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(Memphis Commercial Appeal)   Police feel they did nothing wrong by interrogating a 12 year old for hours with the camera "accidentally" turned off and getting to confess to a crime he denied doing before and after the "confession"   (commercialappeal.com) divider line 314
    More: Asinine, tennessee legislature, false confessions, Innocence Project, Judy Blume, confessions, strangling, interrogations, homicides  
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19848 clicks; posted to Main » on 14 Jan 2012 at 11:00 PM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-01-14 07:31:00 PM
and this happened six years ago?

Love the speed of our justice system. let me tell you.
 
2012-01-14 07:44:31 PM
And what has the real killer been doing for six years? Sitting on his hands? The detectives handling this case should be treated like the killer's accomplices if he's ever caught.
 
2012-01-14 07:46:26 PM

SilentStrider: Love the speed of our justice system. let me tell you.


I'd much rather have a justice system that moves ponderously slow to one that makes snap, knee-jerk decisions.
 
2012-01-14 07:47:12 PM
I miss this show. (new window)
 
2012-01-14 07:49:07 PM

Shostie: SilentStrider: Love the speed of our justice system. let me tell you.

I'd much rather have a justice system that moves ponderously slow to one that makes snap, knee-jerk decisions.


in this case, I think I'd prefer the opposite. That confession should never have been allowed in court.
 
2012-01-14 07:49:30 PM
"You can have an individual there and you're doing things like you should and you've got him singing like a bird," Bass said. "And he asks: 'Hey, am I being taped?' Well, if you answer 'yes,' to some of 'em, it's over. And maybe this is a child rapist."

Why would the cops pick that point to start telling the truth?
 
2012-01-14 07:49:41 PM
Sounds like an episode of Law and Order.
 
2012-01-14 07:56:08 PM
damonday.com

//the confession that is
 
2012-01-14 08:02:04 PM

SilentStrider: and this happened six years ago?

Love the speed of our justice system. let me tell you.


FTFA: Thomas was freed after serving two years in lockup.
 
2012-01-14 08:05:29 PM

ArkAngel: FTFA: Thomas was freed after serving two years in lockup.


still. that's two years too many.
 
2012-01-14 08:05:57 PM
Do not question the Gestapo! We have ways of making you talk!

Seriously, just record every minute of every interrogation, and if you do get a real confession, it will be airtight, especially if they display knowledge of facts not revealed about the case. Otherwise you could not coached them on even the "incriminating knowledge" during the time the recorder is cut off. Geez
 
ZAZ [TotalFark]
2012-01-14 08:08:44 PM
Boston station WBUR reported on a coerced confession in Massachusetts: http://www.wbur.org/2011/12/07/worcester-coerced-confession-i

The judge threw the confession out. Under Massachusetts case law a confession must be proved voluntary beyond a reasonable doubt. The jury gets to hear the confession in context and judge for themselves. If there is no recording, the judge is expected to instruct the jury that police are supposed to record interrogations and they should be especially skeptical if there is no recording.
 
2012-01-14 08:13:28 PM
morrobaynews.info

I'm just another voice for vigorous and vigilant civil oversight of our police forces...
 
2012-01-14 08:13:38 PM
It's easy... They just keep telling the kid that they have all the evidence they need to convict him, and he's going to get the death penalty if he keeps pleading innocent, but if he pleads guilty or confesses, they'll talk to the DA and make a deal. Of course, they can't make a deal, and wouldn't anyway. But when you're being told that you're going to die, you start grasping at straws.
 
2012-01-14 08:26:57 PM
this is so easy to fix
kill the cops who got the confession
in public
slow hang them
no trial
no appeals

they have no place in society and clearly cops think that this kind of behavior is OK!!!!
esp if it gets results!!!

/seriously. even if the kid DID the crime, the cops need to spend some time in miami playing with dexter.
 
2012-01-14 08:30:18 PM
asked for food
they turned the camera off
here is what happened while the camera was off

pigs) well we can give you food, but only if you confess
victim) but I am hungry!!!!
pigs) well, you are going to starve to death unless you dont confess
victim) I did it, please dont let me starve to death!

camera is turned back on

/what is wrong with these asshats?
 
2012-01-14 08:31:08 PM
Nor did he know that police are allowed to lie to get a confession.


They are?

Normally I'm not against the police, even when they're obviously in the wrong. I think we should, however make public service announcements to the whole country. Take "Click it or ticket." and "Wear your helmet." and replace them with "Police can lie." and "Loose lips sink ships." and "Snitches get prison rape."
 
