Drama

Smackdown Defense E2

Female attorney in courtroom

EPISODE 2 – CRIMINAL TRIAL

The drama unfolds as Marcus’ peaceful life is jeopardized by his violent past during a high-stakes criminal trial.

👩🏻‍⚖️ A district attorney’s role is not to advocate for the defendant, but to highlight negative aspects that sway jurors’ emotions and strengthen the case.

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Battling in Court

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Marcus Roberts is facing manslaughter charges, the unlawful killing of another person without premeditation or malice aforethought. The air is heavy with tension as this legal drama unfolds, becoming a battleground for conflicting narratives.

The prosecutor argues that Marcus, being a skilled fighter, used too much force against Wayne. She says Wayne, who was mentally ill and acted impulsively, wasn’t a real threat. According to her, Marcus should have used less force, and his actions led to Wayne’s tragic death.

Determined to secure a conviction, the prosecutor presents evidence of Marcus’ knockout victories throughout his fighting career. She argues that this casts doubt on his claim of acting in self-defense. DA Hutchins then interviews a responding officer.

Prosecutor: “Officer, did you observe any injuries on Mr. Roberts at the scene?”

Officer: “No, he had no visible injuries.”

Prosecutor: “Is it usual for someone in a serious fight to come away without a scratch?”

Officer: “Typically, we see some injuries.”

Prosecutor: “No further questions.”

During cross-examination, the defense lawyer endeavors to provide more context.

Defense Attorney: “Officer, is it possible for an experienced fighter to subdue an opponent with one blow?”

DA Hutchins: “Objection, the coroner couldn’t establish the number of blows.”

Defense Attorney: “Your Honor, the question seeks to establish the necessity of receiving any injuries during an altercation.”

Judge: “I’ll allow it. Officer, you may answer the question.”

Officer: “Yes, it’s rare but possible.”

👩🏻‍⚖️ Narrative persuasion involves asking a series of questions that elicit “yes” answers to subtly influence the jury’s opinions.

Defense Attorney: “Are you familiar with Mohammad Ali’s phantom punch of 1965, where he knocked out Sonny Liston?”

Officer: “Yes. There was debate, but slow-motion video showed it was possible.”

Defense Attorney: “As an officer of the law, you train in various fighting techniques, correct?”

Officer: “Yes, it’s part of our training.”

Defense Attorney: “Have you heard of Bruce Lee’s one-inch punch?”

Officer: “Yes, as a child.”

Defense Attorney: “So, is it possible for my client, trained in martial arts, to defend himself with one blow?”

Officer: “Yes, it’s possible.”

Defense Attorney: “Thank you. No further questions.”

The defense presents evidence of Marcus’ peaceful life, highlighting his commitment to meditation and his daily practice of finding inner calm. They call witnesses who attest to Marcus’ character, portraying him as someone who left the competitive world of fighting to seek peace.

Marcus’ lawyer stresses self-defense, arguing that years of training made his actions instinctive. Marcus, they say, acted to protect himself from imminent harm and had no reasonable choice but to defend himself with the necessary force.

Awaiting a Verdict

After the lawyers speak their final words, the jurors retire to deliberate. The diverse group begins passionate debates, attempting to determine the true victim. Hours turn into days as they analyze evidence, dissect testimonies, and grapple with the case’s moral complexities.

As deliberations continue, the jury remains deeply divided. Some argue for leniency, believing Marcus acted out of necessity. Others think his training should have enabled him to neutralize the threat without causing lethal harm.

The tension in the courtroom is palpable as the foreperson stands, ready to deliver the decision. Their voice trembles as they announce a deadlock. The judge, with a weary sigh, declares a mistrial.

Marcus’ heart sinks at the prospect of another trial. The mistrial offers a reprieve but also means the case is far from over. The legal storm shows no signs of abating.

Outside the courtroom, Marcus’ supporters gather, their faces a mix of relief and frustration. They offer encouragement, reminding him of his resilience throughout this legal battle. Marcus draws strength from their unwavering belief in his innocence.

As the court declares a mistrial, Marcus Roberts finds himself caught in a whirlwind of emotions and uncertainties. He is grateful for the reprieve, but anxious about revisiting the case in the future.

The civil trial looms ahead, threatening to strip Marcus of everything he has left. The impending legal proceedings weigh heavily on him, fueling his determination to fight for his innocence.

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