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Sep. 30th, 2005 @ 09:31 am "and furthermore, poo on you"
A slight twist on this syndrome:

Framed man freed after 19 years: Under recent questioning by the FBI, the witness recanted, claiming Eppolito had bribed and intimidated him into identifying Gibbs, authorities said. [...] Given the chance, Gibbs said he would tell Eppolito, "You've got a lot of nerve doing what you did to me."

"You've got a lot of nerve doing what you did to me." I had it wrong before; the quality shared by these wrongly convicted fellows is not highmindedness but a superhuman gift for understatement.
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From:nibor
Date:September 30th, 2005 04:43 pm (UTC)
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I, on the other hand, am wondering what's so magical about "19 years" that's getting people out. Two stories about men wrongly convicted - both freed after 19 years. Coincidence?
You Be The Judge!
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From:extempore
Date:September 30th, 2005 04:52 pm (UTC)
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In the mid-80s crime was getting out of control so maybe cops were of the "fuck it, let's just start jailing whoever we can" mindset.
From:mandelbrot_
Date:September 30th, 2005 05:11 pm (UTC)
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Were?
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From:extempore
Date:September 30th, 2005 05:27 pm (UTC)
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What I meant to say is that in the 80s the mindset was "fuck it, let's jail whoever we can, and the public is behind us on that one" and now it's "let's jail whoever we can but try to be careful about it since liberal hippies with camcorders are everywhere these days."
From:darse
Date:October 3rd, 2005 09:57 pm (UTC)

andy's view

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Andy Dufresne (Shawshank Redemption) was also in prison for 19 years. Spooky, eh?

Is their understatement so surprising? They've had a *long* time to wallow in fruitless outrage. At some point, they have to resign themselves to their unfortunate circumstances. Perhaps it is similar to those who suffer a tragic injury, resulting in paralysis.

Maybe it eventually comes down to this: "Get busy living, or get busy dying".

~d
From:zetack
Date:September 30th, 2005 05:31 pm (UTC)

I can't imagine...

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If I lost 19 years of my life that's everything from when I was 18 years old until today. Everything I've done, experienced, and accomplished my entire adult life gone, wiped out. I can't imagine it.
From:facedownacesup
Date:September 30th, 2005 06:01 pm (UTC)

Re: I can't imagine...

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They are probably guilty of something else, that's why they aren't showing any real righteous indignation. Both these mofos may have been innocent of the crime that convicted them, but that doesn't mean they were they weren't up to other hi-jinks. This guy had a drug problem and the other guy was charged with rape by an ex-girlfriend but was acquitted. I'm pretty sure if we had a time machine we could go back and find something worthy of convicting both of these guys for at least 19 years.



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From:libertarianrc
Date:September 30th, 2005 06:09 pm (UTC)

Re: I can't imagine...

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So we should find a crime to fit the punishment and not the other way around???
From:facedownacesup
Date:September 30th, 2005 06:20 pm (UTC)

Re: I can't imagine...

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I'm just saying if you have 50 pounds of heroin in your trunk and you get stopped for going 5 mphs over the speed limit, are you really gonna bust cop's balls and argue with him?

These guys probably recognize that it could have been worse. They could have been convicted of something else and did less time, but then they are just loser ex-cons. Now they are former pillars of society that have been wrongly convicted by the Man and will most likely get a sweet little payday out of it. I wouldn't push my luck either.
From:serdet
Date:October 1st, 2005 04:32 am (UTC)

Re: I can't imagine...

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So what did he do that is worse than the murder he never committed,
for which he served 19 years? I'm asking you, the all-seeing eye.

Also, maybe you can tell us what other dirtbag to lockup, because he's
guilty of SOMETHING. Who knows what, but SOMETHING. You can TELL.
JUST LOOK AT HIM!!!!

From:xlmtfcg
Date:September 30th, 2005 06:13 pm (UTC)

Re: I can't imagine...

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Following that logic. I'd like you to pay the $1,257,345.98 of speeding tickets you owe for all the times you exceeded 55 and weren't caught.
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From:deaconblus
Date:September 30th, 2005 06:18 pm (UTC)

Re: I can't imagine...

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excellent, my only question is what've you got against 6?
From:xlmtfcg
Date:September 30th, 2005 06:20 pm (UTC)

Re: I can't imagine...

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It's in the middle and I'm too lazy to reach that far.
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From:steeltoe
Date:September 30th, 2005 06:23 pm (UTC)

Re: I can't imagine...

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You must have been rooting for the bad guys in 'Minority Report'.

I hope someone hits you in the face with a hammer based on something you haven't done yet.
From:facedownacesup
Date:September 30th, 2005 06:35 pm (UTC)

Re: I can't imagine...

