Monthly Archives: January 2012

Man Convicted of Sexual Assault 20 Years After Innocent Man Was Convicted of Same Crime

A man in North Texas was convicted of child sexual assault charges that occurred 23 years ago, after another man was exonerated, according to the Austin Statesman. Robert Warterfield, convicted of molesting a 7- and 9-year-old girl in 1989, faces a life sentence in prison. Another man, Stephen Brodie, was wrongfully convicted then exonerated of the charges with DNA evidence. Brodie is deaf and communicates with sign language. There was a lack of solid evidence when he was charged and convicted. Police questioned him for hours with no interpreter, according to reports. Craig Watkins, a Dallas County District Attorney, reopened Brodie’s file in 2010. He was convinced he was innocent and petitioned for his release before connecting the crime to Warterfield, who was already convicted of molesting another 5-year-old girl in the area around the same time. It is shocking to think that police would charge this man with such…
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Are Corrupt Prosecutors a Growing Problem in the United States?

Everyone likes to have faith in the American Justice system, especially when it comes to homicides and violent crimes. But what happens when the prosecution has the wrong suspect? When they discover their mistake, they release the suspect and proceed with the investigation, right? Not always. Author Conrad Black, contributor at HuffingtonPost.com, says that some prosecutors are out of control. He cites the case of Michael Morton, in Williamson County, Texas, who served 25 years in prison for the murder of his wife before he was exonerated by DNA evidence. He was convicted by the prosecution using entirely circumstantial evidence. He was released in large part with help from the Innocence Project, a New York organization that fights to overturn wrongful convictions with DNA evidence. “Mistakes happen, are not rare, and provide one of the strongest arguments against the death penalty,” says Black. “What makes this more worrisome than a…
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Facing Criminal Charges? Know Your Rights!

If you find yourself facing possible criminal charges in Texas, there is a chance you could land yourself in quite a bit of hot water, whether you are guilty or not. It is important to keep your constitutional rights in mind. Here are a few of the big ones: Right to remain silent. There is a reason all defense lawyers tell their clients to not speak to authorities if they are charged, especially without an attorney present. There are very few opportunities for you to improve your situation by speaking with law enforcement. Right to an attorney. It is particularly important that you exercise this right, even if you feel you did nothing wrong. Police interrogations are designed to confuse subjects. Protection from unreasonable search. Do not allow any search of your private property, personal belongings or vehicle under any circumstances. Police must have probable cause or a warrant to…
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