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Questionable Death Row Cases.

Discussion in 'Courtroom' started by Cousin Dupree, Sep 6, 2015.

  1. Cousin Dupree

    Cousin Dupree Platinum Member

    Kimster likes this.
  2. misssasska

    misssasska Active Member

    Kimster and Cousin Dupree like this.
  3. ima.grandma

    ima.grandma Believer of Miracles

    Kim Kardashian West is on a mission to free wrongfully treated inmates, but not all may be worth exonerating. One victim's mother claims Kardashian West is being "used," and the convicted killer is absolutely guilty.

    Kardashian West has been working to free Kevin Cooper, a California inmate who's currently sitting on death row. Cooper has been convicted of four murders, which he committed with a hatchet.

    Mary Ann Hughes, mother of Chris Hughes, said she "pities Kardashian" in a conversation with TMZ. "It makes me feel sick to my stomach and I pity her," she explained. "For what she's doing to us, there's nothing to justify what she's doing to us, the immense pain she is causing us."

    In Hughes' eyes, Cooper is guilty, and there's no denying it. She explained that there's enough evidence against him to prove he did it, and there's also a living witness. In 1983, Cooper murdered a family and a neighbor who was sleeping over, who happened to be 11-year-old Chris Hughes. One person in the home, the family's eight-year-old son, survived.

    Kardashian West stated Cooper is innocent. "I had an emotional meeting with Kevin Cooper yesterday at San Quentin's death row. I found him to be thoughtful and honest and I believe he is innocent of the crimes for which he was convicted," Kardashian West said on social media Friday. "I am hopeful that Kevin will be exonerated since DNA testing has now been ordered on Kevin's case and I remain grateful to Governor Newsom for ending capital punishment in California."

    Hughes asked if Kardashian West has seen all of the comments and testimonies stacked against Cooper. She claimed the reality star has "obviously has not read all of the actual evidence—she has bought into half-truths perpetrated by the defense. If she actually sat down and read the transcripts of all the trials and appeals, she would be sick to her stomach to be in the same room with him.

    The reality star has been freeing inmates at a rapid pace, most of whom were convicted to hefty sentences for drug charges. Kardashian West is currently in law school, but for now, she's working with a team of skilled lawyers who have helped her free over 17 inmates.

    Cooper has also been accused of two rapes and admitted to one in court.
    Kimster and Cousin Dupree like this.
  4. ima.grandma

    ima.grandma Believer of Miracles

    AS I WRITE this to you, I am in a 4 1/2 by 11 foot long cage, with two feet between the side of the bed and the wall for me to walk in. I have been in a cage like this for most of my adult life for murders that I did not commit. I eat prison slop for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and the guards look up my butt at least once a day to make sure that I don’t have contraband when I leave this cage.

    I, Kevin Cooper, have been on death row in the state on California for 32 years, going on 33. I came to this place in May of 1985, and I have been fighting for my life ever since.

    This modern day plantation that I am forced to live in is a very dirty and inhumane place for any human being. On February 9, 2004 I came within three hours and 42 minutes of being strapped down to the state’s death gurney, tortured with lethal poison, and murdered by the volunteer executioners who are prison guards working for the state.

    While I received a stay of execution from that madness, I went on to suffer from post-traumatic stress for years, just because I survived that sick ritual of death that this prison put me through. No human being should ever have to endure what I have, not even if they are guilty of the crime they were convicted of committing.

    I, however, am innocent, and now my fate lies in the hands of Governor Brown. In this fight for my life from death row at San Quentin prison, I have asked any and every person who has read anything about my plight to look at my case with an open mind.

    On February 17, 2016 Norman C. Bile, my pro bono attorney from the prestigious law firm of Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP, filed in the office of California Governor Edmund G. Brown, Jr. my petition for clemency.

    I have respectfully asked Governor Brown and any other person to look at my case with an open mind, and outside the legal box that has me close to being murdered for murders that I did not commit. Doing this is truly important, especially now that many Americans are learning the truth about America’s criminal justice system and some of the people who work within it!

    People have learned that this system is dishonest, and that some of its investigators, prosecutors and judges cannot be trusted, and are more concerned with winning, or their political ideology, than with truth or justice. This is especially true in my case.

    Start with the fact that for the first time within the history of the death penalty in California as well as within the history of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, eleven (11) federal circuit judges dissented in one death penalty case, and that case is mine!

