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Old 08.05.2010, 02:51
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Freedom after 28 years...

I don't think I could have lasted the distance in his shoes.

You read and hear of similar stories, but... the loss of your freedom/life when you are in your prime is something that I would find hard to accept.

After the euphoria of freedom, I hope that he can get over the anger that is sure to follow, and build a new life.

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/new...cle7120167.ece

"DNA test clears American musician after 28 years in jail for rape"
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Old 08.05.2010, 02:56
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Re: Freedom after 28 years...

"Despite pleading not guilty and offering a solid alibi, Mr Towler was sentenced to life without parole on the basis of a Cleveland police officer’s suspicion during a routine traffic stop that he resembled the man sought in a rape that had occurred two weeks earlier. He was later picked out by the victim from an identity parade."

wtf?
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Old 08.05.2010, 02:59
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Re: Freedom after 28 years...

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"Despite pleading not guilty and offering a solid alibi, Mr Towler was sentenced to life without parole on the basis of a Cleveland police officer’s suspicion during a routine traffic stop that he resembled the man sought in a rape that had occurred two weeks earlier. He was later picked out by the victim from an identity parade."

wtf?
One of those "well he's black and they all look the same" moments me thinks...
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Old 08.05.2010, 03:01
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Re: Freedom after 28 years...

This is why I am against the death penalty.

I really hope, as you say, that he can live some sort of a meaningful life now...

Mrs. T
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Old 08.05.2010, 07:11
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Re: Freedom after 28 years...

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One of those "well he's black and they all look the same" moments me thinks...

I think this could be the sticker... and unfortunately, depending on the area of Ohio (and some - ok, "many" - other States), it could be more sinister than that.

Or, it could be very "innocently" "simply" failure of accurate identification due to cross-racial recognition issues which is known to be an issue.


There still is struggle along racial lines in the US, more marked in some areas than others. There still is a strong KKK / white supremacist presence in many of the midwest and southern States.

"Because" of this, those areas, even with attempts for better integration, it is tough because of pressures to stick to ones own kind... even if you don't consider yourself racist. And, with lack of integration comes lack of individual recognition. Folks in "those areas" simply do not "see" members of other races and then are unable to differentiate between individuals.


It's a pathetic shame. I'm really glad as well as fortunate that my parents are so not racist that it never even occurred to me to wonder if they'd accept my friends or romantic interests as I was growing up.

Anyhow, I am happy for Mr.Towler that he's been exonerated and I really hope that he can build a life for himself now that he has the chance. Hopefully he has a good support network of friends and loved ones who can really help him get on his feet.
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Old 08.05.2010, 08:36
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Re: Freedom after 28 years...

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I don't think I could have lasted the distance in his shoes.

You read and hear of similar stories, but... the loss of your freedom/life when you are in your prime is something that I would find hard to accept.

After the euphoria of freedom, I hope that he can get over the anger that is sure to follow, and build a new life.

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/new...cle7120167.ece

"DNA test clears American musician after 28 years in jail for rape"
Wow that is so sad and such a shame. Thank God he was finally released and I hope he can enjoy the rest of his life that he has left. 30 yrs is a long time!
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Old 08.05.2010, 08:48
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Re: Freedom after 28 years...

We've had a few cases like this in Canada recently, one where there was obvious corruption by the police and prosecutor to just put anyone in jail. Very very sad, with no preprecussions for the real guilty.

Hope the above man can live in peace.
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Old 08.05.2010, 08:51
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Re: Freedom after 28 years...

It's natural when such a terrible crime is committed to try and put things right. One way is to find the (or a) perpetrator, and punish them. The pressure for a suspect, to charge and to prosecute would have been enormous

Not only does this (as another poster says) tell you that the death penalty is a bad idea, it also introduces the discussion about victim impact statements. Yes, everybody should understand the impact of a crime and in the UK these are post verdict and pre sentencing. But the problem is in the salacious and sensation seeking UK press that plays out the agony of victims and our outrage. This is all righteous stuff but I think aimed, not at justice, but at getting readers to feel things, to make news better entertainment and outrage stands in the way of justice

This is why societies need justice to be the work of an impartial body, not society in general which can easily be whipped into a frenzy to find and and punish SOMEBODY
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Old 08.05.2010, 09:37
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Re: Freedom after 28 years...

Can you find a better case to use in an argument against death penalties?
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Old 08.05.2010, 10:20
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Re: Freedom after 28 years...

