Wednesday, July 20, 2011

American Justice

I normally don't post entire articles, but this one tells you how the American justice system works;

According to a software designer who created the computer program used by police and prosecutors to allege that Casey Anthony had conducted a Google search of the word “chloroform” 84 times, the prosecution erred in their assertion regarding the computer search and knew they might be doing so prior to the conclusion of the Anthony trial.

The computer search was a key piece of evidence in the murder trial as the prosecution sought to prove that Anthony had carefully studied the use of chloroform to render her daughter unconscious as part of a plan to murder 2 year old Caylee Anthony.

The designer, John Bradley, is the chief software developer for Cacheback, the owner of the software program used by the Orange County Sheriff’s department to determine how many times Ms. Anthony had searched for information on the use of chloroform. Bradley also gave expert testimony with respect to the same at the trial.

Subsequent to Bradley’s testimony, during a redesign of the software program, he discovered that the program used in the investigation had erred and that, in fact, the computer had only conducted a Google search for the word 1 time leading to a website that was also visited just one time - a considerable distinction from the 84 times the prosecution alleged.

Bradley decided to commence the redesign after learning, following his testimony at trial, that police had used a different software program prior to his own and had come up with a different result – something they had failed to tell Bradley prior to his testimony and a fact that worried Mr. Bradley who realized the importance of getting it right as Ms. Anthony’s life might very well be at stake.

Bradley says that upon discovering the mistake, he immediately emailed and phoned prosecutor, Linda Drane Burdick, and Sgt. Kevin Stenger of the sheriff’s office to disclose his findings, expecting that this new piece of information would be provided to the defense.

It was not.

“I gave the police everything they needed to present a new report,” Mr. Bradley said. “I did the work myself and copied out the entire database in a spreadsheet to make sure there was no issue of accessibility to the data.”

Under the law, prosecutors are obligated to reveal any and all information that could be relevant to the guilt of the defendant, particularly information that would be exculpatory. Failing to do so is a serious offense and, had Ms. Anthony not been found not guilty, would have likely presented grounds for a new trial.

Prosecutor performance is based on convictions. The attorneys will lie and cheat in order to further their own careers. There really is no ethics in the field of law beyond defense attorneys.

A defense attorney will get a person he knows is a murderer off scott free only because they know they function as a balance to the prosecutors. Sure, having a high success rate enhances their career, and while it might seem sleazy in itself, it comes nowhere near to the completely lack of professional ethics that infest prosecutor offices nation wide.

A prosecutor is simply not allowed to violate the rules because they are convinced that a defendant is guilty of a crime. That's why the rules exist.

People in the United States have been executed who were not guilty of the crime they were convicted of. Politicians like Rick Perry cause that. Prosecutors of the type that are in every legal jurisdiction of this nation cause that.

I've served on a criminal jury three times in my life. All three times I voted to convict, and was actually the forman on one jury and had to cajole another juror into changing her mind.

The first case was a simple DUI. The police and prosecutors had all the evidence.. video, breath test, everything. In most states, there is no penalty to taking a DUI case to jury because the penalty for conviction is the same whether you plead guilty at the out-set or go through the entire trial process. Therefore, most attorneys will take even the most obvious cases to trial just in case they can "OJ" it.

The second case was of a woman charged with drug possession. The woman did not appear at the trial (tried in absenstia) and the judge instructed us to not infer guilt based on her not being present. I didn't make that inference. However, there was only one witness - a police officer that testified that he watched the woman go into "known drug house" and emerge later. They followed her until she made a minor traffic infraction (changing lanes without signaling), pulled her over and after searching her pockets, found the drugs.

The defense attorney was obviously a public defender and he didn't put up much of a defense at all. After the conclusion of the presentation of the evidence, we walked into the jury room and in less than 30 seconds, convicted her.

This is the case that I regret convicting the person. This happened back when I thought police officers were honest, rather than serial liars and corrupt hacks that they evidently are. Another thing that never occurred to any of us on the jury. The police pulled her over for a lane change, and somehow that leapt, suddenly, to his hand going into her pocket and pulling out drugs. There was no explanation of how, on a traffic stop, she ended up out of the car with a cop doing a search on her.

The third case was a burglary of a vehicle. It was a simple "steal the stereo" type of thing. There wasn't much too it, the cops caught the guy red handed.

The issue I have with the legal system isn't that I think all criminals are innocent. It just had never occurred to me before that those in authority, that we are taught as children to respect and admire, are very often lying fucks.

I really don't know if Casey Anthony killed her child or not. It's not something I feel I should have an opinion on because I always steer clear of that type of sensationalism. Still, even in this case, the prosecutor presented a key piece of evidence to a jury knowing that it was false. They did that intentionally in order to make her appear guilty, all while knowing what they were doing was completely unethical and diametrically opposed to the concept of justice that we're suppose to be subject to in the United States.

If I ever sit on a jury again, it won't be enough to present evidence such as DNA, or computer analysis, or the like. I will assume that if it's possible for the police or prosecutor to have conjured up the evidence, or alter it, then that's what they did. They will need to have overwhelming evidence in order for me to convict somebody. I'll tell them up front when they do the voir dire, that I will not convict anyone of any drug offense for any reason so they might as well just disqualify me.

It was about 15 years ago that I voted to convict the woman in the drug case. I wish I could apologize for it and do something to make up for it.

And the comments;

Who cares! Casey Anthony is a CHILD MURDERER! She KILLED her own daughter! A two year old was SMOTHERED TO DEATH BY HER OWN MOTHER!Who cares if she looked fro chloroform on the computer one time or a hundred? She MURDERED her child!SHE DESERVES TO DIE LIKE HER DAUGHTER DID.ALONE AND SCARED.

This is why our nation is in decline. This person doesn't care about the rules of evidence. She only knows that Casey Anthony is guilty and deserves to die. If that means that knowingly falsified evidence is used to convict her, "who cares!"

Because that person is stupid as fuck, she cannot imagine that the same exact thing might be done to her in a criminal case, where she didn't actually commit the crime. She's unable to make that connection due to a low intellectual capacity.

And she is in the majority.. and the majority will find its way on to juries to be the majority.. and innocent people will get life sentences or executed.

It's yet another reason why it's vital that you become relatively wealthy. There is a chance you can be targeted for a ridiculous abuse of justice and you're going to need a very expensive attorney. Wealthy people go to prison at a much lower rate than the poor. That's how blind Lady Liberty is.

A OS about an hour ago
So, are they saying her parents lied? Are they saying that the other facts of the case don't matter? Does this mean she can be re-tried? Does this mean she should be re-tried?

So stupid that they don't understand that you can't try a person twice for the same crime. It's called "double jeopardy" and is no permissible in our legal system.

I know that I should feel fortunate that there are so many stupid people in this nation. It helps my relative position. It's just annoying that they can be that stupid.


Anonymous said...

"...unable to make that connection due to a low intellectual capacity."

These are the same people that fail to understand that denying one person the right to a public trial is the same as eliminating that right altogether.

Sadly, intellectual mediocrity is hammered into most Americans from birth.

Always pleasant to stumble upon a voice of reason in the sea of dreck. Bookmarked for future reference.

Tom said...

Mediocrity would be a step up in most cases.

I honestly think most people are sociopaths. They cannot fathom that an injustice to someone else is an injustice to them.

This was all the rage during the years of the warrant-less wiretapping that was going on after 9/11. Most Americans would insist that if you weren't guilty, you had nothing to hide, and so should not care.. not realizing that they put their own liberty at risk with such ill reasoned logic.

Very few people actually understand that.