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(Chicago Trib)   There's shoddy police work, and there's "accidentally destroyed the murder weapon" police work   (chicagotribune.com) divider line 31
    More: Fail, murder weapon, Juan Rivera, lake county, false confessions, Waukegan, slain, State Attorney  
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6309 clicks; posted to Main » on 22 Jan 2014 at 6:28 AM (31 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



31 Comments   (+0 »)
   
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2014-01-22 12:09:34 AM
I wonder what the chances are that someone "important to the community" or someone related to such a person actually committed the crime...

Either that or someone who was "tough on crime" was up for reelection when the crime was committed...
 
2014-01-22 12:21:42 AM
that's not shoddy police work. that's "making it stick".

our system of prosecution is all about making a charge stick to someone, whether or not they committed the crime in question.

because you know they did <i>something</i>. for example they may have been black.
 
2014-01-22 12:35:09 AM
Many mysteries surround the 1992 rape and killing of Holly Staker

Such as "Where was Glenn Beck at the time?"
 
2014-01-22 01:01:58 AM
Confessions during interogation should not be considered evidence.

Only confessions given freely in the courtroom should be valid.
 
2014-01-22 03:25:50 AM
You mean "accidentally" destroyed the murder weapon, no?
 
2014-01-22 06:35:14 AM
Hell, just let him go.  He will kill someone else and they can get him next time.  That is the Chicago way!
Yea I know but  Waukegan is close enough.
 
2014-01-22 06:49:12 AM

mamoru: I wonder what the chances are that someone "important to the community" or someone related to such a person actually committed the crime...

Either that or someone who was "tough on crime" was up for reelection when the crime was committed...


From comments in the article about other cases, I'm more thinking this is just a case of massive incompetence.  See, they already HAD the murder weapon and murderer in jail, so obviously this new knife is just random garbage.
 
2014-01-22 06:53:03 AM

doglover: Confessions during interogation should not be considered evidence.


It was cases like this one that led Illinois to mandate the videotaping of police interrogations in capital cases, a widely praised piece of legislation for which we can thank a forward-looking State Senator, one B. Obama.
 
2014-01-22 06:55:36 AM
By privatizing the prisons, we created a demand for prisoners.
 
2014-01-22 07:14:59 AM
Can you really kill someone with a bread knife?
 
2014-01-22 07:20:00 AM
If faced with prolonged interrogation... My head is so full of memes I'd write something that looked like a 4chan thread had sex with an abovetopsecret thread while descirbing the points at which I was told the details they wanted me to confess. At least the prosecution in Kafka's Trial never fed the accused elements to build a false confession around.
 
2014-01-22 07:46:23 AM
my question is:  how could the police have not found the knife in the first place?  it was sitting in a bush in the same yard the girl was found in, and nobody found it for two freaking years?  and nobody even knows if there was any kind of evidence on the knife in the first place, they have no reason to believe it is the murder weapon, anymore than the other knives they found might have been the murder weapon.  if there is no dna on this knife either, then that proves nothing, but the defense attorneys act like it could prove him innocent.  for all they know that knife had been sitting there for 20 years.  the whole scenario is just bizarre.
but my favorite part is that the cops don't want to reveal information about their investigation because it could prevent them from catching the "real" killer, as if they even care at this point.  the crime happened 20 years ago and whatever evidence they had is long gone by now, since they believed they convicted the killer in the first place, so case closed.
 
2014-01-22 07:48:46 AM
encrypted-tbn2.gstatic.com
 
2014-01-22 07:54:08 AM
FTFA ""It would have been immeasurably important to be able to establish that there was another weapon that was not the weapon that appeared in the statement written by Tessmann," Urdangen said."

And there's the reason why it was destroyed right there.  Some asshole cop decided that they didn't need this evidence screwing up a perfectly good conviction.
 
2014-01-22 08:06:18 AM

Need_MindBleach: Can you really kill someone with a bread knife?


If you're asking that you might be thinking of butter knives. This is a bread knife:

i.imgur.com
 
2014-01-22 08:10:11 AM

Autistic Hiker: doglover: Confessions during interogation should not be considered evidence.

It was cases like this one that led Illinois to mandate the videotaping of police interrogations in capital cases, a widely praised piece of legislation for which we can thank a forward-looking State Senator, one B. Obama.


Seems strange that they don't just record everything.
Would there be anything they could do to stop me (or, my lawyer, since I'm not talking without him) from recording the proceedings ourselves?
 
2014-01-22 08:28:19 AM

generallyso: Need_MindBleach: Can you really kill someone with a bread knife?

If you're asking that you might be thinking of butter knives. This is a bread knife:


That knife should be banned. Who needs something like that anyway?
 
2014-01-22 08:29:28 AM
2 years later? It also could have been worthless to either side.

DNA evidence doesn't last forever under all conditions.

What's inexcusable would be not finding it when she was murdered.
 
2014-01-22 08:32:20 AM

Animatronik: 2 years later? It also could have been worthless to either side.

DNA evidence doesn't last forever under all conditions.

What's inexcusable would be not finding it when she was murdered.


