Truth in Justice Newsletter - May, 2003

Free!
DENNIS MAHER
In 1983, in Lowell, MA, two rape victims identified Dennis Maher as their assailant.  For 19 years, Dennis protested his innocence.  DNA tests have confirmed his innocence and he has been freed.

JOSEPH AMRINE
The Missouri Supreme Court has overturned the conviction of death row inmate Joseph Amrine, who had claimed he was innocent of killing another prisoner 17 years ago.   The Supreme Court, in a 4-3 decision, said Amrine had shown "clear and convincing evidence of actual innocence that undermines confidence" in his conviction.


Electric Chair
INNOCENT MEN, IN MORTAL DANGER


"Prove you're innocent," demanded the state.  When DNA did just that, the state called it irrelevant.  The State of Ohio will murder Jerome Campbell on May 14th.

JERRY LEE HAMILTON
For the second time in 4 1/2 months, a judge has ordered a new trial for a North Carolina death row inmate -- this time, Jerry Lee Hamilton -- because prosecutors withheld exculpatory evidence.  The state's star witness was the killer.

ALAN GELL
Same song, first verse.  
Read the Raleigh, NC News-Observer's riveting series on the framing of Alan Gell:  Who Killed Allen Ray Jenkins?  (Hint:  The state's star witness did it.)   

DIALOGUE WITH THE OSHKOSH NORTHWESTERN

The media can support and promote injustice or expose it, as it chooses.  The Oshkosh, WI Northwestern has a long track record of supporting former Winnebago County, WI DA Joe Paulus, which may explain the editorial it published on April 24, 2003.  Sheila Berry wrote an opposing view and received a  non-sequitur response with threatening overtones from the newspaper's managing editor.  We bring you here what Northwestern readers will not see.


Junk Science
And the Junk Goes On

More Forensic Fraud ~ More Business as Usual


FORT WORTH, TX CRIME LAB
It's not just Houston's police crime lab that is under fire -- and under investigation.  A review of three years' worth of DNA evidence processed by the Fort Worth Police Department's crime lab is under way after a proficiency test revealed that a senior forensic scientist did not follow proper procedures and protocol.

FBI CRIME LAB -- ENCORE JUNK PERFORMANCE
The FBI crime lab is dealing with new wrongdoing by employees that has opened the door for challenges of the lab's science in scores of cases involving DNA and bullet analysis.  "Defense lawyers are being ambushed and jurors are being misled," retired FBI metallurgist William Tobin said.  "There is no comprehensive or meaningful data whatsoever to support their analytical conclusions."

INCREDIBLE!
You won't believe the unadulterated garbage prosecutors put on as expert testimony in arson cases. Unfortunately, judges and juries believe it.

Discrediting False Allegations
Federal Judge: 'No Evidence' That Ramseys Killed JonBenét
Through the prism of a defamation suit, a federal judge in Atlanta has examined the 1996 murder case of 6-year-old Colorado beauty queen JonBenét Ramsey and determined there is "virtually no evidence" to support theories that her parents killed her.  U.S. District Judge Julie E. Carnes, a former federal prosecutor, evaluated evidence that the Ramseys, Patsy Ramsey in particular, were responsible for their daughter's slaying. In her analysis, Carnes sharply criticized the botched investigation that followed the discovery of JonBenét's body; accused Boulder police of using the media to target the Ramseys; and stated that the Ramseys, despite widespread criticism to the contrary, attempted to cooperate fully with detectives investigating their daughter's murder.
JonBenet Ramsey

Imprisoned
  
JOHN MALONEY HABEAS HEARING
One step closer to freedom.  John Maloney's habeas petition will be heard on May 21, 2003 in Brown County (WI) Circuit Court.  Read it here.  (PDF format - read with Adobe Acrobat.)

Also available online:
Forensic Pathology Review Report
Fire Origin Review Report

FRANK CASTEEL
Jury selection in Frank's long awaited -- long overdue -- retrial began April 28, 2003 in Chattanooga, TN.  Click HERE for trial news and updates.  (Click on Frank's name to learn about his case and his compelling innocence claims.)
 

Imprisoned


police badge
POLICE AND PROSECUTOR MISCONDUCT

Texas:  Dallas PD undercover narcotics investigator Mark Delapaz received accolades and decorations for busting drug dealers.  The secret to his success?  Use paid snitches to set up dozens of innocent people by planting fake drugs on them.  Now he's been Indicted for Setup Arrests

When a single undercover investigator put away 12% of Tulia's blacks on drug charges -- without drugs -- pro bono lawyers from Texas, New York and Washington, DC smelled a rat.  They have smoked him out and won a class action habeas for 38 defendants.  Justice in a Small Town

Don't miss the details on how these lawyers and their staffs broke the case.  Tulia, Texas Back Story
 

California:
 We're a year late with this story, and we apologize it took us so long to learn of it.  In March of 2002, LAPD Det. William Douglass was caught -- by the presiding judge -- submitting phony fingerprint test results in an attempted murder case.  The judge dismissed the charge and issued a stinging 8-page opinion against Det. Douglass.  But don't worry. Douglass wasn't charged.  (If you're in LA -- be careful out there.)  LAPD Fiction


Florida:  A federal jury convicted 4 Miami cops of conspiracy in planting guns on unarmed people they had shot; 3 other cops were acquitted and the jury deadlocked on the remaining 4.  Civil rights advocates were ambivalent about the verdicts, but a newly unsealed ruling that prosecutors had met the civil "preponderance of evidence" standard as to all 11 defendants opens the door to winning millions in civil lawsuits alleging police misconduct. Judge Opens Door to Civil Suits

Instructions
HOW TO GET A FALSE CONFESSION IN TEN EASY STEPS

Here is
a nice short primer on the kinds of interrogations techniques that are seen time and time again in false confession cases.  Notice that there is not even the hint of the possibility of false confessions and the complete confidence of the interrogator in his ability to read the "buy signs" of his suspect—the body language and other  physical reactions that suggest the suspect's guilt and that he is ready to confess.

FREEDOM NO CURE-ALL

"When it happened, I had cameras in my face every day.  When I was exonerated, there were a couple of cameras. Now, there's nothing. People just forget about you or turn against you. That's the killing part."

The wrongly convicted long for exoneration and freedom, and when these are achieved, the backhand they get from society can be a bitter blow.


TRUTH IN JUSTICE FOUNDATION
Truth in Justice Foundation (not related to Truth in Justice, but very good friends) assists exonerees in resettlement.  Find out what they do, and see what you can do to help, too.

yellow ribbon tree

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 700 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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