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WBEN NewsRadio 930>Audio & Video on Demand>>Ferguson Legal Issues in Focus: Paul Cambria & Dennis Vacco; Pt I

Ferguson Legal Issues in Focus: Paul Cambria & Dennis Vacco; Pt I

Aug 21, 2014|

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Automatically Generated Transcript (may not be 100% accurate)

We're discussing the events that continued to unfold in Ferguson Missouri. Are in the studio guest is buffalo defense started Paula camera and on the phone is Donald -- partner with the law firm -- Mathias Wexler and Friedman LLP. Gentlemen thank you for your input this morning and done -- -- -- begin with you Paula is already. He's already commented on this -- like good to hear from you what do you make of Missouri's governor. Looking for vigorous prosecution of this case and by that we presume he means vigorous prosecution of those police officer. Who fired the fatal shot popular governors say that's when a grand jury in virtually is just started to collect evidence. -- agenda that and -- going to use and employ all. It's it it is interesting them. I happen to -- Jay Nixon and from mcsame. As attorney general it was once the attorney general of Missouri. We Serbs together. And has his prosecutorial experience fact that he was once a prosecutor so. Makes his statement that last -- all the more curious and and and frankly disappointing I think at. The situation and streets and -- Ferguson are are already complicated enough already emotional enough. That these citizens of Missouri and Ferguson. Really don't need the governor. Pre judging the the outcome would -- investigation. I think she would have been better served if he had talked about these figures and thorough. -- stone -- investigation. Which the DEA this has pledged to do that no other elements to this as well -- I've read recently where. -- -- Jay Nixon has already best for the prosecutors stepped down. Because prosecutor apparently some years ago. His father was a police officer they wait this officer was gunned down actually American males. So governor election results so called on the deity. Stepped aside claiming that he can that be fair impartial there I think those are. Inflammatory statements that he's gone too far the -- he'd be what DA now the procedure and do their jobs. Which is a thorough investigation. When it just makes things in ever more complicated there it's Dennis do you think that the at the cup was justified based on what you know so far. And do you think he'll be indictment. Well -- you know. That it was a readings -- yesterday. Preparations interview about the autopsy. And then -- -- struck by the -- gets trapped and added Richard Paul would have more to say about that. But that the wound up of their head. Really causes -- -- we have a lot of questions about what precisely happened there. I think would be reduced as irresponsible forming -- A forecast that up -- and clinging. Jay Nixon was -- responsible for a powerful figures such fusion. It's important they happen is that throw grand jury investigation. They need to talk all the witnesses. At this -- that the prosecution. Or the investigation in this case need to get -- street and the entry room what the prosecutors and invest in Tunisia. OK Paul let's bring you an honest people who serve on a grand jury we never find out who they are so. I mean these people mostly commodity the open we don't know who they are so. There are relatively safe are these politicians and a Missouri. Do you think that. Me are hoping. That this police officer will be indicted because it is not and and they're worried at all hell's gonna break loose in that city. Well I think you've -- -- on the head you know they're looking to get out of the limelight have somebody else take the heat. If that's the situation than you know unfortunately they would be looking for somebody else to be a scapegoat. Com the grand juries -- curious tool. Those of us who would defend people know that the grand jury basically. The is what they prosecutor. Wants them to do I know that's a terrible statement to make but. I think that it's true you understand there -- no defense dollars before the grand jury. Prosecutor decides what questions to ask what witnesses to call whatever it is to present so it's pretty one sided. What's the benefit for the defense the benefit is that people go and make. Statements and give testimony in those transcripts are available to them and compare to what they say at trial that really the only. Benefit to to the defense so. If if someone here is hell bent on having this off Serbia's scapegoat. And be indicted they can direct what happens before -- agree injury and achieve an indictment and then it goes from there. Now there's two separate -- Go ahead and. But -- erupting so you know obviously I'm going to be just -- dispute by my friend and colleague about. Granger reset doing always always doing checked with prosecutor west and to do -- keep in mind. And so they always Dennis. Well that. -- -- egg -- -- point but I I think. That we got to keep in mind that grand juries. Because the offense -- aren't involved. Randomly selected in the random selected from the the population wolf. -- specific -- so. Much like my expectation that this grand jury. Saint Louis county is going to reflect the demographics. Of that funky. Which I think will will make a presentation. Much much more down the middle of the fairway so without an awful lot of influence one way or the other from the posture. I know atoms in a perfect world. In the real world. When you get to decide who's the witness what questions RS. And what evidence it's podium that's pretty one sided you can pretty much direct what happens sure their rogue grand -- now and then. We saw some evidence of that recently. In case here locally but for the most part grand juries. Are directed by the prosecution. There are a state and federal investigations right there are two different investigator would. The S one would be. Deciding whether or not. There was a crime committed in killing. The young man mr. brown. The other would decide whether or not civil rights violation occurred that would be the federal side. And it would be the