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maher_tyler
08-01-2012, 07:14 PM
Back in 2001, my step dad (wasn't my step dad at the time) was drinking with a friend at a bar in Sturgis South Dakota. Him and his friend got into her brand new Corvette. Driving over 100 mph got into a accident. He was thrown from the vehicle and she was found in the passenger side of the vehicle. She was killed in the accident..obviously he ended up living. Her family sometime down the road decided to press charges. They never preserved any evidence leaving the car sit outside in the weather etc...not preserving any evidence. He ended up in prison. There was never any proof that he was ever driving the car. The only "proof" was the HP that was first on scene that went back and changed his original statement. Saying he was 8-10 feet from the driverside door. They went on to repeal the conviction as 2 witnesses stating his friend was driving the car. He was let out after 6 years for about a year before they put him back in. After they had put him back in another witness came forword after reading an article in the newspaper stating she waas driving the car. They again let him out 6 months ago after doing another 2.5 years. Now they are trying to send him back in AGAIN!

I know some of this might not make any sense but how can they have 3 witnesses saying she was driving yet keep him in prison?? So my question is, does anyone know anyone anywhere that could look at this and set an inoccent man free?? Any help would be very much appreciated!!

Bronkota
08-01-2012, 07:22 PM
I know the story. The law in this state is pretty out of control. Too bad
he couldnt afford a Hollywood lawyer...

theAPAOps5
08-01-2012, 07:23 PM
Threads that have "serious question" never end well.

My first thought is that he short is fishy. To be released from prison means his conviction was overturned under appeals, right? Which cannot be appealed by the prosecution under double jeopardy laws. He can appeal more than once but it vice versa.

That and how can a witness 6 years later say he wasn't driving. They won't go on just his word would they. Because anyone could theoretically say they witnessed it then.

That just seems fishy to me. Doesn't mean I am calling you or your stepdad a liar just seems odd. SoCal or BroncoBuff hopefully speak up as they have law in their educational background.

Edit: Saw that Bronkota knows the story. That is crazy ass laws if they can get away with that.

baja
08-01-2012, 07:27 PM
Back in 2001, my step dad (wasn't my step dad at the time) was drinking with a friend at a bar in Sturgis South Dakota. Him and his friend got into her brand new Corvette. Driving over 100 mph got into a accident. He was thrown from the vehicle and she was found in the passenger side of the vehicle. She was killed in the accident..obviously he ended up living. Her family sometime down the road decided to press charges. They never preserved any evidence leaving the car sit outside in the weather etc...not preserving any evidence. He ended up in prison. There was never any proof that he was ever driving the car. The only "proof" was the HP that was first on scene that went back and changed his original statement. Saying he was 8-10 feet from the driverside door. They went on to repeal the conviction as 2 witnesses stating his friend was driving the car. He was let out after 6 years for about a year before they put him back in. After they had put him back in another witness came forword after reading an article in the newspaper stating she waas driving the car. They again let him out 6 months ago after doing another 2.5 years. Now they are trying to send him back in AGAIN!

I know some of this might not make any sense but how can they have 3 witnesses saying she was driving yet keep him in prison?? So my question is, does anyone know anyone anywhere that could look at this and set an inoccent man free?? Any help would be very much appreciated!!

Your stepdad clearly needs a good lawyer.

lonestar
08-01-2012, 07:31 PM
I would think that double jeopardy would have kicked in after the first reversal..

maher_tyler
08-01-2012, 07:38 PM
Threads that have "serious question" never end well.

My first thought is that he short is fishy. To be released from prison means his conviction was overturned under appeals, right? Which cannot be appealed by the prosecution under double jeopardy laws. He can appeal more than once but it vice versa.

That and how can a witness 6 years later say he wasn't driving. They won't go on just his word would they. Because anyone could theoretically say they witnessed it then.

That just seems fishy to me. Doesn't mean I am calling you or your stepdad a liar just seems odd. SoCal or BroncoBuff hopefully speak up as they have law in their educational background.

Edit: Saw that Bronkota knows the story. That is crazy ass laws if they can get away with that.

