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  1. #1
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    Why an unfair trial?

    I'm looking for anyone to give me a valid legal argument as to why these trials were unfair. Please note I said "legal" argument.

    (side note if the courts have already ruled on it, it's obviously not valid)

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
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    I suspect this thread will go unanswered until some of these folks who insist the trials were unfair actually read the testimony from those trials.

    And I have found that most supporters simply aren't interested unless HBO decides to present the trials.

  3. #3
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    I am NOT a supporter. I'm still on the fence...


    IMO though they did NOT get a fair trial bcuz Misskelly’s confession was ruled inadmissible at Damien and Jason's trial. But yet the foreman on that jury read about Misskelly’s confession in the newspaper before the trial began and that formed the basis for his decision that DE and JB were guilty. He even admitted to sharing this information with the rest of the jury. WHAT?!?
    Sorry but this does not sit well with me. Especially bcuz Damien's life is on the line now.
    A lot of things bother me about this case but I'm done posting. I don't want to see this thread pulled again.



    JMO

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by ~Lisa~ View Post
    I am NOT a supporter. I'm still on the fence...


    IMO though they did NOT get a fair trial bcuz Misskelly’s confession was ruled inadmissible at Damien and Jason's trial. But yet the foreman on that jury read about Misskelly’s confession in the newspaper before the trial began and that formed the basis for his decision that DE and JB were guilty. He even admitted to sharing this information with the rest of the jury. WHAT?!?
    Sorry but this does not sit well with me. Especially bcuz Damien's life is on the line now.
    A lot of things bother me about this case but I'm done posting. I don't want to see this thread pulled again.



    JMO

    The ASSC has already ruled on this:

    http://courts.state.ar.us/opinions/2.../cr94-928.html
    At the outset, it should be noted that the basis for Echols's claim - i.e., that the jury considered improper and extraneous information in its consideration of his guilt - does not fall within any of the four categories of errors for which error coram nobis constitutesappropriate relief. Although Echols maintains that his claims regarding jury-deliberation irregularities and impermissible jury bias should fall within the ambit of error coram nobis, this court has specifically declined to extend the writ to remedy a case involving allegedly misleading responses by a juror during voir dire. See Davis v. State, 325 Ark. 96, 925 S.W.2d 768 (1996).
    It has been more than ten years since Echols's conviction. This fact clearly demonstrates that Echols did not exercise due diligence in bringing his claims to light - especially in view of the fact that the point on which he relies (the jury's alleged consideration of Misskelley's confession) was known to the court, the prosecutor, and to Echols's defense team at the time of trial. In his memorandum brief, he points out that, during trial, the trial court denied his motion for mistrial when one of the police witnesses inadvertently mentioned Misskelley's statement. At that time, the court stated, "I suggest . . . that there isn't a soul up on that jury or in this courtroom that doesn't know Mr. Misskelley gave a statement." Thus, Echols should have been aware from the time of his trial and conviction of the possibility that the jury might have been aware of and considered this extraneous information.3
    For these two reasons - coram nobis is not applicable to address and correct the errors that allegedly occurred here, and Echols failed to exercise due diligence in raisingthese claims - we decline to reinvest the trial court with jurisdiction to consider Echols's petition for writ of error coram nobis.4

  5. #5
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    ---------------------------

    This is most likely not a response you're looking for but I thought I'd throw this out there. First of all I have read everything available -for, against, facts, etc.- also I am not a supporter of freeing the wm3. I do believe after everything I've read that they do deserve a new trial.

    What I've always thought was unfair is:

    --Jason's attorney repeatedly asked for a separate trial...everyone imo deserves their own trial yet the judge refused..I do have my opinion of why.

    --they had zero evidence..none.

    --the jury foreman has come forward and admitted he spoke to the prosecution about the case outside of the courtroom, not that inside would be any better.......now this was later but still.......