same set of facts just different -- laws. From a federal standpoint it wouldn't be murder would be civil rights violent. You know it's been mentioned. Those police officer who fired the fatal shots. Was injured during the confrontation with the young boy you know it's been mentioned that. The boy apparently came at him and there is evidence from one autopsy. That is so from the -- -- -- the top of the head. Which makes us. Assume that his head was down as it was approaching. The well police -- but let me ask you this. The police officer. Suffering an injury. I mean to the police officer being injured does that change anything. Well sure it makes it very defensible case. I mean if someone is coming out of an arm police officer as I said before first of all that would not be rational act they haven't gone and you go after them anyway. And secondly if you -- salted. Now as far as the angle of the shot all the rest of it -- in combat situation. The dynamics of the positions of the bodies change all the time in rapidly. And it wouldn't be you -- also a shot in the top of the head would ever would take if I'm the police officer. And I were reasonably believe it and it and an individual would reasonably believe -- That that person could take my gun away from me and kill me. I will do whatever it takes to killed them and we could be rolling around women and changing our positions all over I just wanna shoot him and kill. Dennis and you probably have something. BP that there are some reports indicated that witnesses first observed an altercation where Michael Brown was leaning into the patrol -- In his this friend was relieving in the passenger window and there witnesses say that while in the patrol car while he was fleeing into -- shall our. They've -- shot was -- was fired from the what they believe was the result service revolver. So it seems -- the altercation may have started even before. Police officer got out of our. I agree with all at once once said that the that situation designated. Then you know anything can happen in the presumption of everything -- last we checked so. We're discussing the unfolding events in the Ferguson Missouri were -- in the studio -- buffalo defense attorney point embryo. And humbly telephone Dennis -- partner with the law firm -- those Mathias Wexler Friedman. LLP Dennis. There were more than one police officer involved does the shooter as we know. Is out of town isn't an undisclosed location. And and probably him will not be called to testify. Before this grand jury but what -- the what about the other policemen. That was with him. Well he becomes sick -- victim witness and we haven't heard much about what his role was in this altercation but he becomes a a key witness the player I was gonna make before for the break. That every state here's. And via the sketch and and in the statute still Walt justification. It's really the that the defensive justification. So well. That the the focus of this case will be checked the what transpired and the in the street. The steps -- the case will then have to fit into weather net this police officer. Was justified in this country that it would negate. -- otherwise potentially criminal conduct but he was justified on the law in -- what he did Paul touched that mystery moments ago. You know on street. Other rules are a lot different terms of what situation -- in your home. But that's what's what what's gonna be part of this investigation as to whether inept police officer what he was thinking what he was observing. What that reasonable person in his situation would get done. And world were -- X justifiable under the statute. Because the officer was injured. Does that help his case well it helps his case because it shows that the deceased was an aggressor of some kind I mean that's that's really where it's gonna go I like the word that -- use ignite. The situation and I agree with that. Once it's ignited and there is deadly force available. And it's a tossup as to who will wind up with -- it and who lined up on the other end of it. It seems to me that's a totally justifiable situation are you supposed to be there I mean an average person is gonna say well wait a minute. What's police officers -- say wait a minute timeout -- -- think this through now. I MI AM gonna shoot you hear there because it may look this way -- that way that's not gonna happen it's gonna be on my god I'm gonna die. And I have to make you die if you're trying to make -- guy that's how it goes. Well how does agree injuries short rule. Well you know ordinary citizens that in there and have these discussions that we're having. And now once they get the law. Again what's it'll it'll depend upon how it's how they're instructed as well. I mean prosecutors can drive instructions one way or the other I hate -- keeps it in this but it's the truth. There and there are alone and they can emphasize certain words. And so on when they're reading the instructions to the grand jury. And if somebody is hell bent on making this guy scapegoat that's what's gonna. Have to. End it'll probably don't know anybody you know more volatile -- as days unfold. You go ahead Dennis. As I do agree with -- in terms. That the prosecutor meaning to the legal advisor to the grand jury and by that I mean that he he will deliver. -- the instructions inauguration Natalie we'll see what the law is in terms of that -- that homicide statute. But it also told what the law is regarding the potential of justification that the things that we've been talking about over desktops but miniature. But -- -- also has the ability. Stand there and told a grand jury that. I think I'm going to -- -- to suggest you -- recommend you that you deliver. They know bill because of the defense justification or he could say that net -- stable with a sense -- just Haitian. I'm going to recommend you an indictment so close by and the prosecutor can ultimately. Direct. The horse of the deliberations century. Okay are in studio guest buffalo defense attorney Paul Cameron and all the telephone Dennis Michael. Partner in the law firm -- Mathias Wexler Friedman LP were discussing the unfolding events and Ferguson Missouri.

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