Shocker

Background Articles and Videos

Sherlock Holmes (1954) The Case of the Winthrop Legend pt 3

Casey Anthony Not Guilty in Slaying of Daughter

“…After nearly six weeks of testimony, a jury of seven women and five men rejected the prosecution’s contention that Ms. Anthony had murdered Caylee, 2, by dosing her with chloroform, suffocating her with duct tape and dumping her body in a wooded area. They did, however, find her guilty of lesser charges of providing false information to law enforcement officers.

In a sign that jurors had little difficulty reaching a verdict, the jury did not ask to review any evidence and reached a decision in fewer than 11 hours. Jurors, who were imported from the Clearwater area and had been sequestered for six weeks, declined to talk with reporters and returned home to Pinellas County.

When the verdict was read, Ms. Anthony, 25, who faced a possible death sentence, cried quietly, the relief made plain on her face. After the jury left the courtroom, she broke down and sobbed, hugging her lawyer, Jose Baez, tightly. She has spent about two and a half years in jail awaiting trial. She is expected to be released soon because she is not likely to serve any more time for misdemeanors. Ms. Anthony was also found not guilty of aggravated child abuse.

Her parents, George and Cindy, who lost a granddaughter and then listened in court as Mr. Baez blamed the family for Caylee’s death, sat stone-faced after the verdict was read. Prosecutors, who had entered the courthouse with broad smiles and to cheers, sat stunned.

The defense had argued from the start that Caylee drowned accidentally in the family swimming pool and that the death was concealed by a panicked George Anthony and Casey Anthony.

It was unclear if that version of Caylee’s death swayed jurors. But the circumstantial nature of the prosecution’s case seemed to be insurmountable. There was no direct evidence tying Ms. Anthony to the death of her daughter. Forensic evidence was tenuous, and no witnesses ever connected her to Caylee’s death. Investigators found no traces of Ms. Anthony’s DNA or irrefutable signs of chloroform or decomposition inside the trunk of Ms. Anthony’s car, where prosecutors said she stashed Caylee before disposing of her body. The prosecution was also hurt by the fact that nobody knows exactly when or how Caylee died; her body was too badly decomposed to pinpoint cause of death. And it permitted Mr. Baez, Ms. Anthony’s lawyer, to create a reasonable doubt in jurors’ minds — despite the prosecution’s relentless portrayal of her as a callous liar who sought to kill Caylee so she could lead a carefree life of boyfriends and bars. …”

Casey Anthony Acquittal Leaves Big Question: Who Killed Caylee?

“…Many troubling revelations came to light during the case that may never fully be explored now that double jeopardy attaches. The biggest question is the manner of Caylee Anthony’s death. Although the prosecution attempted to cover all bases during the case, especially by throwing suspicion on Anthony’s father, George, a former detective, they were never able to prove that Caylee’s death was murder.

The prevailing theory now is that Caylee accidentally drowned in the swimming pool and the family immediately engaged in an elaborate cover-up that included fictional trips to Disneyland, an imaginary nanny and an entire social network of friends and caregivers that simply didn’t exist.

The shocking end to this case means there is still a big mystery to unravel: just how did the angelic, innocent, happy child meet such an untimely end? …”

Circumstantial evidence

“…Circumstantial evidence is evidence in which an inference is required to connect it to a conclusion of fact. By contrast, direct evidence supports the truth of an assertion directly—i.e., without need for any additional evidence or the intervening inference.

On its own, it is the nature of circumstantial evidence for more than one explanation to still be possible. Inference from one piece of circumstantial evidence may not guarantee accuracy. Circumstantial evidence usually accumulates into a collection, so that the pieces then become corroborating evidence. Together, they may more strongly support one particular inference over another. An explanation involving circumstantial evidence becomes more valid as proof of a fact when the alternative explanations have been ruled out.

Circumstantial evidence allows a trier of fact to deduce a fact exists.[1] In criminal law, the inference is made by the trier of facts in order to support the truth of assertion (of guilt or absence of guilt).

Testimony can be direct evidence or it can be circumstantial. If the witness claims they saw the crime take place, this is considered direct evidence. For instance, a witness saying that the defendant stabbed the victim is direct evidence. By contrast, a witness who says that she saw the defendant enter a house, that she heard screaming, and that she saw the defendant leave with a bloody knife gives circumstantial evidence. It is the necessity for inference, and not the obviousness of a conclusion, that determines whether or not evidence is circumstantial.

