While I have been a columnist for years now, I have also remained a practicing attorney. In my early days as a lawyer, through an unusual set of circumstances, I found myself serving as lead counsel for a 17-year-old boy against whom the state was seeking the death penalty. I'm sure I was too young and inexperienced, but along with a slightly more experienced and brilliant co-counsel, we somehow managed to avoid the electric chair for our client.
It was considered a success from the standpoint of the seemingly insurmountable evidence we faced, but when it concluded I vowed never to get involved in another murder case as long as I lived. There are no winners in such matters, and I am far too soft-hearted when it comes to both victims and the arguments, when strong, for the accused.
So, having tried a case -- one in which, at the time, my client would have been the youngest to ever face death row in my state -- what words of wisdom do I offer on the Zimmerman verdict? The answer is: none.
The laws that govern any case as serious as that which Zimmerman faced are so complex, and the impact of testimony and other evidence is impossible to truly comprehend outside of the courtroom. And to armchair second-guess the strategy of the prosecution or defense, much less how a jury ferreted through the facts and applied the law, is far too complicated.
There are certainly many legal analysts with much more experience in this type trial than I, and their opinions, while varied, are at least generally grounded in law and experience, if not sometimes tinged with a little emotion. But when it comes to politicians and political pundits somehow passing judgment on the decision of a jury, there is not much more to say but forgive them, for they know not of what they speak.