George Zimmerman, accused of murdering an unarmed teenager, has apparently lost his attorneys, according to the Wall Street Journal:
The lawyers for George Zimmerman, the member of a neighborhood watch group who killed an unarmed teenager, said they were withdrawing as his legal counsel, a surprise twist in a case that has riveted the nation.
“We’ve lost contact with him,” attorney Craig Sonner said at a news conference Tuesday afternoon. “He’s gone on his own.” Mr. Sonner said the last time he had communicated with his client was on Sunday. Since then, Mr. Zimmerman hadn’t returned phone calls, text messages or emails, he said.
What the hell? This comes on the same day that Zimmerman launched his own website, seeking donations for his legal defense.
Last Spring, a seven-year-old girl, Aiyana Mo’nay Stanley-Jones, was killed when police raided her family home where she was asleep on the couch. There was a crew for a reality TV filming events outside, as the police were looking for a murderer suspected of being in the building. It is a horribly sad story intertwined with the bigger story of Detroit’s decline.
“You might say that the homicide of Aiyana is the natural conclusion to the disease from which she suffered,” [Chief Medical Examiner Dr. Carl] Schmidt told me.
“What disease was that?” I asked.
“The psychopathology of growing up in Detroit,” he said. “Some people are doomed from birth because their environment is so toxic.”
WAS IT SO SIMPLE? Was it inevitable, as the doctor said, that abject poverty would lead to Aiyana’s death and so many others? Was it death by TV? By police incompetence? By parental neglect? By civic malfeasance? About 350 people are murdered each year in Detroit. There are some 10,000 unsolved homicides dating back to 1960. Many are as fucked up and sad as Aiyana’s. But I felt unraveling this one death could help diagnose what has gone wrong in this city, so I decided to retrace the events leading up to that pitiable moment on the porch on Lillibridge Street.