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on Monday, March 16th, 2009 at 7:31 pm by Radley Balko
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6 Responses to “Live Chat With Cory Maye’s Attorneys”
Hate that I missed this one, but I was at work. :-(
Many thanks to Radley and the lawyers for taking this time.
If I’d been able to ask a question, I’d have asked them about the appeal system that only deals with issues of law and procedure, versus the trial where the jury decides all matters of fact. It seems to me that in a case like Cory’s, it is the facts that are in question, not the law or procedure. DAs and AGs arguing that it’s perfectly okay to execute someone who is actually innocent, so long as all the procedures are followed; this, in my opinion, is one of the greatest evils seen in our “justice” system.
I would suggest reading Maye’s Appellate Brief and/or reading the chat with his lawyers. There are circumstances in which it’s appropriate for the Appellate Courts to make rulings based on an examination of the facts – but the scope of review is limited. In Maye’s case, his legal team is making the argument that the factual evidence presented at trial is insufficient to sustain what Maye was charged, and convicted, of. Additionally, Maye’s team is arguing that the verdict is against the ‘overwhelming weight’ of the evidence.
So in limited circumstances, Appeals Courts do engage in a substantive review of the facts. But if you’re looking for the Appellate Division to completely second-guess a jury on the trial transcript – the general wisdom (correct, I think) is that juries are in a better position to determine things like credibility, because they are actually in the courtroom listening to the testimony and reading body language and not simply reading a transcript.
Thanks to Radley and the attorneys for their endless support of justice for Cory and others.
Our system is broke in many areas and it will take strong folks like yourselves to keep us informed, vigilant and involved. Most importantly unafraid to address the issues in our daily lives and contacts.