Ferguson sits in jail while court sits on appeal, jurors rethink verdict

Want to know what’s new with Ryan Ferguson and Chuck Erickson? This excerpt sums up the new news (from a May 1st Columbia Tribune story by Brennan David):

With the habeas petition filed in February, the Missouri Attorney General’s Office faces a deadline this week to issue its response to the allegations of Ferguson and his attorneys. Cole County Circuit Judge Daniel Green will consider both arguments and could rule on the matter at a June 29 hearing.

Don’t know anything about the trial? Want to go over all the details again? Read the comprehensive Tribune story. Kudos to David for writing a good one. Kudos to blog commenter Fleastiff for bringing it to my attention. Type “Ryan Ferguson” in my blog search field to read previous posts and comments on the topic.

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About Nicole

Daughter of God, wife, mother, volunteer youth leader, substitute teacher, aspiring writer, rabbit owner, nature lover. These are some of my titles.
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18 Responses to Ferguson sits in jail while court sits on appeal, jurors rethink verdict

  1. Sheila Cain says:

    I am a 56 year old single mom from New Jersey and have been following Ryan’s case very closely since first seeing his story on 48 Hours. Our government should be ashamed of themselves for allowing not only Ryan, but so many other innocent people to be wrongly convicted of crimes they didn’t commit. With the DNA technology we have today, so many people would be exonerated and sent home to their families, where they belong.

    Ryan Ferguson’s case is just totally heartbreaking. This is the United States of America! Not some foreign country! Here, we are SUPPOSED to be “Innocent Until Proven Guilty!” To anyone who has read Ryan’s story and all that was involved, it is apparent that the Missouri judicial system (And the prosecutor at the time, Kevin Crane), was definitely corrupt.

    For Ryan to now have to wait until June 29th for Judge Green’s decision on whether or not he will be given a new trial is just unacceptable. This young man has been sitting in prison for over seven years. Exonerate him! Send him HOME, NOW!

  2. Fleastiff says:

    In accord with the usual delaying tactics the AG filed its response near the end of the very last day it was allowed to do so. The response is a typical “we see the writing on the wall but are not going to admit it” wherein the AG maintains Erickson has been consistent and credible in placing himself and Ryan Ferguson at the scene and committing the murder but supposedly the AG now welcomes the requested Evidentiary Hearing. In reality of course the AG does not welcome the forthcoming EggOnFace and wishes to delay that day of reckoning by yammering about Erickson being credible when he has not been credible since about four years prior to his walking into the police station and being induced to confess.
    One relevant link might be: http://www.columbiatribune.com/news/2011/may/03/state-files-response-to-ferguson-appeal

  3. Nicole says:

    Sheila, thanks for commenting. “Innocent until proven guilty” comes with some strings attached. Our judicial system is set up with the intention that it should be extremely difficult to convict a person in the original trial. This is based on William Blackstone’s observation, “better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer.” The appeals process is set up with the good faith assumption that the appellant was soundly convicted. The system intentionally makes appeals very difficult. Unfortunately, this is necessary. Almost every case with a guilty verdict leads to an appeal. The courts are already bogged down with an unbearable caseload. If every appeal led to an instant re-trial, the courts would be far too jammed to operate at all.

    But in cases like Ferguson’s, where it appears he was guilty until proven innocent, it is extremely frustrating. His original lawyers messed up a lot. But Zellner (his current lawyer) has provided plenty of material to justify a retrial or mistrial. I hope Ryan gets his day in court soon.

  4. Nicole says:

    Every time I read the Attorney General’s statements, I get mad again. Erickson’s recantation isn’t credible. Well, obviously. Nothing he says is credible. And that’s the whole point.

  5. Sheila Cain says:

    Erickson’s recantation isn’t credible? Yet his original confession, based on a DREAM (drug induced no doubt) 2 years after the crime WAS ‘credible?’ I work for a police department. The more I watch his original interrogation, the more unbelievable it seems. His confusion, the police and Crane FEEDING HIM INFORMATION on how the crime was committed (For instance, Erickson not knowing that the victim’s belt was used) is almost laughable.

    I truly believe that the police and Crane all knew that these boys were innocent. It doesn’t matter that the real killer or killers are still out there (Probably still laughing at how easy it was to get away with murder), it’s obvious that Crane was in the running to become a judge and a conviction in this case pushed him way up that career ladder. What is so sad, and what makes me so frustrated and angry, is that the State of Missouri let him get away with it. I can only hope and pray that the saying “What goes around, comes around,” is true. Because if it is, someday Crane is going to rot in hell for what he did to these families.

  6. Nicole says:

    Sheila,
    I understand your passion. I’ve seen the interrogation tapes as well and they are extremely frustrating. It certainly seems that the police and Crane intentionally went after any conviction instead of seeking out the truth.

