TX: On Judges Getting It Right and Prosecutors Getting it ..
Sun Feb 3, 2013 04:07

Thursday, January 31, 2013
On Judges Getting It Right and Prosecutors Getting it Wrong and Testing and Believing the DNA

As Paul Kennedy wrote this morning,
Judge tells state to just test the damn DNA

which appears not to be exactly true, but hell, it was a headline. And it sure likes like he's about to tell them to test it.

It's from Larry Swearingen's case, the one where nine (9!) forensic pathologists examined the autopsy results and concluded that the evidence clearly showed that he was innocent. You know, because he was in jail when someone (but not he) killed Melissa Trotter. And now it looks like they'll finally test the DNA. And really, it's about time and getting awfully close since the good people of Texas were meaning to kill him in less than a month. And of course the prosecutor is on their side because who gives a rat's ass about innocence, after all, when the chance for killin' is so close.

Meanwhile, up here in the Buckeye State, the Honorable Judge Judy Hunter issued a 26 page opinion explaining that since the DNA showed Douglas Prade (about who I've written before) is innocent, well then.

[T]he evidence that the Defendant presented in his case is clear and convincing. Based on the review of the conclusive Y-STR DNA test results and the evidence from the 1998 trial, the Court is firmly convinced that no reasonable juror would convict the Defendant for the crime of aggravated murder with a firearm. The Court concludes as a matter of law that the Defendant is actually innocent of aggravated murder. As such, the Court overturns the Defendant's convictions for aggravated murder with a firearms specification and he shall be discharged from prison forthwith.
. . .
The Court finds that no reasonable juror, when carefully considering all available evidence in the underlying trial in light of the new Y-STR DNA exclusion evidence, would be firmly convinced that that Defendant Douglas Prade was guilty of aggravated murder with a firearm. Given such a scenario, the outcome of the deliberation on these offenses would be different - the verdict forms would be completed with a finding of not guilty.
(Emphasis added.)

Which is almost as good as it gets. Except that the prosecutor is appealing. Because, after all, you can't let a simple thing like innocence get in the way of keeping a guy in prison for life.

Or for death, if you're talking about Larry Swearingen.

  • Criminal Justice Texas-Size Reparations for the Wrongfully Convicted By Tim Stelloh on January 31, 2013 In 2006, after serving 19 years and 11 months in a Texas prison for a rape he didn’t commit,... more
    • TX: On Judges Getting It Right and Prosecutors Getting it .. — Petra., Sun Feb 3 04:07
      • Death Row Prisoner Larry Swearingen May Be Innocent. Do Texas Courts Care? Jordan Smith February 20, 2013   Just over a year ago, in January 2012, Texas Governor Rick Perry marked a gruesome... more
        • Swearingen gets partial win over document review By Howard Roden | Posted: Friday, March 1, 2013 11:32 pm The attorney for Larry Ray Swearingen was in Conroe Friday requesting access to almost all of ... more
          • TX: LARRY RAY SWEARINGEN, AppelleePetra., Wed Feb 5 17:08
            • Swearingen requests hearing on DNA testing; DA’s office focused on execution date Posted: Saturday, March 15, 2014 11:07 pm By Howard Roden Attorneys for convicted killer Larry Ray Swearingen filed... more
              • Swearingen defense requests more DNA tests By Brandon K. Scott | Posted 3 hours ago Attorneys for Larry Swearingen filed an amended motion last week to the 9th state District Court in Montgomery... more
                • Court Again Denies DNA Tests in Death Row Case • by Johnathan Silver - The Texas Tribune • Oct. 28, 2015 Death row inmate Larry Swearingen during an interview at the Polunsky Unit in Livingston,... more
                  • Larry Swearingen is scheduled to be executed by Texas on November 16,2017 Texas – former Gov. Rick Perry and his successor Gov. Greg Abbott and Texas death penalty enthusiasts– don’t lose sleep over... more
                    • The legal reason for denial of DNA testing has always been that evidence of guilt is so overwhelming that there is no reason for DNA testing. This is a long standing legal reason to reject appellate... more
                      • Lawyers agree to DNA testing in Swearingen's death row case By Keri... more
                        • SwearingenDudley Sharp, Sat Nov 4 08:37
                          Petra: One of the strangest legal back and forths, ever, 19 years in the making.
              • Hello Dudley long time no see hope your keeping well? I have question for you Hun I don't no much about this case I'm going over trial now. Do you think he's guilty?. What I've read so far I think he ... more
                • Sweearingen's guiltDudley Sharp, Fri Feb 7 17:21
                  Kitten" The "mountain of evidence" for his guilt is the language from the appellate judges. Stick to the appellate record and not the usual BS from anti death penalty folks, eg Troy Davis.
          • The most guilty person in the history of Montgomery County’ Published in the Dublin Review in June 2013. From George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston, the ... more
      • TX: Letters: Weighing in on DNA testingPetra., Sun Feb 3 06:36
        Letters: Weighing in on DNA testing Copyright 2013: Houston Chronicle | February 2, 2013 Common sense Regarding "Test the DNA" (Page B8, Wednesday), the article provides a perfect example of our... more
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