GUILTY FL - 17 killed in Stoneman Douglas High School shooting, Parkland, 14 Feb 2018 *Arrest* #5

turaj

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SEESSEAS thanks for the update...the fact that they say defense has 60 more witnesses is beyond belief. I don't know how much authority a judge has in this but can they not be forced to pare down the list and make sure that each witness is relevant and bringing something new to the stand? This to me is not so redundant and I think if they call even 1/2 that number they are losing the jury. They have lost me..I can listen and do other things...just has to sit there and are missing their lives.
 

turaj

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I assume the hearing will be streamed?
 

SeesSeas

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SeesSeas

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SEESSEAS thanks for the update...the fact that they say defense has 60 more witnesses is beyond belief. I don't know how much authority a judge has in this but can they not be forced to pare down the list and make sure that each witness is relevant and bringing something new to the stand? This to me is not so redundant and I think if they call even 1/2 that number they are losing the jury. They have lost me..I can listen and do other things...just has to sit there and are missing their lives.
Defense calling 60 more witnesses might result in "losing the jury"? I don't think so.
Also, there are so many breaks in this trial that I'm confident the jurors aren't "missing their lives".
I think it's very important for the jurors (and society) to know and understand the events in the life of Nikolas Cruz. Nineteen years of events. Family, friends, neighbors, classmates, teachers, administrators, therapists, doctors, law enforcement, etc., testifying about their interaction/observation of his life.

Witnesses can provide some of the most crucial evidence in any legal case. For whatever reason, humans absorb stories better than pure facts. According to the twentieth-century psychologist Jerome Bruner, we are 22 times more likely to remember a fact when it's attached to a story. In short, no matter how strong your evidence may be, judges and juries will be more inclined to accept it if they have a human voice to put it into context. Witnesses provide that voice.
 

SeesSeas

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PARKLAND SCHOOL MASSACRE: HOW WILL JUDGE SCHERER'S RULINGS AFFECT OUTCOME?​

Court TV anchor Judge Ashley Willcott takes a look at recent motions in the case. For example, the judge allowed jurors to see Cruz's swastika drawings; Judge Scherer also refused to allow testimony that a neighborhood kid sodomized Cruz. (9/6/22)
 

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Does anyone know how I can keep track of the schedule in this case on the court website perhaps? I am wondering when they're back.
 

SeesSeas

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Death Penalty Mitigation: Humanizing the Hatred​

The American Bar Association (ABA) Guidelines provide that a mitigation specialist is a necessary requirement to meet the standard of care for capital cases. (ABA Guidelines 4.1(A)(1).
Humanizing a seeming monster isn't easy. It cannot be accomplished simply by attempting to weigh the good acts or the bad childhood actions of the accused against the horror of their crime. When you try that, you slip perilously close to an “eye for an eye”.

In death penalty cases, you have to focus entirely on the person the State is talking about killing, whether it makes sense; or whether it makes us safer; or whether it makes us a stronger society, to put them to death. Humanizing the hated is an extremely difficult road for the defense attorney because it is hard for the public, who are fed on sound bites of grotesquery, to grasp the importance of respecting people who do terrible things.
As the process of humanizing the “worst of the worst” unfolds, the defense attorney must first embrace the course of events and acknowledge the tragedy that brought your client to court in the first place, and remain ever cognizant of the survivors that are left behind.

One of the key differences in capital case preparation is the collection of reliable, objective documentation about the client's life history. [...]

It is the duty of counsel to lead the team in conducting an exhaustive investigation into the life history and factual circumstances of the client's case.
[...]
In addition, at least one social worker, a mitigation specialist, and an investigator are, at the very least, required to be assigned to the case. Additional experts with special training in areas that are case-specific include, but not limited to: forensic medicine/pathology, DNA, forensic psychology, forensic psychiatry, pharmacology, neuropsychology, race and/or cultural issues, substance abuse, trauma, institutional life, toxicologists, to name a few.

At least one member of the team needs to have specialized training in identifying, documenting and interpreting symptoms of mental and behavioral impairment, cognitive deficits, mental illness and developmental disabilities because these will be factors, in one form or another, that will be present in almost every single case.
[...]
To begin with, mitigation specialists are social scientists with training and experience in the forensic application of social science theory. They are investigators with special knowledge and experience in the human sciences and mental health issues. They are professionals with expertise in identifying, analyzing, interpreting, and incorporating relevant mitigation evidence into the theory of the case. They help attorneys to understand the defendant in the context of the factors that lead up to the offense.

