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Man who spent 22 years on death row is cleared

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posted on May, 12 2009 @ 04:15 PM
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Man who spent 22 years on death row is cleared


www.cnn.com

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- A former death row inmate in Tennessee has been cleared of murder, three years after the Supreme Court raised repeated questions about his conviction.


After 22 years on death row, Paul House was released on bail and has now been cleared of murder charges.

1 of 2 State prosecutors on Tuesday asked a judge to drop all charges against Paul House, who was convicted of murder and sentenced to die in 1986. Special Judge Jon Blackwood accepted the request.

House had been scheduled to be executed next month for the 1985 murder of Carolyn Muncey. He had been on death
(visit the link for the full news article)




posted on May, 12 2009 @ 04:15 PM
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You know, I'm a big supporter of punishing the guilty, so when I saw this story I was especially interested in the fact that a man on death row was in point of fact, completely innocent.

After reading the story and researching the case a little more, I have to be honest and say that the guy still looks as guilty as hell to me.

You make up your own mind.

www.cnn.com
(visit the link for the full news article)



posted on May, 12 2009 @ 04:44 PM
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This is why I always never understood the whole Quick and Speedy trial, you can't be extremely hasty, although 22 years is neither of the two.

What a life, his whole life has been ruined, he I'd assume can't go back to the job he had 22 years ago. No telling if he's been institutionalized.



posted on May, 12 2009 @ 04:54 PM
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Originally posted by Republican08
This is why I always never understood the whole Quick and Speedy trial, you can't be extremely hasty, although 22 years is neither of the two.

What a life, his whole life has been ruined, he I'd assume can't go back to the job he had 22 years ago. No telling if he's been institutionalized.


With advanced MS and being fully wheel chair bound I doubt there's much of any career that he could take on.

As a former sex offender who was found with the murdered girl's blood on his jeans plus being found to be covered in cuts and scratches the day after the murder, I can't say I exactly wish him the best........



posted on May, 12 2009 @ 04:56 PM
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reply to post by Retseh
 


Yikes, didn't know all that. Well I think vigilante justice will prevail, it almost always does.



posted on May, 12 2009 @ 05:10 PM
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This is a tough one. I agree that his blood-stained jeans consisting of the victim's blood, him being covered in cuts and bruises the day after the murder, him lying to the police about his whereabouts, him being a sex offender, and holes in his alibi is awfully suspicious.

I wonder if he had a partner and the mystery DNA was theirs.

[edit on 5/12/2009 by AshleyD]



posted on May, 12 2009 @ 05:15 PM
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Well here's another example of why the death penalty should not be legal. We all know that our criminal justice system makes mistakes and once you fry somebody there's no way to undo that. If this man had been put to death the blood of an innocent man would be on the hands of the state.



posted on May, 12 2009 @ 05:16 PM
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Sounds like the blood on his pants was a frame job. DNA from under the fingernails, and the semen, did NOT match the accused. I presume it did not match the husband's either.



posted on May, 12 2009 @ 05:23 PM
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I have to say that as a Criminal Justice/Forensics major, stories like these always interest me.

If he is truly innocent, than I think it is great he was [finally] found innocent. Though is history does not make me really feel like him being on the streets is a good thing.

But he did lie to police that night and that makes it very very hard to believe anything he says from there on out.



He was a friend of Muncey's husband, but claimed he was in his own house several miles away the evening of the murder. But prosecutors found a hole in his alibi, discovering that he had left his home the night of the murder and returned about an hour later with unexplained cuts and bruises.


Just like witness testimony can be flawed, so can suspect and even victim testimony. This is why hard cold evidence is absolutely necessary.

However, what really bothers me is what I would call the ol "OJ curse" - Forensics teams royaly screwing up:



Forensic evidence found Muncey's blood on House's jeans, but questions were later raised whether the samples were contaminated en route to an FBI lab for analysis.

Subsequent state-of-the art DNA testing conducted after the conviction showed that semen on the victim belonged to her husband, not House. Blood under her fingernails and cigarette butts discovered near the wooded crime scene also did not match the accused.

.....

Kennedy said jurors might conclude that Muncey's blood found on House's pants may have inadvertently spilled there during the autopsy or through mishandling by police at the crime scene.


Forensic science is always accurate but when dealing with humans conducting it, there is room for error and this is my biggest pet peeves at crimes scenes. Those involved not taking extra precaution to ensure evidence is collected properly and there is no room for error or contamination.

Unfortunately (well fortunately for me) there is a shortage of those working in the CSI world and they are usually over worked, under staffed and its almost impossible to fire these people for mistakes because of this.

The DA did say this:


District Attorney Paul Phillips wrote in his petition this week that he still believes House could have been convicted again in a new trial, "but the new evidence (including the forensic examinations) raises a reasonable doubt that he acted alone and the possibility that others were involved in the crime."


