Seven days from now will mark the third anniversary of Zac Champommier's killing at the hands of plainclothes undercover law enforcement officers, as he drove through a public parking lot in Studio City.
Below is an excellent summary provided by the growing-in-numbers activist group, United Citizens Against Police Violence.
The following is copied from the United Citizens Against Police Violence page on Facebook:
Champommier Trial Update: Closing Arguments (May 23, 2013)
The judge appeared to be looking at the events that transpired in the killing of Zachary Champommier by plainsclothes members of a multi-jurisdictional task in the light most favorable to Zac's killer. The standard set by Graham v. Conner essentially holds that Zac's killer had to have acted as a reasonable officer would have acted under similar circumstances.
In a nutshell, however, the judge appeared to be begging attorneys for the United States of America to highlight how the actions of Zac's killer could be deemed "reasonable":
1. The judge asked defense council to explain and support how Deputy's position was improved by the killing of the Champommier as he sat behind the steering wheel of his Toyota Corolla (Champommier was alleged to have struck Deputy intentionally, necessitating the use of deadly force. However, if Deputy was on Zac's hood when Agent shot at Zac, Deputy's position would arguably have been worsened by not only the risk of being shot but also by having the car turn into a runaway vehicle by the killing of the driver. If, however, Deputy was no longer on the hood when Zac was shot, wouldn't that be more akin to retaliation for having allegedly struck Deputy?)
2. Defense attorneys find themselves in the proverbial pickle as to the calculus of time taken for Agent (Zac's killer) to perceive the event, formulate the plan to use deadly force, draw his weapon, and execute his plan to use deadly force. If time is decreased, as was argued by defense when they claimed that Zac was traveling at a high rate of speed, Agent had less time to consider his actions. Here, less time equates with less reasonableness. If, however, the calculus of time is added to the notion that there was little or no risk presented to officers by Zac's car becomes more viable because that means Zac's car would have been stopped or nearly stopped for Zac's killer to have been able to shoot the first, and fatal shot while facing the driver's side door. Thus, the notion of retaliation for having struck Deputy becomes bolstered.
3. Judge stated that he had considered utilizing an "advisory jury" to aid in making some determinations in the case. (One may rightfully speculate that this move may be to get an objective understanding and determination of damages amounts)
Decision forthcoming. Stay tuned.