There were witnesses prior but his ****ty appointed lawyer didn't do his job! I'm sure none of them would have ever imagined an innocent man would be put in prison. Not sure why someone he has never met would come forward and say they saw her driving! Not only that, there was and still isn't any evidence of him ever driving the car!!

maher_tyler
08-01-2012, 07:41 PM
Your stepdad clearly needs a good lawyer.

$$$$$...don't have it!

hades
08-01-2012, 07:58 PM
Did they happen to take any pictures of him after the accident showing any injuries? If he was wearing a seatbelt, or she was, perhaps there is a bruise, and the line woudl cross the body only one way depending on which seat you were in.

Sounds like they probably didn't have seatbelts on tho.

broncosteven
08-01-2012, 08:02 PM
I guess I would research other groups that have freed other innocent people, do lots of calling to find out what they would suggest to do and see if they can't connect you with some firm that wants to take it on pro-bono.

How much time is he looking at doing? I would guess the longer he is facing the more chance you would have to get help.

Good luck! Maybe you can find someone who is either trying to make a name for himself, do a good deed, or get some pub.

maher_tyler
08-01-2012, 08:05 PM
I guess I would research other groups that have freed other innocent people, do lots of calling to find out what they would suggest to do and see if they can't connect you with some firm that wants to take it on pro-bono.

How much time is he looking at doing? I would guess the longer he is facing the more chance you would have to get help.

Good luck! Maybe you can find someone who is either trying to make a name for himself, do a good deed, or get some pub.

He is charged with vehicle homicide...so 25 years max and parole at 13...he's done a total of 11. He was in a minimum security prison prior to being let out the second time. I think this whole thing is ****ed up!

broncocalijohn
08-01-2012, 08:13 PM
obvious your Mom likes bad boys if she was to marry a ex/current con. Good luck to him if he was really innocent.

maher_tyler
08-01-2012, 08:49 PM
obvious your Mom likes bad boys if she was to marry a ex/current con. Good luck to him if he was really innocent.

Two different judges thought he was innocent enough to let him out. With 3 different witnesses, there is no doubt in my mind he's innocent. It's the state of South Dakota's justice system that is ****ed up!

They were together prior to him going to prison.

FireFly
08-01-2012, 09:01 PM
Two different judges thought he was innocent enough to let him out. With 3 different witnesses, there is no doubt in my mind he's innocent. It's the state of South Dakota's justice system that is ****ed up!

They were together prior to him going to prison.

Now I'm not an expert, but I have some experience. Double jeopardy should definitely apply based on what I'm hearing.

Also, just looking at reasonable doubt and the burden of proof it doesn't seem like you need a great lawyer it just sounds like you need a decent one!

maher_tyler
08-01-2012, 09:34 PM
Now I'm not an expert, but I have some experience. Double jeopardy should definitely apply based on what I'm hearing.

Also, just looking at reasonable doubt and the burden of proof it doesn't seem like you need a great lawyer it just sounds like you need a decent one!

The one he has now seems pretty good...I would love an explanation of how you can put a man in prison with no proof of guilt but 3 different people proving his innocense! I'm sure there is a lot im missing but I've given the gist of it all...It pisses me off! Imagine anyone you know really well being thrown in prison like that...11 year and prolly more he will never get back!!

baja
08-01-2012, 09:44 PM
Prisons are big business.


Lots of bad stories.

extralife
08-01-2012, 10:07 PM
The story you tell sounds blatantly illegal, which means either there's something about double jeopardy laws that I don't know, or you're lying/leaving things out.

Even if she was driving, is there something in the law regarding the culpability of other people in the car? If this woman was over the legal limit and he both knew it and got in the car with her behind the wheel--is that against the law, or otherwise relevant in some way in a vehicular homicide case? Makes him a ****ing idiot either way, of course. But I guess they don't put people in jail for being idiots (insert joke).

Beantown Bronco
08-02-2012, 05:18 AM
We're definitely missing a lot of detail here. Necessary detail to give any advice worth a damn. I know you think this is the "gist" of what happened, but it couldn't possibly go down that way, no matter the state it occurred in. Double jeopardy laws are double jeopardy laws. You simply cannot be taken out of prison and put back in for the same crime 3 different times, when the only new "evidence" supports your innocence. Something else is going on here.

