Yeah, I guess 'confused' would be one word for it.
Belinda, you have an excellent point. The Ayres blog asks a number of questions about why the prosecutor's version of various events is so glaringly at odd with so many others.
What the blog doesn't mention is that right after the trial, the prosecutor falsely accused a poor mother of an Ayres victim of feeding confidential information from the DA's office to the Ayres blog. The prosecutor said to the mother in an intimidating fashion, " I have a file on this back in my office."
The Ayres blog has only two contributors - an Ayres victim and reporter Victoria Balfour. They have never received any information from any parents of the Ayres victims. Moreover, I know they are very confused by the prosecutor's allegations against the mother, because the prosecutor herself in a comment she wrote under her own name on January 29, 2010, states that she "NEVER" reads the blog.
Parents and prosecution witnesses who have been harshly rebuked by the prosecutor have been afraid to speak up - until now. Now they're speaking up.
Please read the Ayres blog. There are many questions about the actions of the San Mateo DA's office, and apparent lack of supervision that need to be addressed. For those who would like answers to these questions, I would strongly urge you to contact San Mateo Chief Deputy DA Steve Wagstaffe himself at: firstname.lastname@example.org or call: 650-363-4752.
Former prosecutor and legal television analyst Wendy Murphy says she has written in her book about the need for people to rise up and organize and fight for prosecutors who are ethical and give a damn, but has never once seen organization. She says that there have been many other cases where the prosecutor is antagonistic and unethical towards her own witnesses, but no one ever fights back. She is urging people to organize like the mothers did in MADD.
Wendy Murphy Bio: http://www.speakersaccess.com/wendy-murphy
Steve Wagstaffe, the Deputy DA of San Mateo, has been alerted to the prosecutor's misstatements and contradictions by a number of citizens. Everyone is waiting to see if he is going to take action.
Another? Does this not prove to the naive public just how far these monsters will go to access the children?
Thank you for alerting us to this arrest, Mercy. I just started a thread.
Prosecutors in criminal cases have been accused of withholding exculpatory evidence to the defense, as Mike Nifong did in the Duke rape case. But the prosecutor in the Ayres case- may have been excluding inculpatory evidence that may have been favorable to her case.
Let's say, for example, that she called the Boston doctors who trained with Ayres that the reporter Victoria Balfour found in 2006. Let's say that the doctors reconfirmed to the prosecutor what they told the reporter- that they were not trained to give genital exams to boys in therapy, and did not do it themselves. Let's say then that the prosecutor chose to ignore this and did not include it in the trial.
After the mistrial, the reporter has gone back to three of the doctors , who reconfirmed that Ayres was not telling the truth about his training.
Is it possible that the prosecutor didn't want to hear what the Boston doctors were telling her about their training? Is it possible that she excluded it because it would have helped establish Ayres' guilt?
Just a hypothesis, but not out of the realm of possibility.
But also bear in mind, to date, three out of the four Boston doctors have been unable to confirm that anyone from the DA or the police ever contacted them. The fourth doctor has Alzheimer's. Is it possible that she never contacted them at all and then made up stories to show that she had?
Remember, she has told at least five different stories to different people about why she didn't use the Boston doctors, including: "Ayres didn't talk about his Boston training on the stand "(false: he talked about it at length); or that he "lied about where he went to medical school and by the time I found out it was too late to call the Boston doctors; or a doctor was "physically unable to travel." ( A total whopper.)
Last edited by Mercyneal; 09-05-2010 at 08:52 AM.
I think you are spot on and there are hinky things going on with this case. This prosecutor has made zero effort to actually prosecute this case. I want to know why. She has been caught in numerous lies and attempting to cover her tracks. I really, really want to know why. There is something important here that we don't know.
On a side note, I did see your post about contacting Wagstaffe. I have not done so as I am completely on the other side of the country and feel that my opinion would have no weight. If you think it is still worthwhile for me to send an email, let me know and I will do so. I just think that since I am not of the voting community there, my letter will just be immediately placed in the circular file.