As a general rule, the chief difference between an investigator who does not specialize in mitigation and a mitigation specialist lies in the strong clinical and/or mental health background possessed by most mitigation specialists. A mitigation specialist is trained to know the significance of the contents of most mental health and medical records or how this information may be relevant to a competent theory of mitigation.
[...]
Mitigation specialists often generate documents and visual aids that depict the client's life and identify important patterns of thought and behavior, including the client's life history chronologies, annotated genealogies, time lines, and frequency charts.

Additionally, analysis of the life history evidence enables mitigation specialists to make recommendations about the need for other experts, such as psychologists, neuropsychologist, psychiatrists, neurologists, pharmacologists, or special education experts.
[...]

COLLECTION OF MITIGATION EVIDENCE

The collection of mitigation evidence necessary for a proper and thorough mitigation packet will be voluminous. It is, in effect, a collection of the client and his or her family's entire life history. This evidence should consist of the client's entire background, including, but not limited to: education, social, medical, and mental health. Get everything. What may appear to be insignificant or irrelevant may be relevant or direct you to something of more significance.
[...]
 

SeesSeas

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Does anyone know how I can keep track of the schedule in this case on the court website perhaps? I am wondering when they're back.

The court notified jurors they need to be back in the courtroom at 9 a.m., on Sept. 12.

Court website. Not much detail about the schedule.

@mothwings - just noticed that you and I both joined Websleuths on the same date Jul 2, 2015
 

mothwings

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The court notified jurors they need to be back in the courtroom at 9 a.m., on Sept. 12.

Court website. Not much detail about the schedule.

@mothwings - just noticed that you and I both joined Websleuths on the same date Jul 2, 2015

Nice! What a perplexing synchronicity!

Thank you for the information.
 

turaj

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I guess at this point we are left to speculate that no documents requiring a hearing have been filed this week. Or my best guess is defense will show up with a bunch of motions on Monday 9/12?
 

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turaj

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Today was very frustrating...week off...defense dumping documents last night on state and ending with early dismissal after very late start. The judge seems a bit overwhelmed to say the least. Zoom witness not at all happy to have to carry this over tomorrow.
 

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Dr Jones, one of the nation’s leading FASD researchers who has a dedicated clinic for children prenatally exposed to alcohol, testified that Cruz’s biological mother drank more during her pregnancy than any woman he has ever come across in his 50-year career.
[...]
Dr Jones, who told jurors he was not being paid for his testimony, also said that he had never had so much documentation to prove a patient’s prenatal alcohol exposure.

Cruz’s team of public defenders called on Dr. Kenneth Jones last year to assess whether the Parkland shooter has alcohol-related neurodevelopmental disorder, or ARND.

Jones testified Tuesday that Cruz meets the cognitive criteria for such a diagnosis “without any question,” pointing to his impaired executive function, memory and visual spatial processing.
[...]
He called it the “most severe pattern of alcohol consumption” he’s seen while studying fetal alcohol spectrum disorder. Other drugs, like cocaine and methamphetamine, can also affect the developing fetus, but none has as great an impact as alcohol.

"You can take all of the illicit drugs you can think of — heroin, marijuana, methamphetamine — wrap them up in a single bag, and they don't hold a candle to alcohol in terms of its effect on the developing baby,” Jones said.
 

Marysmith

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Dr Jones, one of the nation’s leading FASD researchers who has a dedicated clinic for children prenatally exposed to alcohol, testified that Cruz’s biological mother drank more during her pregnancy than any woman he has ever come across in his 50-year career.
[...]
Dr Jones, who told jurors he was not being paid for his testimony, also said that he had never had so much documentation to prove a patient’s prenatal alcohol exposure.

Cruz’s team of public defenders called on Dr. Kenneth Jones last year to assess whether the Parkland shooter has alcohol-related neurodevelopmental disorder, or ARND.

Jones testified Tuesday that Cruz meets the cognitive criteria for such a diagnosis “without any question,” pointing to his impaired executive function, memory and visual spatial processing.
[...]
He called it the “most severe pattern of alcohol consumption” he’s seen while studying fetal alcohol spectrum disorder. Other drugs, like cocaine and methamphetamine, can also affect the developing fetus, but none has as great an impact as alcohol.

"You can take all of the illicit drugs you can think of — heroin, marijuana, methamphetamine — wrap them up in a single bag, and they don't hold a candle to alcohol in terms of its effect on the developing baby,” Jones said.
Wow. That’s brutal!!
 
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