So it is possible the man is guilty and maybe had an accomplist and the forenics team just screwed things up badly. Good for him. Bad for everyone else. Or he is 100% innocent and I bet he will be suing shortly!


[

[edit on 5/12/2009 by greeneyedleo]



posted on May, 12 2009 @ 05:23 PM
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Originally posted by TheComte
Sounds like the blood on his pants was a frame job. DNA from under the fingernails, and the semen, did NOT match the accused. I presume it did not match the husband's either.


I think the "DNA" was found to be the husbands, but that's hardly surprising when you think about it.

You know, I actually wanted this to be a "clean" type of innocence for this guy, but the more I read, the more it looks like he really did kill her, possibly in collusion with the husband who was his friend.



posted on May, 12 2009 @ 05:26 PM
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reply to post by Retseh
 


*ignore*

[edit on 12-5-2009 by downtown436]



posted on May, 12 2009 @ 05:31 PM
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reply to post by Republican08
 


I dont get this line of thinking AT ALL! so this guy did bad things...so we do bad things to him? it seems an almost childish and lazy minded route to solve problems.These sorts of people will never go away..course we can just kill kill kill kill kill kill..you get my point.Why dont we take the intellectual road and find out *why* people do such things,the psychology behind it.Most definelty if someone is found guilty of such thigns he should serve his time in jail,but jail time should be both punishment and rehabilitation imo.



posted on May, 12 2009 @ 05:31 PM
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The reason for freeing him depends on what type of men are running this country. Its possible this mystery dna is fabricated or from anyone working for the DA. In Bush's reign of terror, he was well known to actually want to sit in on cases and decide on clemency or not. His clemency always seemed to favor those who were serial killers of the worst kind, whereas ordinary people, likely to never reoffend, often with extenuating circumstances, such as a mentally handicapped woman who pleaded for her life, and whom he publically mocked but sent to her death despite the inhumanity of doing this, were executed.

Of course, his probable involvement in Brownsville Texas massacre of a satanic cult he was a member of, and the fact that he was pursued actively for 6 months as the main suspect in these brutal murders, a fact he didn't deny when questioned just prior to his election, but chose to use the words, "may or may not have happpened..." which was inconceivable for a man in his position, seemed to point to the nature of the men running the country, and may shed some light on strange rulings.


[edit on 12-5-2009 by mystiq]



posted on May, 12 2009 @ 05:44 PM
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While this guy makes me sick, this is one of the reasons why the death penalty is barbaric.

As an American, I'm ashamed that most of my countrymen still support our government killing people in the name of justice.



posted on May, 12 2009 @ 06:23 PM
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Originally posted by Retseh

You know, I actually wanted this to be a "clean" type of innocence for this guy, but the more I read, the more it looks like he really did kill her, possibly in collusion with the husband who was his friend.


That's what I was thinking, but I didn't know. The thing is, does he deserve the death penalty if the other guy was the primary doer? Maybe, maybe not.

I like the death penalty in cases where there is no doubt about guilt, and the crime is extremely heinous. Eg. Dahmer

Cases like this you can't make that decision, I don't think.



posted on May, 12 2009 @ 06:31 PM
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Wow, what injustice. If that were me, I'd feel, once release, that I should be entitled to commit a crime punishable by 22 years in jail. First, I'd want to make sure I received proper credit for those years served. Then, I'd probably go looking for that judge that sentenced me to death for something I didn't do.



posted on May, 12 2009 @ 06:31 PM
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“Before the U.S. Supreme Court took this case, several courts denied Paul House a hearing to look at all of the new evidence collected since the original trial. Procedural barriers should not keep people from being able to prove their innocence. Paul House isn’t the first person on death row who was blocked from being able to prove his innocence for years, and he might not be the last."

www.innocenceproject.org...

"There have been 238 post-conviction DNA exonerations in United States history. These stories are becoming more familiar as more innocent people gain their freedom through postconviction testing"

www.innocenceproject.org...



posted on May, 12 2009 @ 07:32 PM
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reply to post by thepresidentsbrain
 


I would have brought up the innocence project myself, being a Dallas resident and having seen 19 people proven innocent out of Dallas County alone. I’m just paranoid enough to wonder if this man isn’t being turned loose to bring suspicion on all the other cases. The circumstantial evidence is convincing, and his prior record would weigh on anyone’s mind. Possible psy-op in my opinion, an attempt to avert any possible thought that someone accused could be innocent?



posted on May, 12 2009 @ 09:06 PM
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This highlights the problem that exists with the death penalty



posted on May, 12 2009 @ 09:07 PM
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reply to post by starfemme1
 


because while you can pardon the living you cant bring back the dead



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