Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Artificially Controversial Adnan Syed Case Adds To Tilt Against Victims Worldwide

Posted by The Machine



Victim Hae Min Lee; bottom, podcaster Sarah Koenig basking in celebrity

1. The Media Overview

Doug Preston, John Douglas, Steve Moore and Bruce Fischer are by no means the only crackpots in America perpetrating innocence fraud.

Their main distinction was to perpetrate it in English against a victim and a police and court system of other countries, using ignorance and smears and a largely complicit American media to trample hard truths in the case.

But innocence fraud is still a tiny industry in Italy as compared with the godzilla it is becoming in America - often with politically vulnerable judges and usually with naive do-gooders in compliance. 

2. The Adnan Syed/Hae Min Lee serial podcast

Much of the public seems to have developed an insatiable appetite for documentaries about people who have been convicted of murders they allegedly didn’t commit. Faux TV documentaries title American Girl, Italian Nightmare, Paradise Lost, West of Memphis, and Making of a Murderer, have all been watched by millions of people.

Podcasts are another way of reaching them. Wikipedia defines a podcast as “a digital audio file made available on the Internet for downloading to a computer or portable media player, typically available as a series, new installments of which can be received by subscribers automatically.”

High school student Hae Min Lee was the victim in this 1999 Baltimore murder case and her ex-boyfriend Adnan Syed was convicted in 2000 of her murder and is serving a life sentence plus 30 years. 

The serial podcast about the Adnan Syed/Hae Min Lee case has been downloaded over 80 million times now. According to Apple, it’s the fastest podcast to reach five million downloads and streams in the history of iTunes.

In the light of public sentiment inflamed by it a retrial has been ordered, a ruling which Maryland’s attorney general will now seek to overturn.

Why was this serial podcast so popular?

Natasha Vargas-Cooper and Ken Silverstein made the following observation about the success of Serial in an article about the case for The Intercept:

“The reality is that ‘Serial’ only worked if it could demonstrate that there were serious doubts about the fairness of Syed’s trial and conviction. If he were guilty, there was no story. The storytelling device was to amplify claims that favored Syed’s defense and contrast that with a watered-down version of the state’s case”

TV producers and podcast makers know full well that an innocent person being railroaded by corrupt or incompetent cops is a far more melodramatic story than a run-of-the-mill domestic violence murder.

Paul Ciolino admitted in a question and answer session about the Meredith Kercher case at Seattle University that CBS News didn’t care whether someone was innocent. The only thing they care about is the story.

“I work for CBS News. I want to tell you one thing about CBS. We don’t care if you did it. We don’t care if you’re innocent. We like a story. We want to do a story. That’s all we care about.”

CBS News produced one of the most biased and factually inaccurate documentaries about the Meredith Kercher case “American Girl, Italian Nightmare”.

The CBS documentary is an archetypal example of innocence fraud. The story is told primarily from the defence point of view, incriminating pieces of evidence are ignored and the programme contains a number of significant factual errors.

3. Faults by podcast creator Sarah Koenig

The Serial is another example of innocence fraud. Sarah Koenig, the executive producer and host of Serial, tries to be partial and objective, but fails miserably.

Instead of maintaining a professional distance from Adnan Syed, she becomes emotionally attached to him, and it’s clear she desperately wants to believe he’s innocent.

She can barely hide her disappointment when she finds out things that show Syed in a bad light. Her comments that Syed doesn’t seem like a killer are just crass. She comes across as an unwordly academic who has been sheltered from the real world in her ivory tower. 

She says she doesn’t buy the motive put forward by the prosecution i.e. Adnan Syed couldn’t deal with being dumped by Hae Min Lee and it erupted in violence.

In reality, people kill other people for the most banal and trivial reasons. She doesn’t seem to understand that there are seven billion on the planet and not everyone shares her logic and morals. There have been a number of high-profile murder cases where seemingly normal people have committed horrific and senseless murders with little or no motive.

And motive is not a required element in any common law jurisdiction.

She adopts a piecemeal cherrypicking approach to the evidence and analyses each piece of evidence in isolation from the other pieces of evidence. If there’s an alternative innocent explanation not matter how far-fetched it is, she wrongly assumes it nullifies that particular piece of evidence.

It’s no surprise she concludes there isn’t enough evidence to convict Adnan Syed of murder: “It’s not enough, to me, to send anyone to prison for life.”

She doesn’t understand the concept and application of the “beyond a reasonable doubt standard” and that all the pieces of evidence have to be considered wholly, not separately - by a jury actually present to size up all witnesses.

According to the Supreme Court of the United States in Victor. Nebraska (92-8894), 511 U.S. 1 (1994):

“…absolute or mathematical certainty is not required.”

“You may be convinced of the truth of a fact beyond a
reasonable doubt and yet be fully aware that possibly you may be mistaken.”

You put all the pieces of evidence together to see whether a picture of guilt emerges.

According to the Supreme Court of Canada in Stewart v. The Queen, [1977] 2 SCR 748:

“It may be, and such is often the case, that the facts proven by the Crown, examined separately have not a very strong probative value; but all the facts put in evidence have to be considered each one in relation to the whole, and it is all of them taken together, that may constitute a proper basis for a conviction.”






4. Main facts of the case against Adnan Syed

The key pieces of evidence in the case were the testimony of his friend Jay Wilds and the mobile phone records which destroyed Adnan Syed’s initial alibi that he was at the mosque on the evening of 13 January 1999 - the day Hae Min Lee disappeared- and corroborated Wilds’ claims that he and Adnan were in Leakin Park that evening.

This is significant because Hae Min Lee’s body was found in Leakin Park. There’s no question that Jay Wilds had inside knowledge about the murder - he led the police to Hae Min Lee’s car. He confessed to being an accessory to murder after the fact.

On 13 January 1999, Hae Min Lee was supposed to pick up her cousin from the Campfield Early Learning Center after school and take her home. She must have been abducted by her killer whilst on the way to the kindergarten.

This means the window of opportunity for her killer to abduct her was extremely narrow. It takes approximately 11 minutes to drive the 3.8 miles from Woodlawn High School to the kindergarten. 