Honest advice: let him finish out his term. He's already done 11 out of 13 anyway, so he'll be out in 2. Any attempted appeal he files now would eat up a good deal of that and probably wouldn't do much good anyway. Sucks, but that's the way it goes sometimes.

maher_tyler
08-02-2012, 03:29 PM
We're definitely missing a lot of detail here. Necessary detail to give any advice worth a damn. I know you think this is the "gist" of what happened, but it couldn't possibly go down that way, no matter the state it occurred in. Double jeopardy laws are double jeopardy laws. You simply cannot be taken out of prison and put back in for the same crime 3 different times, when the only new "evidence" supports your innocence. Something else is going on here.

Honest advice: let him finish out his term. He's already done 11 out of 13 anyway, so he'll be out in 2. Any attempted appeal he files now would eat up a good deal of that and probably wouldn't do much good anyway. Sucks, but that's the way it goes sometimes.

No, i'm not leaving much out. They are saying because these "new witnesses" came to surface since after the state convicted him, that he has to be retried by the state. It is not 100% he will have to go back but the state wants him back in there like ASAP. With the way this thing has gone, i would not be surprised for him to go back. There is nothing much else to it, i'm betting its that the state does not want to admit they put an innocent man in prison for 11 years. Easy to say just do the last 2 years when you're guilty. He's been fighting it since he got in there! The state of SD is jacked up man, i'm telling you!

Tombstone RJ
08-02-2012, 03:35 PM
$$$$$...don't have it!

IF your step dad is indeed innocent, but he doesn't have any money, he needs to go public with his story. He needs to tell any reporter/journalist, etc. that will listen.

If he's NOT innocent, I doubt he will be willing to do this b/c it could come back and bite him even harder in the ass.

maher_tyler
08-02-2012, 03:42 PM
IF your step dad is indeed innocent, but he doesn't have any money, he needs to go public with his story. He needs to tell any reporter/journalist, etc. that will listen.

If he's NOT innocent, I doubt he will be willing to do this b/c it could come back and bite him even harder in the ass.

It's been in the paper multiple times...3 different people said they saw her driving...the witnesses would have come forward years ago had they ever been contacted by his original lawyer! At one least found out he went to prison by reading an article in the paper about it.

Tombstone RJ
08-02-2012, 03:47 PM
It's been in the paper multiple times...3 different people said they saw her driving...the witnesses would have come forward years ago had they ever been contacted by his original lawyer! At one least found out he went to prison by reading an article in the paper about it.

then he needs to hire a PR person who makes this a big story. Fire the damn lawyers as they are doing nothing to help him and you and your family should pay a PR firm to take his damn story public. Like really, really LOUD.

If the state is indeed abusing it's power, the media (not the local yokel, small town dip****s who are in bed with the police, but a large media/news agency) loves this type of story.

Have your step dad admit his culpability (I was young and dumb and made a crappy decision, but I was NOT driving and I've served my time, yadda, yadda, yadda).

Or, do as Boston suggests and just do the rest of the time and be done with it.

It's really up to him. If he's truly innocent and wants some "justice" for himself, he needs to be pro-active. Otherwise, seeyah later...

maher_tyler
08-02-2012, 03:54 PM
then he needs to hire a PR person who makes this a big story. Fire the damn lawyers as they are doing nothing to help him and you and your family should pay a PR firm to take his damn story public. Like really, really LOUD.

If the state is indeed abusing it's power, the media (not the local yokel, small town dip****s who are in bed with the police, but a large media/news agency) loves this type of story.

Have your step dad admit his culpability (I was young and dumb and made a crappy decision, but I was NOT driving and I've served my time, yadda, yadda, yadda).

Or, do as Boston suggests and just do the rest of the time and be done with it.

It's really up to him. If he's truly innocent and wants some "justice" for himself, he needs to be pro-active. Otherwise, seeyah later...

His lawyer is pro bono. The current one seems to give a **** and be doing a decent job. He shouldn't have to throw money, he or my family does not have, at some PR firm. How much are we talking and what firms?? I have never done anything like this before...

Tombstone RJ
08-02-2012, 04:07 PM
His lawyer is pro bono. The current one seems to give a **** and be doing a decent job. He shouldn't have to throw money, he or my family does not have, at some PR firm. How much are we talking and what firms?? I have never done anything like this before...