    Even so, I will never pray for any person to rot in hell. Who knows what was or currently is in Kevin Crane’s heart and mind? Even if he was intentionally corrupt in his actions, it is not our place to sit in final judgment. We can condemn his acts and question his right to serve as a judge. But it is only God’s grace through Christ that saves me and anyone else from rotting in hell. In my quest for justice, I pray to remain humble. I hope you don’t feel I’m inappropriately preaching at you. Your strong religious language compelled me to respond in this way.

    From a practical perspective, no punishment for Crane or the police department will help Ryan Ferguson or repair the damage to his family. What he needs is his freedom.

  7. Fleastiff says:

    In what the Ferguson family refers to as a “strongly worded reply” Zellner attacks the Missouri Attorney General.
    http://www.freeryanferguson.com/pdfs/petitioner_reply_to_AG.pdf

    In viewing those interrogation tapes, try to recall that these are not inexperienced police officers doing their first interrogation. As to the use of the belt to strange editor Heitholt it should be remembered that police initially withheld this fact from the media so as to test the credibility of anyone who might later confess, then that spoodfeed that very crucial fact to man who had been losing most of his friends due to his drug use and bizarre behavior. FG

  8. Fleastiff says:

    Although media attention is likely to be directed at Casey Anthony on July 12th that is also the date of a conference regarding the Missouri Attorney General and the attorney representing Ryan Ferguson before the Judge hearing the Habeas Corpus petition.

  9. Fleastiff says:

    NEW 48Hours program.
    July 12th.
    Judge Green in Cole County took the petition under advisement and expects to issue a decision in the near future concerning the possible release of Ryan Ferguson under the Preston Doctrine which held that allowing veniremen to opt out of jury duty in return for a modest fee meant that the later impaneled juries were insufficiently representative of the community.
    48Hours was present and shot some footage but does not expect to air its updated analysis of the Ryan Ferguson case for several weeks. The Assistant AG most involved in Ryan Ferguson’s case filed a request with the judge to be allowed to withdraw.

  10. Fleastiff says:

    Dateline and 48Hours will each do shows on this case in the very near future.

    Judge Green of Cole County struck count 4 in the petition for a writ of habeas corpus, thus baring consideration of the jury duty opt-out as grounds for the writ to issue despite it being the law of land in Missouri as a result of the Oranda and Preston decisions. Evidentciary hearing scheduled for August 9th.

  11. Fleastiff says:

    This coming Friday, August 5th, 2011 there will be a two-hour DATELINE special on the Ryan Ferguson case entitled Mystery on Halloween Night.

  12. It’s so sad that our justice
    system relys on the criminals. they protect them house them povied for them and protect them. And we pay for it.

  13. Fleastiff says:

    Today Show: Friday morning.
    Ryan Ferguson’s parents and appellate attorney will be guests on the Today show this Friday morning. The two hour DateLine special will air this Friday night.

  14. Selena Paquette says:

    Ryan is innocent…i will pray for him everyday…be strong Ryan..the truth will someday come out.

  15. FleaStiff says:

    Cole County Judge Green DENIED Ryan Ferguson’s Habeas Corpus petition, terming the recantations unreliable due to prolonged contact with Ferguson’s lawyers and attacks on Prosecutor (now Judge) Crane.

  16. Nicole says:

    Unfortunately, after reading the legal documents explaining the parameters of a Habeas Corpus case (as provided by the Tribune), I knew he was doomed to another denial. It seems that by trying so many appeals and so many different avenues of proving his innocence, he has exhausted his legal options. So sad and ironic that consistently insisting he is innocent could be his undoing. I don’t know what his next course of action can be. Perhaps a request to the governor for pardon will be his last resort.

    Have you heard of Errol Morris? He wrote and directed the documentary “The Thin Blue Line,” in 1988, in which he demonstrated that Randall Dale Adams was wrongly convicted of capital murder in Texas. He was convicted primarily on the testimony provided by another man who confessed to being present at the crime but implicated Adams as the murderer. After the documentary came out, the case was reexamined and the conviction overturned, the DA declined to re-prosecute, and Adams was released after a habeas corpus hearing.

    In September, Morris published the book “A Wilderness of Error: The Trials of Jeffrey MacDonald.” MacDonald was convicted of murdering his wife and two daughters at Fort Bragg in the 1970s. The police asserted that MacDonald staged a break-in as a coverup. Morris presents compelling evidence that what happened was something entirely different. Perhaps Ryan Ferguson’s story should be brought to the attention of someone like Errol Morris?

  17. Connie says:

    All I can say is that the people who have any power to free Ryan, do it TODAY, or….. ROT IN HELL> Shame on your stupidity, your righteousness of LOOKING good, smart, taking pride in your positions. This case is clear cut…. OH I see how this works alright- O.J.Simpson truly got away with murder and here we have an innocent law abiding citizen giving up his life only to sit in Prison.
    I would love to put the judge, the police department and any other party responsible for putting an innocent man in prison and make them sit their for LIFE! God, how can people in this world be soooo stupid? This is insane and I feel so incredibly sad for Ryan and the parents/family…

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