Jay Wilds told the police that Adnan Syed’s plan was to get a lift with Hae Min Lee. Becky and Krista, who were friends with Hae and Syed, claim they heard him asking Hae for a lift on 13 January 1999. Scott Adcock, a police officer, testified that Syed had told him he had asked Hae for a lift that day.

Syed would later deny that he had asked Hae for a lift. Adnan Syed had lent Wilds his mobile phone and car that day. However, it should be pointed out that it wasn’t the first time that Syed had done this.

Kevin Urick, one of the prosecutors, acknowledged in his interview with The Intercept that the two key pieces of evidence - the mobile records and Jay Wilds’ testimony - are of weaker probative value when considered separately, but pointed out that when you put them together, they are strong pieces of evidence.

“Jay’s testimony by itself, would that have been proof beyond a reasonable doubt?” Urick asked rhetorically. “Probably not. Cellphone evidence by itself? Probably not.”

But, he said, when you put together cellphone records and Jay’s testimony, “they corroborate and feed off each other–it’s a very strong evidentiary case.”

He also pointed out that the mobile phone records destroyed Adnan Syed’s alibi that he was at the mosque on the evening of 13 January 1999. From The Intercept:

“Yes. Early on in the Syed case, the defense sent us a disclosure of about eighty names stating that these were witnesses that were going to testify that Syed was at the mosque because it was Ramadan. He was praying all evening and that’s where he was [Intercept ed’s. note: We have corrected this in the introduction].

If they called those eighty witnesses, they would’ve obviously been testifying falsely, because the cellphone records in conjunction with all the evidence we gathered about the cellphone towers, who made the calls, who received them, place him everywhere but at the mosque.

The best defense an attorney can put on is the defense the client is telling them. But attorneys still are not supposed to put on fabricated evidence. And that would’ve been fabricated evidence. And I think once Gutierrez recognized that fact, she did not put it on.”

Adnan Syed chose not to testify at both his trials. If he had, Kevin Urick would have asked him a pertinent question.

“And my very last question would be, what is your explanation for why you either received or made a call from Leakin Park the evening that Hae Min Lee disappeared, the very park that her body was found in five weeks later?”

The mobile phone records also showed there was a call from his mobile phone to his friend Nisha’s landline at 3:32pm on the day Hae disappeared. This is significant because Jay Wilds didn’t know Nisha and Adnan Syed claims he didn’t have his phone at this time as Jay Wilds had it. The phone call lasted more than two minutes.

Sarah Koening speculates that the Nisha call could have been a “butt dial”.

Dana Chivvis, one of the “Serial” producers, puts the pieces of evidence together in episode 12 and seems to have serious reservations about Adnan Syed’s innocence.

“Adnan has always said it was his idea to loan Jay the car because he wanted to get Stefanie a birthday present right. So that’s pretty crappy luck that you loaned this guy who ends up pointing the finger at you for the murder that you loaned him your car and cell phone the day you ex-girlfriend goes missing. The next thing is that it seems pretty clear to me that Adnan asked Hae for a ride after school because we’ve got at least two of their friends saying they overheard him ask for a ride from Hae.

Adnan himself tells the cop that day he asked Hae for a ride. And In Jay’s first interview with the detectives, he says to them Adnan’s plan was to get in Hae’s car by telling her that his car was broken down and asking her for a ride. Then the next piece of bad luck is the Nisha call. I mean even if the Nisha call could potentially be a butt dial… in the realm of possibility maybe it was a butt dial, but what are the chances? Like that sucks for for you that your phone butt dialled the girl that only you know and would call on this day your ex-girlfriend goes missing that you happen to loan your car and phone out to the guy who ends up pointing the finger at you. That sucks.

And the last thing that I think really sucks for him if he’s innocent is that Jay’s story and the cell phone records match up from about 6 o’clock to about 8 o’clock which is when Jay is saying that you’re burying the body and that’s the time of day when you have no memory of where you were…But you Adnan you don’t really remember where you were that evening and that blank spot in your memory that’s the window of time when Jay’s story actually does seem to be corroborated by the cell phone records.”

It’s important to put the evidence that Dana Chivvis outlines into the wider context of Adnan Syed and Hae Min Lee’s deteriorating relationship.

In November 1998, two months before Hae Min Lee was murdered, she wrote a break-up note to Syed telling him to move on, accept her decision to end their relationship, and to “hate me if you will.” On the back of the note Adnan Syed wrote: “I’m going to kill.”

Is it a coincidence that two months later that Hae Min Lee was killed?

Is it a coincidence that Adnan Syed can remember very little about this day even though it wasn’t an ordinary day because the police called him to tell that Hae was missing and asked him if he knew where she was?

Ann Brocklehurst wrote a blog article criticising Sarah Koenig for consistently minimising the warning signs of intimate partner violence and noted that she overlooked that fact that Hae had asked a teacher, Hope Schab, to help her hide from Syed.




5. Doubts Sarah Koenig tries to raise

Sarah Koenig seems to think that Asia McClain is a credible witness - she claims she saw Adan Syed in the library that afternoon. However, Kevin Urick points out why the judge in the post-conviction trial didn’t take her claim seriously.

“I think the judge in the post-conviction trial does a very good job of pointing out that in the letters to Syed, she is very vague and indifferent about what she’s doing. The difficulty comes from Syed. In all his statements about his whereabouts the day of the case he says that he was at the school from 2:15pm to 3:30pm.

He never once, in any statement, at any time, made any reference about being in the public library. His defense was that he was at the school from 2:30 to 3:30. So [Asia McClain’s] reporting seeing him at the public library contradicts what he says he was doing.”

Kevin Urick also stated that Asia McClain told him she was being put under a lot of pressure from Adnan Syed’s family.

“Asia contacted me before the post-conviction hearing, she got my number and called me and expressed to me a great deal of concern about whether or not she would have to testify at the post-conviction hearing. She told me she was under a lot of pressure from Adnan’s family and to get them off her back she wrote him a couple letters.

The implication was she was trying to appease them and she didn’t want to have to stick by it at that time. And I testified to that when I appeared in the post-conviction hearing.”