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These guys had pretty shady pasts, it's almost a mortal lock they did something. I don't know about you, but I've never been charged with rape before, and I'm pretty sure an undercover cop/mob hitman wouldn't be able to pick my name out of thin air to pin a murder on me.
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From:steeltoe
Date:September 30th, 2005 07:02 pm (UTC)

Re: I can't imagine...

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You make as much sense as a shoe full of thumbtacks.

Eat hair.
From:mathew5000
Date:October 5th, 2005 08:17 am (UTC)

Re: I can't imagine...

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Innocent people are charged with rape more often than you would imagine, and whether they have a “shady past” is less relevant than whether they can afford a good lawyer.

For example, Ronald Cotton spent 10½ years in jail after being convicted of two rapes he did not commit, based on eyewitness testimony.

The basic problem is that the line-up identification procedure, widely used throughout the U.S., is faulty because complainants and witnesses tend to choose the person in the lineup who looks most like the assailant. Often the resemblance is not because the suspect is the assailant, but because the police chose the suspect specifically because he resembled a description given by the witness. So it’s no coincidence that the innocent suspect is then ‘identified’ by the witness, since of course he resembles the true assailant; that’s why he became a suspect in the first place.
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From:walterzuey
Date:September 30th, 2005 07:40 pm (UTC)

Re: I can't imagine...

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They are probably guilty of something else, that's why they aren't showing any real righteous indignation.

It has occurred to me that righteous indignation is more highly correlated with guilt than innocence.
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From:krizazy
Date:September 30th, 2005 09:24 pm (UTC)

Re: I can't imagine...

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You're absolutely right.
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From:krizazy
Date:September 30th, 2005 09:25 pm (UTC)

Re: I can't imagine...

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I really really hope you're not saying that the imprisonment was OK in any way because they were "probably guilty of something else anyhow." If you are, then "wow."

If you're using that solely as an argument for why they're not acting all mad about it, then you might want to make that more clear.
From:facedownacesup
Date:September 30th, 2005 09:36 pm (UTC)

Re: I can't imagine...

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If you're using that solely as an argument for why they're not acting all mad about it, then you might want to make that more clear.

Yeah, I thought that was clear since that's what the original post in this thread was about.

1 asshat put words into my mouth and 2 other asshats took the ball and ran with it. Oh well.
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From:highrisk7
Date:October 5th, 2005 05:06 pm (UTC)

Re: I can't imagine...

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I find the outrage and your supposed inferenes a little surprising. After all we are, as a society, 'happy' that someone does 19 years for a crime that they probably committed but not for untried crimes that they also probably committed (which may in total excede the sentence). Guilt is guilt whether tried or not. I'm not saying it is something that is or should be condoned or sanctioned; after all it most likely means least that someone guilty is walking around free, unless they're all getting fitted up for eachother's crimes. I struggle to see how you can feel bad if you were to know that a guy was as probably guilty of other crimes as required by law to establish a conviction in the one in which he was innocent.

If innocent people are not convicted then one of two things are true: one we have a perfect legal system in which the guilt or innoncence of the defendant can always be established; or two, only a few people are ever found guilty, since guilt requires 100% certainty.

Of course we must always look to inprove upon the legal system & such corruption or injustice will always create additional problems. Nevertheless it is hard not to feel some relief that a very likely dangerous or persistent criminal is (or has been) off the streets.
From:ooda_loop
Date:September 30th, 2005 10:13 pm (UTC)
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Everything I've done, experienced, and accomplished my entire adult life gone, wiped out.

But you'd have a whole different set of experiences and accomplishments. Ever seen Midnight Express?

;-)


From:bruteforcex
Date:September 30th, 2005 06:06 pm (UTC)

Imprisonment Effects

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I agree that it's very odd to see time and time again the really subdued responses given by the victims of incorrect imprisonment. But, if we think about it a bit more, maybe what the evidence is telling us is that prisons do change people.

In prison, it's probably not a great idea to let your anger stew and grow uncontrollably. So, living in that sort of environment for any length of time just might change you. Given that you were innocent (and presumably a good person to start), you might be more likely to adapt to the prison environment.

It would be interesting to see responses given by a range of released victims. It might be that there is some sort of bell-shaped curve that would plot time of improper imprisonment and level of anger and hate expressed. If only imprisoned for a month, you might still have the ability to express deep anger, but for one month, nothing too damaging happened (hopefully). But, after a few years, you might not yet have been changed by the system, and can still lash out vehemently. After even more years, the evolution has already taken effect, and you no longer have the ability.

Just a thought.
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From:krizazy
Date:September 30th, 2005 06:29 pm (UTC)

Re: Imprisonment Effects

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Not many have the willpower that Edmond Dantes showed, though I imagine that all would like to.