I worked for a small PR firm as an intern in college but that was YEARS ago. We advertised & did the promo work for the Pope's US tour back in 1993?... good Lord that sucked... anyhow, that's my suggestion. Try googling it and calling some PR firms and ask them first if they even want to work with you and if they say sure, then start talking money.

If your step dad is squeaky clean outside of this one incident, a PR firm may be willing to do some pro bono work too with the option of making money on the story if it gets lots of publicity? I'm really not sure how a PR firm works as far as getting paid, I was just a low level intern/grunt worker in college.

The PR thing is just a suggestion. If that doesn't work send his story to someone who has media exposure like a well known personality? Perhaps they will pick up the story.

I dunno, if the lawyer you currently have is worth the paper he prints on, he should be able to do something, right?

maher_tyler
08-02-2012, 04:36 PM
I worked for a small PR firm as an intern in college but that was YEARS ago. We advertised & did the promo work for the Pope's US tour back in 1993?... good Lord that sucked... anyhow, that's my suggestion. Try googling it and calling some PR firms and ask them first if they even want to work with you and if they say sure, then start talking money.

If your step dad is squeaky clean outside of this one incident, a PR firm may be willing to do some pro bono work too with the option of making money on the story if it gets lots of publicity? I'm really not sure how a PR firm works as far as getting paid, I was just a low level intern/grunt worker in college.

The PR thing is just a suggestion. If that doesn't work send his story to someone who has media exposure like a well known personality? Perhaps they will pick up the story.

I dunno, if the lawyer you currently have is worth the paper he prints on, he should be able to do something, right?

If all else fails. We'll see if he has to go back etc. I think what is going to end up happening is that he will be retried by the state. Seems like they have an agenda though...

http://rapidcityjournal.com/news/federal-court-reaffirms-vehicular-homicide-conviction/article_496c1eb7-a28f-51c8-91d4-836be81215ab.html

razorwire77
08-02-2012, 04:37 PM
Did the investigators examine the position of the driver's seat to see where it was positioned? How tall is your step dad? How tall was the woman?

Was she seatbelted into the passenger's seat when the paramedics arrived?

Does your stepdad remember what happened, or was he at a blackout level of intoxication?

maher_tyler
08-02-2012, 04:46 PM
Did the investigators examine the position of the driver's seat to see where it was positioned? How tall is your step dad? How tall was the woman?

Was she seatbelted into the passenger's seat when the paramedics arrived?

Does your stepdad remember what happened, or was he at a blackout level of intoxication?

There was never an investigation of the car, neither was wearing their seat belts...he was thrown from a car going 112 mph, he does not remember anything...he almost died himself...there is literally no evidence showing he is guilty...

extralife
08-02-2012, 05:25 PM
There has to have been some investigation if they know 1) neither party was wearing a seatbelt, and 2) the car was going 112 mph on impact.

also how in the flying **** do you live after being thrown from a car at 112 mph

Tombstone RJ
08-03-2012, 08:34 AM
really, what happened sounds like very bad police work. If I was the lawyer, I'd go hard after the police investigation and claim gross negligence and put the friggen police on the stand.

If neither were wearing their seatbelts then where the bodies ended up means nada. Also, it was Finley's car, so basica assumption should be that she was driving the car.

Your lawyers suck dude. Sometimes that's just the way it is I guess.

Beantown Bronco
08-03-2012, 09:20 AM
There was never an investigation of the car, neither was wearing their seat belts...he was thrown from a car going 112 mph, he does not remember anything...he almost died himself...there is literally no evidence showing he is guilty...

There is also literally no "new" evidence showing he is innocent. And, at this point, it appears that that's all that's going to matter to these particular judges. Eye witness accounts now will mean nothing to the court, since they're unreliable at best to begin with and anybody could say anything at this point, they could've been paid off, etc.

The only thing that would help right now would be if the car was preserved in a vacuum for the last 11 years or there were cameras running outside the establishment that clearly showed her gettin in the driver seat. Since the car obviously wasn't preserved and there's no way anyone's going to just come up with said video footage, I'd say he's out of luck. There's just no real way to collect any real evidence now, now matter how hard this new lawyer works.