Forensic evidence supplied by an expert witness is usually circumstantial evidence. A forensic scientist who testifies that ballistics proves the defendant’s firearm killed the victim gives circumstantial evidence from which the defendant’s guilt may be inferred. (Note that an inference of guilt could be incorrect if the person who actually fired the weapon was somebody else.)

On the other hand, the additional circumstantial evidence of the defendant’s fingerprint on the trigger would dovetail with this piece to provide corroborating evidence.

The two areas in which circumstantial evidence is of most importance are civil and criminal cases where direct evidence is lacking. …”

“…Criminal law

Circumstantial evidence is used in criminal courts to establish guilt or innocence through reasoning.

With obvious exceptions (immature, incompetent, or mentally ill individuals), most criminals try to avoid generating direct evidence. Hence the prosecution usually must resort to circumstantial evidence to prove the mens rea levels of “purposely” or “knowingly.” The same goes for tortfeasors in tort law, if one needs to prove a high level of mens rea to obtain punitive damages.

One example of circumstantial evidence is the behavior of a person around the time of an alleged offense. If someone was charged with theft of money and was then seen in a shopping spree purchasing expensive items, the shopping spree might be circumstantial evidence of the individual’s guilt.

Forensic evidence

Other examples of circumstantial evidence are fingerprint, blood analysis or DNA analysis of the evidence found at the scene of a crime. These types of evidence may strongly point to a certain conclusion when taken into consideration with other facts, but if not directly witnessed by someone when the crime was committed, they are still considered to be circumstantial in nature. However, when proved by expert witnesses, they are usually sufficient to decide a case especially in the absence of any direct evidence. Owing to the development in forensic methods, old undecided cases (or cold cases) are frequently resolved.

A popular misconception is that circumstantial evidence is less valid or less important than direct evidence. This is only partly true: direct evidence is popularly, but mistakenly, considered more powerful. Many successful criminal prosecutions rely largely or entirely on circumstantial evidence, and civil charges are frequently based on circumstantial or indirect evidence. Much of the evidence against convicted American bomber Timothy McVeigh was circumstantial, for example. Speaking about McVeigh’s trial, University of Michigan law professor Robert Precht said, “Circumstantial evidence can be, and often is much more powerful than direct evidence”. [1] The 2005 murder trial of Scott Peterson was another high-profile conviction based heavily on circumstantial evidence.

Indeed, the common metaphor for the strongest possible evidence in any case—the “smoking gun”—is an example of proof based on circumstantial evidence. Similarly, fingerprint evidence, videotapes, sound recordings, photographs, and many other examples of physical evidence that support the drawing of an inference, i.e., circumstantial evidence, are considered very strong possible evidence.

In practice, circumstantial evidence has an advantage over direct evidence in that it is more difficult to suppress or fabricate.[citation needed] Eyewitness testimony is notoriously inaccurate at times,[citation needed] and many persons have been convicted on the basis of perjured or otherwise mistaken testimony. Good strong circumstantial evidence can be a far more reliable basis on which to determine a verdict.[citation needed] Circumstantial evidence normally requires a witness, such as the police officer who found the evidence, or an expert who examined it, to lay the foundation for its admission. This witness, sometimes known as the sponsor or the authenticating witness, is giving direct (eye-witness) testimony, and could present credibility problems in the same way that any eye witness does.

However, there is sometimes more than one logical conclusion inferable from the same set of circumstances. In cases where one conclusion implies a defendant’s guilt and another his innocence, the “benefit of the doubt” principle would apply. Indeed, if the circumstantial evidence suggests a possibility of innocence, the prosecution has the burden of disproving that possibility. …”

Sixth Amendment to the United States Constitution

“…The Sixth Amendment (Amendment VI) to the United States Constitution is the part of the United States Bill of Rights which sets forth rights related to criminal prosecutions. The Supreme Court has applied the protections of this amendment to the states through the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.


In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defence.[note 1][1]
The Bill of Rights in the National Archives

Rights conferred

Speedy trial

Defendants in criminal cases have the right to a speedy trial. In Barker v. Wingo, 407 U.S. 514 (1972), the Supreme Court laid down a four-part case-by-case balancing test for determining whether the defendant’s speedy trial right has been violated in the case. The four factors are:

  • Length of delay: A delay of a year or more from the date on which the speedy trial right “attaches” (the date of arrest or indictment, whichever first occurs) was termed “presumptively prejudicial,” but the Court has never explicitly ruled that any absolute time limit applies.
  • Reason for the delay: The prosecution may not excessively delay the trial for its own advantage, but a trial may be delayed to secure the presence of an absent witness or other practical considerations.
  • Time and manner in which the defendant has asserted his right: If a defendant agrees to the delay when it works to his own benefit, he cannot later claim that he has been unduly delayed.
  • Degree of prejudice to the defendant which the delay has caused.