  6. #6
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    First of all I have read everything available -for, against, facts, etc.
    Have you?
    they had zero evidence..none.
    So what you meant to say is that you've read everything except for the trial transcripts.
    the jury foreman has come forward and admitted he spoke to the prosecution about the case outside of the courtroom
    This couldn't possibly be any less true.

    The foreman's name is Kent Arnold, and he has consistently denied the Defense's allegations against him.

    And Warford - who he allegedly spoke with - wasn't a Prosecutor, he had absolutely nothing to do with this case.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by laurensmom View Post
    This is most likely not a response you're looking for but I thought I'd throw this out there. First of all I have read everything available -for, against, facts, etc.- also I am not a supporter of freeing the wm3. I do believe after everything I've read that they do deserve a new trial.

    What I've always thought was unfair is:

    --Jason's attorney repeatedly asked for a separate trial...everyone imo deserves their own trial yet the judge refused..I do have my opinion of why.

    --they had zero evidence..none.

    --the jury foreman has come forward and admitted he spoke to the prosecution about the case outside of the courtroom, not that inside would be any better.......now this was later but still.......

    There was no legal reason why Jason's and Damien's trial should be severed, except for the blood on the pendant. Which is why the prosecution decided not to introduce it into the trial. The only legal reason Jessie wasn't tried with Jason and Damien was because he confessed.

    Zero evidence? No they had evidence, there was the fibers, there was Damien's admission at the ballpark, there was Jason's admission to Michael Carson, there were witness's that placed them in the area around the time of the crime, they had no alibi's (or at least ones that weren't proven to be made up). Was there a lot of physical evidence, no, however with victims that were killed either near or in the water there wouldn't be, especially since the bodies were submerged in water. CSI isn't realistic, hence why some people are falling into the "CSI Effect".

    http://www.truthinjustice.org/CSI-effect.htm
    http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/...i-effect_x.htm
    http://the-csi-effect.com/

    Actually Kent Arnold (jury foreman) has come forward and denied this allegation.

    However once again this has been ruled on by the ASSC. (see above post)

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sunnyone View Post
    There was no legal reason why Jason's and Damien's trial should be severed, except for the blood on the pendant. Which is why the prosecution decided not to introduce it into the trial. The only legal reason Jessie wasn't tried with Jason and Damien was because he confessed.

    Zero evidence? No they had evidence, there was the fibers, there was Damien's admission at the ballpark, there was Jason's admission to Michael Carson, there were witness's that placed them in the area around the time of the crime, they had no alibi's (or at least ones that weren't proven to be made up). Was there a lot of physical evidence, no, however with victims that were killed either near or in the water there wouldn't be, especially since the bodies were submerged in water. CSI isn't realistic, hence why some people are falling into the "CSI Effect".

    http://www.truthinjustice.org/CSI-effect.htm
    http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/...i-effect_x.htm
    http://the-csi-effect.com/

    Actually Kent Arnold (jury foreman) has come forward and denied this allegation.

    However once again this has been ruled on by the ASSC. (see above post)
    Ugh I made this huge reply that of course got lost as soon as I hit reply.....anyway I appreciate your reply....very hard to find anyone to discuss this case with that doesn't stoop to larry's (like above) level.

    I don't watch CSI or any of those type of shows. As far as the evidence you listed, I wanted to comment on those....if you can show me where I'm wrong-great I would love to complete this own little puzzle in my head!!!

    The fibers--I thought it was determined that these could be find just about anywhere

    the confessions-damien's and jason's-don't hold much weight with me considering the number of people that have come forward over the years admitting they lied

    being placed at the scene-i thought only damien and his girlfriend were said to be near the scene by only one or two people

    alibis-they all 3 had alibis--they just weren't believed.....