I imagine that if I were wrongfully imprisoned for an extended period of time my response would be along the lines of: "Yeah the system is fundamentally flawed, everybody knows that, and oh well. It's my fault for having been born into this absurd world. If you don't mind I'd like to go about my business and salvage the rest of the life that you have stolen from me."

~D
From:mathew5000
Date:October 5th, 2005 07:42 am (UTC)

Re: Imprisonment Effects

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It would be interesting to see responses given by a range of released victims.

Then be sure to catch the film After Innocence.
From:sleepycell
Date:September 30th, 2005 06:48 pm (UTC)

this scenario seems more plausible

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wrongly convicted: "You...you SOB...you ruined my life!"

false accusor: "Sorry dude. My bad. I was broke and needed the money."

wc: "oh, alright. i forgive you. that's all in the past now anyway."

fa: "Cool. Let's get a beer."

wc: "Right on. I'm buying."
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From:topher928
Date:October 1st, 2005 01:08 am (UTC)
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From my experience in psychology, I would think that after some time in prison, the anger would give way to acceptance. He knows he's right, he knows it's bullshit, but eventually all human beings adapt to what they are given. If you just spent 19 years of your life in prison, you're not thinking about revenge. You're thinking about the freedom that you missed so badly, and getting the most out of every new day. Sort of like a near-death experience. It just changes your perspective, I think.

That being said, I probably would've spent all that time formulating a better scorcher than "You've got a lot of nerve."
From:epsteininspace
Date:October 1st, 2005 07:39 am (UTC)
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From my experience in psychology, I would think that after some time in prison, the anger would give way to acceptance. He knows he's right, he knows it's bullshit, but eventually all human beings adapt to what they are given.

If you killed or raped someone's kid, then came back 19 years later to tell them, how likely do you think it is that their response would not involve beating you to within an inch of your life? In that scenario, the parents would have certainly adapted to the loss for functional purposes (elsewise they wouldn't still be around 19 years later), but I would estimate that they'd still have plenty of desire for revenge.

That being said, I probably would've spent all that time formulating a better scorcher than "You've got a lot of nerve."

Maybe he was still ripped on Pruno?


In any event, am I the only one who is a bit disturbed that there doesn't seem to be any kind of government program or reimbursement or even a "Hey, Sorry, We Fucked Up" parting check?
From:samholden
Date:October 1st, 2005 02:35 pm (UTC)
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A reimbursement might be a bad thing, as it would make freeing an innocent person a cost. And some bureaucrat somewhere would like to reduce those costs and provide an incentive to not free the person in order to save the cost. Without a reimbursement saving face is the only real reason keep an obvious innocent imprisoned and usually the releaser and the one whose face is being saved are not the same person...

In this case of being setup to go to jail by people who knew you were innocent (rather than it being just a complete mistake) there is probably some sort of civil case you could make against those people.

From:epsteininspace
Date:October 1st, 2005 03:24 pm (UTC)
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A reimbursement might be a bad thing, as it would make freeing an innocent person a cost. And some bureaucrat somewhere would like to reduce those costs and provide an incentive to not free the person in order to save the cost.

Fair enough, but I think if the government can provide aid to people whose homes have been destroyed in natural disasters or even to people who simply don't want to work, then they can respond to someone who was, because of their actions, essentially robbed of 20-33% of his life and is now nearly unemployable with a bit more than "Sorry, dude - my bad."
From:mathew5000
Date:October 5th, 2005 07:47 am (UTC)
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One of the subjects of the documentary After Innocence observed that if he had been released on parole, he would be entitled to health care, job training, various treatment programs, and so forth. But because the reason he was released was that he proved his innocence, he was left penniless and unable to get a job (because he was perceived as an ex-con).
From:steve_kendrick
Date:October 1st, 2005 04:08 pm (UTC)

compensation

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With respect to compensation, there is a real distinction between "wrongfully convicted because of false/perjured/insufficient evidence" and "wrongfully convicted because of actual innocence."

This distinction is recognzied in many of the state's compensation statutes in that the "wrongfully convicted" defendants must affirmatively prove their innocence before receiving compensation. This seems appropriate; the taxpayers should not be rewarding guilty defendants who benefitted from being prosecuted by corrupt or sloppy prosecutors and policemen
From:jacksup
Date:October 3rd, 2005 03:34 pm (UTC)
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Isn't "you've got a lot nerve" what the gangsters say before they put a hit on somebody? Pretty sure I saw that in a movie somewhere...
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From:chrishanel
Date:October 6th, 2005 06:39 pm (UTC)
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I like Phil Hellmuth's new taunt better...

PhilHellmuth: coak sucker