Monthly Archives: July 2013
First let me start this post with this thought: Trayvon Martin’s Death was a terrible tragedy.
That said, a tragedy does not a lawsuit make. The greatness of the American system of justice comes from a simple yet profound tenet, that a person is innocent until proven guilty. Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. said “This is a court of law, young man, not a court of justice.” and Charles T. Sprading once stated “Although the legal and ethical definitions of right are the antithesis of each other, most writers use them as synonyms. They confuse power with goodness, and mistake law for justice.”
Simply stated the State of Florida could not prove their case. The burden of proof beyond and to the exclusion of any reasonable doubt is a high standard. In fact it is VERY high and rightfully so.
The presumption of innocence, sometimes referred to by the Latin expression Ei incumbit probatio qui dicit, non qui negat (the burden of proof lies with who declares, not who denies), is the principle that one is considered innocent until proven guilty. Application of this principle is a legal right of the accused in a criminal trial. The burden of proof is thus on the prosecution, which has to collect and present enough compelling evidence to convince the trier of fact, who is restrained and ordered by law to consider only actual evidence and testimony that is legally admissible, and in most cases lawfully obtained, that the accused is guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. If reasonable doubt remains, the accused is to be acquitted.
Why do we have the principal of presumptive innocence?
Because of God. It is very clear that God does not want us to punish the innocent.
The example appears in the very First book of the Bible (Genesis 18:23-32),as: Continue reading