Monday, May 15, 2006

A creative firebomb defense

We all know about lame excuses and creative defenses – some of them by culprits, some of them by (nitwit) lawyers.
But we have to give a lot of credit to Mr. Otis Cecil Wilkins and his defense counsel.
Mr. Wilkins threw a homemade bottle bomb at his ex-girlfriend when she driving her car into her yard in Rougemont, North Carolina.

The bomb exploded in “a large fireball” as eye witnesses described it.
He was promptly charged with attempted first-degree murder.
What defense can you come up with as a Public Defender?
Well, PD Lawrence Campbell cooked up the following.
The intended target was not the ex-girlfriend (or her car) but a beaver dam that blocked a waterway.
You might ask yourself how the beaver demolition unit went haywire.
Well, you see, the bomb was (unintentionally, I am sure) ignited by ash from Wilkins’ cigarette that fell onto the fuse that set off the bottle bomb.
(Do you want more proof that that smoking is a health hazard?)
In the end, Wilkins pleaded guilty to three assault counts (one for the ex-girlfriend and two for other people nearby, including her 3-year-old granddaughter) and was convicted to 300 days in jail.

If you think that Wilkins came off lightly, you are partially wrong.
You see, when he threw the bomb, it rolled back at him, igniting his shorts.
As a result, he spent more than a week at a hospital burn center.

What did Mr. Wilkins have to say in his defense?

“I ain't no terrorist, it was just a little bit of black powder. It was just a little boom thing.”
And an atom bomb is just a mushroom thing?

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