Updated Thursdays

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Arguments 3


Linda's back!

My dear, your post is largely a rehash of what you’ve already mentioned.

Are we using terms of endearment to condescend to each other now? Well, sweetheart, that’s what an argument is. I lay a groundwork and then bolster it with supporting points. If you don’t understand why something is relevant, I explain it.

Not much new ground to cover, but I will clear up a few things.

The solid basis for my belief that he is guilty is based on the child’s testimony. My belief is not based on what other people think, although all the people who mattered believed he was guilty as charged.

That’s lovely darling; which version of her testimony do you believe to be absolutely true? The initial report, the unrecorded/destroyed statement at the HPD station, her statements during the criminal trial, or her testimony during the civil trial?

It appears the solid basis for your belief that he is innocent is mostly based on unrelated cases from the past. Your argument is essentially, “Well, I can’t prove it, but in these other unrelated cases that have nothing to do with Coy or the victim, these other victims may have lied about their story, so that must mean Coy’s victim is also lying!” I don’t think I even need to address how flawed and ridiculous that argument is. If that’s the best you can do, then your movement is in serious trouble.

Obviously I can’t prove it, Pookie, or this blog would be called, “The Totally Awesome Story of How I Single-Handedly Freed a Falsely Convicted Rapper dot com.” All I can do is look at the facts of the case as they’re presented to the public, compare them to similar local cases, and draw the reasonable conclusion that Carlos Coy was convicted under circumstances that mirror other cases in which the defendant was eventually shown to be innocent, and therefore might be innocent himself.

There is nothing wrong with questioning something. But if you decide to question something, then you need to do your research. By your own admission, you haven’t done your homework. How can you even pretend to know anything about this case if you didn’t attend the trial, and you haven’t even read the transcripts? I’m surprised you haven’t at least obtained the transcripts since you are obviously so passionate about this case. I believe that should have been the very first step of your “mission”.

Honey-pie, my homework is all here on the blog for anyone to see and draw their own conclusions. Your dismissal of the opinion of anyone who hasn’t read the transcripts AND attended the trial is a little amusing, unless you have a time machine in which you can provide me with that opportunity. I would like to have the transcripts, but I’m not ashamed of my inability to obtain them; there’s been enough news coverage and publically available court documents for any inquisitive mind to reach a conclusion on this case.

I’m sorry to say this to you, but yes, you are a victim blamer, and you sadly do not have a clue. You are calling the victim a liar, and you haven’t even done your homework. Instead of me enlightening you, I suggest you enlighten yourself. Obtain the transcripts. Do your homework. You will learn actual facts instead of unverified nonsense and harebrained assumptions

Oh, puddin’; asking questions doesn’t make you a victim-blamer. Even if I had called Jane Doe a liar, which I don’t believe I ever have, it would not follow that I would be blaming her for what she claimed happened to her. I was going to write here about what the definition of ‘blame’ is, and then gently explain that ‘blaming’ someone and ‘questioning’ someone are two totally different things, but I feel like that’s too easy. Just…you know…get a dictionary.

You have sidestepped all of my questions to you, as well as avoiding any defense of your assertions. You insisted that context would change my mind about her testimony that the whole thing might have been a dream, and yet refuse to share what that context was. You won’t refute my statements that we can draw conclusions about the Harris County justice system based on their handling of similar cases, petulantly insisting that everything is totally unrelated. Care to fix any of this, or are you just going to stick by your claims that I haven’t done my homework?

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Arguments 2

Linda Bailey said…
I cannot comment on the efforts of HPD because I have never been involved in that particular process. Although I can say whether or not the police try to collect DNA depends on the type of abuse that occurred, how much time has passed between the abuse and the outcry, and whether or not the victim has taken a bath. You need to understand though that DNA is not required for these cases. I can also say your claim that the accusation changed significantly is definitely wrong and dishonest. That I can speak to, which I will discuss later.

Everyone charged with a crime deserves their day in court. No argument there, and Mr. Coy certainly had his day in court, and he lost. The police did not believe him, the prosecutors did not believe him, the judge did not believe him, and the jury did not believe him. They all believed the child. I believe that should give you some pause.
Allow me to reassure you; it most certainly did. It was my surprise and disappointment at his conviction (years after it happened) that led me to look into the case more deeply. I’m not an SPM super-fan, or regular fan, or any kind of hardcore rap fan. The lack of any concrete, convincing evidence is the basis for my belief in his innocence, not a knee-jerk reaction to a bad thing happening to a person I like. Do you have a solid basis for your beliefs, other than the rubber-stamp of a local court system known for convicting the innocent?