Sarah Koenig also seems to think that Jay Wilds’ testimony shouldn’t have been used to convict Adnan Syed because he gave conflicting accounts. Kevin Urick explained why these inconsistencies don’t discredit him as a witness.

“Like I said, people who are engaged in criminal activity, it’s like peeling an onion. The initial thing they say is, ‘I don’t know a thing about this.’ And then ‘Well, I sort of saw this.’ You get different stories as you go along. This is the real world. We don’t pick our witnesses, we have to put them on as they are. There were a lot of inconsistencies throughout Jay’s prior statements. Almost all of them involve what we would call collateral facts.

“A material fact is something directly related to the question of guilt or innocence. A material fact would have been, ‘I was with Adnan,’ and then you’ve got the cellphone corroborating that material fact. A collateral fact would be, We were at Joe’s Sub Shop,’ but then you find out actually they were at the auto repair store. That’s a collateral fact. It’s not necessarily material to the question of guilt or innocence. So, many of the material facts were corroborated through the cellphone records including being in Leakin Park.”

Sarah Koenig is not the only person who thinks Jay Wilds’ testimony shouldn’t have been used to convict Adnan Syed.

Civil lawyer Richard Dwyer says doesn’t believe Adnan Syed and thinks he might be guilty, but he states he shouldn’t have been convicted because Jay Wilds gave conflicting statements and the timeline wasn’t proved beyond a reasonable doubt.

There seems to be a widespread misconception that the prosecution must be able to prove with absolute certainty each and every element of a second-by-second comprehensive timeline and that witness testimony must be discounted if there are any contradictions. 

The bottom line is the jury found Jay Wilds to be a credible witness and found Adnan Syed guilty of murder.

6. Some Conclusions

A biased and one-sided 12-part documentary presented by a partisan journalist doesn’t supercede a criminal trial where the jurors get to hear the defence and prosecution present their cases and watch witnesses being cross-examined in court.

Justice shouldn’t be a like a reality TV show where the public gets to decide whether someone convicted of murder should be allowed leave the big house. However, there’s no doubt that these types of documentaries do influence legal proceedings. A judge has recently ruled that Adnan Syed will be given another trial.

We can expect Adnan Syed’s supporters and a number of media organisations will try to influence the legal proceedings before and during the new trial. This couldn’t happen in the UK because of the sub judice rules which prevents the media from commenting on a case until a verdict is reached in order to prevent the jury from being swayed.

The Guardian recently published an article entitled “Adnan Syed is innocent. Now find Hae Min Lee’s real killer”, which was written by Adnan Syed’s chief advocate Rabia Chaudry. I hope the mainstream media provide balanced and factually accurate reports on the case - something they didn’t do when covering the Meredith Kercher case.

Journalists and the public should remember that a miscarriage of justices are not just cases where innocent people have been convicted of crimes they didn’t commit. They include cases where people have literally got away with murder. I can’t think of one documentary about such a case.

7. The reactions of Hae Min Lee’s family

Hae Min Lee’s family sat through the trials along with the juries and have no doubts that Adnan Syed killed her.

“It remains hard to see so many run to defend someone who committed a horrible crime, who destroyed our family, who refuses to accept responsibility, when so few are willing to speak up for Hae.”

Unlike Sarah Koenig or any of the 80 million people who downloaded the Serial podcasts, they actually attended every day of both trials, heard the arguments put forward from the defence and prosecution and saw the witnesses being cross-examined on the stand.

“unlike those who learn about this case on the internet, we sat and watched every day of both trials – so many witnesses, so much evidence”.




Some Of The Main Sources

One: Serial Season One

Two: EXCLUSIVE: PROSECUTOR IN ‘SERIAL’ CASE GOES ON THE RECORD

Three: EXCLUSIVE: SERIAL PROSECUTOR DEFENDS GUILTY VERDICT IN ADNAN SYED CASE, PART II.

Four: Serial podcast rehabilitated a schoolgirl’s murderer, so where’s the feminist outrage?

Five: Serial case: victim’s family offers rare statement before hearing resumes

Six: Adnan Syed is innocent. Now find Hae Min Lee’s real killer

Seven: Syed Of ‘Serial’ Podcast Given Retrial

Eight: Serial Podcast Locations

Nine: ‘Serial’ takes the stand: How a podcast became a character in its own narrative

Ten: Serial Finale—Why I Don’t Believe Adnan Syed

 




Comments

This is a very important point you make TM.
One has to look at why some people are so easily led.
Another question that has to be asked is why are these tactics influencing - and indeed beginning to pervert the course of justice?

Why should a simple audio podcast be so influential that it impacts on a lawful system so as to make them think again?

Regarding how people can be so easily led, I remember a member of .org that was almost dying and in tears for the poor Edda Mellas, when actually Mellas was up to her neck in the grand deception and web of deceit and lies that we all are aware of.
It beggers belief, it really does.

I guess this is a mass media thing, the bigger the catchment audience - the bigger the nay sayers too.

My point is that whatever their grubby and dishonest podcasts or PA company spin they spew out into the public at large should not effect what goes on in a court of law in a tried and trusted system.

This has been seen with Goggerty Marriot beautifying Knox although overwhelming evidence would suggest otherwise.

It is not right and is nothing but a perversion of true justice.

Posted by Deathfish on 07/27/16 at 06:20 PM | #

Thanks Macchiavelli, a much-needed, very relevant, and excellent Analysis.

The innocentisti certainly cloud the issues with their Obfuscations

As you point out they got the retrial ruling partly on the failure, at the original Trial, to question “Experts” on the alleged unreliability of Cell-Tower Records.

It is my understanding that :

1. In combination with other evidence, the Cell Tower Records point to Syed’s Guilt BARD. and,

2, Outgoing calls are reliable only for location status. Incoming calls sre NOT considered reliable information for location.

Posted by Cardiol MD on 07/27/16 at 07:38 PM | #

Whoops. Cut & Paste omission:
Would you please clarify your analysis on those 2 specific issues?

