Friday, September 5, 2008

Schmitz Case Reveals Alarming Signs of Deja Vu

Is the Sue Schmitz prosecution in Decatur, Alabama, turning into Round Two of the Don Siegelman case?

Some disturbing signals indicate the answer might be yes.

U.S. District Judge David Proctor sent jurors home for the weekend today when it became clear they remained deadlocked after three days of deliberations.

What's alarming about that?

As we showed in a recent post, the government's case is preposterously weak--under the law. That assessment came from Huffington Post's David Fiderer, who has training as a lawyer and works in international banking.

In fact, Fiderer said the government's case is worse than weak. "Nonexistent," he called it.

But jurors have deliberated three days and still can't reach a decision? On a case that probably should have been dismissed by the judge before it ever got to the jury?

That might not be a good sign, at least if you happen to be someone who cares about justice. And it is reminiscent of the jury deadlock in the Siegelman case, which eventually ended with a conviction--one that was not supported by fact or law.

A growing body of evidence indicates that Siegelman and codefendant Richard Scrushy were convicted largely because Judge Mark Fuller, a George W. Bush appointee, presented improper jury instructions.

Makes you wonder about the jury instructions from Judge Proctor in the Schmitz case.

And who appointed Proctor to the federal bench?

George W. Bush.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I'm following this one, too, and noted the similarity.