This child never told any crazy stories about being flown to Mexico or seeing witches. Obviously if a child tells a nonsensical or impossible story like that, I would not believe the child. That was not the case with this child though.

I am glad to hear you would not believe such crazy stories, but that does not change the fact that people did, and do. Innocent men and women were sent to prison for years based on exactly those kinds of stories, and no one batted an eyelash about it. The correlation here is that the intuition that you claim helps you infallibly identify victims of abuse is less trustworthy than you imagine, and we know it because of those cases.

You have used a variety of fallacies in your arguments, mainly red herrings and faulty comparisons. You mention these other unrelated cases as if it proves something in regards to Coy’s case. Regardless of the validity of the cases you mentioned, they are irrelevant to the case in question. You are trying to distract attention away from Coy’s case by redirecting the argument to different cases. Very cute, but erroneous and dishonest.
I’m sorry you are not able to comprehend how a thriving culture of convict-at-any-cost could possibly have affected Coy’s trial. Your assertion that he is guilty because the police, prosecutors, judge & jury believed him to be is exactly why it’s necessary to consider the endless parade of cases in which a man was universally believed to be guilty, and yet was innocent. Harris County has a truly atrocious track record of false convictions. This matters precisely because so many people, like yourself, are willing to acquiesce to the judgment of the system without stopping to consider how many times that system has been wrong. 

You again mention something about how the child’s story “fluctuated wildly”. You of course do not provide any examples, but it does not matter because I know personally that your claim is wrong. The child has always maintained that Coy was the attacker. She has always maintained that the attack happened in his house, in his daughter’s room on her bed. She has always maintained what specific sex act Coy did to her. She has always maintained what happened before the assault, such as Coy making her dance, touching her on the bed, etc. She has always maintained what happened after the assault, such as the ride home, him telling her not to tell, him speaking with her family, etc. I read a piece on your blog where Coy states that the victim changed how long the assault lasted. Not that we should believe anything Coy says…
Sorry, I have to interject here; “Not that we should believe anything Coy says?” Why shouldn’t we? In my view his guilt is far from settled, which means that his assertions of innocence may be true.
In regards to your insistence that the child has maintained the same story throughout I would like to point out that in the transcripts we’ve seen on the blog, even the prosecutor mentions the fact that the initial accusation was only touching. Of course you are familiar with this, as you continue to assure me that you are very familiar with the case. The difference there is not insignificant to the justice system, which differentiates between ‘Indecency with a Child’ (2-20 years) and ‘Aggravated Sexual Assault of a Child’ (5-99). Because HPD destroyed the initial statement and did not record the first interview properly, we don’t know exactly when that changed to licking, but change it did, and it makes a world of difference.
…but even if that were true, it is insignificant. Due to the passage of time, it is possible the child’s memory has faded in that regard. The fact of the matter is that she still maintains the assault occurred, and that is all that really matters.

So it’s not important for the details of her story to remain consistent, as long as she continues to say that something happened? Oscillating between five minutes of rape, a minute of rape, and a second of rape doesn’t make you even a teeny bit incredulous?

Your comment about the “dream testimony” also demonstrates your ignorance on this case. If you heard the testimony yourself, you would understand the proper context of the dream statement. Coy’s lawyer tried to spin it, but everyone saw through it. Once again, there is a reason why the jury chose to convict him, and it certainly was not because of “malleable testimony”. It was powerful testimony that everyone knew was the truth. I wish you could have seen the doomed expression on Coy’s face when the child was testifying. He knew he was done, as did his lawyer who even complimented the child’s testimony.
If I’m ignorant, enlighten me. What was the proper context?

I see no justifiable reason for you to believe that Coy is innocent.
That does not surprise me; my initial stated assumptions about you, as a sef-identified member of the child abuse system is that you are part of a group of earnest, educated individuals whose zeal to protect children may lead to the (accidental) conviction of innocent men and women, Your first assumptions about me, as you initially stated, are that I am a rape apologist, that I’m a victim-blamer, that I don’t have a fucking clue, and that I should be ashamed of myself. As satisfying as a little reactionary foot stomping can be, perhaps your tendency to stigmatize people who disagree with you is clouding your vision.
I can see this situation from your point of view; I have sympathy for your surprise that someone would defend a man convicted of this type of crime, your concern for victims who may be discouraged by someone questioning their stories, your outrage that someone would question something that you personally and intimately believe to be true. Is it possible for you to see it from my point of view? Can you articulate what my point of view is?
Were you there every day of the trial? Have you read every single page of the transcripts? If your answer is no to those two questions, then your assertion that Coy is innocent is very flimsy at best.
No and no. Should I now shut up and sit down? Shall I refrain from questioning the experts, who have only my best interests in mind? Should I just ignore a case that seems to me to illustrate all the worst aspects of our justice system?

