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Watson Murder Case - Discussion

Discussion in 'Diving Litigation' started by almitywife, Jun 4, 2009.

  1. Cave Diver

    Cave Diver Divemaster

    This is on Dateline NBC right now.
  2. Cacia

    Cacia Divemaster


    i want to see

    this is why i like to solo
  3. Missdirected

    Missdirected Contributor

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Tampa
    Just watched the last half hour or so... They seem to have really glossed over a couple of things that I at least would have like to have known... Ah well. It is a news/entertainment show :rolleyes:
  4. Missdirected

    Missdirected Contributor

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Tampa

    You're worried JB is going to off you :huh: j/k :)
  5. Valwood1

    Valwood1 Contributor

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Texas
    The prosecution's statements regarding a duty to one's buddy, and the apparent special duty owed if one is a rescue diver, set just a terrible, terrible precedent, and are a perfect example of (1) "Hard cases make bad law", and (2) some people don't know when to shut their damn mouths. The prosecutor could have had the manslaughter plea without saying one word about it.

    There generally is no duty to render aid -- i.e., you can watch someone drown and you have no legal obligation to help that person. This moron has effectively changed a LEGAL non-duty into a FACTUAL we-ll-look-at-each-case-to-see-if-you-have-a-duty -- i.e., whether or not you have a duty depends on the facts, including your skill level, with all the subjectivity and inconsistency that accompany fact-determinative questions.

    And we're really not protected simply because this case is in Australia -- one trend, apparently approved of by some members of the US Supreme Court, is an increase in consideration of "international law" in US courts. We're going to see more of this sort of claim - civil and criminal -- and that doesn't bode well for most of us.

    And as far as a US prosecutor not pursuing such a case: maybe not, but, if you're a certified rescue diver who is buddied up with the governor's idiot son, and that guy swims off into oblivion, I'd suggest getting a good lawyer.
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2009
  6. K_girl

    K_girl Contributor

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Sacramento, CA
    Sounds like to me that the prosecution did not consult Tina's family when making the deal:

    Christina's father Tommy Thomas said his family was in disbelief that the murder charge was not maintained. "I'm sure that the entire Australian nation as well as our country back home shares in the shock at what we've just seen, because it's a total injustice ... it's ludicrous," he said. "Today he (Watson) was allowed to take the easy way out. "This is in no way, shape or form a beginning to get justice for our daughter. "It's an embarrassment to everyone involved. "We believe that Gabe Watson murdered our daughter."

    So some here said, wait for the details about the charge. Well, here it is, now we know what any of us, as rescue divers are expected to do:

    Prosecutor Brendan Campbell told the court the manslaughter plea was accepted on the basis that Watson had failed in his duty as Tina's dive buddy by not giving her emergency oxygen. Mr Campbell said Watson also allowed Tina to sink to the ocean floor without making any serious attempt to retrieve her, and that he did not inflate her buoyancy vest or remove weights from her belt. "He virtually extinguished any chance of her survival,'' Mr Campbell said.

    Source: David Gabe Watson jailed for killing wife on honeymoon dive | National News | News.com.au

    Why did the Coroner bother making the judgment that they did have a case for murder last year if they really didn't? They should have just said they didn't have a case a year ago so Tina's parents could try and move on with their lives. The Australian government led Tina's parents to believe that they were going to persue this case as a murder case. They didn't just let them down, they basically tore these people's heart out once again after six years of fighting for justice for Tina and made the deal without consulting them. Shame.. shame.. shame..
  7. K_girl

    K_girl Contributor

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Sacramento, CA
    I just saw on Larry King, talking about this case, Gerregos said he has seen that people have been tried in the states after being tried overseas for crimes that were committed overseas. Double-jeopardy does not apply. Maybe this is Australia's way of transferring the burden of cost for prosecution to the U.S. and get Watson to serve time in the meantime.

    I say that we start a writing campaign to get U.S. Authorities to prosecute this case after Watson is released in Australia. Especially since this was an American-on-American crime.

    One of the other talking heads said the same thing I did - this case is bad publicity for Australia, giving the government reason to get it over with as quickly as possible. I don't think the Australian authorities would have persued this case at all if it had not been for the persistent pressure from Tina's parents.

    Gerregos said the same thing some others have said here, which was that the prosecution will not give away a case if they have a strong case. But that jjust doesn't jive with what they determined last year - when the Coroner's Inquest concluded they did have a case for murder and issued a warrant for Watson's arrest and order to bind-over for trial. Geeze - either you do have a case or you don't. I can't imagine that the Coroner did not talk to the prosecution before they determined whether or not they had a murder case that could be prosecuted. And I can't help wondering why the prosecution gave-up on this case so fast. They didn't even have time to get barely started on it and boom - you got a plea deal. Just doesn't smell right.
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2009
  8. almitywife

    almitywife Vegemite Mod

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Sydney, Australia
    i feel for the family - really i do but please "the entire nation... shares in the shock".... no the "entire nation" does not. except for the diving community there isnt really any outrage down here. the media is more intent of beating up the Chaser boys (political comedy show that was last in trouble for getting thru security while dressed up like Osama for OPEC with George W) for a bad comedy stint that was on tv last week than the Watson case

    we are use to the soft sentances that the judges hand out and the prosecutorers are under no obligation to consult with any of the victims family for sentencing

    personally i believe when he agreed to return to australia a deal had already been struck
  9. alohagal

    alohagal Contributor

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Colorado/Hawaii
    I absolutely do not believe it was just a coincidence that Gabe Watson suddenly stopped fighting extradition, lands in Australia, and gets the deal of a lifetime from the prosecution. No, this was a done deal before he ever got on the plane from Alabama two weeks ago! Why? Is the question.
  10. Age

    Age Divemaster Candidate

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Tokyo, Japan
    I believe that in any country that applies case law (eg. The US and the UK), this case would be of persuasive precedence and possibily affect the outcome of any case sufficiently similar. However, in Australia the precedence would be binding and the outcome of a sufficiently similar case would be certain

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