And, keep in mind, it might not even be the murder weapon.  Still a mess up not to log it in and check, though.
 
2014-01-22 08:34:37 AM
In the original investigation, Waukegan police found a broken straight-edged knife in a yard near the home where Holly was baby-sitting when she was killed, and prosecutors suggested at trial that it was the murder weapon. 

The knife found at the home next door in spring 1994 had a serrated blade.


In other news, police suspect a knife found in a grocery store in Moose Lips, Vermont could potentially be the murder weapon as well
 
2014-01-22 08:43:39 AM
Police truly destroying the murder weapon:

http://www.classicshorts.com/stories/lamb.html
 
2014-01-22 09:25:05 AM

Asa Phelps: that's not shoddy police work. that's "making it stick".

our system of prosecution is all about making a charge stick to someone, whether or not they committed the crime in question.


Jim Garrison agrees
 
2014-01-22 09:26:22 AM

generallyso: Need_MindBleach: Can you really kill someone with a bread knife?

If you're asking that you might be thinking of butter knives.


I'm reminded of George Carlin: "It's only a table knife, but you could kill a pilot with a table knife. It might take you a couple minutes. You know. Yeah, especially if he's hefty."
 
2014-01-22 09:45:22 AM

Doom MD: generallyso: Need_MindBleach: Can you really kill someone with a bread knife?

If you're asking that you might be thinking of butter knives. This is a bread knife:

That knife should be banned. Who needs something like that anyway?


I don't like the black assault-style textured handle on that thing. It can easily allow a stong grip for effortless stabbing. If it had a smooth wooden handle, I'd be fine with it, since it would have uses like hunting bread. But an assualt handled knife is only desgined to kill children and stab through schools.
 
2014-01-22 11:45:44 AM
www.sourcewatch.org
Seen sweating profusely.
 
2014-01-22 11:58:22 AM

Animatronik: 2 years later? It also could have been worthless to either side.

DNA evidence doesn't last forever under all conditions.

What's inexcusable would be not finding it when she was murdered.


Could have been worthless, could have been invaluable... hard to know since the police destroyed it.
 
2014-01-22 12:00:26 PM

99.998er: [www.sourcewatch.org image 250x241]
Seen sweating profusely.


Yeah, but he does that all the time.
 
2014-01-22 03:20:07 PM
DNTFA, but the headline reminded me of a short story that I read in English class as a teen.

Woman kills her husband with a blow to the head with a frozen ham.  Then puts the ham in the oven, and goes out to buy veggies to go with it.  Comes home, "discovers" dead hubby, calls the cops. Small town, everyone knows everyone, so they are discussing things, and the lady does not want the ham to go to waste, so she invites the detectives to stay for dinner.....
 
2014-01-22 04:16:36 PM

enderthexenocide: my question is:  how could the police have not found the knife in the first place?  it was sitting in a bush in the same yard the girl was found in, and nobody found it for two freaking years?  and nobody even knows if there was any kind of evidence on the knife in the first place, they have no reason to believe it is the murder weapon, anymore than the other knives they found might have been the murder weapon.  if there is no dna on this knife either, then that proves nothing, but the defense attorneys act like it could prove him innocent.  for all they know that knife had been sitting there for 20 years.  the whole scenario is just bizarre.
but my favorite part is that the cops don't want to reveal information about their investigation because it could prevent them from catching the "real" killer, as if they even care at this point.  the crime happened 20 years ago and whatever evidence they had is long gone by now, since they believed they convicted the killer in the first place, so case closed.


I don't think the defense wants to prove this knife is the murder weapon; Mr. Rivera has already been cleared of the charges and can never be tried again for them. The issues are: just how sloppy was the original investigation? was critical evidence withheld from the defense? and was Mr. Rivera's confession that the raped and killed the victim, and that the knife he used broke, simply another piece of data that shows the confession was simply fed to Mr. Rivera by the interrogators?
 
2014-01-22 10:21:11 PM

Ranger677: DNTFA, but the headline reminded me of a short story that I read in English class as a teen.

Woman kills her husband with a blow to the head with a frozen ham.  Then puts the ham in the oven, and goes out to buy veggies to go with it.  Comes home, "discovers" dead hubby, calls the cops. Small town, everyone knows everyone, so they are discussing things, and the lady does not want the ham to go to waste, so she invites the detectives to stay for dinner.....


You mean the story that Rustico linked to at 2014-01-22 08:43:39 AM?
 
2014-01-22 10:44:46 PM

fredklein: Ranger677: DNTFA, but the headline reminded me of a short story that I read in English class as a teen.

Woman kills her husband with a blow to the head with a frozen ham.  Then puts the ham in the oven, and goes out to buy veggies to go with it.  Comes home, "discovers" dead hubby, calls the cops. Small town, everyone knows everyone, so they are discussing things, and the lady does not want the ham to go to waste, so she invites the detectives to stay for dinner.....

You mean the story that Rustico linked to at 2014-01-22 08:43:39 AM?


Yea, that would be it.  I was at work and did not have time to read through the thread.  Did a quick Ctl-F for "ham", but other then that....
 
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