Debra Milke's Attorneys Ask Judge to Set Bail

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Will Debra Milke be granted bail after more than two decades on death row?

Debra Milke should be granted bail in her pending re-trial for murder because the main evidence against her is the word of a lying scoundrel of an ex-cop with zero credibility.

That's pretty much the argument offered by Milke's attorneys Michael Kimerer and Lori Voepel in a motion filed Monday in superior court.

As I explained in a previous blog item, Milke, whose 1990 conviction in the slaying of her 4-year-old son Christopher was recently overturned by the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, may still be entitled to bail under the provisions of the Arizona Constitution.

See Also:
Debra Milke Still Has Shot at Bail, Despite Bill Montgomery's Statements
Bill Montgomery Doubles Down on Armando Saldate, Debra Milke Denied Bail Pending Trial (For Now)

Normally, capital cases are nonbondable, assuming the prosecution can establish that, "the proof is evident and the presumption great" of the accused's guilt.

But as the motion for a bail hearing states, Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery's case "rests almost entirely upon the testimony of [former Phoenix Police homicide] detective Armando Saldate."

Read Debra Milke's lawyers' motion to set bail.

And Saldate has a long history of unethical behavior that involves lying to judges, grand juries, his supervisors, you name it.

Indeed, in throwing out Milke's conviction, the Ninth detailed at length Saldate's "lack of compunction about lying during the course of his official duties" and his "willingness to abuse his authority to get what he wants."

The appeals court ruled that Saldate's record of mendacity should have been revealed to jurors, as Milke's first trial was essentially a "swearing contest" between Saldate, who claimed Milke confessed to him, and Milke, who insisted she did not, while maintining her innocence.

Given this record and given that Saldate did not record Milke's supposed confession, to which he was the only witness (natch), how can the prosecution show that "the proof is evident and the presumption great" as to her guilt?


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29 comments
ExpertShot
ExpertShot topcommenter

What ya want to bet her ex-boyfriend set her up and was somehow responsible for the murder!

ConcernedCitizenAZ
ConcernedCitizenAZ topcommenter

INNOCENT!  After 17 yrs. behind bars:

http://voices.suntimes.com/early-and-often/backtalk/a-clue-to-the-real-killer-in-case-that-put-innocent-men-in-prison/
Backtalk
July 24, 2013 11:57 am

"A clue to the real killer in case that put innocent men in prison?Randy Steidl, who was exonerated after 17 years behind bars, speaks about his story at The Church of the Holy Spirit in Schaumburg Sept. 21, 2010. (Andrew A. Nelles / Photo for The Courier-News)

"An affidavit scheduled to be hand-delivered to Gov. Pat Quinn’s office Wednesday suggests the identity of the real killer in a Downstate case that sent two other men to Death Row." 

ConcernedCitizenAZ
ConcernedCitizenAZ topcommenter

Prosecutors, Judges and Cops, who through misconduct cause innocent citizens to be incarcerated for crimes they did not commit should themselves be incarcerated in prison -- Day for Day -- equal to that served by the people they victimized. 

ConcernedCitizenAZ
ConcernedCitizenAZ topcommenter

Ray Krone was released on bail after his conviction was overturned. Debra Milke should be treated the same after over 11 years later moving forward after over 1,100 exonerees nationwide.  

Where are the women exonoerees in Arizona? 

Does Arizona treat women differently than men?  We're still waiting...

eric.nelson745
eric.nelson745 topcommenter

I assume that if she is retried, the death penalty will not be on the table. That said, and notwithstanding the lying ways of ex-detective Saldate, what was she thinking when she let those two saddle tramps take the little boy "to see Santa?"

ConcernedCitizenAZ
ConcernedCitizenAZ topcommenter

"IN 64% OF FEMALE EXONEREES' CASES, NO CRIME HAD OCCURRED."  Exoneration Registry.  March 27, 2013


Reply: The 64 percent figure just jumps out at me. Please, please, please do not tell me that in every one of those cases, police and prosecutors actually believed a crime had occurred. My take is that they see an easy target and go for it."

