The “Law of Parties” and George Floyd
Welcome to Jamal Law School.
I need to say something about the “Law of Parties,” in regards to the George Floyd murder case. In some states, the Law of Parties is called the “Felony Murder Rule.”
The “Law of Parties” is a judicial philosophy enacted through legislation and injected into the penal code of almost every state and used for felony infractions. The law of parties provides for everybody involved in a felony to take a murder charge, should a victim die during their committal of the felony. Here’s an example:
Childhood friends A, B, and C all go to rob a bank.
A is only a driver and never enters the bank. B guards the door, and C goes in to collect the money. While collecting the money, C kills a guard.
The law of parties would have all of the perpetrators, A, B, and C, face a murder charge even though B never shot anybody and A didn’t even enter the bank. The theory is that WITHOUT A and B, C would never have had the human resources necessary to commit the felony robbery and thus could never have murdered the guard on his own. So they are all responsible.
But what if A, DIDN’T KNOW that B and C were planning a bank robbery? He’s screwed!
The “law of parties” is also used in other unorthodox manners. For example, A, B, and C go to rob a store. The store owner has a gun and KILLS C in self-defense. But A and B get away. Later on, A and B are caught and both are charged with MURDER, even though the guy who was killed was THEIR FRIEND and WASN’T EVEN SHOT BY THEM. C was shot by the Store Owner. But today is A and B’s unlucky day, cause they are in a state that follows the judicial philosophy of the “law of parties.”
Now here’s something that will shock you. In REAL LIFE, this rule is widely used to lock large numbers of Black men up forever when they were simply in the wrong place at the wrong time. I know that blew you away. If you don’t believe me, look it up.
Why am I bringing this up?
Because the law of parties is always used on civilians. Never used on police even though police incidents seem to be where the law of parties should apply most. After all, don’t cops call themselves a brotherhood? Don’t they pride themselves on acting “as one?” Aren’t they trained to act in unison with the same purpose?
The law of parties would dictate that if my brother drove me to a spot and then stood around and watched me kill a cop by putting my knee into the cop’s throat, my brother would be charged with murder TOO. And you know what? That’s what would happen in real life.
It is for this reason that ALL the cops who stood around like they were waiting for their restaurant reservations to be called while a man’s face was kneed into the street, should be charged with murder.
Because the cop “taking a knee” COULD NOT HAVE KILLED George Floyd, without their consent and assistance. He would not have been able to accomplish this murder, alone.
But what the system usually does, is let one cop take the fall and let the others go. Remember I called it first. But justice calls for the “law of parties” to be applied.