2012-01-14 08:33:49 PM

Theaetetus: It's easy... They just keep telling the kid that they have all the evidence they need to convict him, and he's going to get the death penalty if he keeps pleading innocent, but if he pleads guilty or confesses, they'll talk to the DA and make a deal. Of course, they can't make a deal, and wouldn't anyway. But when you're being told that you're going to die, you start grasping at straws.


why are police allowed to talk to people once they have arrested them?
seriously
the arrested people should be immediately brought to the court jails and the only people allowed to talk to the arrested person is their lawyer and the jailers.

TADA problem solved

plus
100% if the confession should be ruled in admissible
children can not legally wave their rights. period.
children, by definition, are not able to be mirandized.

/arent there farking LAWS about not being able to question children without a parent/lawyer being present??
/sigh
 
2012-01-14 08:35:33 PM

doglover: Nor did he know that police are allowed to lie to get a confession.


They are?

Normally I'm not against the police, even when they're obviously in the wrong. I think we should, however make public service announcements to the whole country. Take "Click it or ticket." and "Wear your helmet." and replace them with "Police can lie." and "Loose lips sink ships." and "Snitches get prison rape."


yup
cops lie all the time and of course it is legal ...
they trick criminals into confessing all the time by pretending that they have a witness/evidence/what not.

the only thing that you should ever say to a cop is

am I under arrest?
am I free to go?
bring me my lawyer

/sigh
 
2012-01-14 08:42:10 PM

Coelacanth: And what has the real killer been doing for six years? Sitting on his hands? The detectives handling this case should be treated like the killer's accomplices if he's ever caught.


He may have moved.
To PA, or NH, or any other state with an unsolved dead 10-13 year old girl.
 
2012-01-14 08:54:04 PM
Hey, it could happen! Cameras are complicated little electrophotonbuggers with switches and dials and gizm

i420.photobucket.com

SEE!!
 
2012-01-14 09:35:00 PM

namatad: asked for food
they turned the camera off
here is what happened while the camera was off

pigs) well we can give you food, but only if you confess
victim) but I am hungry!!!!
pigs) well, you are going to starve to death unless you dont confess
victim) I did it, please dont let me starve to death!

camera is turned back on

/what is wrong with these asshats?


namatad: this is so easy to fix
kill the cops who got the confession
in public
slow hang them
no trial
no appeals

they have no place in society and clearly cops think that this kind of behavior is OK!!!!
esp if it gets results!!!

/seriously. even if the kid DID the crime, the cops need to spend some time in miami playing with dexter.


Anyone else think these posts read like Burma Shave ads?
 
2012-01-14 09:42:06 PM

namatad: the only thing that you should ever say to a cop is

am I under arrest?
am I free to go?
bring me my lawyer


In Japan you don't get that last one. They can hold ya for up to 30 days for NOTHIN' and interrogate you that whole time. 99% conviction rate and most convictions are confessions.
 
2012-01-14 10:12:56 PM
It seems to me that the moral of every similar story is that no one should say sh*t without a lawyer.

/dnrtfa
 
2012-01-14 10:15:33 PM
Let's keep this thing in perspective. They obviously had some reason to believe he did it--it's not like they'd be questioning him for no reason. And he CONFESSED to it. Why would he confess to a crime he didn't commit? Sheesh, all you wannabe lawyers get really annoying.
 
2012-01-14 10:32:11 PM

namatad: /arent there farking LAWS about not being able to question children without a parent/lawyer being present??


It sounds like his mother waived that right for him:
"Thomas' paternal grandfather, Stephen Harris, with whom he lives, said Thomas' mother should have been considered a suspect and, therefore, not given the authority to allow police to interrogate the boy alone."
 
2012-01-14 10:55:22 PM

xl5150: Let's keep this thing in perspective. They obviously had some reason to believe he did it--it's not like they'd be questioning him for no reason. And he CONFESSED to it. Why would he confess to a crime he didn't commit? Sheesh, all you wannabe lawyers get really annoying.


He was frightened12 year old kid who was told he would get the death penalty if he didn't confess. None of the physical evidence matched the boy either.

Of course, if you had bothered to RTFA, you would have known this, but since you're either functionally illiterate or mentally handicapped I guess that was impossible.
 
2012-01-14 11:05:15 PM
As long as there are officers in the force who will cover up for the ones who pull shiat like this, there is NO SUCH THING as a "good" cop.
 
2012-01-14 11:05:38 PM

GAT_00: Sounds like an episode of Law and Order.