Women's Project, Center on Wrongful Convictions: Bluhm Legal Clinic, Northwestern Law School

http://www.law.northwestern.edu/legalclinic/wrongfulconvictions/womensproject/
Women's Project: Why Women's Cases Are Different

Innocent women accused of heinous crimes face extraordinary challenges. In many cases, they are suspected of harming their children or other loved ones. As a result, when under investigation, they are coping with deep personal losses, rendering them especially vulnerable to high-pressure interrogation tactics that sometimes lead to false confessions or seemingly inculpatory statements.

When women—traditionally viewed as nurturers and protectors—are accused of murdering or sexually abusing children, they are particularly reviled by society, including, of course, by police, prosecutors, judges, jurors, and witnesses. In cases in which no crime has occurred—such as those arising from accidental or natural deaths that are mistaken for homicides—convictions are likely to ensue. Because the evidence in such cases is often entirely circumstantial, identifying wrongful convictions is difficult and rectifying them is complicated.

Statistics
  • 20% of female exonerees falsely confessed to a crime*
  • 18.7% of female exonerees were convicted of murdering a family member or loved one
  • 18.7% of female exonerees were convicted of physically harming or murdering a child in their care
  • 40% of female exonerees were the victims of police or prosecutorial abuse of authority
  • In 64% of female exonerees' cases, no crime had occurred

In keeping with its mission, the Women's Project of the Center on Wrongful Convictions (CWC) will focus both on litigation aimed at exonerating women in prison for crimes they did not commit and on public education aimed at raising awareness of the factors that lead to their convictions. The project is well positioned for both endeavors. The CWC's success in representing innocent women—favorable outcomes in four cases—has provided invaluable experience and insights that will serve the project well.

The CWC has formidable research capabilities. It is the repository of the nation's most extensive files on wrongful convictions and, in partnership with the University of Michigan Law School, it established and maintains theNational Registry of Exonerations. The overarching goal of the research is fostering reforms designed to improve the fairness and accuracy of the criminal justice system in ways that make it less treacherous for innocent women.

*Statistics cited on this webpage are from the National Registry of Exonerations as of March 27, 2013. 


ConcernedCitizenAZ
ConcernedCitizenAZ topcommenter

Breaking news: Charges dismissed after DNA clears man - Wyoming Tribune Eagle Online


http://www.wyomingnews.com/articles/2013/07/20/news/19local_07-20-13.txt

West of Cheyenne wrote on Jul 22, 2013 8:37 AM:

" "It sounds to me as if the person who needs to be thrown in prison, for 23 years, is the former prosecutor. And the jury certainly proved itself stupid and gullible beyond all reasonable doubt, proving once again there's no fixing stupid. The jury had a man's life in its hands and they deliberated for 15 minutes which means they didn't consider or discuss anything. Pathetic.

The only thing the state had on Johnson was the testimony of a woman who was bar-hopping and very drunk. She admitted to being so drunk that she was throwing up in a parking lot shortly before the attack, making her testimony worthless. 

Shame on the WTE for going out of it's way in the story not to name the former prosecutor or the defense attorney. "


DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

More proof that Cops are Lying Lowlife Scumbags.


Cozz
Cozz topcommenter

That would require MontePoodle and the Judge to do the right thing, we all know MontePoodle isn't capable of doing the right thing and I will believe the Judge is when I see it happen.

ConcernedCitizenAZ
ConcernedCitizenAZ topcommenter

Steidl's exoneration pushes error rate in Illinois capital cases to more than 6%

Gordon (Randy) Steidl was released from the Illinois Correctional Center at Danville on May 28, 2004, making him the eighteenth person to be exonerated and released after having been sentenced to death in Illinois since 1977.

His release, ordered earlier the same day by the Edgar County Circuit Court, was based on new evidence that he and co-defendant Herbert Whitlock were innocent of the murder of newlyweds Karen and Dyke Rhoads, whose bodies were discovered on July 6, 1986, in their burning home in Paris, Illinois.

