Interesting linked article to an interview with Mark O’Mara on the open thread. At the risk of pointing out the obvious, and simultaneously upsetting the followers who believe in Mark O’Mara, may I just, well, point out the obvious. Mark O’Mara is seeking the fame and professional notoriety that comes with a massive public trial.
Mark O’Mara did not trip into this case, he was delivered into the case by his friend and colleague Mark Nejame. [Collective goal to be amid Orlando's "Power 100" - Alongside fellow power player John Morgan (see Charlie Crist, Greg Francis, Ryan Julison et al)].
From the article: To an outside observer, O’Mara and other attorneys say, a combination hearing-trial would likely look a lot like a normal trial: A jury would be selected, and the state and defense would present their cases. But once that’s done, the jury would be placed in limbo while the defense tries to convince the judge to end the case herself.
[...] The “stand your ground” hearing is set for April 22, and Circuit Judge Debra Nelson has made it clear that she opposes any delay. The judge said last week that she wouldn’t grant a continuance “unless there are extenuating, extraordinary circumstances.”
But O’Mara said the defense doesn’t have time to prepare its case before that date, nor does it have the money. “We don’t have the finances to pay for experts to come [at all],” he told the Orlando Sentinel. “We certainly don’t have the finances to have them come twice.”
[...] However, Robert Buonauro, an Orlando lawyer who has handled several “stand your ground” hearings, argued that combining the immunity hearing with the trial is counterintuitive.
[Unless there is another unstated goal..... Duh ! /SD]
“The whole purpose of the immunity statute is to avoid a trial,” Buonauro said. “I think it’s totally contrary to the concept.”
[BINGO and, well Duh!..... /SD ]
The combination approach would also eliminate one of the much-heralded benefits of immunity hearings, Buonauro said: the chance to preview the state’s case, and the testimony of key witnesses, well before trial.
“If I can get my client off on an immunity grounds prior to a trial, I think it’s more beneficial to my client,” Buonauro said. “I can’t think of a situation where I would want to do it” the way O’Mara may propose.
O’Mara acknowledged that skipping the pretrial hearing would be a lost opportunity but said that would be true for both sides. He said he’s confident in his case, even if Nelson decided not to rule on immunity until after the jury’s verdict.
“She could even listen to the verdict before she makes her determination,” he said, adding confidently: “I’m OK with waiting until the jury acquits.”
[...] O’Mara said that, although the trial would be costly, a combination approach would eliminate the need for a two-week immunity hearing and would also limit additional pretrial publicity, which could make jury selection more complicated.
“We’re going to have literally worldwide gavel-to-gavel publicity of the immunity hearing,” he said. (link)
*Footnote: It should always be noted that Shellie, George, Robert Jr., Robert Sr., and Gladys Zimmerman have the utmost confidence in Mark O’Mara and his approach and committment to this case. (link)