In Strunk v. United States, 412 U.S. 434 (1973), the Supreme Court ruled that if the reviewing court finds that a defendant’s right to a speedy trial was violated, then the indictment must be dismissed and/or the conviction overturned. The Court has held that, since the delayed trial is the state action which violates the defendant’s rights, no other remedy would be appropriate. Thus, a reversal or dismissal of a criminal case on speedy trial grounds means that no further prosecution for the alleged offense can take place.

Public trial

See main article: Public trial

In Sheppard v. Maxwell, 384 U.S. 333 (1966), the Supreme Court ruled that the right to a public trial is not absolute. In cases where excess publicity would serve to undermine the defendant’s right to due process, limitations can be put on public access to the proceedings. According to Press-Enterprise Co. v. Superior Court, 478 U.S. 1 (1986), trials can be closed at the behest of the government on account of there being “an overriding interest based on findings that closure is essential to preserve higher values and is narrowly tailored to serve that interest.” The accused may also request a closure of the trial; though, it must be demonstrated that “first, there is a substantial probability that the defendant’s right to a fair trial will be prejudiced by publicity that closure would prevent, and second, reasonable alternatives to closure cannot adequately protect the defendant’s right to a fair trial.

Impartial jury

Main article: Jury trial

The right to a jury has always depended on the nature of the offense with which the defendant is charged. Petty offenses—those punishable by imprisonment for not more than six months—are not covered by the jury requirement.[2] Even where multiple petty offenses are concerned, the total time of imprisonment possibly exceeding six months, the right to a jury trial does not exist.[3] Also, in the United States, except for serious offenses (such as murder), “minors” are usually tried in a juvenile court, which lessens the sentence allowed, but forfeits the right to a jury.

Originally, the Supreme Court held that the Sixth Amendment right to a jury trial indicated a right to “a trial by jury as understood and applied at common law, and includes all the essential elements as they were recognized in this country and England when the Constitution was adopted.”[4] Therefore, it was held that juries had to be composed of twelve persons and that verdicts had to be unanimous, as was customary in England. When, under the Fourteenth Amendment, the Supreme Court extended the right to a trial by jury to defendants in state courts, it re-examined some of the standards. It has been held that twelve came to be the number of jurors by “historical accident,” and that a jury of six would be sufficient[5] but anything less would deprive the defendant of a right to trial by jury.[6] Although on the basis of history and precedent the Sixth Amendment mandates unanimity in a federal jury trial, the Supreme Court has ruled that the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment, while requiring States to provide jury trials for serious crimes, does not incorporate all the elements of a jury trial within the meaning of the Sixth Amendment and does not require jury unanimity.[7]

The Sixth Amendment requires juries to be impartial. Impartiality has been interpreted as requiring individual jurors to be unbiased. At voir dire, each side may question potential jurors to determine any bias, and challenge them if the same is found; the court determines the validity of these challenges for cause. Defendants may not challenge a conviction because a challenge for cause was denied incorrectly if they had the opportunity to use peremptory challenges.

Another factor in determining the impartiality of the jury is the nature of the panel, or venire, from which the jurors are selected. Venires must represent a fair cross-section of the community; the defendant may establish that the requirement was violated by showing that the allegedly excluded group is a “distinctive” one in the community, that the representation of such a group in venires is unreasonable and unfair in regard to the number of persons belonging to such a group, and that the under-representation is caused by a systematic exclusion in the selection process. Thus, in Taylor v. Louisiana, 419 U.S. 522 (1975), the Supreme Court invalidated a state law that exempted women who had not made a declaration of willingness to serve from jury service, while not doing the same for men.

Article III, Section 2 of the Constitution requires defendants be tried by juries selected from the state in which the crime was committed. The Sixth Amendment extends the rule by requiring trials to occur in districts ascertained by statute. In Beavers v. Henkel, 194 U.S. 73 (1904), the Supreme Court ruled that the place where the offense is charged to have occurred determines the trial’s location. Where multiple districts are alleged to have been locations of the crime, any of them may be chosen for the trial. In cases of offenses not committed in any state (for example, offenses committed at sea), the place of trial may be determined by the Congress. …”


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