Please do email Wagstaffe. He and his office care very much about public opinion, and how they are portrayed in the media. A constituent from San Mateo has already sent him the Websleuths thread on the Ayres case. I posted his response a while back - saying that he had read the link. Who knows if that's true ? He did say he cares about how his office is viewed by the public. If this story becomes national, you can be damn sure he will care. The fact that others from around the country are paying attention to the Ayres case can only make them more aware of what is going on. So, do it!
I just asked lawyer Wendy Murphy- a former visiting scholar at Harvard Law School and legal analyst for places like the Today show, whether she had ever heard of a case where a prosecutor kept out inculpatory evidence that would have been favorable to the prosecution.
Murphy's response: "I see prosecutors intentionally bag cases all the time by not using inculpatory evidence - there's no redress - nothing you can do - except cause the elected prosecutor not to be re-elected.
You can also tell the media to write about it and to call the prosecuctor and ask "why aren't you using this evidence"?
By the way, Wagstaffe has had citizens complain about the prosecutor before, last year, during the Ayres case. He told one citizen that he had other complaints about prosecutor Mckowan and promises to do something. But he just tries to placate everybody and then does nothing.
But one would think that now with the Ayres prosecutor, Melissa Mckowan, being sued for lying and fraud in another child abuse case, that her boss, Steve Wagstaffe would start to be taking these complaints more seriously.
If he doesn't, then he is part of the problem. As Wendy Murphy says, people can cause the elected prosecutor, Wagstaffe, not to be re-elected. Sadly, Wagstaffe, is running unopposed.
I don't understand why a prosecutor would intentionally bag a case. Their job is to get criminals convicted. Why would they do this? It doesn't make any sense to me. And then reading that it is done all the time completely mystifies me. Isn't their rate of conviction important to their resumes? I'm very confused.
Unfortunately, Wendy Murphy says it happens more often than we would know. She has written about prosecutors who are hostile to prosecution witnesses and fail to use inculpatory evidence that would help the prosecution case.
She said that prosecutors engaged in misconduct are the focus of lots of groups' energy - but only when the misconduct could help the accused. That's why there is the Innocence Project, to help people who have been wrongfully convicted.
But she says so far when it comes to prosecutorial misconduct against their own prosecution witnesses, there has been no such mobilization.
"Murphy says," Pro-victim forces are impotent against prosecutors - no matter their misconduct. i've written about this issue and urged people to rise up and mobilize politically around the election of prosecutors who give a damn and have the right ethics, etc - but i've never once seen organization.
Someone suggested to me that the San Mateo DA's office didn't want to use the doctors who trained with Ayres in Boston because they didn't want pay for their flight. IF that were the case - and I don't think it is-- the prosecutor could have had Dr. Mel Brown, one of Ayres' former medical partners testify. Brown lives in San Mateo and ALSO trained at Judge Baker, where Ayres was trained. He would have been able to testify that he was not trained to give genital exams to boys in therapy. He doesn't like Ayres and told reporter Victoria Balfour way before Ayres' arrest that he found Ayres' sex education television series in the 1960s to be "disgusting" and that he thought Ayres was using the show to "procure." Why didn't they call on Dr. Brown to testify about his training? He's right there in town.
I think the larger reason is that the prosecutor for whatever reasons, had some walls up and a blind spot about Ayres' training. It could have been fear. It could have been that she subconsciously knew that if she brought in the doctors who trained with Ayres that she could have nailed the case, and perhaps that's what she feared. Perhaps Ayres himself is a trigger for her, for something that happened to her in her past. If she had nailed Ayres, perhaps she would have had to expose some truth about herself, and she couldn't do it.
But she did have a shocking blind spot when it came to his training. And all those weird stories about why she didn't call the Boston doctors - some of which make no sense and some are just based in falsehoods. They are covering up something.... the fact that she didn't do her homework, or is there something deeper going on? Others - some of the parents of Ayres victims- have a theory that Wagstaffe told Mckowan not to work too hard on the case, out of fear that if she won the County -which had used Ayres to treat juveniles in the courts- would be open to all sorts of lawsuits. That theory seems a bit far fetched to me. Why pursue the case if you don't want to win? Also, why spend the money on it?
Last edited by Mercyneal; 09-05-2010 at 11:47 AM.
