The concept of Corpus Delicti should provide the "master dialogue" for what is reported in the media.
Black's Law Dictionary (6th ed.) defines Corpus Delicti as "body of crime". In the American Legal System admission of guilt is not evidence enough to prosecute the person that admitted guilt. In other words if I confess to a judge on my blog that I've committed a crime he cannot convict me unless he can prove my guilt through another source.
On this blog I've accused the Branson Media of participating in what could be consdidered "criminal or psuedo criminal" activity. To me, the journalism community is a group of friends and colleagues. In some cases, such as my correspondence on Branson Mediagate, I refrain from producing the "body of crime." I've refrained from producing the body of crime in hopes they will "convict themselves."
Usually, due to my reputation, mission and ruthless pursuit of truth I don't have to elaborate in detail backing up everything I report. Can I produce "corpus delecti" - of course. Raw video is the best and purest way of proving the reporters presence at an event. Of course, video can be altered, thus a film of a crime in action cannot be submitted to a jury unless it can be verified.
The City of Branson sued three merchants a few years agofor cutting down a tree without city approval . During discovery, a legal process where attorneys exchange information that will be submitted to the court a video of the tree massacre was presented to Branson's attorney. The city attorney attempted to submit the video of the crime into evidence during the trial to Tony Williams an associate judge in the 38th circuit.
In order for the video to be presented to the judge it had to be verified. Unfortunately for the city of Branson all three sisters were being sued. A premise of the American legal system is that a person accused of a crime is not required to testify against themselves. Outside of the three sisters being accused, the city of Branson didn't have any witnesses to authenticate the video. As a result, the three sisters were found innocent after presentation of state evidence.
They were set free becuase the state couldn't establish corpus delecti. No harm no foul. The city couldn't prove that a crime had been committed.
The massacre of the tree in downtown Branson was a setup planned with political pundit Gary Groman which in future posts we will refer to as "the vulture." There is good reason to believe that "the vulture" helped stage the destruction of the tree.
The city of Branson was too aggressive in trying to prosecute the entrepreneurs.
If the city expunged the record (erased the record that a crime had ever been committed) and required the business owners to pay a fine the trial never would have occurred.
The city's arrogance forced tax payers to fork out thousands of dollars in legal fees (ie legal counsel's time)to pursue their case. The sisters only wanted to clear their name and keep their criminal record clean. One of the sisters was going to law school and didn't want the mark to keep her from good standing with the Missouri Bar.
The city of Branson forced Gary Groman out of the courtroom during trial. The move was a vindictive manueaver punishing "the vulture" for several unsubstantiated, biased and unfair attacks against the city manager in the newspaper. The city told Judge Tony Willams that they may call him to testify as a witness.
The city never intended to call "the vulture" as a witness - the move was made purely to attack him. The report ended up being a gift from the city of Branson to me - afterall - as they only reporter in the courtroom - I had an exclusive which was reported on this website. Ironically, if "the vulture" was called as a witness the three sisters might have been successfully prosecuted. The vultures attendance was a dangerous taunt which could have resulted in the sisters conviction. The city lost becuase they were grossly unprepared.
In the Christian tradition Corpus Delicti is a fundamental precept. Because the body of Jesus Christ could not be found the Roman soldiers that killed him can not be found guilty. No body - no crime.
According to Christians who killed Jesus Christ? The answer to Christians is everyone. The innocent was sacrificed for the guilty - the guilty being everyone that falls short of perfection. As a result, Christians claim to be joint participants in the crucification. They admit they killed their "Saviour" through their actions - that he couldn't be killed in the worldly sense and that they can be forgiven - the record taken away by asking for forgiveness. They believe their records are cleaned through the ultimate sacrifice. They can't show the body so they can't prove their case - they can only believe (ie have faith) such an incident ever occurred.
The two posts below are treatments for a book I'm currently authoring. Luckily, becuase of the legal concept of corpus delecti - I can admit to a crime without being convicted in a court of law.
In the political system past drug use is a dying theme. In Barrack Obama's book (page 72 I believe), Obama admits to having smoked marijuana and ingesting cocaine. Because he came clean the public hasn't convicted him. When George Bush was asked "Did you snort coke?" he said , "I haven't used drugs since ......" Bill Clinton said he never inhaled. Becuase Clinton didn't come clean the public embarrassed him with the topic throughout his administration repeating the statement "He never inhaled."
The Vulture tried to attack me by challenging the precept of truth as recorded in this blog. He was wrong. When I proved he was wrong he erased the record of what he wrote. The stain isn't yet "rubbed out" and we challenge him to restore the record; however, we'd prefer he study Journalistic ethics. We forgive him because the concept of Journalistic integrity is foreign to "the vulture".
The Master Dialogue for a journalist should be "ruthless pursuit of truth". If I'm biased, it is becuase I love the truth more than my own selfish desires. As a journalist in Branson this makes me feel very lonely.