Just a link to a interview with Ward Bird who is serving time. the interview is the second one down. I work in the town where this happened and I can tell you the neighboring towns are turning out the support as well.
I do not know the man but given what I have been told/read. This situation is backwards. Two people, he said vs she said. Prosecutor sided with her side and now he sits in jail. She admittedly trespassed and they both state he cussed. that's where the common ground ended. when you hear more about them both you wonder what made her more believable than him.
Bottom line is the law needs to be changed because it could be any of us next. Someone standing with a firearm in hand to some would be considered a threat ( just the sight). how friendly are you with your local police / prosecutors.
Regardless of whether the man's sentence is reduced, this should serve as a very pointed reminder that everyone should know and understand the laws pertaining to the use of force, deadly force, and firearms, including the threatening display of firearms, in his or her jurisdiction.
The laws that Ward Bird was convicted of breaking have been in place for centuries. The case went all the way to the state supreme court.
A lot of people seem to have the idea that they can pull guns on people who trespass. In some places that may be lawful under some circumstances, but, absent the presence of a serious imminent threat (A, O, J, & P), not in most. His action would have been unlawful where I live and in most other jurisdictions in the United States.
I don't know the reason for that apparently widespread misconception. Too much television?
Perhaps those who may consider drawing a gun for some reason, even when they are "on their own property", would be well served to first ask, "just what do I intend to do with this thing?".
December 23, 2010, 07:17 PM
he for some reason chose not to speak so the jury heard her. his choice i wonder why. brian aitken did the same thing
December 23, 2010, 07:34 PM
he for some reason chose not to speak so the jury heard her. his choice i wonder why.
If he had testified, he would have been cross examined. His attorney apparently felt either that the basis for his defense was not strong, or that he would likely damage his own case by testifying.
He displayed the gun, and would have confirmed that. He then would have had to testify that he had had a reasonable belief that it had been immediately necessary for him to do so to defend himself. It is likely that he could not provide any evidence supporting that belief.
December 23, 2010, 07:37 PM
yea and that would make him guilty
didn't help that his niece testified she called him told him the woman was headed his way so he can't play surprised
December 24, 2010, 10:11 PM
I did read the earlier thread and noted that it was locked.
I understand that the wheels of justice were set in motion and there was no turning back. Justice cannot be wrong, so I hear.
What I do not understand is why the accuser who stated that she was threatened was given priority over the person being wronged (trespassing). Now I am not beginning to say that he should have pointed a gun at anybody ..... my point is he says he didn't.
So she says she was threatened, she was told in person not to go there.
She disregarded the warning and drove past the warning signs
she after being told to leave did not.
This makes her credible?
She has a past that is far from pristine, not allowed to discuss in court. Why?
I would guess he has had run ins with the local police given his prior arrest. Does this make him less credible now?
The Neice did call him but she also told the woman not to go there in the first place, once again selective justice?
They did not know her, they did know him. they took her word and decided to prosecute based on her word. As long as the jury followed the rules they probably could not come back with any other verdict given that he failed to tell his side of the story.
If you have ever been on the defendant side of things you will understand often the prosecutor can be playing the game and they play to win. Right and wrong some times have no bearing.
He was convicted of a standing law that right or wrong was on the books. He lost the argument of weather he was guilty of the charge. the law is a funny thing some times what the average person will worry about is not even a blip on the radar but something we take for granted can pop up and land you in jail.
Again I do not know Mr. Bird but if you could see the outpouring of support in the area he surely cannot be all bad . You cannot go into a business in any of the area towns without seeing petitions, buttons , money jars to help the cause. Just like the fellow in NJ , this is just wrong. Maybe legal, but wrong and the people know it.
In the end I will be watching to see if the law is changed there is growing support, unfortunatly Mr. bird is the catalyst.
December 24, 2010, 10:17 PM
I think the lesson here is, if you use an affirmative defense (yes I did it, but it was justified or even righteous) you have to testify. If you can't testify, you better plea bargain.
December 24, 2010, 11:33 PM
For now this thread is closed because there really isn't anything new to add.
If there is some change in this case we can certainly start a new one but for now the OP has given us a couple of links to check out if we want to so we will stop here.
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