Already a movie about a similar true story.

ecx.images-amazon.com
 
2012-01-14 11:05:46 PM
Jesus saw you do it. And he saw what you do in the bathroom too.
 
2012-01-14 11:08:15 PM
Easy way to fix camera, automatically toss case if it shuts off.
Surprising how those things stop happening.
 
2012-01-14 11:10:13 PM
I'll say it again. Cops should always be recorded while on duty.
 
2012-01-14 11:11:10 PM

12349876: GAT_00: Sounds like an episode of Law and Order.

Already a movie about a similar true story.

[ecx.images-amazon.com image 300x300]


I am taking a forensic psych class and we just covered a unit on interrogations and we discussed these kind of crappy interrogation techniques. Prof showed the real footage of Michael Crowe. It made me tear up and very angry.
 
2012-01-14 11:11:58 PM

Lone Stranger: Jesus saw you do it. And he saw what you do in the bathroom too.


Honestly, it was a miracle. There I was feeling like a massive shiat was underway.

I went there, dropped trou and low and behold it was just a little poot. Didn't even drop.

So I got some tissue and went to wipe and what do you think I saw? That's right, it was a whole, intact, 1" tall mushroom from my previous day's dinner. A little more stanky and covered in some normal poo ash, but mostly it was the same. Like a corn.

I was shocked as you would be.
 
2012-01-14 11:13:27 PM
My favorite movie when comes to interrogation is the end of Four Brothers. "I don't know what happen to him, I was busy banging your wife."
 
2012-01-14 11:16:20 PM
Police will commonly tell suspects that DNA evidence, etc. will find them innocent later. Most people believe in the idea of justice, so they fall for it, since 'justice' will let them free if they are innocent.

Example: "We have the security video from the crime scene. If you confess and plead guilty, you'll look as if you're cooperating and you'll get better treatment while you're here, and a shorter sentence if you're guilty. If the camera shows you are innocent, hey, then you'll get off at trial, and no harm done. And you'll still have gotten the better treatment here, so, bonus!

To many people that sounds win/ win, so they confess.

Of course, at trial, the confession is submitted as factual evidence and 'What security camera footage?'
 
2012-01-14 11:17:54 PM
Police can interrogate a 12 year old for hours on end without a parent or a lawyer involved?
 
2012-01-14 11:19:10 PM

imprimere: I'll say it again. Cops should always be recorded while on duty.


^ THIS. If a cop issues so much as a speeding ticket without a camera on, it should be invalid. And it goes without saying that the footage should be as tamper-proof as possible.

/Probably should have an exception for certain types of undercover work.
 
2012-01-14 11:20:19 PM

Sim Tree: Police will commonly tell suspects that DNA evidence, etc. will find them innocent later. Most people believe in the idea of justice, so they fall for it, since 'justice' will let them free if they are innocent.

Example: "We have the security video from the crime scene. If you confess and plead guilty, you'll look as if you're cooperating and you'll get better treatment while you're here, and a shorter sentence if you're guilty. If the camera shows you are innocent, hey, then you'll get off at trial, and no harm done. And you'll still have gotten the better treatment here, so, bonus!

To many people that sounds win/ win, so they confess.

Of course, at trial, the confession is submitted as factual evidence and 'What security camera footage?'


^ This. My sister's fiancee got caught in that kind of crap on a false rape charge. Bam, sex offender for life.
 
2012-01-14 11:20:56 PM

stuffy: Easy way to fix camera, automatically toss case if it shuts off.


This. Not just for interrogations - it should apply to dash cams and arrests, too.
 
2012-01-14 11:21:05 PM

Shostie: SilentStrider: Love the speed of our justice system. let me tell you.

I'd much rather have a justice system that moves ponderously slow to one that makes snap, knee-jerk decisions.


"OMG, Your right! He was innocent."

*sound of a backhoe*

"Ok boys, dig him up!"
 
2012-01-14 11:21:24 PM
I still wonder about these people who say people wont confess to crimes they dont commit, well keep a person up for 36 hours or just limited sleep and they will say anything just to make it stop.

Its also interesting that now the prosecutors are telling people they have to plead to lesser charges to get out rather than just dropping the charges, no doubt to save them the embarrassment from getting sued. The cops and DAs are pathetic, an asst DA here in the south is a family friend but biatched at me when I said I would never convict anyone of pot possession or intent to distribute, this went on for hours of her telling me how wrong that was, she completely missed the irony that we had gotten stoned in our car before going in to see the band.

Get a conviction thats all that matters, fairness or guilt be damned!
 
