Thursday, June 10, 2010
That speedy trial thing... more of a guideline than a rule.
It's been more than eighteen months since Johannes Mehserle shot Oscar Grant in the back when the young man was lying face down on the Fruitvale BART platform. The murder trial has finally begun, being held in Los Angeles county due to the high level of publicity here in the Bay Area.
The relative racial peace of the area where I live is in the hands of twelve Angelinos, none of whom are black. The prosecutors say it was murder with malice. The defense says it was just an accident. All I know is that if Mehserle doesn't spent a decade or two in jail for what he did, the place where I live is going to get a lot worse for a lot of people, myself included, and fast.
All this in the hands of a Southern California jury, much of it dependent on the competence of Southern California prosecutors. I have hopes, but I don't have high hopes.