Wow. What a mess.
This is a discussion on muggin victim fights back within the In the News: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly forums, part of the The Back Porch category; No sure it this is the right place to post this if not Mods please move Trial begins for Maurice Parks, mugging victim who stabbed ...
No sure it this is the right place to post this if not Mods please move
Trial begins for Maurice Parks, mugging victim who stabbed bystander following violent robbery
BY Oren Yaniv
DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITER
Friday, May 15th 2009, 4:00 AM
Lombard for News
Maurice Parks leaving court.
Maurice Parks was either hellbent on revenge last year when he stabbed an innocent man to death after a violent mugging or a dazed victim trying to fight off one of his assailants.
Those were the two conflicting accounts lawyers put forth Thursday as the murder trial of Parks, 41, kicked off in Manhattan Supreme Court.
The facts are not in dispute: Parks, a subway conductor and martial arts expert, was walking to his Harlem home on Jan. 10, 2008, when a gang of drunken robbers attacked him, stabbing and punching him.
But he pulled out a dagger, stabbed one of them and chased the group away.
As he called 911 to report the crime, he came upon Flonarza Byas, 28, and, thinking he was one of his assailants, stabbed him repeatedly to death.
"This defendant took it upon himself to exact the most ancient form of justice - an eye for an eye," charged Assistant District Attorney David O'Keefe, calling the mugging and Byas' knifing two separate crimes.
"He thought he was fighting for his life, not out of retribution," retorted Parks' lawyer Anthony Ricco. "These events happened in rapid succession."
A key piece of evidence was Parks' dramatic 47-second 911 call, which was played in court.
Parks, breathing heavily and moaning in pain, gives his location then says, "Three guys just tried to mug me....I think I'm stabbed."
When he starts to give his phone number, another voice can be heard, followed by a chilling shriek as the call abruptly ends.
It was Byas screaming as Parks began to stab him, prosecutors said.
O'Keefe said that Parks, who cut Byas 15 times - seven in the back - later lied to investigators, identifying Byas as one of the attackers.
Ricco angrily said his client never intentionally lied and indicated that jurors will hear from Parks later in the trial about his state of fear and distress when he stabbed Byas.
"Maurice Parks was a very innocent victim," Ricco said. "He made a mistake about another innocent man."
Jury gets victim's revenge-slay case
BY Jose Martinez
DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITER
Wednesday, May 27th 2009, 4:00 AM
The fate of a mugging victim who repeatedly plunged his double-edged dagger into a man he thought was trying to mug him is in the hands of a Manhattan jury.
Martial arts expert Maurice Parks faces a murder charge over the death of Flonarza Byas, who Parks chased down and stabbed last year after thugs battered the transit worker on his walk home.
"Back on Jan. 10, 2008, this defendant acted as judge, jury and executioner," said Assistant District Attorney David O'Keefe. "This defendant killed an innocent man."
O'Keefe cast Parks as a victim who turned vigilante when three men attacked him near his Harlem apartment.
"Every fiber of his being said one thing: They're not going to get away with it," O'Keefe said. "That is why he chased them."
Defense lawyer Anthony Ricco described Byas, 28, as a "beautiful young man" who had the terrible misfortune to encounter "a very dangerous situation" at W. 139th St. and St. Nicholas Ave., where three men pounced on Parks.
After playing for the jury a 47-second clip of a 911 call Parks made after being mugged, Ricco mocked the prosecution's claim that his client intended to kill.
"I'm gonna commit intentional murder, but let me get the police on the phone first," Ricco said. "Hello, 911 ... hold on, let me commit this intentional murder."
Jury deliberations resume this morning.
Wow. What a mess.
"Criminals are a cowardly and superstitious lot."
It's pretty hard to be seen as the victim if one chases down the perpetrators and ends up killing one who might not have been in the group of attackers. Who's to say what the real facts are.Maurice Parks was either hellbent on revenge last year when he stabbed an innocent man to death after a violent mugging or a dazed victim trying to fight off one of his assailants.
My question is this: why aren't the gang of attackers on trial for murder, since their actions caused this situation?
Once the attack ended, he decided to chase down someone and the law says he decided to become a criminal.
Had he stayed and called 911 he would not have had these problems.
He was not using common sense.
Certified Glock Armorer
NRA Life Member
He was oozing adrenaline onto the street. The DA went for revenge murder? That's a reach!
-Blackstone’s Commentaries 145–146, n. 42 (1803) in District of Columbia v. Heller, 554 U.S. 570 (2008)Americans understood the right of self-preservation as permitting a citizen to repel force by force
when the intervention of society... may be too late to prevent an injury.
Wow, while I can imagine and sympathize with what he must have been thinking/feeling, I'm pretty sure he stepped WAY over the line.
The ultimate result of shielding men from the effects of folly is to fill the world with fools.
NRA Life Member
Self Defense does not include chasing after the threat in anyway what so ever.
Not much info here.
What constitutes "chase the attackers away"? Lunging at them for a couple of steps? Chasing them around the block?
The facts are that he was attacked and stabbed.
So the guy is standing there at the pay phone bleeding and wondering if he will live or not and the adrenilin level is off the charts.
Then someone comes up behind him to help him and he is startled and thinks, "Oh crap, their not finished!!!!"
It's easy for us to come up with the right course of action while we are comfortably sitting at our computers (hold on. . . . let me get a sip of coffee. OK. . . . back now) but he didn't have that luxury.
Did he over react?? Don't know; wasn't there.
It's a sad situation: a good man gets attacked and during his confusion kills another good man.
One life is ended and the other changed forever.
fortiter in re, suaviter in modo (resolutely in action, gently in manner).
Aside from what every one is already pointing out, I find it interesting that both articles find it necessary to describe Parks as "a martial arts expert". So does this mean that because he has had some type of training that he has been planning this vengence spree? Is he some foaming at the mouth lunatic? Oh, thank God he didn't have a gun!
It is unfortunate in the extreme that two innocent people had to be injured/killed. It is even more unfortunate that the DA is throwing the book at some one who stood up for himself. That being said, if Mr. Parks did chase after the perps, who can say what his state of mind was after that initial attack?
Sad all around.
*WARNING - I may or may not know what I am talking about.
It did of course result in a charge and a trial, but in the end the jury, or judge sided with the defendant. Usually you would be right, but there can be exceptions to the rule.
Hard and Fast rules are generally not a good idea for most things. Situations are dynamic and one has to have the ability to "flow" with the situation. Certain hard and fast rules are good though. Like, "Never point a gun at something you are not willing to destroy."
In short, everything has to be taken in context and looked at objectively.
Last edited by BikerRN; May 28th, 2009 at 02:52 PM. Reason: typo