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Arguments

We received an interesting visitor the other day who claims to be a child therapist, so I thought I’d do a response here; her first foray onto the blog was pretty standard: I’m a horrible fucking person who should be fucking ashamed of themselves, fuckity fuck fuck fuck…so that’s nice. After I explained that neither I nor this blog are pro-rape, she wrote back with a longer attempt to show me the error of my ways, which I always appreciate. Her comments are in bold, my responses are not.

Linda Bailey said...
This is such a horrible blog. The owner of this blog doesn't have a fucking clue. No woman or child deserves to be raped. I see that the owner of this blog is the type that always blames the victim. It doesn't matter what the situation is, no woman or child deserves to be violated and have the rest of her life ruined by nightmares, being afraid to be touched again, PTSD...on top of not being believed. This blog truly does a disservice to women and children everywhere, and the owner of this blog should be ashamed.
Linda,

It's interesting that you would ignore the entire premise of the blog, which is that Carlos Coy was falsely convicted, in order to imply that I'm making excuses for rape. As you can see from the many, many stories presented here, Texas has a habit of falsely convicting innocent men and women, refusing to believe them when they state their innocence, ruining their lives and very possibly causing PTSD by imprisoning them until, years later, they are exonerated.

At what point am I allowed to question a glaringly false conviction? Does any individual who makes an accusation deserve to be believed despite obvious inconsistencies in their testimony and the evidence presented? Or do you prefer that we that we just blindly accept the imprisonment of innocent men, women and children in order to avoid making their accusers uncomfortable?

Linda Bailey said...
There are people who have been wrongfully convicted who deserve support; however, the man you represent is not one of them. I'm a child therapist from the Houston area. I'm very familiar with the case in question.

I’m thrilled to hear it. It saves me time if I don’t have to link back and forth to show the basic outline of the case, so I will take you at your word.

You have to understand how these cases work. With a child molestation case, you usually have the child molester and the victim alone in a bedroom. There aren't going to be any witnesses or surveillance cameras around. Most of the time DNA can't be recovered either, especially if it's a delayed outcry. If the child waits days, weeks, months, or years before he/she tells anyone about the abuse, then there is just no way DNA can be recovered.

Especially if there’s not even the slightest effort to do so; remember, Jane Doe made her outcry immediately, and was interviewed by an HPD officer. The only delay was on the part of the Houston Police, who waited 7 days to bring her and her mother (the outcry witness) in to make a statement, then trashed that statement and brought her in to the CAC 3 days later to make new statements. The accusations changed significantly between day 1 and day 10, as I’m sure you are aware.

So all we have is the child's word. Should we simply ignore the child's outcry? Should we simply let these child molesters get away? Of course not.

Is my other option to simply imprison anyone who’s accused regardless of guilt or innocence, because we don’t want the bad ones to get away? Our justice system is predicated on Blackstone’s Formulation, that it’s better for the guilty to go free than for the innocent to suffer. That’s why there should be an investigation, an attempt to gather DNA, and at least a cursory examination of whether the accusations are consistent.

You yourself admit that there are people who have been wrongfully convicted; do you refuse to believe that any of them have been wrongfully convicted of ‘icky’ crimes, like sexual assault if a child?

The fact of the matter is, the child is a witness to the crime. Like any witness, the child deserves to be heard in a court of law. It then becomes a jury's province to determine how credible the child is. A victim's testimony is evidence, and it can be very powerful evidence. Have you ever listened to a child's testimony in a case such as this? I have. More times than I like to think about.

When you listen to these children recount the abuse, you know they are telling the truth. There is simply no way they are fabricating these stories of perversion and horror.

Is there any way a story about being flown to Mexico to be raped by soldiers and returned before Mom picks you up from daycare, of murdering and eating babies, of seeing witches fly and being flushed down toilets to secret sex abuse rooms could possibly be fabricated? I assume, as a therapist, that you are also familiar with the ‘satanic panic’ that resulted in so much misery for so many falsely accused people.

The therapists, police officers, and judges in those cases were no less educated than you, no less earnest. They truly believed that, as you say, there was ‘simply no way they are fabricating these stories of perversion and horror’…yet now almost all of those imprisoned have been exonerated and released.

Do you know how to judge credibility? You can tell by the way they speak, their demeanor, their body language, etc. Your own experience, intuition, and common sense can tell you when something rings true or not. Do you have children of your own? If so, I'm sure you can tell when they are lying or telling the truth.