2012-01-14 11:22:13 PM
The girl was obviously in league with Satan
The boy was merely an avenging angel.

Are they even allowed to question a 12 year old without a parent, or representative present?
 
2012-01-14 11:23:15 PM
West Memphis 3 redux
 
2012-01-14 11:24:23 PM

steamingpile:
Get a conviction thats all that matters, fairness or guilt be damned!


There isn't a prosecutor in this country that puts justice above convictions. You show me one and I'll show you someone who's lying to you to get re-elected.
 
2012-01-14 11:24:37 PM

namatad: am I under arrest?
am I free to go?
bring me my lawyer

You hear Internet Lawyers with their GED's in Law saying that crap all the time.

In the real world, on the streets, taking that act with a cop will cause a lot more trouble than it's worth.

In the US, there is something called a "Terry Stop", from the SCOTUS case Terry v. Ohio, 392 U.S. 1 (1968) (Link (new window))

In a Terry stop, No you are NOT free to go, you are NOT under arrest, and you do NOT have the right to an attorney. You are only briefly detained, but if the police have "reasonable suspicion" that you are up to something illegal, they can detain you long enough to ask you what is going on and give you a chance to explain yourself. You can be frisked for presence of weapons, and any contraband that is plainly obvious on even a superficial frisk, in a traffic stop this can include glove compartments being searched. Traffic stops are considered a type of "Terry Stop".

That was expanded in the SCOTUS case Hiibel v. Sixth Judicial District Court of Nevada, 542 U.S. 177 (2004) Link (new window) Where the Supreme Court ruled that if you are subjected to a Terry Stop, you must identify yourself to the Police if they ask for your identification. Clamming up and repeating that little speech will just make trouble, possibly resulting in an arrest.

Suddenly refusing to talk to a cop when he comes up to you and starts asking questions is a quick way to make things go from bad to worse. Yeah, if you're subjected to a Terry Stop, a cop has at least some suspicion that you've done something illegal, and acting very evasive and agitated is a way to make those suspicions get very big very quickly. Calmly explaining what you're doing instead of something illegal makes the problem go away.

You get the right to an attorney when you are actually accused of a crime, which is typically upon arrest, not the moment a police officer tries to ask you questions because he's trying to see if a crime has happened, is happening or is about to happen.

/Law Enforcement Officer
 
2012-01-14 11:26:58 PM
How do you know when a cop is lying?
 
2012-01-14 11:28:53 PM

LordJiro: Sim Tree: Police will commonly tell suspects that DNA evidence, etc. will find them innocent later. Most people believe in the idea of justice, so they fall for it, since 'justice' will let them free if they are innocent.

Example: "We have the security video from the crime scene. If you confess and plead guilty, you'll look as if you're cooperating and you'll get better treatment while you're here, and a shorter sentence if you're guilty. If the camera shows you are innocent, hey, then you'll get off at trial, and no harm done. And you'll still have gotten the better treatment here, so, bonus!

To many people that sounds win/ win, so they confess.

Of course, at trial, the confession is submitted as factual evidence and 'What security camera footage?'

^ This. My sister's fiancee got caught in that kind of crap on a false rape charge. Bam, sex offender for life.


Don't plead guilty if you didn't do it.

A guilty plea is a confession, end of story. Anybody who enters a guilty plea and doesn't know they are de jure confessing to the crime in question, well, either had a total idiot for an attorney, or was a total idiot themselves.

The "Alford Plea", a.k.a. No Contest is what you would use to plead what is guilty without a confession. You'll still get the punishment for the crime, but you are not confessing, just admitting they have enough evidence to convict you without admitting you did it.
 
2012-01-14 11:30:43 PM

doglover: namatad: the only thing that you should ever say to a cop is

am I under arrest?
am I free to go?
bring me my lawyer

In Japan you don't get that last one. They can hold ya for up to 30 days for NOTHIN' and interrogate you that whole time. 99% conviction rate and most convictions are confessions.


funny how easy it is to forget that we take for granted certain freedoms and rights which dont exist elsewhere
 
2012-01-14 11:31:12 PM

Silverstaff:

Suddenly refusing to talk to a cop when he comes up to you and starts asking questions is a quick way to make things go from bad to worse. Yeah, if you're subjected to a Terry Stop, a cop has at least some suspicion that you've done something illegal, and acting very evasive and agitated is a way to make those suspicions get very big very quickly. Calmly explaining what you're doing instead of something illegal makes the problem go away.

/Law Enforcement Officer


You use this to go on fishing expeditions a lot. You'll say you don't, but we both know you're lying.
 
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