    Six of the 11 stated these words and others to show their concern as to why Kevin Cooper’s case should be heard on its merits before he is executed: “Public confidence in the proper administration of the Death Penalty depends on the integrity of the process followed by the State… 24 Years of flawed proceedings are as good as no proceedings at all.”

    The other five judges stated these words and others to show their concern about the truth not being told in the case of Kevin Cooper: “The State of California may be about to execute a innocent man.” A twelfth judge wrote a separate opinion stating: “Significant evidence bearing on Cooper’s culpability has been lost, destroyed or left un-pursued, including, for example blood covered coveralls belonging to a potential suspect who was a convicted murderer, and a bloody t-shirt discovered alongside the road near the crime scene…. Countless other alleged problems with the handling and disclosure of evidence and the integrity of the forensic testing and investigation undermine confidence in the outcome.”

    While it’s safe to say that there have been many a judge, and many a time when certain judges have turned a blind eye to the truth and let a poor person get executed even when there were serious doubts about that person’s guilt, there haven’t been as many times when judges speak out against a possible execution.

    If these twelve judges are not listened to, then what will happen to me will not be my execution, but my murder by, and at the hands of the state of California!

    “Finality” or Justice?
    Many judges whose political ideology allows them to ignore the truth and injustice, to allow for a sick sense of justice to apply in death penalty cases, do very much exist on damn near every court within this country. Politics, the politics of life and death, do play a very real part within this country’s criminal justice system.

    This is why the Republicans in Washington would not allow for President Obama to replace Scalia on the U.S. Supreme Court. This truth may never be admitted in words, but actions speak louder than words. The “Actions” are the continuing oppression of people like me who are poor and fighting for our lives from within this rotten criminal justice system.

    So while “Finality” may be what certain judges are more concerned about rather than “Justice,” it’s my hope that somewhere in here someone else will also see the miscarriage of justice in my case and stand up and speak out and prevent this state from murdering me.

    What makes my case unique in many ways is the fact that the federal judges are doing just that, “standing up and speaking out” against my questionable conviction — based on “all the evidence” and not just what the state claims after hiding lying destroying tampering with, withholding and manipulating the evidence!

    Just because certain judges choose not to speak out, or acknowledge the truth about my case as others have, doesn’t mean I’m guilty. This truth can be said for all the people who have been exonerated for crimes that they did not commit, including murder! Certain judges in their cases upheld those bogus convictions and then closed the case.

    I am respectfully asking you, no matter who you are, no matter what your religion is, or your political party, no matter what your skin color is, or your sexual orientation, no matter what your job is, or what class you’re from or anything else that makes you the individual that you are, to please get involved in this fight to save my life as well as to fight for our collective humanity.

    While I may indeed be murdered by the state of California in the not too distant future, this fight isn’t just about me. It’s much, much bigger than me, or any one person. It’s about us as a people bringing an end to this historic and horrific crime against humanity that is only done against America’s poor people. especially its Black ones like me.

    The Fight Today
    My legal team and I have petitioned the Governor seeking clemency. But we want him to grant me a investigation so that he can learn the truth about all the police corruption in my case, as well as a clemency hearing which will also include DNA testing on certain pieces of evidence which we hope will have the real killer’s DNA on it.

    We hopefully will then seek a pardon if everything works out the way we want, though I have learned from experience that things very seldom work out the way anyone wants them to.

    The first thing that we are asking the Governor is to grant me a reprieve, so that if this state restarts executions, I will not be executed. The state has me marked for death and at the top of their execution list, in part because they didn’t torture and murder me in 2004, and then because of all the attention that my case is now receiving.

    Many people have signed on to a petition that can be found on my freekevincooper.org website and also be found at the Amnesty International website (https://act.amnestyusa.org/ea-action/action?ea.client.id=1839&ea.campaign.id=40574).

    There is entirely too much sadness and pain and inhumanity inside these modern day prison/plantations to go into in any one essay. Just know that my human spirit has endured and is keeping me alive when all around me is death. I live under the threat of death each and every day, and will continue to do so until I get dead, or get out of here!

    Note: Kevin Cooper is a California death row prisoner, convicted of a 1983 quadruple murder in a grotesquely unfair trial. His case was scrutinized in a June 19, 2017 New York Times column by Nicholas Kristof (https://www.nytimes.com/2017/06/17/opinion/sunday/kevin-cooper-death-row-innocent.html). We urge our readers to support the campaign for his exoneration and freedom. You can visit the website www.savekevincooper.org, Facebook /freekevincooper and write to him: Mr. Kevin Cooper, C-65304-4-EB-62, San Quentin Prison, San Quentin, CA 94974.
  5. ima.grandma

    ima.grandma Believer of Miracles

    Politicians on both sides of the aisle want to make the justice system more equitable. Part of that discussion includes the problem of wrongful convictions. WGBH’s Morning Edition Host Joe Mathieu talks with Northeastern University law professor and WGBH News legal analyst Daniel Medwed about the scope of wrongful convictions. The transcript below has been edited for clarity.