Posted by Cardiol MD on 07/27/16 at 07:43 PM | #

Hi Cardiol,

The mobile phone records are important for three reasons:

1. They destroyed Adnan Syed’s initial alibi that he was at the mosque on the evening of 13 January 1999. Once Syed’s lawyer Cristina Gutierrez became aware of these records, she dropped this particular alibi and didn’t call of the witnesses who claimed he was at the mosque. It should trouble Adnan Syed’s supporters that so many people were prepared to give him a false alibi and perjure themselves in court.

2. Jay Wilds has repeatedly claimed that he and Adnan Syed were in Leakin Park that evening. Syed’s mobile phone pinged the mobile phone tower that covered Leakin Park a couple of times that night. This is significant because the mobile phone records corroborate Jay Wilds’ account of what happened that evening and contradict the claims of numerous people who claimed Adnan Syed at the mosque.

We will need to hear why incoming calls were not considered reliable at the new trial. Some DNA experts e.g. Stefano Conti, Carla Vecchiotti and Peter Gill claim Meredith’s DNA on Sollecito’s kitchen knife isn’t reliable evidence because it was only tested once. Other DNA experts e.g. Dr. Patrizia Stefanoni, Dr. Renato Biondo, Professor Novelli, Professor Francesca Torricelli and Luciano Garofalo claim the knife evidence is reliable evidence. Experts disagree with each other.

I’d like to know how Adnan Syed’s mobile phone could ping the mobile phone tower that covered Leakin Park if it wasn’t in the area. Bear in mind, this didn’t happen once, but a couple of times.

3. The Nisha call is significant because Jay Wilds didn’t know her. What are the chances that it was a “butt dial”?

I’d like to know whether she was at home to take the call that day. If she was, it seems highly unlikely that she didn’t answer the landline.

Posted by The Machine on 07/27/16 at 11:45 PM | #

Hi Deathfish,

Some people are gullible and/or they want to be entertained by a melodramatic story about someone who has been convicted of a crime they didn’t commit that has a Hollywood happy ending. These types of documentaries e.g. Serial, American Girl, Italian Nightmare and West of Memphis expressly try to evoke feelings of sympathy for the “wrongly convicted”. American Girl, Italian Nightmare ended with images of Amanda Knox as a child accompanied by sad piano music and was followed by Edda Mellas crying and Curt Knox stoically fighting back the tears. It was blatantly and shamelessly manipulative.

Dream jurors like Sarah Koenig don’t seem to understand that killers are literally the guy or girl next door to someone. They are all someone’s son or daughter. They were all innocent children at some point. They can all be polite, friendly, charming and funny. This doesn’t change the fact they are killers.

Posted by The Machine on 07/28/16 at 12:05 AM | #

A very informative, if depressing article!  Thanks to Sarah Koenig’s podcasts, the family of Hae Min Lee have to anticipate a re-trial. Well done, Sarah Koenig!

The picture of Sarah Koenig basking in celebrity says it all to me.

Posted by DavidB on 07/28/16 at 04:17 AM | #

@ Macchiavelli:
According to CRISTINA EVERETT ONE of the reasons for NOT considering INCOMING calls for LOCATION was a GLITCH with “AT&T at that time” , [presumably a TEMPORARY GLITCH?]:

“5 key findings from Undisclosed that Serial missed
BY CRISTINA EVERETT @CRISTINAEVERETT
.....3. The cell phone tower pings mean nothing…....
“outgoing calls only are reliable for location status. Any incoming calls will NOT be considered reliable information for location.” One of the reasons for this disclaimer was due to a glitch with AT&T at the time, which had incoming calls ping the tower near the person making the call rather than the person on the receiving end…”

I assume Syed remains in Prison pending re-trial?

The re-trial Ruling is already being Appealed by the Prosecution. This may settle Syed’s hash?

Posted by Cardiol MD on 07/29/16 at 06:40 AM | #

Hi Cardiol,

We’ll have to wait and see what the prosecution’s expert witness says on this matter at the new trial. It doesn’t change the fact that Adnan Syed’s initial alibi for the evening was demonstrably false or the fact two witnesses overhead him asking Hae Min Lee for a lift that day.

The jury that convicted Adnan Syed believed Jay Wilds and I can understand why. He voluntarily came forward and led the police to Hae’s car. He was prepared to go to prison. He was also prepared to be cross-examined on the stand unlike Adnan Syed.

Adnan Syed’s credibility is undermined by the fact three witnesses contradicted his claim he did’t ask Hae for a lift, his false alibi for that evening and his spurious claim he can remember very little about that day even though it wasn’t an ordinary day.

Posted by The Machine on 07/29/16 at 09:08 AM | #

Great article, The Machine, not Machiavelli smileand I agree with those who claim bias in programs that present the defense but not the prosecution case.

However, the appeals court http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/crime/bal-adnan-syed-memorandum-opinion-ii-20160630-htmlstory.html and http://www.baltimorecitycourt.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/syedvstateofmdpetitionforpostconvictionrelieforder063016.pdf vacated the conviction and ordered a new trial, ruling that the trial lawyer’s “unprofessional error” re: incoming phone calls and ineffective assistance in questioning the cell phone technician “prejudiced the defendant’s right to a fair trial”.

It also ordered that an alibi witness’s (Asia McLain?) testimony should be resubmitted to the appeals court. Syed will remain in prison in case the state appeals the ruling.

Having said that, I think the state still has a strong case based on the lack of an alibi witness (Syed said he spent several hours in the mosque, no one came forward to corroborate that) and an FBI technician specializing in cell phone technology says the evidence would still be sufficient to re convict.

It also appears, that Innocence Project grandstanding notwithstanding, the DNA will NOT be tested. https://www.reddit.com/r/serialpodcast/comments/3zmfci/dierdre_dna_update/

Posted by Ergon on 07/29/16 at 10:22 AM | #

The Innocence Project has already identified a “potential suspect which is not part of the appeals process but will definitely help in case he gets a new trial” http://lawstreetmedia.com/issues/law-and-politics/innocence-project-shot-redemption-u-s-criminal-justice-system/ Sigh.

Posted by Ergon on 07/29/16 at 10:35 AM | #

Thanks! Ergon.
Apologies! The Machi…..

