Inevitably some reporter decided to go down to the gun shop/range and interview gun owners. I have no idea why they think they will get useful information out of people whose only knowledge of the case comes from the very newspapers and TV reports that are grossly misrepresenting what happened, but they come out anyway.
“The operator told him not to follow the individual , the young man, and he still did. To me, Zimmerman took his authority a little bit too far and it could be because he had a gun on him. He maybe felt like he was extra powerful or something,” Lancaster said.
Hodgkins said, “I don’t know if people feel empowered because they have guns. I don’t think that’s a good thing if you feel like you’re going to go out and stop crimes, because that’s not a good reason to own guns. Police are there for that.”
Watch the video
I think that on the whole, these gun owners represented us pretty well, but I’m still angry that the press has printed what has turned out to be a pack of lies about the case and then demands that the average gun owner react as if those lies are truth. I sent the reporter an email.
In most ways, NC Law is the same as Florida law. In NC you do not have to retreat from anywhere you have a legal right to be. You are certainly not required to attempt to retreat when your assailant is sitting on top of you and pounding your head on the pavement.
The cops handcuffed Zimmerman, put him in a police car, and took him to the station for interrogation. They then compared his statement to the physical evidence found at the scene, and to witness statements. They all matched. They all point to Treyvon attacking Zimmerman, taking him to the ground, sitting on top of him and pounding his head into the pavement. This is considered a deadly force attack in any jurisdiction, including North Carolina. It also points out that there was no duty to retreat even in states that demand you attempt to retreat because retreat is impossible when someone is sitting on top of you.
Now most of us would equate being handcuffed and hauled down to the station as an “Arrest.” The police called in “Investigative Detention.” In either case, the popular notion that Zimmerman was patted on the back, handed his gun back, and sent home to rest while the cops swept up the crime scene is certainly false.
The only specific difference I can see between Florida law and NC Law is that it is written in Florida law that if the police can’t find probable cause to dipute your claim of self defense, they can’t arrest you. Even here in North Carolina, absent probable cause the police can’t arrest you. And when the shooter’s statement, the physical evidence, and the witness statements all line up to say that it was a lawful shoot, they shouldn’t arrest you here in NC either.
Sean D Sorrentino
blogging at An NC Gun Blog
UPDATE: His answer.
Thank you for sending this email. It’s good to have this information.
I don’t expect a lengthy answer from him, he has a real job and is off doing it. The fact that he read the email means he has a chance of knowing the facts next time. He also might call and ask for help.
Getting them to call and ask when they don’t know the answer is half the battle.