Friday, May 19, 2006

AZ: New self-defense law won't apply in Fish trial: "A county judge has ruled a new law that makes it easier for people to claim self defense will not be applied in the case of Harold Fish, accused of shooting Grant Kuenzli at a trailhead in Pine on May 11, 2004. In response, the defense has requested Fish's trial be put on hold until the matter can be appealed to a higher court. The judge denied that request. Coconino County Superior Court Judge Mark Moran ruled Tuesday that the new law, which changes the burden of proof from the defense to the prosecution, does not apply in Fish's case, currently in trial. The defense argued the law applies to the Fish case because the change is a procedural one, which state law allows to be applied to cases filed before the law went into effect. The prosecution argued that the law does not apply because the change is a substantive one, and therefore, because Fish was charged under the old law, the old law still applies."

Guns, gun laws, and liberty: "The heart of virtually every citizen of America went out to the family of little Kayla Rolland after a classmate took her life with a .32 caliber revolver on February 29 in Mt. Morris, Michigan. As with the Columbine High School shootings in Colorado last year, we all feel pained and distraught about such senseless violence, and we wonder what has gone wrong and what can be done to prevent any recurrences. In the wake of these tragedies, legislators in every state are taking up the issue of gun control. The challenge is to express appropriate grief and concern about these things without allowing hyped emotions, rhetorical window-dressing, or futile 'quick fixes' to rule the day. Political jockeying to prove who is most outraged by violence must not overwhelm facts, logic, and experience."

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