Both convictions rested principally on the testimony of two alcoholics, Deborah Reinbolt and Darrell Harrington, who claimed to have been present when Steidl and Whitlock repeatedly stabbed the victims and set their home afire. Reinbolt was charged with concealing the homicidal deaths and, pursuant to a plea agreement, pleaded guilty. She was sentenced to two years in prison.

The evidence against Steidl also included the testimony of a jailhouse informant, Ferlin Wells, who claimed to have heard Steidl say that, if he had known Harrington would come forward, "he would have definitely taken care of him."

ConcernedCitizenAZ
ConcernedCitizenAZ topcommenter

It's time to end absolute immunity for the prosecutors, judges and cops and punish them for causing the innocent to be incarcerated and having their lives destroyed.

ConcernedCitizenAZ
ConcernedCitizenAZ topcommenter

Judicial Gatekeeping of Suspect Evidence: Due Process and Evidentiary Rules in the Age of Innocence

Keith A. Findley 
University of Wisconsin Law School

June 3, 2013

Georgia Law Review, Vol. 47, No. 723, 2013 

Abstract: 
The growing number of wrongful convictions exposed over the past two-and-a-half decades, and the research that points to a few recurring types of flawed evidence in those cases, raise questions about the effectiveness of the rules of evidence and the constitutional admissibility standards that are designed to guard against unreliable evidence. Drawing on emerging empirical data, this Article concludes that the system can and should be adjusted to do a better job of guarding against undue reliance on flawed evidence. The Article first considers the role of reliability screening as a constitutional concern. The wrongful convictions data identify what might be called “suspect evidentiary categories” — a few types of evidence (eyewitness identifications, confessions, forensic science, and snitch testimony) that are both recurring features of wrongful convictions and not otherwise susceptible to correction through traditional trial mechanisms and that, therefore, can and should be subjected to heightened scrutiny for reliability under the Due Process Clause. 

Recognizing, however, that the Supreme Court is moving away from using constitutional doctrine to screen for reliability, this Article considers other mechanisms for better ensuring reliable evidence and accurate trial outcomes. First, current trends in Supreme Court jurisprudence suggest a due process framework that focuses upstream of the trial process on regulating the police and prosecutorial conduct that generates some of the most suspect trial evidence. Second, the Article assesses new applications of non-constitutional evidence law that offer promise for filling the void in reliability review of such suspect types of evidence. Finally, the Article considers remedies in addition to exclusion that might aid in the enterprise of mitigating the harm from flawed evidence. Principal among these are broader use of expert witnesses and jury instructions to educate fact finders about the counter-intuitive but scientifically established qualities of these categories of suspect evidence. And because courts have proven reluctant to apply reliability-based exclusionary rules rigorously, the Article concludes by exploring partial exclusion — excluding the most objectionable parts of the evidence while permitting other parts — as a remedy that courts might be more likely to actually enforce.

http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2273847

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@eric.nelson745 ... if being a bad parent were a crime, there wouldn't be enough prisons in the world to hold all the perps.

ConcernedCitizenAZ
ConcernedCitizenAZ topcommenter

Arizona taxpayer and citizen on Arizona's mockery of a justice system against WOMEN:

"64%! You see once again this is proof that the courts are no more accurate at convicting the proper party than a coin toss. In fact 64% is worse than a coin toss by 14%. I would prefer a verdict based on an impartial coin toss than a verdict based on prejudice from a bunch of people that don’t know me and just want to go home for dinner."

MandyMountain
MandyMountain

@truthseekeraz These cases lead me to infer that there are a LOT of people in prison for crimes they didn't commit. Unfortunately there is no DNA test for faulty eyewitness testimony or for lying prosecutors or cops. The prosecutors always want to sweep the dirt under the rug. How many times have we ever heard apologies from prosecutors who wrongly railroaded someone? Seems like it's not nearly as often as they try to defend convictions exposed as flawed or outright fraudulent.

Cozz
Cozz topcommenter

@DonkeyHotay  

Not all but many for sure.

Now when it comes to prosecutors, find one that isn't a liar would be record breaking.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@truthseekeraz ... it's even more perverse in Colorado, where the absolute immunity coverage also includes WILLFUL Misconduct on the part of Prosecutors and Judges.