Posted by Cardiol MD on 07/29/16 at 01:17 PM | #

Hi Ergon,

As Kevin Urick points out, Asia McClain’s claim that she saw Adnan Syed contradicts what he said he was doing. He made no reference to being in library In any of his statements. Kevin Urick also claims Asia McClain said she had been pressured by Adnan Syed’s family and she wrote a couple of letters to get them off her back. She comes across as being flaky and a bit of pleaser. She chose not to testify at a post-conviction hearing and she says she doesn’t know whether Adnan Syed is guilty or not. It doesn’t inspire much confidence in her credibility as a witness.

The supporters of James Hanratty were convinced he was innocent because a witness placed him elsewhere at the time of the murder. Years later, the DNA evidence proved conclusively that he was the killer. Adnan Syed’s chief advocate Rabia Chaudry should bear in mind this particular case the next time she claims Asia McClain’s uncorroborated testimony proves Adnan Syed is innocent.

Posted by The Machine on 07/29/16 at 09:58 PM | #

A quick note to Amanda Knox and the filth that supports her.
In the midst of the election brouhaha don’t for one minute think we have forgotten you. We are working all the time to bring about your downfall. It’s only a question of time.

Posted by Grahame Rhodes on 07/30/16 at 03:33 AM | #

Just watched the documentary film My Friend Rockerfeller on Netflix about conman and murderer Christian Gerhartsreiter. It’s a fascinating watch about a very skilled and very dangerous man who was convicted of murder in 2013. He perpetrated a whole host of cons on intelligent people; so good was he at playing whatever part he set his mind to.

Towards the end there is a segment where he is interviewed by an old friend and a couple of others. He comes across very well indeed, likeable even, with his mask slipping only occasionally. You really do have to remind yourself that this is a complete narcissist for whom committing murder was nothing at all. I’m sure virtually every word he uttered was a lie.

Anyway, he tells the people talking to him that he is super confident that his conviction will be overturned on appeal and that he is basically the same as Amanda Knox i.e. he has been wrongfully convicted. I’m delighted to say that his appeal was turned down in October 2015 as there were clearly no grounds for it.

Justice has been seen to be done in the case of this rather charming but, nonetheless, murdering scumbag. We await with bated breath justice being visited upon the utterly charmless Knox.

Posted by davidmulhern on 07/30/16 at 02:37 PM | #

August 1, 2016 Daily Mail online reports Amanda Knox is moving in with her new boyfriend, Christopher Robinson. She is photographed with him on July 4th. Obviously she and Colin have broken up.

Knox writes in her West Seattle Herald that the move into Christopher’s apartment makes her remember moving into her prison cell in Capanne, the combining of lives via personal possessions. (Not very complimentary to Mr. Robinson, is it?)

She mentions the emotional baggage that each new cellmate brought into the cell in prison, and that the combined emotional baggage could be insufferable or even dangerous. My my, what an awful feeling to start a new life with a boyfriend, but those are her own words.

Robinson is a writer. His “War of the Encyclopeadists” was a book Knox reviewed for the newspaper.

Robinson and Knox both wore red, white and blue for the July 4th photo with Knox in red baseball cap and wearing gold earrings and red lipstick. Christopher has a light beard shaved into stripes.

One photo of Robinson shows him using the American flag as a cape sort of like Superman in an outdoor shot.

IMO he is brave or crazy to let this woman move in with him. Wrong all around, but typical Knox. Knox views it as a step toward moving on with her life and a start to normal living which includes things like cleaning up cat poop and paying bills. (her words)

Sounds like a disaster waiting to happen. Sounds like Knox doesn’t really want to do this move-in if she equates it to prison days. Weird and weirder.

Posted by Hopeful on 08/01/16 at 03:20 PM | #

Just had a look at the DM article.

Looks like Knox is shacked up with yet another man, maybe thats why Paxton cleared out.
Knox seems to leave people in her wake and discard them like used tissue paper.

There is a rather distasteful and unfortunate photo - obviously posed, with Knox wearing bright red lipstick and her new man looking like he is holding a knife to her neck on the side Knox fatally stabbed Meredith Kercher.

What a monster she is to be playing these wicked and sick games while she knows she still has a flicker of attention from the media.

Posted by Deathfish on 08/01/16 at 03:43 PM | #

Thanks for the heads up @Hopeful, just had a read of that mail online article.

The posed picture is very obviously a Knox construct. Christopher clearly had little, or no artistic input into it at all. If he was ignorant of the facts about Knox’s crime before, I noticed that a few folks on Twitter have gently debated with him over the past few weeks to enlighten him. His Twitter handle is @manunderbridge. One scoundrel even mocked up a bloody knife in his hand here:

https://mobile.twitter.com/Soletrader4u/status/752107435955851264

The photo is actually quite shocking and having read back through a fair portion of this poor dupe’s Twitter output, I’d say he is absolutely perfect for Knox. A low grade, pseudo writer, fond of stock phrasing and flowery, overly descriptive bullsh*t learned directly from a similar creative writing course to Knox’s. He’s fulsome in his praise of her (sarcasm alert) widely read West Seattle Herald musings. I’m guessing about the type of course he took, of course, but his Twitter output certainly suggests something low grade.

Her recent collision with Dawndra Budd has clearly given her ideas beyond her own normally narrow scope of photographing flowers and shadows when Madison still thought she was vaguely human. Missing Madison hugely I think but still too afraid to write anything about the split and tell us why. I think Madison is holding the sword of Damocles over Knox’s scrawny neck, hence her reticence. Face it Foxy, she ain’t coming back so it’s just another in a long line of rejections that you’ve faced in your miserable existence.

Apart from the obviously dark nature of the staged photo, she can’t help herself but make sure she leaves great clanging clues, just in case some people miss her genius. She’d hate even one person not to know what she was getting at in this photo and boy does she make it obvious. In this case, the thick ruby red lipstick mimics that worn by Meredith when she was dressed as a vampire the night before Knox slaughtered her. Covers her disease ravaged top lip, at least!