    Joe Mathieu: You've made wrongful convictions the focal point of your academic research. What prompted your interest in this to begin with?

    Daniel Medwed: Before I became a professor, I was a criminal defense lawyer in New York. First as a public defender handling appeals for indigent defendants who were dissatisfied with their convictions. And then I ran a small clinic at Brooklyn Law School, where my students and I investigated and litigated claims of innocence by New York state prisoners. What those experiences taught me is that the phenomenon of wrongful convictions — of actually innocent people being convicted either at trial or through plea bargains — is much more widespread than I ever imagined. So I naturally gravitated to that research area when I became a professor.

    Mathieu: How widespread are we talking here? What kind of numbers do you have? How many prisoners have proven their innocence?

    Medwed: You know, that's the $64,000 question. I guess with inflation it's much higher than that now. Here's what we know: according to the Innocence Project in New York, there have been 365 documented DNA exonerations of innocent prisoners across the country since 1989. Those are cases where post-conviction DNA testing of biological material retained from the crime scene has been tested and excluded the person who was convicted of the crime as being the perpetrator. Twenty of those people were on death row at the time. Now biological evidence is seldom available in a criminal case, so we typically see exonerations in non-DNA cases — without the magic bullet of science — and scholars have pin-pointed about 2,100 other non-DNA exonerations across the country since 1989.

    Mathieu: Wow. How many of those cases involve prisoners in Massachusetts?

    Medwed: Well, when you deconstruct that data set, it appears as though there are 65 well-documented exoneration cases from Massachusetts, including 10 DNA exonerations — again where post-conviction DNA testing excluded the person convicted of the crime as the culprit. Most of those DNA exonerations involved rape or murder, which are the types of cases that would leave biological evidence at the crime scene.

    Mathieu: Those are just proven cases, Daniel. [Is there] any sense about how many innocent prisoners might still be behind bars?

    Medwed: Well, there's a sense that these proven cases are just the tip of the innocence iceberg. And here's why. First, if you're claiming innocence behind bars, you need help to investigate and litigate your case. And there just aren't that many lawyers out there that do this kind of work. There are two organizations in Massachusetts. One [is] the New England Innocence Project. [It's] a nonprofit 501c3 [and] operates on a shoestring. For purposes of full disclosure, I'm on the board of that group. There's also an innocence program affiliated with our state public defenders: [The] Committee for Public Counsel Services. Other than that, there might be a few individual lawyers who take on cases pro bono, but there aren't [a lot] of people out there to provide help.

    Second, even if you can scramble and find someone to represent you, you're facing a number of practical obstacles in proving your innocence. For one thing, a lot of these cases are old and cold. You need to find newly discovered evidence of innocence to overturn your conviction. Witnesses might be hard to find, memories are stale, evidence might be destroyed and so on. And finally, there are [a lot] of procedural obstacles, because once you've been convicted a presumption of guilt takes root, and you have to possibly circumvent certain statutes of limitations or other procedural hurdles like limitations on the number of things that you can file.

    Mathieu: What does that mean for Massachusetts?

    Medwed: Well, Massachusetts has the lowest incarceration rate in the country — about 126 people per 100,000 residents, which is much lower than, say, Louisiana and other states by multiples. But even if you have a one percent error rate — which is a very conservative estimate — we're talking over 80 prisoners in Massachusetts, because there are 8,200 prisoners in our state facilities. And then even more in our city and county jails.
  6. kezzy

    kezzy Member

    Why do they refuse to investigate Darin Routier? Even after Darlie stated in her appeals that the lawyers she hired with held crucial information regarding Darin's guilt? How can they even think about killing this girl when the husband was never investigated?
    Cousin Dupree likes this.
  7. kezzy

    kezzy Member

    I wasn't sure at first what to think but once I began to notice certain things about Darin my focus changed from her to him. I am convinced now without a doubt that Darin did the crime. He had no alibi and there was no possible way Darlie could have known if he was the intruder or not. I felt he had been feeding her information because he knew she had memory loss. I believe he drugged her
    Cousin Dupree likes this.

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