Fucking Obscene.


ConcernedCitizenAZ
ConcernedCitizenAZ topcommenter

Take the "Santa" and Christmas out of the media dialog and it would never have reached this level of putting a woman on death row with NO evidence, just the word of a lying Phoenix detective. Nothing has changed in Maricopa County's long sad history of using "vulnerable" people for their "easy" convictions.

ConcernedCitizenAZ
ConcernedCitizenAZ topcommenter

@MandyMountain  Their job is to right the wrongs and seek fair justice. They block their ears and eyes to wrongful convictions of the innocent. That shows incompetence, lack of education or malicious prosecution.

ConcernedCitizenAZ
ConcernedCitizenAZ topcommenter

@Cozz @DonkeyHotay  ex-MCAO Andrew Thomas and his chief "charging" prosecutor ex-DCA Lisa Aubuchon were both disbarred in April 2012. That is very rare, so it illustrates how badly they abused their power including falsely accusing judges, officials, lawyers, and newspapers executives of serious charges. For the lives they destroyed along with their cronies they ALL deserve serious prison time. 

The MCAO should have a federal investigation of its entire office that needs to go back decades, to the beginning of the Macumber case.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@truthseekeraz @MandyMountain @Cozz @JohnQ.Public 

Prosecutors, Judges and Cops who through misconduct cause innocent citizens to be incarcerated for crimes they did not commit should themselves be incarcerated in prison -- Day for Day -- equal to that served by the people they victimized.


ConcernedCitizenAZ
ConcernedCitizenAZ topcommenter

@JohnQ.Public

Your well informed comment is spot on.  Read the out of print book "Down and Dirty  Justice" by law professor, lawyer and former MCAO prosecutor, Gary T. Lowenthal.  He describes the MCAO "restructure" of laws by then CA Romley to learn the background of why there is no fair justice or equity in the justice system here, as they thumb their noses at established laws. This book was published in 2003, yet can't be found in the MC libraries. Why? It would be a valuable, non-fiction  resource about Arizona's justice system.  It belongs in every library and bookstore in Arizona along the others books about Arizona's true history. This book impacts ALL those who live and work here. Especially the "newcomers" and visitors who come here and would not believe such a system exists. They are the "easy" targets and convictions and are prime targets, snatched for Arizona's "business model" --- their mass industrial prison complex and the criminal justice system that feeds it. In Arizona, the lawyers and the profiteers in this sick and destructive business are obscenely rich while the rest are churned in the lucrative court system or in their jails, prisons and detention centers. All use for political and financial gain by the county attorneys with their eyes on state attorney general and governor. Time to stop this sick game being played out for decades until there will no longer by jurors or taxpayers to keep their sick game going. 


JohnQ.Public
JohnQ.Public

Unfortunately, County Attorneys usually seem to see their "skin in the game" as being re-elected to the position.  So they feel that they have to appear tough on crime and hard on alleged criminals in order to support their re-election campaign and we all know the politics, campaigns and elections are as far from the concept of justice as could possible be.  It seems, especially here, that charging decisions and prosecutions are based more on political calculations than any notice of justice or equity.

ConcernedCitizenAZ
ConcernedCitizenAZ topcommenter

@MandyMountain @Cozz  What you describe is unequal justice. The justice system is tipped against the people, which is why its time to eliminate absolute immunity for prosecutors. The County Attorney should not be an elected politician by a professional hired to do the job. The MCAO has politicized the justice system and destroyed thousands of lives in the process. 

MandyMountain
MandyMountain

@Cozz The crux of the matter lies here: the prosecution has virtually unlimited resources, but no skin in the game. The defendant has everything on the line and only whatever resources he or she has on hand.

Cozz
Cozz topcommenter

@truthseekeraz

Prosecutors that do these things and Judge's that allow them to happen should all be in prison where they send innocent people.

Absolute immunity is total bullshit, it does nothing but allow them to be as corrupt as they are since there are no repercussions when in fact they are rewarded for their corruption. 

I wouldn't piss on any of them if they were on fire.

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