  9. #9
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    I meant to add the only physical evidence that you pointed out was the common fibers.....one person seeing damien and his girlfriend near area would be circumstantial...is that right? along with the 'confessions', etc.
    I am not an expert with legalities by nooooooooo means lol that's why I'm asking how things are divided-physical/circumstantial

    also I know my above statement about the alibis has nothing to do with the actual law-it's simply my opinion

  10. #10
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    I don't know if anyone mentioned this but they are discussing this case on Larry King Live tonight.


  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by laurensmom View Post
    Ugh I made this huge reply that of course got lost as soon as I hit reply.....anyway I appreciate your reply....very hard to find anyone to discuss this case with that doesn't stoop to larry's (like above) level.

    I don't watch CSI or any of those type of shows. As far as the evidence you listed, I wanted to comment on those....if you can show me where I'm wrong-great I would love to complete this own little puzzle in my head!!!

    The fibers--I thought it was determined that these could be find just about anywhere

    the confessions-damien's and jason's-don't hold much weight with me considering the number of people that have come forward over the years admitting they lied

    being placed at the scene-i thought only damien and his girlfriend were said to be near the scene by only one or two people

    alibis-they all 3 had alibis--they just weren't believed.....

    The fibers:
    If you read the trial transcript you can read about the actual tests performed on the fibers, and that in fact they were not that common at all. That no matching fibers were found in the victims homes, yet matches were found in Damien and Jason's home says just how uncommon they were.

    The confessions of Damien and Jason: None of the key witness's of these two accounts have come forward to say they lied. One of the softball girl's mom came forward to say she didn't think he was serious, yet she was not present when Damien said it. Neither of the two girls that actually testified have recanted or stated they lied. Michael Carson to date has not recanted nor stated he lied either. I'm not sure who you are referring to as the number of people that have come forward stating they lied, as far as I'm aware only one and she wouldn't even testify to that in court. Her testimony had no relevance though to either of these confessions.

    It was stated that the witness's believed it was Domini with Damien, yet Domini's whereabouts during this time are accounted for. That aside though let's just say it was Damien and someone else, that says that Damien lied about his whereabouts.

    The alibi's weren't just not believed they were proven to be false. You can read about Damien's slip up about his alibi in the trial transcripts.

    Now IMO if you (not anyone in particular just generally speaking )try and tear apart each individual piece of evidence you might have some doubts but I think that if you take the totality of the evidence together it paints a different picture. Basically if the evidence is taken as a whole then IMO the only answer is either a huge conspiracy or they are guilty. There are too many coincidences added together with all three of them confessing, and no alibi's even after 17 years that can be verified, no evidence has come to light that prove them innocent. Numerous unbiased legal minds have reviewed this case and find that there was sufficient proof of guilt.
    Numerous witness's would all have decided to lie, prosecutors, the judge and most importantly the ASSC all have to conspire to keep them in prison if they are truly innocent. Now that is pretty unrealistic conspiracy to me. These entities take the chance if these three were truly innocent for some evidence to come to light that would prove their innocence and ruin their reputations at the least, their careers at worst. Now seriously does anyone truly believe a member of the ASSC would take that chance for this case with all the publicity around it?

    What I would love for all supporters to do is read all the documents available without putting in the opinions of others you have heard, (including non's opinions) from the pretrial hearings to the latest appeals. Stay clear of the defense media circus, the newspapers, Larry King, 48 hours, etc... stick to the legal documents. If after reading everything available and you look at it as a whole and not break it down with the defense misinformation you still feel that they are innocent, that's great. I will respect that opinion, I won't agree because my puzzle came together as guilty as charged. What is frustrating to most non's is that some supporters just watched the documentaries and they are innocent, railroaded, etc... when PL 1&2 were bias, as acknowledged by the makers themselves. Now it's true some supporters will skim over the documents and claim I've read them and still feel they are innocent. While that is their opinion and they are certainly entitled, I feel that they are misled and sadly lacking some of the basic knowledge. Then there are the supporters that will reiterate the defense hype word for word ad nauseam. Examples:

    Jessie was interrogated for 12 hours without his parents consent.
    They were persecuted for wearing black, listening to metallica and reading Stephen King.
    Jessie was mentally retarded, he had the intelligence of a 5 year old.
    Jessie was coerced in all his confessions. (four total that we have proof of)
    Damien wasn't mentally ill, he just had normal teenage angst.
    DNA evidence exonerates the three.
    There was no blood at the scene.