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"Despite pleading not guilty and offering a solid alibi, Mr Towler was sentenced to life without parole on the basis of a Cleveland police officer’s suspicion during a routine traffic stop that he resembled the man sought in a rape that had occurred two weeks earlier. He was later picked out by the victim from an identity parade."

wtf?
Quite common unfortunately. Dylan wrote this song about Hurricane about Reuben Carter, pretty much sums up the issue.

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Old 08.05.2010, 10:28
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Re: Freedom after 28 years...

I'd rather have 100 guilty men roaming the streets than one innocent man in prison.
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Old 08.05.2010, 10:30
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Re: Freedom after 28 years...

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I'd rather have 100 guilty men roaming the streets than one innocent man in prison.
..and I'm sure you are going to retract that statement when one of those 100 men rape, hurt or kill one of your loved ones.
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Old 08.05.2010, 15:02
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Re: Freedom after 28 years...

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Quite common unfortunately. Dylan wrote this song about Hurricane about Reuben Carter, pretty much sums up the issue.

Now that's a great song but better songs on that album: Mozambique, One more cup of coffee for the road...
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Old 08.05.2010, 15:08
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Re: Freedom after 28 years...

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..and I'm sure you are going to retract that statement when one of those 100 men rape, hurt or kill one of your loved ones.
And thats the issue isn't it. Nobody can disagree with that at all. But there comes a point: we all agree that its better to have two guilty men free than one innocent in prison, but let's talk 100, 1000 or 10,000

So are we willing to have our loved ones exposed to this cruelty to not end up in prison when we have done nothing wrong?

At some stage if we make convictions we are going to get it wrong and personally i find some error rate OK to keep most of us safe and this is acceptable, as long as it's not me
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Old 08.05.2010, 15:30
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Re: Freedom after 28 years...

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Can you find a better case to use in an argument against death penalties?
The movie "The Life of David Gale" addresses exactly this story. Great actor Kevin Spacey.
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Old 08.05.2010, 16:03
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Re: Freedom after 28 years...

This was just one of many similar cases in the US. It seems almost routine in the news that some guy gets released because of DNA testing and/or it is discovered (or admitted by some cop, 'witness,' or prosecutor with a guilty conscience) that the trial was tainted by false testimony or evidence.

The phrase 'liberty and justice for all' is burned into the American psyche, but is fast becoming little more than an artifact of a bygone era.
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Old 08.05.2010, 16:11
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Re: Freedom after 28 years...

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The phrase 'liberty and justice for all' is burned into the American psyche, but is fast becoming little more than an artifact of a bygone era.
Did it ever exist?
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Old 08.05.2010, 16:11
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Re: Freedom after 28 years...

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This was just one of many similar cases in the US. It seems almost routine in the news that some guy gets released because of DNA testing and/or it is discovered (or admitted by some cop, 'witness,' or prosecutor with a guilty conscience) that the trial was tainted by false testimony or evidence.

The phrase 'liberty and justice for all' is burned into the American psyche, but is fast becoming little more than an artifact of a bygone era.

On the one hand I may agree with you, on the other hand, my disagreement is not only there but it is strong.


The thing is, many of these cases we're seeing coming to be overturned are from "many" years ago - not last year, not the year before... you get the point, they're not recent.

So, to decry that "liberty and justice for all" is somehow from a bygone era rings false to me. If it were from a bygone era, people who were jailed nearly 30 years ago wouldn't be getting set free AND people (such as Roman Polanski) who should have been jailed 30 years ago wouldn't be facing punishment for their previous "escape" from justice now.
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Old 08.05.2010, 16:39
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Re: Freedom after 28 years...

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Did it ever exist?
Maybe never at 100%, but I think many factors have eroded both liberty and justice in the US over the years, especially lately.

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...The thing is, many of these cases we're seeing coming to be overturned are from "many" years ago - not last year, not the year before... you get the point, they're not recent...
Oh, but there's all kinds of injustice taking place in US courts these days at the hands of unaccountable 'officials' and corrupt 'judges,' from the detainment (without charges) in Guantanimo of so many non-terrorists, to the ruinous treatment of Steven Hatfill, to the recent Duke Non-Rape case, to the current Tonya Craft 'trial.'

Sure, the many cases of DNA overturning past convictions do address injustices from years ago, but to pretend that similar things aren't happening in the US today is just an act of dumb willful ignorance.
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Old 10.05.2010, 10:29
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Re: Freedom after 28 years...

Imagine being convicted for murder... and the victim turning up years later!
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