Truth in Justice Newsletter - April, 2004


INNOCENCE AND THE DEATH PENALTY

Nothing about the double homicide seemed to finger Tyrone Noling. Even the former sheriff doesn't believe he should be on death row.

Nothing about the double homicide seemed to finger Tyrone Noling. Even the former sheriff doesn't believe he should be on death row.
Lethal Injection Chamber




POLICE/PROSECUTOR MISCONDUCT

Michigan
:
A New Baltimore, MI man wrongly jailed for six months in the 2000 slaying of a teenage pizzeria worker says a $300,000-plus settlement of his civil suit against police will help him start a new life -- but it won't end his family's nightmares or stop the accusing stares that follow him.  And while the settlement is about to change Jonathon Kaled's life, legal experts said the suit's outcome won't affect how police handle interrogations and false confessions.  Misconduct as Usual

New York:  A Brooklyn gang murder case is in disarray after a federal judge overturned the conviction of Angel DeAngelo for the killing, saying prosecutors had relied on "blatant, critical perjury by all of the key witnesses."  "How many other people did they do this to?'' Mr. DeAngelo asked yesterday in a telephone interview from Latham, N.Y., near where he now lives. "They believe anything these people say. It's all about a collar; It has Nothing to do with Justice.''

VirginiaKenneth Maurice Tinsley raped and murdered Rebecca Williams in 1982 in Culpeper, VA.  Police took advantage of mildly retarded farmhand Earl Washington, feeding him details of the crime to win a quick conviction that put Washington on Death Row for 9 1/2 years.  Tinsely was identified in 2000 through the same DNA tests that exonerated Washington.  But there are no plans to prosecute him.  In fact, the Commonwealth had to be ordered by a federal judge to turn over turn over records identifying Tinsley to Washington's lawyers.  And what about Rebecca Williams' husband and children?  Where is Justice?

Wisconsin:  The continuing saga of the corrupt former Winnebago County DA, Joe Paulus

March 12, 2004:  Paulus Forced to Resign from Law Firm
Allegations against former DA about to come to a head

March 14, 2004:  Paulus' Hard Fall from Grace

March 16, 2004:  Ex-DA May Face Another Investigation

WRONGFULLY CONVICTED COPS
JOHN MALONEY

John Maloney was granted a hearing for a writ of habeas corpus, which can be granted by a judge if they find a defendant's Constitutional rights were violated or they were unjustly convicted.  The hearing was held in May, 2003.  In July, 2003, Judge Peter Naze -- who presided at John's trial -- ruled Maloney got a fair trial the first time around.  That decision is under appeal before the Wisconsin Court of Appeals.

But wait . . . as Maloney's appeal inches its way through the appellate process, his conviction and the conduct of the prosecutors, defense, local and state investigators is finally coming under objective scrutiny.


State Investigates Maloney Case
In March, 2004 the Wisconsin Department of Justice announced it has launched an investigation into the John Maloney case.  Maloney's attorney, Lew Wasserman, said the probe "takes the case in a new direction" and means the attorney general's office believes questions raised about the case aren't "frivolous."

Medical Examiner has Second Thoughts on Murder Ruling
The medical examiner in the 1998 murder and arson case against former Green Bay police officer John Maloney said Sunday he no longer has confidence in his ruling that Maloney's estranged wife was murdered.  Dr. Gregory Schmunk told the Wisconsin State Journal that key evidence was withheld from him that could have affected his ruling that Madison native Sandy Maloney's death was a homicide. He has called for a re-opening of the investigation into the Feb. 10, 1998, death, which he ruled was caused by "strangulation/suffocation at the hands of another."

