Two very public cases in a short period of time that had verdicts that angered portions of the public to a great extent. One completely circumstantial and the other nearly devoid of circumstantial evidence. Agree or disagree with the verdicts on moral or other non-legal grounds, the prevalence of law seems to have been upheld in both cases.
In the Anthony case, the prosecution did not have the evidence to prove Caylee was murdered let alone by her mother. The remaining evidence against Casey was disturbing and gave serious doubts about her moral fiber as a human being as well as her fitness as a parent.
Conversely this case had an autopsy report saying the 16 year old robber was alive after the first shot to the head, and may or may not have died as a result of that wound. The decision to use another weapon and fire five additional rounds was captured on video.
If this was a case where Ersland was a cop who had wounded the suspect, would there be any debate whether the cop, had a duty to protect the life of the incapacitated man? Whether it be from his robbery partner who thought killing him might keep him quiet, or from the cop himself who jeopardized his own life in the situation. The only debate can be is whether it was 1st or 2nd degree murder. BTW the victims adult adult accomplices got life plus 30 & 45 years on a 1st degree murder charge, his 14 year old armed accomplice was sentenced as a juvenile after pleading to 1st degree murder. If Ersland were to win on appeal, what does it mean for these 3 cases?
This a near text book example from a criminal law lore. A man is thrown off a building in a struggle; during his fall he is shot by a bullet fired by another man who was aiming at someone else. The autopsey reveals the bullet killed the man instantly. Who is charged with what?