Harvey Windsor

Harvey Windsor was wrongfully convicted of the murder of Rayford Howard and Randal Pepper.

Both were shot by Lavon Guthrie and an accomplice on February 25, 1988.

The question in this case is the identity of the accomplice.

Harvey Windsor was convicted on the basis of

(a) An obviously dubious eyewitness identification placing him with Lavon Guthrie on the day of the murder.

(b) An invalid fingerprint identification.  The state’s fingerprint expert, Ms. Carol Curlee, “made only one fingerprint identification of Mr. Windsor, that on the cigarette butt. On cross-examination Ms. Curlee admitted that this was only a partial print, and that she could not recall how many ‘points’ of similarity there were between that print and Mr. Windsor’s file prints.”
( from the appeal ruling ).

  • Two alibi witnesses testified that Harvey Windsor was in fact elsewhere at the time of the second crime.
  • Other eyewitnesses failed to identify Harvey Windsor as the accomplice, and gave descriptions that did not match him.

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Four Decades, Three Trials, Two Death Sentences, One Exoneree. Almost.

An incredible saga. Love this:

“And the missing stocking that was supposed to be full of souvenir body parts was found in 1992 rolled up in a pants leg of Edwards’s jeans by a juror who’d asked to look closely at the trial exhibits—15 years after the murder.”

Wrongful Convictions Blog

From: Texas Monthly

Thirty-eight years after Kerry Max Cook was convicted of murder, he continues to seek exoneration. And now he might finally have a chance to convince the courts of his innocence. – See more at: http://www.texasmonthly.com/news/four-decades-three-trials-two-death-sentences-1-exoneree-almost/#sthash.S6zVMqhs.dpuf

Editor’s note: This story has been updated below to reflect that Smith County district judge Christi Kennedy recused herself from Kerry Max Cook’s case. A new judge has been appointed to consider Cook’s writ: Jack Carter, age 72, from Texarkana. Carter is a Democrat who last year retired from the Sixth District Court of Appeals, which handles appeals in cases from 19 Northeast Texas counties—but not Smith County, where Cook’s trials have taken place.

The long, strange ordeal of Kerry Max Cook—perhaps the most bizarre series of capital murder proceedings in Texas history—just got longer. And stranger. Cook, convicted of the 1977 rape, mutilation, and murder of Linda Jo Edwards, spent 20…

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Mario Casciaro conviction overturned

Mario Casciaro‘s conviction was overturned on Thursday.

“They just tore the prosecution apart. They said it was ridiculous, ludicrous, the evidence was improbable,” said Kathleen Zellner, Casciaro’s attorney.

Casciaro was convicted of murder after the 2002 disappearance of 17-year-old Brian Carrick. Carrick, was last seen a few days before Christmas 2002, at the Johnsburg, Ill., grocery store where he worked, owned by Casciaro’s parents. Carrick’s body was never found.

The conviction hinged on the testimony of another coworker — Shane Lamb – who after receiving immunity, claimed Casciaro asked him to confront Carrick about a $500 marijuana debt.

Prosecutors said they plan to appeal the ruling to the Illinois Supreme Court.

Source : http://abc7chicago.com/991322/

Rodney Patrick McNeal

On March 10, 1997 Rodney Patrick McNeal came home for lunch to take his pregnant wife to a doctor’s appointment. He found her murdered.

Despite compelling evidence of innocence, Patrick was convicted of murdering his wife and a court sentenced him to 30 years-to-life in prison.

A detailed timeline of Rodney’s movements shows that he could not have committed the crime.

Rodney has the support of the California Innocence Project.

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Oklahoma May Be About to Execute an Innocent Man

The murder-for-hire theory of the prosecution is not credible, a witness in the room next door heard voices, arguing, contrary to story of the killer. Apparently some jurors didn’t believe the story but convicted on an incorrect theory that Glossip could have saved the victim’s life after being told of the crime – incorrect because firstly ( despite the incorrect testimony of the medical examiner at the second trial ) the victim was already dead, and secondly because Glossip didn’t initially believe the killer. The clamour for a stay is growing.

Wrongful Convictions Blog

Richard Glossip is scheduled to be executed by lethal injection in Oklahoma next Wednesday, 9/16.

He was convicted of a murder-for-hire plot based solely upon the testimony of the actual murderer, who implicated Glossip after coercion by the police, and to save his own skin.

See the CNN story by Helen Prejean here.

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Montez Spradley – Exonerated

Montez Spradley was wrongly convicted of the 2004 murder of a 58-year old white woman in Birmingham.

He spent nine years behind bars — including three-and-a-half years on Alabama’s death row.

The prosecution relied on tainted and inconsistent testimony of his disgruntled ex-girlfriend as well as a jailhouse snitch, who both claimed he had confessed to them.

The ex-girlfriend wanted to back out, and was paid $10,000 for her testimony.

Neither the police nor the prosecutors ever disclosed the payments to the defense.  Judge Bahakel, before sentencing Montez to death, had signed off on a payment herself. Yet she never told Montez’s trial lawyers about it, and her order authorizing the payment never made it into the court file.

Read more here

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The role of Junk Science in Wrongful Convictions

Last month, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit granted qualified immunity to Lowell Thomas Johnson and Raymond Rawson, the two bite mark specialists whose testimony helped convict Robert Lee Stinson of raping and murdering an elderly Wisconsin woman in 1984. Stinson spent 23 years in prison before DNA testing exonerated him in 2009.

writes Radley Balko.

He goes on

It took more than three decades, but over the past several years, actual scientists have finally started testing the claims of bite mark analysts. And as we’ve pointed out on several occasions here at The Watch, those scientists are showing that bite mark analysis is a fraudulent field.

and also references the case of Ray Krone.

When will it ever end. I left a comment:

There is no end to the bogus evidence that is employed when the State embarks on a wrongful conviction.

Take a look at the Jodi Arias trial : the State changed theory with the sole purpose of contradicting Arias’ claim of self-defense. To accomplish this the Medical Examiner (Dr Horn who has a shady reputation) had to arbitrarily and implausibly suggest there was a “typographical error” in his own autopsy report.

There was no end to the false prosecution claims in the case, they ranged from the ridiculous to the hilarious.

The remedy is for courts to refuse to admit evidence which has no scientifically established basis.

Bill Windsor

Movie Producer/Director Bill Windsor could spend the rest of his life in the Montana State Prison for filming a documentary.

William M. Windsor could die in the Montana State Prison for tweeting, emailing, and publishing a man’s name.

Bill Windsor’s trial is set for September 28, 2015 in the Missoula County Courthouse.

Bill Windsor has spent 134 days in jail. People ask why couldn’t Bill Windsor get out of jail on a bail bond?  He didn’t have a spare $4.1 million.

Did Bill Windsor murder someone?  No. He allegedly Tweeted.

Had Bill Windsor ever been in jail before?  No.  Had Bill Windsor ever been charged with a crime before?  No.  Bill Windsor does not even have a traffic ticket or parking ticket in the last 15 years.

When people hear this, they immediately think: “there must be more to the story.”  Yes, there is.  Bill Windsor has specific evidence of extreme law enforcement and judicial corruption in Montana and Texas, and these corrupt “officials” are doing everything they can to stop Bill Windsor and Lawless America…The Movie.

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