In a case that bears some striking similarities to George Zimmerman’s, a 76-year-old Milwaukee man is set to stand trial this week in the 2012 shooting death a 13-year-old boy he had accused of stealing from him.
Police say John Henry Spooner confronted Darius Simmons, who lived next door with his mother, as the teen took out the trash. Spooner, who is white, had suspected that Simmons, who was black, stole $3,000 worth of shotguns from him, and demanded
that the sixth-grader return them.
Simmons denied stealing the guns, and his mother, Patricia Larry, told Spooner to go back inside.
Instead, prosecutors say, Spooner pulled out a handgun and shot the 13-year-old in the chest from near-point blank range.
“When police arrived, Spooner was still on the sidewalk, holding the gun,” according to the criminal complaint. “When told to drop the weapon, he placed it on the ground and told police, ‘Yeah, I shot him.’”
An autopsy showed that Simmons, who was unarmed, suffered a gunshot wound to his torso, according to the Associated Press. Spooner was charged with first degree murder. He pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity.
Since he said “Yeah, I shot him” that “insanity” plea doesn’t stand much chance.
Besides I’m sure “The Five” on FAUX will declare his actions perfectly justified
Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett condemned the killing. “To have a boy who’s taking out the garbage at 10:30 in the morning murdered should shock the conscience of the state,” Barrett said at the time.
Just hours before the shooting, Spooner told a local politician he was frustrated police had not arrested the boy in the alleged burglary, according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, and hinted he might take the law into his own hands.
Very George Zimmerman.
“There are other ways to deal with situations,” Alderman Bob Donovan recalled Spooner saying. Spooner’s apparent reference to vigilantism drew comparisons to Zimmerman’s killing of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin after the former neighborhood watchman followed him through a Sanford, Fla., housing complex. Zimmerman was acquitted of all charges on Saturday.
Last year, the Rev. Jesse Jackson’s Rainbow PUSH Coalition called for Spooner to be charged with a federal hate crime. On Monday, an attorney representing Simmons’ family said there’s a clear “issue of profiling” and a “race component” to the case. But Spooner has denied race was a factor in the shooting.
Just like Zimmerman Juror B37
The trial was supposed to begin in January but was delayed due to concerns about Spooner’s health.
His defense attorney, Franklyn Gimbel, said Spooner has been suffering from pneumonia.
Jury selection was completed Monday.
Aging, white Washington Post columnist Richard Cohen is just going to come right out and say it: Young black men are scary. Although he claims to “hate that Trayvon Martin is dead,” he “also can understand why Zimmerman was suspicious and why he thought Martin was wearing a uniform we all recognize.” That is, dark skin and a hooded sweatshirt. To anyone who has donned a similar “uniform” in solidarity with the dead, unarmed 17-year-old, Cohen writes, “The hoodie blinds them as much as it did Zimmerman,” which makes no sense. But onward with his dubious argument.
Cohen continues to state his case — everyone is actually terrified of black men, and that’s okay — by cherry-picking crime statistics from New York City, more than 1,000 miles north of where Martin was killed in a gated Florida subdivision. Never mind that crime rates are falling, and among African-Americans, too, but Cohen argues that “if young black males are your shooters, then it ought to be young black males whom the police stop and frisk.”
George Zimmerman, of course, was not actually an agent of law enforcement, and Martin was not carrying a gun or committing a crime. But in Cohen’s line of thinking, Martin looked like people who sometimes do: “There’s no doubt in my mind that Zimmerman profiled Martin and, braced by a gun, set off in quest of heroism,” he concludes. “The result was a quintessentially American tragedy — the death of a young man understandably suspected because he was black and tragically dead for the same reason.”
Of course Darius Simmons wasn’t wearing a hoodie. But does that matter kids?
Jeez what shitty song!
Well we know what this is really all about. It’s PAYBACK!