There is also that incident with the prominent doctor who trained with Ayres in his first year of residency at Yale. He is only one of six doctors to train with Ayres during a first key year at Yale. This doctor went on to become the Director of the National Institute of Mental Health. He told reporter Victoria Balfour that Ayres was lying about his training back in April, and said he wanted to help the Ayres victims win the case and to give his name to the prosecution.
As the prosecutor had stated in her blog comment on January 29, 2010, that she welcomed people to contact her with new witness info for the second trial, a mother of a victim sent the prosecutor the name of the doctor who trained with Ayres at Yale and his personal cell phone number in May.
The prosecutor never contacted the doctor. As I have reported here before, when the mother of the victim asked the prosecutor in person at an Ayres hearing in June if she had contacted the doctor who trained with Ayres at Yale.
"Yes, I contacted him," the prosecutor said. "But he never called me back."
The doctor has a different version of this story. As of this writing, four months later, the doctor says he has still never been contacted by the prosecutor. We're going with his version on this.
People would have understood had the prosecutor said, " No, I haven't contacted him because I have been so busy, but I will."
What NO ONE can understand is how she would say she contacted him and the foist the blame on him? He is certainly upset by this.
It is up to the prosecutor to research and contact witnesses themselves. Not the other way around.
Did she make this excuse out of laziness or embarrassment? But why then would she blame the doctor for not calling her back when she never contacted him in the first place? Why the attempt to make the prominent doctor - who could nail the Ayres case for her - look bad? Why does she show no curiosity about Ayres' training?
This all just boggles the mind.
I am completely and utterly baffled by this entire case. Nothing makes sense. The prosecutor seems to be some sort of a nut, who seemingly lies to cover her butt and whenever she finds it personally convenient. She also seemingly has no difficulty bashing others for her very own failures. I feel like we are in the Twilight Zone here. There has to be more to this. There has to be a reason she is not trying to convict Dr. Ayre's. She can't be that completely inept, can she?
Mercyneal - I will start working on a letter. I am having a very high pain time right now, so need to take the time to gather my thoughts and write something coherent. I get a bit muddled when the pain is high. Please PM me with any suggestions you have as I want to make sure this letter is well-written and has impact. I am terribly disturbed by many facets of this case and I can't stop thinking about it. I have been so outraged and felt helpless to do anything about it, so maybe the letter will settle me down a bit.
Belinda - I sent you a private message, telling you that I sent an email to you. Couldn't fit all of my info into a private message.
Another point: In her blog comment on January 29, 2010 on the William Ayres blog, the prosecutor stated that she had contacted Judge Baker in Boston, where Ayres trained.. She wrote," Judge Baker told ME, unlike whoever keeps talking about what their records will show, said there are no records from that time period."
But that's not what Judge Baker Chief Operating Officer told reporter Victoria Balfour in August 2009 in a meeting in Boston. For starters, he said he had never heard from anyone in the San Mateo District Attorney's office. He told the reporter that it was possible that there WERE Ayres' work records, in a place called the Harvard Depository. He also said that case records of all patients whom Ayres treated were at Children's Hospital.
The COO said he had never heard of the William Ayres case until the reporter asked him about it last summer. He said that he thought he would have remembered if someone had called him about Ayres' records. And even if the prosecutor spoke to someone else about Ayres, the word would have come to him that she had called, as Judge Baker is a very small place with not a large staff. The COO of Judge Baker asked the reporter why no one from the San Mateo DA's office had ever called him to ask about how child psychiatrists were trained at Judge Baker. He said he would have told them that child psychiatrists have NEVER been trained to give physical exams to kids in therapy - let alone genital exams to boys in therapy.
Last edited by Mercyneal; 09-05-2010 at 04:01 PM.
You would think at some point McKowan would start to feel embarrassed as her massive failures have been publicly outed more than once. Yet, she still defends herself and lies whenever convenient. I feel a fraud investigation needs to be done on this case and her handling of it, as well as Steve Wagstaffe's actions or inactions. She doesn't want to win this case and she isn't going to try to win this case. We have a right to know why. I am very interested in her lack of professionalism and her total lack of preparedness for her own case. Further, her own boss seems unable to manage the case or his prosecutor. Either these people are so completely inept that I fail to see how they made it through law school or something stinks. I'm going with something stinks.