    While only the second one is subjective the others are clearly proven to be false by reading the documents.
    I think a new thread should be started titled "evidence of actual innocence" unfortunately it would be a empty thread.

  12. #12
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    I agree with you 100%!

    After watching Paradise Lost 1 & 2 I at first thought it was possible there had been a miscarriage of justice, but I couldn't shake the overall impression I had of Damien that he was psychopathic.

    Mind you there was the possibility that he was psychopathic but innocent. I then wavered on Jason's guilt, that is until I read the court transcripts and police interviews.

    I implore everyone to do this, if only to set your minds at ease. This is one of the worst crimes imaginable, to take three little boys at once much have been absolutely traumatic for the entire community, apart from all their families who have been through (and are still going through) a second form of hell, by being falsely accused and having the security of conviction continuously questioned.

    Personally I don't believe in the DP, but it's the law in Arkansas and as far as I am concerned Damien meets all the requirements for it and then some.

    The thought of freeing the WM3? Well that's a chilling thought indeed.

  13. #13
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    Sunnyone.....excellent reading and exactly the responses (the wording/non-condescending tone) that I'm looking for. I'm gonna take your advice and re-read the transcripts. I'm sure I'll have many more questions!

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sunnyone View Post
    The fibers:
    If you read the trial transcript you can read about the actual tests performed on the fibers, and that in fact they were not that common at all. That no matching fibers were found in the victims homes, yet matches were found in Damien and Jason's home says just how uncommon they were.
    Respectfully snipped to address the fibers.

    The fibers were quite common IMO, polyester, rayon, cotton. Fibers were found on a red shirt at Michael Moore's home. The fibers tested were "microscopically similar" not a match.

    Price: Ok. And at that time, did you um - come into possession of an item at the Michael Moore home, I believe you have identified - or in your report, and this is on January 17th, 1994 report - MM1, which would have been one red shirt?

    Sakevicius: That's correct.

    Price: Ok. And did you also test the um - the fibers found on the red shirt, MM1 and compare these to the - to the three questioned hairs that you uh - three cotton questioned hairs, you referred to earlier?

    Sakevicius: That's correct.

    Price: Alright. And what was the result of that examination?

    Sakevicius: That they were also similar to the questioned fibers. I can not exclude MM1 as the source of those red fibers.

    Price: Alright. So the - the red t-shirt found at Damien Echols' house and the red shirt found at Michael Moore's house and these three red uh - cotton fibers that were found down at the crimescene are all um - microscopically similar?

    Sakevicius: That's correct.

    http://callahan.8k.com/wm3/ebtrial/lsakevicius.html

    The defense wanted the fibers released for retesting but the state didn't agree, stating that there has been no new technology for such tests since the time of the trial. I can't see why they wouldn't want them to be retested because there is indeed new technology.

    http://callahan.8k.com/wm3/motions/j...r_release.html

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wescott View Post
    Respectfully snipped to address the fibers.

    The fibers were quite common IMO, polyester, rayon, cotton. Fibers were found on a red shirt at Michael Moore's home. The fibers tested were "microscopically similar" not a match.

    Price: Ok. And at that time, did you um - come into possession of an item at the Michael Moore home, I believe you have identified - or in your report, and this is on January 17th, 1994 report - MM1, which would have been one red shirt?

    Sakevicius: That's correct.

    Price: Ok. And did you also test the um - the fibers found on the red shirt, MM1 and compare these to the - to the three questioned hairs that you uh - three cotton questioned hairs, you referred to earlier?

