Friday, December 28, 2007


A CHILD/JUSTICE DENIED/FINALLY FREE ON BOND/MARTY TANKLEFF - A child of only 17, wakes up one morning to prepare for school in his senior year, to find his parents murdered, was falsely accused, convicted, now after 17 yrs, Marty finally is FREE on bond, but to return to court, 1/18/08, before the State Supreme Court Justice Robert W. Doyle.
VIDEO OF RELEASE........... Freedom 'A Dream Come True' Case details .
Please visit this wonderful new blog, called
Justice Winds.

JUSTICE WINDS - Justice mission for all children, to be safe from harm, protected with mercy and compassion.~~~Far TOO many times, the "so called" legal system causes our "nation's children" to helplessly waste their young lives & tears of despair on a concrete floor with no one to comfort them.~~~ One of the most cruel forms of punishment is "denial of existence"

Quest for Justice Tho I have been an advocate most of my adult life, It has become my life's quest to speak out more about the atrocities against our nation's children.
Far too many suffer so needlessly, mistakes made as a "child". Many with a background of dysfunctional families, drugs, alcohol, abuses, assaults, rapes, molestations and even murdered.
Children under the age of 18 get caught up in trouble with the law, not comprehending the consequences of their actions, NOT knowing their basic law rights, MIRANDA RIGHTS, to remain silent without the presence of an attorney.
Juvenile laws in this nation are so desperately needed to be revised, to help protect children, and treat them as a "child" they are.

Many have received sentencing "AS AN ADULT", of LIFE and LIFE W/NO CHANCE OF PAROLE. This is surely a "slow death", it is still the "death penalty" for them. Am striving to make a difference for them, to let them know they are NOT forgotten, that someone "out here" does care about the human being, they ARE.
Many children are falsely imprisoned due to a "coerced" "false confession". Children "deserve" a "chance" to turn their lives around, an "offer" to become a "productive" member of society.
Juvenile Justice "Reform" is "imperative"!

You're invited to please reference the "educational resource" references listed.
Those who visit here, I hope you will have an open mind, and hope such a travesty of injustice NEVER happens to YOUR child.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Recommendations for Avoiding Wrongful Convictions

NEW RESOURCES: The Justice Project recently released two policy reviews that provide suggestions for preventing wrongful convictions in criminal trials. Using research and data from past exonerations, the new reports, Expanded Discovery in Criminal Cases and Jailhouse Snitch Testimony, point to the places and situations in the criminal justice system where a wrongful conviction can be easily prevented.
Expanded Discovery in Criminal Cases stresses the importance of full evidentiary discovery in criminal cases. “Discovery” refers to how the prosecution must disclose all non-privileged information that is relevant in the criminal case before it goes to trial.
The Justice Project notes, “All other aspects of our constitutional system, such as due process and assistance of counsel, depend on complete discovery.” Amongst other solutions, they recommend that uniform, mandatory, and enforced discovery laws be put in place to prevent wrongful convictions.
Jailhouse Snitch Testimony highlights the prevalence of this form of questionable evidence in trials. Jailhouse snitch testimony refers to an inmate testifying against another for his or her own personal gain (e.g., reduced time in prison in exchange for the testimony).

It is often used despite being unreliable. According to the report, “A 2005 study of 111 death row exonerees found that 51 were wrongly sentenced to death in part due to testimony of witnesses with incentive to lie.” The Justice Project calls upon prosecutors to raise the standards for admissibility of jailhouse informant evidence at trial, including finding outside corroboration for the informant’s testimony and providing instructions to the jury that alert them to the reliability issues presented by snitch testimony. (Posted December 14, 2007) Read the Justice Project, Expanded Discovery in Criminal Cases and Jailhouse Snitch Testimony (both 2007). See also Resources and Innocence.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

New Jersey Senate Votes to Abolish the Death Penalty

The New York Times has, "New Jersey Nears Repeal of Death Penalty."

New Jersey Senate voted Monday to make the state the first in the country to repeal the death penalty since 1976, when the United States Supreme Court set guidelines for the nation’s current system of capital punishment.

Approval in the Senate was seen as the biggest obstacle to the repeal, and in the end, it passed 21 to 16, receiving the bare minimum number of votes required in the 40-seat chamber. Three senators did not vote.

Legislators on both sides of the debate said they expected the measure to pass easily on Thursday in the General Assembly, where Democrats hold 50 of the 80 seats.

Gov. Jon S. Corzine, a Democrat and a staunch opponent of the death penalty, has said he would sign a measure ending executions.

“Today New Jersey can become a leader, an inspiration to other states,” Senator Robert Martin, a Republican from Morris Plains who voted for the bill, said during Monday’s debate.

