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    4/20 Hearing Delayed

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    4/20 Hearing Delayed

    Post by Guest on Fri Apr 09, 2010 1:53 am

    "...prosecutors and McCroskey's attorneys have
    agreed to continue the hearing because they are awaiting results of a
    mental-health evaluation of the defendant and other testing, said
    defense attorney G. Russell Stone.
    The hearing likely will be sometime in June, Stone said."
    http://www2.timesdispatch.com/rtd/news/state_regional/article/FARM09_20100408-223206/336080/


    More waiting...*sighs*
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    ziggy

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    Re: 4/20 Hearing Delayed

    Post by ziggy on Fri Apr 09, 2010 3:21 am

    The wheels turn so slowly sometimes. Well at least it will be after finals so I will be able to pay attention to what's going on.
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    the tapu

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    Re: 4/20 Hearing Delayed

    Post by the tapu on Fri Apr 09, 2010 6:15 am

    For god's sake! I've gotten through mental health intakes in 10 minutes, tops! (Ha... ha. Ha?)

    Well, thanks for the news, Mary. I'm sorry you and others of Sam's friends have to go through more waiting.

    Take care, babe. tap
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    piXy

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    Re: 4/20 Hearing Delayed

    Post by piXy on Fri Apr 09, 2010 4:07 pm

    Im not surprised at this, I wish they would set a date already!
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    ericclimbs

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    Re: 4/20 Hearing Delayed

    Post by ericclimbs on Fri Apr 09, 2010 4:47 pm

    Isn't this why it was delayed the first time? How long does it take to complete a mental evaluation????
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    ziggy

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    Re: 4/20 Hearing Delayed

    Post by ziggy on Fri Apr 09, 2010 7:35 pm

    Yep, this is why it was delayed the first time along with statements that all forensics weren't back yet as well, but geesh, yeah, it can't take this long to get an evaluation, unless they are having a hard time obtaining the one they want. ??
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    dangrsmind

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    Re: 4/20 Hearing Delayed

    Post by dangrsmind on Fri Apr 09, 2010 8:40 pm

    I think this is pretty typical. Bowen is trying to keep Sam alive for as long as possible. Delaying pretty much everything will be part of the game from here on out.

    IMO anyway.
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    the tapu

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    Re: 4/20 Hearing Delayed

    Post by the tapu on Fri Apr 09, 2010 8:54 pm

    dangrsmind wrote:I think this is pretty typical. Bowen is trying to keep Sam alive for as long as possible. Delaying pretty much everything will be part of the game from here on out.

    IMO anyway.


    Yeah, you're right. It is just the beginning of that process. Is it any wonder that some people get close to the end of appeals and just say, fuck it, execute me.

    It's really weird to think of that tactic beginning now, but I think you've pegged it.
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    Catwomansixtsix

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    Re: 4/20 Hearing Delayed

    Post by Catwomansixtsix on Sun Apr 11, 2010 11:34 am

    Disappointing but not at all surprising : /
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    dangrsmind

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    Re: 4/20 Hearing Delayed

    Post by dangrsmind on Sun Apr 11, 2010 11:44 am

    Unfortunate, mostly since the 4/20 date was so ironic.
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    the tapu

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    Re: 4/20 Hearing Delayed

    Post by the tapu on Sun Apr 11, 2010 1:00 pm

    My birthday?! <>

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    Re: 4/20 Hearing Delayed

    Post by Guest on Sun Apr 11, 2010 9:36 pm

    how frustrating! makes me wonder what kind of mental evaluation they are doing? to see which meds he is taking to get the best result for various tests? (i'm being sarcastic). could very well be right, saving sam from death. i wonder how sam feels about the date being changed. why could they just set up a court date and in the mean time await the evaluation results? perhaps they want to say he is mentally insane, thus that would change any kind of court hearing?
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    dangrsmind

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    Re: 4/20 Hearing Delayed

    Post by dangrsmind on Mon Apr 12, 2010 9:46 am

    Assuming the forensic evidence points to Sam, and I expect it does, his lawyer is going to be arguing that he is legally insane. The prosecution will argue he isn't. The defense will try to delay every aspect of the hearing and trial, because they expect to lose this argument and they are just trying to avoid or delay the death penalty.
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    AndresEscobar

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    Re: 4/20 Hearing Delayed

    Post by AndresEscobar on Mon Apr 12, 2010 10:08 am

    This is all common. I wouldn't call it a delay tactic as much as it is par for death penalty cases. One of the many reasons they are so expensive is getting this type of expert analysis is extremely time consuming. The logistics of managing experts, then having them analyze their data, write reports, etc is pretty crazy. Then, you have to take all of that information, analyze it and disclose it to the other party to analyze, compare with their data, etc.

