By Dean Weingarten
He said that he had been attacked after he asked the man to leave. He retrieved a rifle, and said the man, James DeWitt, then charged him, giving him no choice but to fire.
The case gained some notoriety because Rogers is legally blind. Rogers spent 22 Months in jail awaiting trail on a first degree murder charge. Half way through the trial, the judge dismissed the charges under Florida’s Stand Your Ground law.
Evidence showed that the dead man was shot from a distance of 18 inches, supporting Rogers account and casting doubt on the claim of DeWitt’s girlfriend, Christina Robertson, that the shooting had been completely unprovoked.
Today, 21 February, 2014, nearly two years after the shooting, Judge John Galluzzo reluctantly returned John Rodgers’ guns. He said that he was forced to do so, because it was the law. From wesh.com:
“I have to return property that was taken under the circumstance,” Galluzzo said. “I have researched and haven’t found case law to say otherwise.”
Then, in what can only be described as a fit of petulance, Judge Galluzzo ordered all of John Rodgers ammunition be destroyed.
Galluzzo did order that all ammunition to be destroyed. He said it was too old and dangerous.
The judge might not agree with what the law called for. It seems likely that John Rogers tends to be violent when drunk, and he seems to get drunk fairly often.
But he has never crossed the law far enough to be convicted of an offense that would disqualify him from owning guns. We are a nation that is supposed to be ruled by law, rather than men.
The destruction of the ammunition falls under the latter category. Judge Galluzzo, clearly piqued at his inability to deny John Rogers his property, made the unsupported claim that the ammunition was “old and dangerous”. I do not see any justification in the law for destruction of such property, or any legal support for Judge Galluzzo’s actions. I am sure that he knows, that after spending nearly two years in jail, on a charge that has now been dismissed, that it is unlikely that John Rogers has the stomach for a legal contest with a judge over some ammunition. It seems a case of petty spite, simply because the judge knows that he can get away with it.
The judge’s actions, in my opinion, show that he is unfit for the bench. This sort of emotional fit, under the color of law, should never be seen in court. Unfortunately, it is seen all too often.
c2014 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice is included. Link to Gun Watch
About Dean Weingarten;
Dean Weingarten has been a peace officer, a military officer, was on the University of Wisconsin Pistol Team for four years, and was first certified to teach firearms safety in 1973. He taught the Arizona concealed carry course for fifteen years until the goal of constitutional carry was attained. He has degrees in meteorology and mining engineering, and recently retired from the Department of Defense after a 30 year career in Army Research, Development, Testing, and Evaluation.