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Daniel Holtzclaw update: Innocence community in New York speaks out

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By Michelle Malkin  •  May 10, 2018 09:15 PM


(L-R: Erica Fuchs, exoneree Anthony DiPippo, exoneree Jeff Deskovic, MM, Jenny Holtzclaw, Jason Flom, Oscar Michelen)

Team Daniel keeps growing. On April 29 in New York City at a Manhattan Film Festival screening of our Michelle Malkin Investigates program, “Railroaded: Surviving Wrongful Convictions,” several leaders in the Innocence community experienced with exonerating innocent people spoke out on Daniel’s behalf.

Jason Flom is a founding board member of the Innocence Project, philanthropist, and criminal justice reform activist who hosts the Wrongful Conviction podcast.

He praised Daniel’s sister Jenny for her tireless advocacy on Danel’s behalf and pledged his support:

“…you’re doing what I advocate for other people to do who know of someone who is wrongfully convicted. And you’re doing it as well or better than anyone because I know I even thought he was guilty. And I tried to dodge you when you first approached me. And I was like ‘this crazy bitch I don’t know what…’ and you know, you totally brought me around, so here I am and I have a lot of respect for what you’re doing and we’re going to get your brother out.”

Outside of Oklahoma, lawyers and activists who are NOT beholden to the parochial political establishment identified bright red flags in Daniel’s case that the local OKC media still refuse to report. Oscar Michelen is a New York trial lawyer who has fought prosecutorial and police corruption for 14 years and exonerated six innocent people (listen to the Jason Flom podcast on exoneree David McCallum here):

The vast majority of these false convictions occur because the police originally arise on a premise or a DA and they can never shake that premise. They never want to admit they’re wrong. They never want to look at anything else. Here you have in Daniel’s case that was very eye-opening, where there were no complaints of any of these conduct and they went back and tried to make a pattern out of something that wasn’t there. It was very, very shocking. And then of course closed hearings which shouldn’t occur in the United States.

…This is not a political issue, it’s a justice issue. We all relish the Constitution. It’s the basis of our country. And wrongful conviction touches on so many different rights that we take for granted that end up getting abused.

Update 5/11 – Oscar also wrote an article this week on the secret hearings:

Jeff Deskovic, head of the non-profit Deskovic Foundation for Justice (DONATE HERE), which works to prevent and reverse wrongful convictions, spent 16 years in prison for a crime of rape and murder he didn’t commit. He was coerced into a false confession and exonerated after post-conviction DNA testing proved his innocence. He earned a master’s degree in criminal justice and is now in his second year of law school (learn more about his fight for freedom here).

…a couple of red flags that are present in this case: Certainly, the pretrial prejudicial publicity. That’s evident here. And secondly, there have been a few exonerations in which people were – the evidence used to wrongfully convict them initially was DNA before further testing straightened it out later. DNA Is often correctly called the gold standard of evidence. But of course, that assumes that all the correct protocols are observed, no contamination’s happened, and that there is truthful testimony and reports by the experts. And to me, that part of the case is extremely troubling.

Last remark I’ll make: These secret hearings and evidence and witnesses…what country are we in? I’ve never heard of anything like that. That makes no sense to me at all.

Anthony DiPippo is another exoneree who was unjustly framed for murder and rape by a sheriff’s investigator who had also engaged in misconduct in Deskovic’s case. He was freed after THREE trials and 20 years in prison (listen to his story on the Wrongful Conviction podcast).

“Jenny, I just want you to know that the innocence community hears you, we follow you, I’m learning as I go, but I believe Dan is innocent and whatever I can do to help you, I will do from here on out.”

Just two years ago, protesters forced an Oklahoma advertising company to yank down a billboard about my CRTV two-part documentary on the wrongful conviction of former Oklahoma City police officer Daniel Holtzclaw called “Daniel in the Den.” The sign simply asked: “What if he didn’t do it.”

We’ve come a long way since then. 6 internationally renowned scientists – Suzanna Ryan, along with five other forensic experts including Dr. Peter Gill, Dr. Moses Schanfeld, Dr.Brent Turvey, and Mr. George Schiro – published a report on the flawed science in Daniel’s case and called for a retrial. Ryan and Turvey spoke out on camera to further explain the fatal forensic and investigative flaws in the case.

Two lawyers, J. Christian Adams and Randall Coyne, signed an amicus brief petition on the circus mob atmosphere that deprived Daniel of his right to a fair trial.

Moreover, Coyne blasted secret hearings that have kept the forensic failures hidden from Daniel, his defense team, the media, and the public.

Renowned exoneration lawyer Kathleen Zellner took on Daniel’s defense against civil suits fled by his shady accusers who are represented by social agitator Benjamin Crump.

And a change.org petition calling on Gov. Mary Fallin to grant clemency in Daniel’s case now has more than 10,000 signatures.

In Oklahoma, the wheels of justice in the courts of law grind slower than a three-toed box turtle crossing a prairie. There are still no rulings yet from the Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals on the secret hearings, motion for an evidentiary hearing, or on Daniel’s criminal appeal filed more than 15 months ago. But in the court of public opinion, the facts of Daniel’s railroading by biased police, incompetent crime lab staff, and deceitful prosecutors are getting out despite the local media’s best efforts to stifle them. Sunlight, as always, is the best disinfectant. We’ll keep shining it until Daniel is free.

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More:

Pyongyang on the Prairie, Part One

Pyongyang on the Prairie, Part Two

Pyongyang on the Prairie, Part Three

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Background:

Brian Bates’ comprehensive website on Daniel’s case: HoltzclawTrial.com

Facebook updates from Jenny Holtzclaw.

Petition to Gov. Mary Fallin to free Daniel Holtzclaw.

Donate.

More background:

The crisis in America’s crime labs

DNA deception: What the Holtzclaw jury never heard

Daniel Holtzclaw update: Storm over Okla. court secrecy

Law professor: Why the secrecy with Holtzclaw filings?

What if he didn’t do it?

Media executive’s questions for 20/20

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Related:

Criminal Justice Reform Journal

Posted in: Daniel Holtzclaw

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Pyongyang on the Prairie, Part 3: All in OCPD’s Crime Lab Family

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Pyongyang on the Prairie, Part Two

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Categories: Daniel Holtzclaw, Feature Story