Sunday, May 25, 2008

Will next Texas DNA exoneree come from death row?

Will the next "actual innocence" exoneration in Texas come from death row?

Michael Blair was condemned to death for raping and killing Ashley Estell, but now collin County DA John Roach admits DNA evidence proves he didn't do the deed. Says the Texas Death Penalty Blog:
Don't worry, though. Because this man has confessed to other brutal sexual assaults, he won't be freed. Ever. But a Texas DA, a Texas jury and several appeals courts almost had the blood of an innocent man (in this case) on their hands. He was convicted because he was a known child molestor who showed an interest in the case. If the process moved as quickly as death penalty proponents wished it did, he'd be dead by now.
Even more to the point, authorities wouldn't know they should still be looking for Ashley Estell's killer. See early media and blog coverage of the story:

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Once he was convicted (wrongly) he was sunk. Did he confess to these other crimes to clear them and let the cops look less incompetent? If there is no evidence that he committed these additional crimes, then he should be set free, and the cops should be railroaded into death row for conspiracy to commit murder.

lowery.shirley said...

Michael Blair has always admitted to the other crimes so he isn't going anywhere. Br, all of these years he has denied having anything to do with the murder of Ashley Estelle. It sure had a ring of truth because he was going to be behind bars for the rest of his life anyway.
This was a brutal murder and Texans couldn't pass laws fast enough. We end up with a bunch of useless laws if we can't even lock up the right person. A cold-bloodied killer got away with this and one can only wonder what further damage he has done. If I remember correctly Michael Blair was convicted on a single hair.
This happened in Florence Shiparo's district but the hysteria regarding this case was a huge boost to many political careers.
We ask for prevention and are given tools for apprehension. After our kids are used for bait the world watches as a manhunt takes place. A new set of heroes captures the limelight. But there is no glory in prevention and our country is dying due to a lack of mental heath care.

Fred said...

Just because he made confessions that doesn't prove he actually committed those crimes. What was the actual evidence he did? Did they find and confirm the victims?

lowery.shirley said...

Fred,
You are exactly right. I don't remember the details of the other cases so I can't give you an answer.