    Sakevicius: That's correct.

    Price: Alright. And what was the result of that examination?

    Sakevicius: That they were also similar to the questioned fibers. I can not exclude MM1 as the source of those red fibers.

    Price: Alright. So the - the red t-shirt found at Damien Echols' house and the red shirt found at Michael Moore's house and these three red uh - cotton fibers that were found down at the crimescene are all um - microscopically similar?

    Sakevicius: That's correct.

    http://callahan.8k.com/wm3/ebtrial/lsakevicius.html

    The defense wanted the fibers released for retesting but the state didn't agree, stating that there has been no new technology for such tests since the time of the trial. I can't see why they wouldn't want them to be retested because there is indeed new technology.

    http://callahan.8k.com/wm3/motions/j...r_release.html

    http://callahan.8k.com/wm3/ebtrial/johnkil.html

    This was the state's rebuttal witness in this area

    Kilbourn: We basically have two classifications of fibers. We have natural fibers and we have man made fibers, or synthetic fibers. Natural fibers uh--that most people are familiar with are things like uh--cotton fibers, uh--flax, uh--hemp, jute, all of these are natural fibers that come from plants. And on the other hand, we have the man made fiber and these are the synthetic fibers that--that most garments and materials are made of today. Well, there are different types of--of uh--synthetic fibers. There are fibers like nylon, there's polyester, uh--there is acrylic fibers, uh--a brand name of acrylic is like orlon that people are familiar with, and there are mod acrylics, and there are acitates and there are triacitates, and there are rayons and there are a few other uh--fairly rare synthetics, but those are the major uh--fibers. And the manufacturing process is the way fibers are manufactured, fibers will take on different shapes. For instance, uh--the way that most fibers are made is that they begin as a liquid and through some kind of process, uh--for instance with nylon they actually take nylon chips and they melt them and so now the nylon is a liquid but we want to make fibers out of that nylon so they take a disc that's called a spineret, and in this spineret there are literally thousands of these great tiny holes and if we looked at the hole through the microscope we would see that one of these holes--for instance with a uh--with a nylon, it might look like that and we call that trilobal. And these thousands of spinerets, each one of them have that shape. Well, this liquid polymer--the nylon is forced through this spineret and then the fibers are cooled as they come through and when they do they take on this shape. And we call that a trilobal nylon, and that's most of the carpets that you have in your home or here in the courtroom. If we looked at it under the microscope, like i was talking about--a slice of bread, you will find that they have that shape. Most of your polyesters that are in clothing and upholstering--they are perfectly round. And once again, but the method that they are manufactured, this is the way they appear. Now, there are a few fibers that are neither round nor have this trilobal and one of them is rayon. Rayon starts out as a liquid but when it passes through these spinerets, actually these holes are round but when this liquid is forced through there it goes from one liquid state, which is very basic ph, into another liquid that is acidic and when this liquid passes into that acid the fibers are formed. And by this process, what we call a wet spinning method, eventhough when they go through they're round when they actually coagulate in that acid bath then they take on a very irregular--very irregular shape. We call this an irregular or striated type appearance and this is what we look at under cross sections--striated, trilobal, and round. With every rayon fiber that you look at, will be a little bit different. Basically, you can say that their shape is round or circular, and that it's more circular than it would be square or be maybe--in this case you could say this is maybe a triangle. But they're not actually round, they're--they have this very irregular appearance. And when you look at a fiber, you can tell that because if you look at it on a microscope slide and have your fiber mounted on here--if we look at it with magnification, we'll see that this fiber--if it's a rayon, actually has these striations or grooves running down it. And we call that a striated fiber and what is happening is that we just project these back and say this is the top of the fiber, uh--because we have hills and valleys caused by this irregular cross section, then when we look down on the fiber that's exactly what we see.

    I haven't been able to locate any new testing method for fibers since 1993, do you have the name of the test or a link?

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