When being falsely or wrongly accused of anything, most of us become upset and flustered. When an interrogation is being conducted by actual police officers, skilled at using coercive tactics to confuse and intimidate, many of us would likely fall victim and appear guilty.
Two young men are currently behind bars awaiting trial for the murder of another 20-year-old man. The criminal defense attorney for one of the accused men, contends his client is innocent and was coerced through police aggression and intimidation into making statements that made him appear guilty.
The two men are accused of killing one man and attacking another. Both men have pled not guilty to the charges and there is no physical evidence linking either to the crime. Trying desperately to tie the men to the crime, prosecutors are relying on the testimony of four witnesses who have since recanted their statements claiming police coercion.
Additionally, prosecutors plan to introduce evidence collected during interrogations. The defense attorney for one of the accused, however, contends his client was not aware of his constitutional rights during the interrogations. He also points out that his client has a learning disability which affects his reading and comprehension skills and that questioning by police took place during extremely early and late hours which served to disorientate his client.
The defense attorney contends any statements made by his client were the result of intimidating, misleading and outright lying on the part of police interrogators. The accused defense attorney believes so strongly in his client’s innocence that he is working the case pro bono.
The hearing ruling on the defense’s motion to dismiss the majority of statements submitted by police officers on the grounds they are not valid will be heard on April 26.