Even more obvious is that, aside from the cold, murderous look that her new muse adopts for the photo, the jacket he wears is embossed with the name “Amanda”. Knox’s expression seems to say “go on, I dare you to do it”. Maybe alluding to Meredith perhaps goading Knox prior to the killing by finally telling her exactly what she thought of her?

One thing is crystal clear, Christopher Robinson must clearly be disturbed in some way himself. Anyone who gets involved with this harpie has a veritable wealth of information online and even a semi intelligent person would read both sides of the story before becoming embroiled. That would inevitably lead to literally hundreds of questions that it would become increasingly obvious that Knox couldn’t adequately answer.

Even allowing for the first flush of love, it would quickly become obvious to anyone even remotely close to this monster that she is hiding, in plain sight as it happens, a very dark (and the worst kept) secret indeed.

I conclude that Robinson is likely similar to her and harbours a dark side himself. Perhaps not murderously inclined, due to a better and less chaotic upbringing perhaps, but a dark fellow he must be nonetheless to allow himself to be used in this fashion. Also I’m sure that the publicity generated by being involved with this herpes infested tramp, won’t do his writing career any harm. Indeed, it will likely provide fuel for future projects and perhaps we can look forward to his own take on Knox when the split inevitably happens. Please God, don’t let them reproduce though!!

I’d imagine sexual deviance is fairly high on the list of priorities in that house. A picture paints a thousand words right enough. Still, if they remain obsessed with each other, then the rest of the world can heave a collective sigh of relief as it keeps them away from romantic entanglement with normal people. At least for now.

As low blows go and for the continued attempted torture of Meredith’s wonderfully dignified and wonderfully close family, Knox has scraped through the bottom of the barrel with this photo and is now digging through Mother Earth. Hopefully she’ll bury herself alive eventually.

Posted by davidmulhern on 08/02/16 at 12:34 AM | #

As a postscript to my lengthy post above, it is heartening to note that the vast majority of the comments following the article in mailonline, are strictly anti Knox. I think she’s probably quite conflicted by this.

On one hand, she loves the continued torturing of Meredith’s family and by extension the rest of us who have seen through her from day one. The anti Knox comments satisfy the side of her that needs to know she’s still capable of causing emotive response from complete strangers.

On the other hand, she’s desperate to be liked. After suffering severe rejection since childhood, a large part of her wants everyone to like her. The comments merely reinforce her brutally low self esteem. I’m personally glad of this.

So here she remains in a limbo which was created for her as a child by her dysfunctional family life but which she chose to perpetuate and make worse when she became an adult because she discovered that her once striking looks could get her free drinks/drugs and apparent popularity just by getting on her back for anyone who would buy her the things she wanted. Until they too rejected her in favour of the next prettily packaged low life who came along.

She knows she’s roundly hated but the little girl inside absolutely craves acceptance. The fast diminishing and psychotic adult who has the innocent child trapped inside her now holds sway though.She will always be a pariah. She knows this now. She must.

What could possibly go wrong??

Posted by davidmulhern on 08/02/16 at 12:47 AM | #

@The Machine. I agree 100%. Instant media is antithetical to the patient pursuit of justice; podcasts seek to create flashmobs for profit and clicks.

The Steven Avery story is led by a female IIRC who seemed to be slobbering over that very unwholesome blonde teddy bear killer named Steven Avery.

This Ms. Sarah Koenig you describe sounds similar, if I haven’t misconstrued the post. It is very dangerous when personal chemistry or sexual attraction to defendants removes the blindfold of justice. Favoritism is the result of that bias and logic goes out the window.

Paul Ciolino knows: don’t let a good story get in the way of the truth. Sensation is what sells, not boring reality. Adnan Syed is guilty, Avery is guilty, Amanda Knox is guilty.

I have sometimes read of some recent crime with the defendant’s supporters outraged by supposed injustice. When I tried to google or do online search for the facts of the case, it was like looking for a needle in a haystack to find the prosecution’s case or the bare facts of why the perp was convicted at all. That’s why TJMK is needed, and other justice sites, to reaffirm the value of the prosecution’s truth and to prevent the blind overturning the facts in their anger.

The new 2016 trend of seeing police and prosecutors in the wrong is an extremely troubling trend. It seems to spring from a hidden need to destroy restraint and to defy law. It’s an anti-authoritarian rebellious spirit that is shortsighted and feral. It’s the opposite of a desire for order. It may be what the Catholic thinkers refer to as “frenetic intemperance”.

Our ubiquitous and impulsive media aids this frenzy by using shallowness and speed to stir the pot. Mobs don’t have time or desire to reflect. Excitement is what they crave. It’s dangerous and deceptive power that thank goodness is usually fleeting.

At the helm of this ship of destruction are people like Koenig and the producers of “Serial” who use their influence to promote one-sided killer-friendly stories for PROFIT. For money or personal lust, they side with killers. Their goal is not justice but the almighty dollar. Their scruples are up for sale.

OT, but I’m a little out of it due to summer heat, swimming, sunburn, and vacation spirit, none of it conducive to thought. In my area we face sometimes 5 or 6 months of unbearable awful dazzling heat in high 90s with sweaty humidity. The long daylight hours never cool down, even after midnight or 4a.m. How did society exist without air conditioners? One hope: seasons do change, whew.

Back to focus: it’s scary when media morphs into a purveyor of lies.

That’s to be expected in the scam sheets and gossip rags which wink at truth and are here to entertain not inform. But it’s scary when mainstream media goes that route when they were once built on integrity and objectivity, hard as either of those is to maintain.