He's been fighting for 11 years and hasn't made any headway. Even if by some miracle everything falls perfectly for him now and some new evidence comes along, it's most likely going to cost a fortune and shave maybe a few months off the sentence at best. Unless there's some big family/life event coming up in the next 2 years that he'd regret missing for the rest of his life and that is what's motivating him to keep fighting this, I just don't really see enough benefit to outweigh the cost at this point.

Irish Stout
08-03-2012, 10:59 AM
One word I haven't seen in this thread: Trial.

Was there a trial or did he plead guilty initially on some offer by the DA? One or the other had to happen for him to be serving any substantial time in jail. If there was a trial, it would have been by a jury and the facts the jury determined would not be overturned on appeal, but the legality of the circumstances presented by the DA might (i.e. - no substantial evidence to have originally brought the matter to trial).

maher_tyler
08-03-2012, 11:36 AM
One word I haven't seen in this thread: Trial.

Was there a trial or did he plead guilty initially on some offer by the DA? One or the other had to happen for him to be serving any substantial time in jail. If there was a trial, it would have been by a jury and the facts the jury determined would not be overturned on appeal, but the legality of the circumstances presented by the DA might (i.e. - no substantial evidence to have originally brought the matter to trial).

There was a trial and he was found guilty by jury. He has never plead guilty or taken a plea deal. I don't understand how there is zero evidence saying he's guilty..how they could ever put him in prison. But there are witnesses. That means anyone of us could go to prison just cause they say so?? Way to ****ed up if you ask me. And please, these people are far from beig paid off...

And he has made progress..Hense he's been let out twice!

Beantown Bronco
08-03-2012, 11:44 AM
And he has made progress..Hense he's been let out twice!

And where is he today? You and I just view progress differently I guess.

maher_tyler
08-03-2012, 04:19 PM
And where is he today? You and I just view progress differently I guess.

A lot more progress than if he sat and did nothing. It's easy for people to sit and say just finish out your time when your not the one doing the time. I love the fact he is not like that and will continue to fight until they get it right!

cutthemdown
08-03-2012, 04:36 PM
Dude you need a killer lawyer not the Omane.

maher_tyler
08-03-2012, 04:42 PM
Dude you need a killer lawyer not the Omane.

Yea i know..just figured i'd see if anyone had been in a similar situation or knows someone and could give some good advice. It sucks but giving up is not an option...not when you're innocent...

cutthemdown
08-03-2012, 04:57 PM
Yea i know..just figured i'd see if anyone had been in a similar situation or knows someone and could give some good advice. It sucks but giving up is not an option...not when you're innocent...

Yeah it's a weird set of events you describe. I'm just a part time paralegal/gopher at a civil law firm so I can't say. So he's convicted, but sometimes they parole him when they think he could maybe be not guilty, then he goes back when they change their mind. That just sounds fishy to me? Am I not understanding it right?

cutthemdown
08-03-2012, 04:59 PM
The problem with a lack of evidence is he is already been found guilty. The burden of proof is now on the defense. That much would be true in civil or criminal I would think.

But you say you have eye witnesses and lawyers always say a credible eye witness is the best thing you can have.

maher_tyler
08-03-2012, 08:46 PM
Yeah it's a weird set of events you describe. I'm just a part time paralegal/gopher at a civil law firm so I can't say. So he's convicted, but sometimes they parole him when they think he could maybe be not guilty, then he goes back when they change their mind. That just sounds fishy to me? Am I not understanding it right?

Every time he is let out by a judge, the state appeals it and he ends up going back. I've never seen anything like it! They are saying he should have known about the witnesses. Not sure how he'd know about any witnesses knocked out laying in a ditch on I-90 or while in prison. During the original trial, the state lied. The trooper that arrived on scene lied about how far he was laying from the car..actually went back and changed his original statement of what he wrote on scene. He was literally sent to prison based on how far the trooper said he was laying from the car(6-10 feet). One of the witnesses said he was over 100 feet from the car. I have no idea how the jury came to the conclusion that he was driving. Its some major BS involved.

Beantown Bronco
08-04-2012, 06:29 AM
Tommy Wiliams: What are you in for?

Andy Dufresne: Me? My lawyer ****ed me. Everybody's innocent in here. Didn't you know that?