Mark O'Mara, lead defense attorney in the State vs Zimmerman trial, reiterated his plan to pursue standing and additional sanctions against the Special Prosecutor's office today in an interview with Reuters.(Reuters) - George Zimmerman's chief defense lawyer on Monday called Florida prosecutors "a disgrace to my profession" for holding back evidence for months and pledged a new effort to impose sanctions against them.
Shortly before the trial began Mr. O'Mara filed a Motion for Sanctions against the State Attorney's office sighting evidence the Prosecution held back that consisted of photos and texts from Trayvon Martin's phone. Excerpt from that motion:
3. In the hearing regarding that motion, Mr. de la Rionda advised this Court that he had not received any further reports from anybody else regarding information resident on Trayvon Martin's cell phone. This was false. See April 30, 2013 State v. Zimmerman Hearing at 16:46:00
Mr. West: We also include any other person that may have given them that information not limited just to Cellbrite
The Court: Have you received any information?
Mr. de la Rionda: No we have not talked directly to Cellbrite, Your honor.
The Court: Or anybody else?
Mr. de la Rionda: No, Your Honor
The State was fully aware at the time that there was information resident on Trayvon Martin's cell phone, including pictures of Trayvon Martin in possession of at least one weapon, pictures of marijuana plants, pictures of Trayvon Martin smoking marijuana, pictures of marijuana blunts, and texts discussing securing or purchasing firearms, and bragging about being involved in fights, etc.
Wesley White, a former prosecutor for the State Attorney's office, brought the information concerning the deletions to light. The photos had been deleted by the Information Technology person for the State Attorney's office, Ben Kruidbos. Krubidos testified that he found photos on Martin's phone that included pictures of a pile of jewelry on a bed, underage nude females, marijuana plants and a hand holding a semi-automatic pistol (Reuters). Of course Ben Kruidbos had nothing to gain by deleting those photos, he was obviously directed to delete them from someone in the prosecutor's office - my belief is the directive came from a tag team, Investigator Osteen and de la Rionda. Ben Kruidbos was suspended and eventually fired by State Attorney Angela Corey.
Kruidbos received a letter today telling him that he: “can never again be trusted to step foot in this office.”
Unprofessional to say the least. Adding insult to injury, Bernie de la Rionda files a sarcastic and beyond unprofessional answer to Mr. O'Mara's motion for sanctions, which included calling Mark O'Mara a "craven" duplicitous grandstander who "courts anything resembling a microphone or camera." I'm not sure if de la rionda was drunk or on crack, but he misstates obvious facts and calls Benjamin Crump "Trayvon Martin's lawyer". Which, of course, he is not. The following are quotes from Reuters article:
Mark O'Mara: "They [Corey and de la Rionda] are a disgrace to my profession," O'Mara said, referring specifically to de la Rionda and Corey. "They said my client was 'lucky' to have been acquitted. Really?"
Angela Corey: "Our office adhered to the highest standards of ethical behavior," Corey told Reuters in a telephone interview. "Our rules of professional conduct regulate comments like that. I don't think those are the kind of comments that are appropriate."From HLN Interview:
Angela Corey: Murderer
B. de la Rionda: Lucky
Vinnie Politan: Describe Trayvon Benjamin Martin in one word
Angela Corey: Prey, P-R-E-Y, prey.
B. de la Rionda: Victim
Link to Video.
The unprofessional behavior by the State Attorney Angela Corey was consistent throughout the trial as well...she held hands with Sybrina and smiled at her frequently during proceedings. She made facial expressions of disdain during opening and closing arguments. I would like to know how the Jury felt about these displays of blatant bias on the part of the State Prosecutor.
One other thing to note, Angela Corey arranged for she and her head Prosecutor, Bernie de la Rionda's pensions [Link] to be increased (taxpayer expense), prior to the beginning of this trial and after her bogus Second Degree Murder Charges against George Zimmerman were announced. I would like to see those pensions taken away. Both Corey and de la Rionda deserve to feel the way George Zimmerman and his family feel at the hands of her office - destitute and robbed of a future.
From : FLORIDA COMMISSION ON ETHICS - Code of ethics for Public Officers and Employees
E. Felony Convictions: Forfeiture of Retirement Benefits
Public officers and employees are subject to forfeiture of all rights and benefits under the retirement system to
which they belong if convicted of certain offenses. The offenses include embezzlement or theft of public funds;
bribery; felonies specified in Chapter 838, Florida Statutes; impeachable offenses; and felonies committed with intent to defraud the public or their public agency. [Sec.
112.3173, Fla. Stat.]
A. Citizen Involvement
The Commission on Ethics cannot conduct investigations of alleged violations of the Sunshine Amendment or the
Code of Ethics unless a person files a sworn complaint with the Commission alleging such violation has occurred.
If you have knowledge that a person in government has violated the standards of conduct or disclosure laws
described above, you may report these violations to the Commission by filing a sworn complaint on the form
prescribed by the Commission and available for download HERE . Otherwise, the Commission is
unable to take action, even after learning of such misdeeds through newspaper reports or telephone calls.
Should you desire assistance in obtaining or completing a complaint form (FORM 50), you may receive either by
contacting the Commission office at the address or phone number shown on the inside front cover of this booklet.