For those opposed to capital punishment, New Jersey’s repeal would represent a victory that has eluded them in the modern history of the death penalty. Though legislatures across the country have tried to abolish capital punishment since 1976, none have succeeded. This year alone, the legislatures in Nebraska, Montana, Maryland and New Mexico have debated bills to repeal those states’ death penalties, but each measure failed, often by a slim margin.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Chris L. Ross Next Pontotoc County, Oklahoma District Attorney

The top assistant in the Pontotoc County district attorney's office has been named to head the office. Gov. Brad Henry announced the appointment Chris L. Ross as district attorney for the 22nd District, which encompasses Pontotoc County, Oklahoma.
He succeeds William Peterson, who is resigning effective Jan. 1.
Chris L. Ross, who is 50 has 24 years of experience and has been with the prosecutor's office since 1983. After graduating from the University of Oklahoma in 1979, Ross earned his law degree from the OU College of Law in 1982. Chris Ross is married and has two children.

During a question-and-answer period at the Oklahoma Bar Association annual meeting urged to tackle wrongful convictions, Pontotoc County First Assistant District Attorney Chris Ross, who prosecuted Glen Gore, outlined changes that have been made in the office since the Debra Sue Carter Rape and Murder case.
He said defense attorneys have immediate access to documents,tapes and other items in the prosecution's files, so a defendant's lawyers do not have to wait until a discover date to obtain information. Ross also said that prosecutors' offices, particularly those in small counties that rarely see capital cases, need more training in handling them. Oklahoma County District Attorney David Prater, who said his office also maintains an "open file" policy with defense attorneys, said prosecutors must be kept up to date on forensic science.
It is also important not to gauge prosecutors' success or failure by their conviction rate, he said.
"We've got to change that culture," Prater said.
The idea, he said, is seeing that justice is done.
"It's not a hash mark," Prater said. "It's a human life.

Big changes for Ada, Oklahoma. I wish the Best for Chris Ross and the Great and Proud people of Oklahoma.

During Peterson’s career several high profile murder cases have been tried. Bill Peterson has also been the subject of much controversy because of his prosecutions of Dennis Fritz and Ron Williamson. Dennis Fritz and Ron Williamson, who were both convicted of the 1982 murder and rape of Debra Sue Carter. After Williamson received a last-minute stay of execution, and Fritz's long-standing efforts to obtain post-conviction DNA testing were successful, DNA results conclusively excluded both men as the source of the semen found in the victim's body. The profile from the semen instead matched Glen Gore. Glen Gore was the prosecutor's key witness. Further DNA testing also proved that not one of the seventeen hairs deemed to be "matches" with Williamson and/or Fritz at the time of trial (under the microscopic analysis then available) belonged to either. As a result, both defendants were exonerated and released from prison in 1999. Bill Peterson also got questionable convictions on Ward and Fontenot , and they are still in prison.
Peterson sued author John Grisham in September 2007 for libel for the portrayal of him in Grisham's first nonfiction book, "The Innocent Man." Other defendants in the lawsuit are:

  • Author Dennis Fritz ,who tells his story of his unwarranted prosecution and wrongful conviction his book "Journey Toward Justice".

  • Barry Scheck, one of Fritz's lawyers who helped exonerate him in 1999, and a co-author of "Actual Innocence," that discusses the case of Williamson and Fritz.

  • Robert Mayer, author of "The Dreams of Ada." - Mayer's book discusses another Pontotoc County murder case that is also mentioned in Grisham's book. The murder of Denice Haraway and the subsequent investigation, prosecution and conviction of Tommy Ward and Karl Fontenot. Bill Peterson got questionable convictions on Ward and Fontenot , and they are still in prison. Robert Mayer, author of The Dreams of Ada; and Barry Scheck, with The Innocence Project, have also filed motions asking the court to dismiss the lawsuit against them.

  • The Doubleday Dell Publishing Group, publisher of "The Innocent Man" and "Actual Innocence."

  • Random House Inc., which owns Doubleday Dell.

  • Broadway Books, publisher of "The Dreams of Ada."

  • Seven Locks Press and/or James C. Riordan, publisher of "Journey Toward Justice."Seven Locks Press and James Riordan have asked that the complaint against them be dismissed for failure to state a claim.

  • In addition to Peterson, other plaintiffs in the lawsuit are Gary Rogers, a former Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation agent, and Melvin Hett, a retired OSBI criminalist. Bill Peterson and Gary Rogers were instrumental in the conviction of Ron Williamson and Dennis Fritz in the murder of Debbie Sue Carter in Ada, Oklahoma in 1982. The Peterson and Rogers lawsuit, filed in federal court, alleges civil conspiracy, libel, placing a person in a false light and intentional infliction of emotional distress.