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Thursday, July 7, 2011

Pat Lykos

In 2009, when the facts of Ricardo Rachell's case came to light, Pat lykos had two choices. Try to weasel out of responsibility (which would not have been hard, given that she had nothing to do with it), or man up, take responsibility, and promise to fix the system.

She chose the right option. She apologized to Rachell and the public, she named names and detailed what mistakes they had made. She pointed out police officers who had collected biological evidence but not tested it; She promised to make a difference.

She has established the Post Conviction Review Section, whose stated goal is to thoroughly and aggressively investigate credible claims of innocence.
So far, 'credible claims of innocence' seem limited to cases where the wrongfully convicted can produce DNA evidence to support their claims. Now it's time for the DA's office to take a long, hard look at potential Brady and Batson violations. (Batson is a supreme Court decision that does not allow a potential jury member to be dismissed solely because of their race, which seems to have been standard operating procedure under Rosenthal.) Trials have been overturned because prosecutors have wrongly excluded jurors to get the racial mix they prefer, and this could potentially lead to a new trial for SPM.
Please, join me in writing to Pat Lykos and asking her to initiate a review of Coy vs Texas, to examine the court documents and transcripts, the police report, the appeals, the writs of habeus corpus and any other evidence that might reveal why Coy was convicted and incarcerated without a shred of convincing evidence. My letter will be posted on Monday.

In 2009, Lykos set an example for the future:

Saying they were negligent and incompetent when they struck seven blacks from the jury pool in a recent murder trial, Harris County District Attorney Pat Lykos castigated two of her prosecutors Thursday, docking their pay and removing them from trial work.
“I assume full responsibility for the incompetence of these two prosecutors,” Lykos said. “There is not invidious racism involved here, but negligence or incompetence, if you will. If I thought for a moment that there were racial motives, they would have been fired

Read more: http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/front/6345362.html#ixzz1RO1F1Uk7

Now, let's see if she's really serious about fixing the mistakes of the past.






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