The sad fact of the matter is that the prosecutor has not contacted any of the colleagues that trained with Ayre's and apparently has no intention of doing so. That has been proven extensively and she can lie about it all she wants but she can't get away from the truth. So, is there a way to go around her and get these people into the next trial? This is such a pivotal issue to the case. She has been handed all the information she needs on a silver platter, yet still can't manage to prosecute the case. What exactly is she doing at the office?
Last edited by Belinda; 09-06-2010 at 12:44 PM. Reason: typo
Write to Wagstaffe. Keep writing. If you don't hear from him, then call. And go to the media. The California Bar Association would be interested in this as well.
Others are contacting him. Wagstaffe responds to media pressure most of all.
I would recommend that they get the prosecutor off the case.
Here is the letter I sent to Steve Wagstaffe today:
I am writing to you today in regards to the William Ayres case. I have been following this case for quite some time on Websleuths.com and WilliamAyresWatch.blogspot.com. To say that I am horrified would be a complete understatement. The actions of your prosecutor, Ms. McKowan, have been unprofessional, irresponsible, deceitful and downright fraudulent. She has been publicly caught in numerous lies.
I would like to know why this case is not being adequately prosecuted? Ms. McKowan has had all of the information she needs provided to her on a silver platter, yet she still can’t manage. I fully believe a fraud investigation needs to be pursued regarding this case and the lack of effort that has been spent on it by your office. Had Ms. McKowan done her job the first time, a second trial would be wholly unnecessary. Let’s face it, we know there are far more victims than he is being prosecuted for to begin with. Yet, your office can’t even manage it at the whittled down size that it is.
Why has the prosecutor utterly failed to contact any of those doctors who trained with Ayres at Judge Baker, and Dr. Bert Brown, one of six doctors who trained with Ayres at Yale? She has claimed that she has attempted contact, but we know this is false and an attempt to cover herself. Is it just that she is completely inept or is there a reason this case is being sunk? Frankly, if she were that completely inept, I fail to see how she would have made it through law school. Therefore, she is intentionally sinking the case and I want to know why.
You have claimed on many occasions that you were going to speak with her, yet have failed to do so. Are you unable to manage your office? Should you really be in the position you are in, if you have no control over your employees? Ms. McKowan has shown herself to be a loose cannon, such as making a confusing and inaccurate comment on the William Ayres blog in January, yet you allow her to continue to make your office the laughing stock of the justice system. I fail to understand why this has been allowed to continue.
Lastly, where is your concern for the victims in this case? Where is her concern? Now the victims are forced to face another trial because your prosecutor is incompetent or worse. It is apparent that no additional effort on Ms. McKowan’s part is being invested in this new trial, therefore we can look forward to a similar outcome. How is this justice?
I look forward to hearing some answers to my many questions. I will be forwarding this letter to interested parties and will also be forwarding your response.
I will post any response I receive from his office.
Someone on the San Mateo Daily Journal forum just reported that there's an ad in the San Mateo County Times about prosecutor Mckowan. I think it's about looking for other people whose cases were represented by her in the DA's office.
It's being reported that the ad in the San Mateo County Times says:
Looking for victims whose cases were represented by prosecutor Melissa McKowan in the San Mateo District Attorney's office.
Please call: 650-549-5241
This ad was paid for by a private citizen
Wow! Thanks again for keeping this thread relevant. I'm a second year law student in Sonoma County and I've composed an email I'm going to send tomorrow. THERE IS NO EXCUSE. They could employ law students as volunteer interns to do some of the work for her. If it weren't so far away I'd offer my services to get her arse in gear! I've gone into law to become a prosector and this offends me in more ways than I can describe. There are law students all over the Bay Area that would love a chance to have some hands on experience.
Steve is going to have to feel some major pressure before he'll do anything. Is it possible that they are just lazy or don't think they make enough money to be bothered going above and beyond? I'm mystified.
Disclaimer: I have a JD, but I am not licensed to practice. Therefore, do not interpret anything contained in my posts as legal advice - they are my personal opinion only.