Posted by Hopeful on 08/02/16 at 04:28 AM | #

According to two witnesses, Asia McClain said she was going to lie to help Adnan Syed avoid being convicted of murder:

“the State also asks this Court, in the interest of justice and in a separate application, for leave to appeal and for a limited remand under Section 7-109(b)(3)(ii)(2) solely to incorporate into the record testimony from two of McClain’s classmates (who are sisters), who state inter alia that shortly after Syed’s arrest, one of the sisters got into a heated argument with McClain who said she was going to lie to help Syed avoid a conviction.”

http://s3.documentcloud.org/documents/3002628/Adnan-Syed-case-State-s-Application-for-Leave-to.pdf

Posted by The Machine on 08/02/16 at 09:51 AM | #

Brian E. Frosh, Attorney General of Maryland, and Thiruvendran Vignarajah, Deputy Attorney General, have outlined the overwhelming evidence of guilt presented by the prosecution:

[T]he State’s case included, inter alia, the testimony of Wilds who helped Syed bury the victim and later led police to the victim’s car; witnesses who spoke of Syed’s possessive behavior toward Lee, his ploy to get a ride from Lee after school on the day she disappeared, and his presence with Wilds that afternoon and evening; toll records and tower location data corresponding to Syed’s cell phone, which corroborated the testimony of Wilds and other witnesses, and placed Syed at Leakin Park that night a short distance from where Lee’s corpse was unearthed; a map page to Leakin Park, ripped from a map book with Syed’s palm print on the back cover, both left in Lee’s abandoned car; the diary of Hae Min Lee recounting the decline of her relationship with Syed and the bloom of her love for Cliendinst; a letter seized from Syed’s bedroom, written by Lee imploring Syed to respect her wishes and move on, with the ominous words “I’m going to kill” written in a separate script on the back side of the note; as well as Syed’s peculiar conduct after the murder and his incongruous statements to police.

http://s3.documentcloud.org/documents/3002628/Adnan-Syed-case-State-s-Application-for-Leave-to.pdf

Posted by The Machine on 08/02/16 at 10:10 AM | #

Hi Cardiol,

Jay Wilds said there were a couple of phone calls around the same time to Adnan Syed’s mobile whilst they were in Leakin Park:

“According to Wilds, it was while he and Syed were in Leakin Park digging a grave for the victim that Pusateri apparently called back; Syed answered and told her that Wilds was busy and hung up the phone. (T. 2/4/00 at 151). Wilds added that Syed received a second call around the same time and heard Syed alternate between English and what he believed was Arabic. (T. 2/4/00 at 152-153). Consistent with Wilds’ recollection, Syed’s cellphone records list a call to Pusateri’s pager number at 7:00 p.m., followed by two incoming calls at 7:09 p.m. and 7:16 p.m. State’s Exhibit 34. Also consistent with Syed’s phone records is Wilds’ testimony that he called Pusateri’s pager again after they left Leakin Park and before he went home. (T. 2/4/00 at 155-156).”

Jay Wilds’ claim there were two phone calls to Adnan Syed’s mobile in quick succession whilst they were in Leakin Park was corroborated by the mobile phone records which showed that his mobile phone pinged the mobile phone tower that covered Leakin Park at 7:09pm and 7:16pm. This is damning evidence against Adnan Syed.

Here is some further information about the Nisha call:

Two other witnesses — Nisha Tanna and Kristi Vincent — placed Syed and Wilds together on the day of the murder, and their testimony is similarly corroborated by Syed’s cellphone records (as well as by the trial testimony of Wilds). Tanna remembered receiving a call from Syed, who after saying hello placed “his friend Jay on the line.” (T. 1/28/00 at 189-190). She testified that she resided in Silver Spring and confirmed that her home phone number (marked “Tanna residence” by the prosecutor on Exhibit 34) corresponded to three entries on January 13, 1999 (3:32 p.m., 9:01 p.m., and 9:57 p.m.). (T. 1/28/00 at 185-189).

Jay Wilds claimed that Adnan Syed called Nisha that afternoon and that he spoke to her:

Wilds also told the jury about a call Syed made to “a young lady . . . in Silver Spring” where, after Syed spoke to her, Wilds got on the phone and said, “hello, my name is Jay.” (T. 2/4/00 at 136).

The experts don’t agree that incoming calls were unreliable for establishing the location of Adnan Syed’s mobile phone:

“...Syed’s defense attorney, Cristina Gutierrez, was not ineffective for failing to raise a novel challenge to cell site evidence based upon a disclaimer whose relevance remains a subject of expert dispute…”

http://s3.documentcloud.org/documents/3002628/Adnan-Syed-case-State-s-Application-for-Leave-to.pdf

Posted by The Machine on 08/02/16 at 12:45 PM | #

Thanks, Machine. The Prosecution’s Appeal reads most convincing to me. Hope we never even get to any Re-Trial.

Posted by Cardiol MD on 08/02/16 at 06:15 PM | #

Hi Cardiol,

Brian Frosh and Thiruvendran Vignarajah have written a compelling appeal. Natasha Vargas-Cooper and Ken Silverstein are right - Sarah Koenig presented a “watered-down version of the state’s case”. That’s exactly why a biased and one-sided documentary which omits key facts will never trump a criminal trial where the jurors get to hear the defence and prosecution present their cases and watch witnesses being cross-examined in court. It’s a shame that mainstream media organisations don’t understand this.

Posted by The Machine on 08/02/16 at 10:50 PM | #

James Raper has written an excellent new book about the case:

Justice on Trial: The Final Outcome - Evidence and Analysis in the Meredith Kercher Murder Case https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01JB6XMDA#navbar

Posted by The Machine on 08/03/16 at 03:05 AM | #

Speaking of innocence fraud, http://host.madison.com/wsj/opinion/column/steven-avery-should-stay-behind-bars——michael/article_a1b28294-23df-5822-ab72-815264fde10e.html “Steven Avery should stay behind bars, says lawyer who helped free him the first time “.

Posted by Ergon on 08/03/16 at 05:17 AM | #

I’m just going to say all these murder groupies are sick. God help them.

Posted by JohnQ on 08/04/16 at 02:16 AM | #

They are indeed JohnQ.
What is it that drives them?
Look at Knox with her latest man - what is she doing and why?

Her PR company employed by her biological father spent enormous amounts of time, money, and energy trying to counter the fact that she was nothing but a cheap vulgar murderous slut.

A slut in the true sense of the word, one who did not flush the toilet in a shared house (is this normal?), never washed and stunk to high heaven according to murder squad detectives who had the misfortune of being near her.
What kind of person does this?
Who doesn’t enjoy having a shower?
However, the money has been spent and now we have the slow revealing of misspent money.
Her lover Paxton has gone.
Knox and her PR spent time saying how she wasn’t a lesbian because she said her cellmates and female and male prison guards all wanted to have sex with the chosen one.