You have great faith in your powers of intuition; I have no doubt that those involved in the above mentioned moral panic felt the same way, as did those involved in convicting the San Antonio 4. Those women have been released and are well on their way to exoneration, despite the jury in their case being convinced by experience, intuition, and common sense that the accusers had been subjected to horrific abuse, including being injected with drugs and raped with a knife. None of these things were proven, but they were believed.

Yes, false accusations can happen, but it's not simply, "any individual who makes an accusation" can do this to someone. These children are extensively interviewed by police, therapists, and prosecutors. Then the child must testify in front of a jury with the child molester present in the courtroom. Do you have any idea how much it takes to go through all of that? That's a lot of hoops and hurdles to surmount. The rare false outcries are weeded out way before the case makes it to trial. In my experience, about 6-8% of the children I interviewed were lying, and it was usually because of a custody dispute that was happening between the parents.

Police, therapists, and prosecutors, all of whom, I have no doubt, have only the best intentions. I would agree that those involved in the justice system truly believe they are helping children, but that help can become dangerous when their ‘gut feeling’ tells them that they have the right guy despite what the evidence says. As you are so familiar with the case, you know that Coy has stated he and Jane Doe’s mother were romantically involved; does that raise the possibility, in your mind, that the accusations may have been false?

Or what if the child was being abused, but was encouraged to name Coy as her attacker because of his notoriety? The case of Ricardo Rachell comes to mind. He was convicted of an attack on a little boy and spent 6 years in prison. It’s likely he was identified because his face, disfigured years earlier, gave the victim’s mother the creeps.

Rachell was eventually freed because DNA, the existence of which was never communicated to his defense attorney, proved he was innocent. Despite the ‘hoops and hurdles’, he was wrongfully convicted. The attack was real, but the child testified that an innocent man had carried it out.

As far as inconsistencies, people are not robots. When recounting a story, it is normal for certain details to vary due to the limitations of human memory. This applies to everyone, especially children since their minds have not fully developed. In regards to this case, it is my understanding that the core of the child's story has always remained consistent. Maybe some minor details have varied, but the who, what, when, where, has always stayed the same.

Then I am afraid your understanding is wrong; the child’s story fluctuated wildly before, during, and after the trial. There are a lot of resources here on the blog, perhaps you should look into that.

I really do wish you were in the courtroom the day this child testified. Perhaps if you were there hearing it for yourself, you would realize that this child was telling the truth, and that Carlos Coy is exactly where he belongs.

She must have been very convincing, despite testifying repeatedly in court that she might have dreamed the whole thing. Not having been there, however, I can only look at the circumstances of the case, the testimony that has been made public, and think, “If they could convict a man on no more than that, who on this earth is safe?”
In the end, that’s what this blog is about; if they can convict Carlos Coy on nonexistent physical evidence, malleable testimony, and nothing else, who will they come after next? How many other men and women have been crushed by this non-stop urge to believe the children, evidence be damned?

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Sonia Cacy 2


Prosecutors have recommended that Sonia Cacy, whom we talked about back in June, be declared ‘actually innocent’ by the Court of Criminal appeals.

Great news for her, albeit 20 years late.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Kerry Max Cook 2


I found an update for the Kerry Max Cook case; the judge who heard his claim of actual innocence recommended that it be denied. For a case that’s dragged on and been tried and re-tried repeatedly since 1977, that sucks. The judge did admit that while a jury seeing all of the evidence may have found Cook innocent, the evidence produced was not enough to prove his innocence post-conviction.

            It’s up to the Court of Criminal Appeals to finalize the decision. Cook has been fighting to prove his innocence for damn near 50 years; I doubt he’ll quit now.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

False Positives

There hasn’t been much in the news besides the Dallas shooting, but I did stumble across this NY Times story on the notoriously unreliable roadside drug tests used by police across the nation; apparently false positives are so common that the tests are not even admissible in court which, as Reason.com points out, isn’t a big deal for the justice system as over 90 percent of the cases plea out.

            Interestingly enough, the illustrative case in the article is a woman who was pulled over in Houston, Texas.

“Based in part on the information gathered by Marie Munier, the former prosecutor Anderson hired to examine the drug convictions, we determined that 301 of the 416 variants began as arrests by the Houston Police Department, with the rest coming from surrounding municipalities, and that 212 of those 301 arrests were based on evidence that lab analysis determined was not a controlled substance, or N.C.S.
            As has been posted many times before, no physical evidence was used to convict Carlos Coy; the case against him was put together completely on the (changing) testimony of his supposed victim and her mother by a police department, district attorney’s office and court system that has shown the most careless, cavalier attitude towards justice in the past decade and a half. It boggles the mind to think of how many innocents have served, or are currently serving, prison sentences because they were not lucky enough to have physical evidence fabricated against them.