Citizen’s Arrest or Civil Disobedience? by Alton H. Maddox Jr.

Listen Sibling, I come in peace,

“We see [our young] when they come home, sometimes.” — Onitaset Kumat

Today’s article is a must read for those who want justice for Trayvon Martin.  The Occidental media is fooling us once again.  A citizen’s arrest of George Zimmerman is in order.  “Stand Your Ground” is not a tool against arrest, but an argument to be had in court.  The Occidental media and Black misleaders are profiting off of our deceased.  Circulate wanted posters.  Get Zimmerman arrested.  And organize against the myth that Occidentals are capable of policing Originals: Orientals aren’t policed by Occidentals and they also have no problem with stop-and-frisk or the frequent government-sanctioned murder of their youth: see the Story of Rekia Boyd, the Story of Emmett Till, the Story of Trayvon Martin, the Story of Ramarley Graham and the Allegory of the Inevitable Murder.  And on point, do not forget this author, Alton H. Maddox Jr.  Who was illegally barred and globally censored for being one of the few African lawyers who would fight for us.  Write me to get more of his emails; and subscribe here to share articles that will make us proud to have many independent, prosperous Black communities here and abroad.  Write too to help build African Blood Siblings Community Centers.  Subscribe, share, love.

Citizen’s Arrest or Civil Disobedience?
By Alton H. Maddox, Jr.

  On February 26, 2012, George Zimmerman, in Sanford, FL, fatally shot an unarmed Trayvon Martin.  There was no probable cause for his seizure.  This is a homicide and it requires the prosecuting agency in Florida to immediately empanel a grand jury and vigorously seek an indictment.  Any homicide requires a criminal prosecution and a jury verdict.

So far, Zimmerman is offering reasons why he should not be arrested for the homicide.  He argues that Florida has a license to kill law which exonerates him from any criminal charges.  The point that he is missing, however, is that only a judge or a jury may find a reason for an acquittal.

The condition precedent for an acquittal is an arrest.  Zimmerman is not willing to submit himself to the jurisdiction of the court and public officials are not willing to arrest him.  In the meantime, no one is willing to effect a citizen’s arrest of him even though probable cause exists for his arrest.

When animal rights activists obtained evidence that Michael Vick had abused some dogs, they demanded swift and certain justice.  Both the United States and the Commonwealth of Virginia invoked their criminal laws to successfully initiate criminal actions against Vick who could explain his actions at trial.  He could also present character evidence at trial.

Public officials claim that Florida’s “stand your ground law” has actually muddied the waters.  This law may muddy a conviction but it does not muddy an arrest.  Any claim of self-defense may be invoked after the prosecution has presented its case to a petit jury.  It is premature to present this claim of self-defense before trial.  The media should back off.

A claim of self-defense is a jury question.  It is incumbent on a defendant to make this claim at trial.  It should be aired before a judge or petit jury.  A defendant may also offer character evidence at trial.  Zimmerman, however, chooses to try a murder prosecution in the media while he is in hiding.

It is good for the governor of Florida to appoint a special prosecutor to show a lack of bias in local officials but Zimmerman must be taken into police custody forthwith.  This arrest can be achieved by a citizen.  The special prosecutor must be unbiased and the grand jury investigation should have started yesterday.  Zimmerman has already admitted that he killed Martin.

Instead of making a citizen’s arrest, Rev. Al Sharpton is urging civil disobedience.  This advice is wrong-headed and suicidal.  Civil disobedience has no place in jumpstarting the arrest process.  Persons who engage in civil disobedience to arrest a suspect are engaged in a questionable tactic since those same persons can effect the arrest of Zimmerman without fearing an arrest of themselves.

Given the fact that Rev. Sharpton heads the Madison Avenue Initiative, this idiotic ploy will only help the media and its advertisers.  These false arrests will add excitement to evening news program in addition to public affairs programming.  Rev. Sharpton is cashing in on a dead body.

Black’s Law Dictionary defines “civil disobedience” as follows:

A deliberate but nonviolent act of lawbreaking to
call attention to a particular law or set of laws
believed by the actor to be of questionable
legitimacy or morality. [Emphasis added]

The protest of the killing of Trayvon Martin also involves the lack of an arrest.  The right to arrest Zimmerman is clear.  To be sure, some persons do have concerns about the text of Florida’s self-defense laws but the problem is not the failure of anyone to invoke the arrest laws of Florida.   Civil disobedience makes no sense in provoking the arrest of Zimmerman.  It is civil suicide.

In effecting the arrest of a criminal suspect, an arrest by a law enforcement officer is the second option.  There can be a citizen’s arrest and not civil disobedience.  Moreover, “wanted posters” should be circulated to encourage Zimmerman to come out of hiding.  The arrest of Zimmerman by a citizen is lawful. It is also lawful to circulate “wanted posters”.

2 thoughts on “Citizen’s Arrest or Civil Disobedience? by Alton H. Maddox Jr.

  1. Brother Oni,
    I read this post by Alton Maddox this morning, and commented concerning it this morning on African Blood Syblings. If this is the case, then this is what Sharpton and Jackson should be telling the people and let them put it to this Special Prosecutor. Alton Maddox always says that “We knock on the wrong doors, talk to the wrong people and ask the wrong questions.” Once he explained the law, it becomes crystal clear what he is talking about. WHY ISN’T THIS SPECIAL PROSECUTOR FOLLOWING THE LAW?

    1. It’s in Maddox’s next letter:

      “Vigilantism” is not new to American jurisprudence. It predates the Articles of Confederation and it certainly predates the U.S. Constitution. Vigilantism is an arm of white supremacy and also an arm of the white, business community Black’s Law Dictionary defines “Vigilantism” as follows: The act of a citizen who takes the law into his or her own hands by apprehending and punishing suspected criminals.

      Vigilantism is a part of a tripartite relationship. The other components are the business community and the law enforcement community. The business community funds vigilantism and the law enforcement community protects vigilantism which, in turn, protects the private ownership of property. This is a function of capitalism.

      In the history of the United States, it has been rare for the criminal justice system to punish a white vigilante for inflicting harm on a person of African ancestry. You can count those cases on the fingers of one hand. Congress has never passed anti-lynching legislation.

      A case in point is State v. Johnson. In an unprecedented fashion, the U.S. Supreme Court assumed original jurisdiction of the lynching of Ed Johnson who allegedly raped a white woman. Afterwards, law enforcement personnel would hound the two Black lawyers out of the United States. They had successfully confronted vigilantism in the U.S. Supreme Court.

      There is more to the shooting of an unarmed Trayvon Martin than what is being printed or aired in the news media. George Zimmerman, the vigilante, is being protected by the law enforcement community, the business community and the news media. A special prosecutor has been appointed to hide the motives of these special interests.

      Trayvon Martin is African.

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