She wasn’t promiscuous - when she has had many men since her arrival back on American soil.
We only see the ones she lets known in the media.
Do the math.
Look at the latest photos of Knox, red lipstick and someone looking like they are holding a knife to her neck.
Why is she doing this?

Posted by Deathfish on 08/04/16 at 07:26 AM | #

Congrats to James Raper on his book, “Justice on Trial: the Final Outcome…”. It is a tremendous accomplishment, and thank you for its help to the truth to counterbalance the lies out there about Amanda Knox’s trial.

@davidmulhern@Deathfish, I agree that Knox’s new flame must have a screw loose to unite his life with Knox.

Knox may be like Casey Anthony who says she’s bored with life 5 years after her murder trial, so she spends her time seducing men. A comment under that article said of such men, “Only a fool would date a child killer.”

Knox’s new fellow may have the rescuer syndrome. Good luck with that.

And Knox looking at magazine covers about Princess Kate and Lady Diana and blogging about that for WSH, drawing analogies about how she has suffered the media onslaught like Lady Di who was killed by it (but wishes she were Princess Kate with the two children, no doubt). She still identifies with the British females, after rubbing one out.

And davidmulhern said it was the Dawndra Budd photo shoot that got Knox stirred up again. I agree. Her new guy, Christopher, looks like an actor who needs a stage. He likes costumes.

A new relationship for Knox with more masks and game playing, these two may be made for each other. It’s all a masquerade.

Posted by Hopeful on 08/04/16 at 11:03 AM | #

Where is Knox seeing things about Lady Diana?
Is she data mining?

Posted by Deathfish on 08/05/16 at 07:17 AM | #

She made a comment about, the last thing Princess Diana would have seen.  This turns out to be the paparazzi.  But how creepy.  Diana’s sole focus was likely on Dodi Fayed.  However, Madam wants to draw our attention to what a dying person might see last.

The post-millenial hipster is referring us to the fact that she knows, ‘what was the last thing’ Mez saw.  Did one of them film the attack?  Why is she talking about something as macabre as Princess Diana last vision being the flash of a paparazzi.  Perhaps a dark figure looming over her, before dashing off on his moped.

Was one of the last things Mez saw, before the pair ran off,  her killers filming her?  This is what is at the forefront of Knox’s mind as she ponders on Princess Diana’s last sights.

The last visions would have been the smirking face of Ice Boy, the maliciously gloating face of her roommate with her triumphant nasal US twang as Knifey pulls out ‘his’ knife.

‘Ew’, she utters in disgust as Mez’ life blood seeps away and spurts over Knifey’s feet.

Then there is the horrid vision of Rudy, her assaulter and co-murderer, uselessly packing towels around her neck and then running off.  Perhaps Mez saw one of them rummaging through her bag for her phones.  One of them knew she had two.

Posted by Slow Jane on 08/07/16 at 04:46 AM | #

Yes and Yes.
Knox is of course a psychopath/sociopath.
  She exhibits all the symptoms of such. The total denial. The poor little me as victim etc; The game playing and flitting from one boy/sex partner to another, or as she says “I have fallen in love so many times” What she does not say is that she falls out of love with equal alacrity. This current loser (Chris) will hang around for only so long then he will join all the other ex boy friends. That is because eventually he will see through the charade because just like George Zimmerman she will commit another crime and then blame anybody but herself.
My hope for the survival of the human race is that Amanda Knox and people like her die and leave the world as a safer place.

Posted by Grahame Rhodes on 08/07/16 at 02:55 PM | #

Well said Graham Rhodes.

Posted by davidmulhern on 08/09/16 at 09:26 AM | #

Machine,

I’m sure you’re seen this but AS alibi witness lied. Oops.

http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/crime/bs-md-serial-syed-alibi-questioned-20160822-story.html

Posted by JohnQ on 08/22/16 at 12:54 PM | #

@ Deathfish,

Yes, Madison, at least, was in love with Amanda, and Amanda used her, whether they had a sexual relationship, or not.

Yes, both Knox and S. had passages in their books saying they were hit on by a woman/ man, as ploys for attention and sympathy.

Posted by JohnQ on 08/22/16 at 01:16 PM | #

Hi John,

When I listened to Sarah Koenig reading out one of Asia McClain’s letters to Adnan Syed claiming she had spoken to him in the library, I wasn’t convinced she is a credible witness at all. Her account of meeting Adnan Syed at the library on the day Hae Mine Lee disappeared just didn’t ring true. I got the distinct impression that she was a weak and insecure teenager who was trying to suck up to a popular kid who was a bit of a bad boy by offering him an alibi.

There are a number of red flags that tell me she’s not to be trusted: (1) her claim she saw Adnan Syed in the library contradicts what he said he was doing - he made no reference to being in the library (2) she chose not to testify at a post-conviction hearing (3) the judge in the post-conviction trial pointed out that in the letters to Syed, she is very vague and indifferent about what she’s doing (4) Kevin Urick claims Asia McClain said she had been pressured by Adnan Syed’s family and she wrote a couple of letters to get them off her back and (5) the two sisters who stated that one of the sisters got into a heated argument with Asia McClain who said she was going to lie to help Syed avoid a conviction. Their testimony confirms my initial impression that Asia McClain wanted to help Adnan Syed avoid being convicted of murder.

Posted by The Machine on 08/24/16 at 12:22 AM | #

Asia McClain has written a book: Confessions of a Serial Alibi:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Confessions-Serial-Alibi-McClain-Chapman/dp/1682611582

Someone should point out to her that Adnan Syed never said he was in the library on the day Hae Min Lee went missing.

Posted by The Machine on 08/24/16 at 02:53 AM | #

Asia McClain has sent me a tweet with a link to her response to the news that two former classmates have testified that she said she was going to lie to help Adnan Syed avoid being convicted of murder:

http://www.asiamcclain.com/response-to-the-state/

Posted by The Machine on 08/27/16 at 02:40 AM | #


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