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    Re: 4/20 Hearing Delayed

    Post by Guest on Mon Apr 12, 2010 12:27 pm

    to dm and andres for your input. helps me understand the process
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    ziggy

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    Re: 4/20 Hearing Delayed

    Post by ziggy on Mon Apr 12, 2010 2:53 pm

    Hey - what if the DA doesn't really want a deal? Isn't it possbile that if they have a mountain of evidence and the community is affected by the crime that the commonwealth may feel that it is the best way to seek justice for the people by trying and convicting him of the capital murders?
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    dangrsmind

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    Re: 4/20 Hearing Delayed

    Post by dangrsmind on Mon Apr 12, 2010 3:59 pm

    Seems likely to me.
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    ziggy

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    Re: 4/20 Hearing Delayed

    Post by ziggy on Mon Apr 12, 2010 10:25 pm

    So therefore, Mr. Bowen et. al. will really need to be prepared to offer a defense and give it their best shot. That probably DOES require a lot of time in the gathering of experts, reports and written opinions etc., not to mention a way to attack the credibility of the forensic evidence....(Mr. Fung )
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    claudicici

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    Re: 4/20 Hearing Delayed

    Post by claudicici on Tue Apr 13, 2010 1:11 am

    ....that's what I was wondering when it seemed as if there would be a plea...why would there be a plea?

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    Re: 4/20 Hearing Delayed

    Post by Guest on Tue Apr 13, 2010 2:52 am

    I was thinking there was talk of a plea deal when he told me he was being transferred to prison in July, but I won't know for sure if that's why he's being moved so soon until I get his next letter...
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    dangrsmind

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    Re: 4/20 Hearing Delayed

    Post by dangrsmind on Tue Apr 13, 2010 9:23 am

    I can't see why the prosecution would accept a plea, but then we don't know everything there is to know about the evidence or problems with it.
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    AndresEscobar

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    Re: 4/20 Hearing Delayed

    Post by AndresEscobar on Tue Apr 13, 2010 10:17 am

    The DA as a prosecuting attorney has an additional ethical duty imposed by the ABA Model Rules. That duty is to seek justice. Not to seek conviction or to do what the DA wants or to win. The duty is to seek justice. Justice for society, for every one.

    If this DA believes putting the families and community through the difficulty, cost, and uncertainty of trial, rather than take the certainty that Sam will spend life in prison without parole as part of a plea deal, then that DA would not receive my vote. We are not cowboys. This is not a game. This isn't about winning or losing. To the extent that the family and community is injured by Sam's horrific crime, at least they will know that he will never leave his prison cell. Making a plea deal will save the state of Virginia tens of millions of dollars. And, a jury trial is an uncertain outcome. If they're a 10% chance that Sam will be paroled based on sentencing from a jury trial, should the DA take that? 1%?

    If the DA is unwilling to bargain he may be paying lip service to his more extreme constituents in the short run. But he is not acting with justice in mind.

    On a different note, I've seen forensics mentioned a few times in this thread. There's a lot of discussion in both scientific and legal communities that "forensics" may not be as accurate as we once thought, and certainly not as accurate as the public is lead to believe through television and movies. Fingerprints have been under scrutiny for a while in these circles, but now even the methods used for collecting and analyzing DNA are being found to be problematic.

    This probably has no effect on Sam's case. However, something to keep in mind when hearing the prototypical "They found his DNA therefore he did it and should be put to death," Nancy Grace style arguments. Or when you hear about DNA evidence weighing heavily in a jury's decision to put a man to death.
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    dangrsmind

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    Re: 4/20 Hearing Delayed

    Post by dangrsmind on Tue Apr 13, 2010 10:34 am

    Ok, now that is something I know about.

    It is true that neither DNA nor fingerprint evidence is as certain as TV shows would make you believe. For example, most fingerprint matches are based on "partial" prints and there is a wealth of literature on the questionable accuracy of partial matches. Not mentioned on TV generally, and even fingerprint experts tend to make mistakes in this area.

    But then again, a witness identification based on someone recognizing an unfamiliar person is also much more unreliable than most people assume. Untrained people aren't very good at recognizing others that they don't know it turns out, and there is a fair bit of scientific literature on the subject. Recently automated facial recognition engines have surpassed human abilities in this area in fact. And yet in court if someone claims they "saw" someone at the crime scene this often carries a lot of weight with the jury despite the scientific research that shows that this evidence might be fairly unreliable.
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    AndresEscobar

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    Re: 4/20 Hearing Delayed

    Post by AndresEscobar on Tue Apr 13, 2010 1:19 pm

    dangrsmind wrote:Ok, now that is something I know about.

    It is true that neither DNA nor fingerprint evidence is as certain as TV shows would make you believe. For example, most fingerprint matches are based on "partial" prints and there is a wealth of literature on the questionable accuracy of partial matches. Not mentioned on TV generally, and even fingerprint experts tend to make mistakes in this area.

    But then again, a witness identification based on someone recognizing an unfamiliar person is also much more unreliable than most people assume. Untrained people aren't very good at recognizing others that they don't know it turns out, and there is a fair bit of scientific literature on the subject. Recently automated facial recognition engines have surpassed human abilities in this area in fact. And yet in court if someone claims they "saw" someone at the crime scene this often carries a lot of weight with the jury despite the scientific research that shows that this evidence might be fairly unreliable.

    Also: Courts usually refuse to allow expert witnesses as to the unreliability of witness identification.
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    ziggy

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    Re: 4/20 Hearing Delayed

    Post by ziggy on Wed Jun 09, 2010 2:38 am

    OK Already; it's JUNE. I can't find any information on a hearing date. Anyone else find out when in June the hearing will be???

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