JUNK SCIENCE

Audits found the same problems that shut down crime labs in Houston and McAllen, Texas at crime labs in Austin, El Paso, Garland, Lubbock, Corpus Christi, and Waco.  Stanley Schneider, chairman of the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association's crime lab strike force, observed, "If crime labs were in the private sector, they'd all be shut down. Business would not tolerate this kind of functioning."  More Flawed Labs

JUNK SCIENCE AND FALSE CHILD ABUSE ALLEGATIONS

The Evidence for Shaken Baby Syndrome
The theory of shaken baby syndrome rests on core assumptions:shaking is always intentional and violent; the injury an infant receives from shaking is invariably severe; and subdural andretinal bleeding is the result of criminal abuse, unless provedotherwise.  Retinal haemorrhage is one of the criteria used, and many doctorsconsider retinal haemorrhage with specific characteristics pathognomonic of shaking. However, in the March 27, 2004 issue of the British Medical Journal,  Patrick Lantz et al examine that premiseand conclude that it "cannot be supportedby objective scientific evidence." 

Read the British Medical Journal Case Report and Editorial (pdf files - use Adobe Acrobat Reader)
Perimacular retinal folds from childhood head trauma
by P. E. Lantz, et al.
BMJ Editorial
We Need to Question the Diagnostic Criteria


HOW THE SYSTEM WORKS

Back in the Mother CountryWhat do the Brits give someone who’s been proved innocent after spending the best part of their life behind bars, wrongfully convicted of a crime they didn’t commit?  An apology, maybe? Counselling? Champagne? Compensation? Well, if you’re David Blunkett, the Labour Home Secretary, the choice is simple: you give them a big, fat bill for the cost of board and lodgings for the time they spent freeloading at Her Majesty’s Pleasure in British prisons.  Ain't No Better in Britain

Paul Craig Roberts Commentary
:
Martha Stewart was indicted for lying and obstructing justice. For these offenses to have any meaning, there must be a crime that she lied about and obstructed. The prosecutors presented no such crime. Stewart was indicted and convicted for lying and obstructing a crime when no crime happened.  Judicial System Casualty


Unlimited Police Powers:  NJ Superior Court Judge Andrew P. Napolitano (Ret.) notes the Constitution prohibits invasions of privacy by the government by denying it the power to engage in unreasonable searches and seizures absent a warrant issued upon probable cause.  But in October 2001, the Patriot Act changed all this. In addition to other violations of the Constitution which it purports to sanction, the Act authorizes intelligence agencies to give what they obtain without probable cause to prosecutors; and it authorizes prosecutors to use the information thus received in ordinary criminal prosecutions. Even worse, the custodians of the records are now prohibited from telling you that your records were sought or surrendered.  Repeal the Patriot Act

LIFE AFTER EXONERATION
Jailed at 16, Josiah Sutton of Houston, TX served 4 1/2 years of a 25-year sentence for a 1998 rape.  Josiah said he was innocent from the beginning. He won freedom March 12, 2003, when a DNA test excluded him as a suspect. A second test, ordered by the Harris County district attorney's office in June, also excluded him.   David Dow, director of the Texas Innocence Network, is working to clear Sutton's name in two ways: a court order to vacate the conviction and a governor's pardon based on innocence.  But Harris County District Attorney Chuck Rosenthal refuses to call Sutton "innocent" in documents needed to clear him.  Still Waiting

INNOCENCE PROJECTS

Innocence Projects provide representation and/or investigative assistance to prison inmates who claim to be innocent of the crimes for which they were convicted. There is now at least one innocence project serving each state except Hawaii, North Dakota and South Dakota. Most of these innocence projects are new and overwhelmed with applications, so waiting time between application and acceptance is long. Wrongfully convicted persons should not be dissuaded from applying to Innocence Projects because of this, but should have realistic expectations regarding acceptance and time lags.  Check the list for the innocence project in your area; we update it regularly.


LINKS

The links pages at Truth in Justice are frequently updated.  Be sure to check them for resources, "must" reading, websites of inmates with compelling innocence claims and more.  Start at http://truthinjustice.org/links.htm

SITE SEARCH ENGINE

There are now over 900 pages at Truth in Justice.  The site search engine on the main page can make it faster and easier to find what you seek.

And remember, YOU can make a difference!

Sheila and Doug Berry



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