- Zimmerman is not a flight risk
- there will still be 14 impartial jurors to be found
- frustration in the community won't build to a boiling point
The initial reason given to the press by the Sanford Police Department for releasing Zimmerman was that there was not enough probable cause for an arrest. Probable cause is defined as reasonable grounds for holding a belief that justifies bringing a legal proceeding against a person. The burden of proof is not the same for an arrest as for a conviction of a crime. A police officer simply must have a strong suspicion, based on observable facts, that a crime has been committed.
We aren't asking for a conviction.
Since the time this case has been covered nationally, the public has been inundated with bits and pieces of information that appear to be ample probable cause for arrest. From the things we have heard, we could be forgiven for developing a focus on a particular charge, even a particular verdict. But most people haven't gone that far. I have been impressed with the fact that the vast majority of people continue to press instead for two things:
- an arrest and trial, so that a jury can sort out what happened
- an investigation of the Sanford PD and the DA's office
Certainly there have been irresponsible voices on the fringe. But the consensus has been more thoughtful. The majority of journalists, pundits, elected officials, community leaders, and writers in the blogosphere are simply calling for appropriate legal action. And I have observed that in my own circle of family and friends, everyone seems to simply want answers.
Just tell us what gives!
Americans are savvy enough to be skeptical of the fragments that have leaked out so far. We can't help but to form opinions, but mostly we are just waiting for those who are privy to the all the verifiable facts to either make an arrest or tell us what it is we are missing.