It’s Like Arraign on Your Wedding Day

Sunday, December 11th, 2011

Bad eyewitness testimony, NYPD incompetence leads to man getting arrested, arraigned on his wedding day, imprisoned for 6 months for a series of sexual assaults.

Yep, they had the wrong guy. He now has a mountain of legal bills. Oh, and while he was in jail, the actual “serial groper” struck again.

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24 Responses to “It’s Like Arraign on Your Wedding Day”

  1. #1 |  Trent McBride | 

    Come on, Radley, are you trying to win your own “headline of the day” award?

  2. #2 |  Mad Rocket Scientist | 

    Well, to be honest, his first mistake was turning himself in without a lawyer.

  3. #3 |  Pete | 

    Scientist, are you suggesting that there was perhaps…good advice that he just didn’t take?

  4. #4 |  Onlooker | 

    This story is a good one to educate all those who say, “I haven’t done anything wrong so what do I have to worry about from the police?”

    Such naivete’ is rampant among the masses, as we know. And it just enable the increasingly abusive state to creep further and further.

  5. #5 |  Bob | 

    His mistake was in thinking the Police were actually trying to find the guilty party. They weren’t. They were trying to find the first person they could pin it on, then work a confession out of them.

    Bad news for this guy… he was today’s duck.

    Now that he knows better, I bet he never talks to the cops without a lawyer present again.

    The Police, of course, think that they ARE trying to find the guilty party. But they’re so stupid and worthlessly incompetent at ‘investigating’, they think the way to find the guilty is to get them to confess.

  6. #6 |  Amy Alkon | 

    This story is a good one to educate all those who say, “I haven’t done anything wrong so what do I have to worry about from the police?”

    Onlooker is exactly right.

    A friend of mine who’s a cop says to NEVER let a cop into your home, don’t answer any questions they ask you (politely decline) and put a “No soliciting, no trespassing, beware of dog” sign outside to increase the burden on them for entering.

  7. #7 |  JimBob | 

    Mad Rocket Scientist:

    I agree that you should always have a lawyer and not to talk to the cops. Then again, dude is an immigrant from Colombia– he might not be entirely aware of his rights. Not to mention the fact that even the majority of Americans think that showing the cops ironclad proof that you’re innocent means that you’e immediately set free– after all, that’s how it happens on the cop shows…

  8. #8 |  (B)oscoH | 

    Blog headline of the year. But it’s cheating if you were saving that…

  9. #9 |  Andrew_M_Garland | 

    Where did you get that wristwatch?
    Is that a stolen IPhone? No? Prove it.
    Please step out of your car sir. Do you mind if I take a quick look?

    Never Talk to the Police

    Prof. Duane explains in these videos why he is proud of the 5th Amendment, and will never, ever talk to the police without a lawyer. You shouldn’t either. Don’t take his word for it; he cites the advice of Nuremberg Trial Chief Prosecutor Robert Jackson, and the U.S. Supreme Court. Prof. Duane is animated and interesting. This lecture is an eye-opener.

  10. #10 |  FloO | 

    I’ve seen those vids on You Tube some time ago. Duane explains how our system can and does arrest and ultimately convict innocent people. The fat detective then comes to the podium and says everything he (Prof. Duane) says is right, he’s correct, but obviously doesn’t have any problem with it.

    You won’t ever talk to a cop again after seeing that video.

    We have a local weekend radio show with a former detective, who talks about law enforcement issues. His fake, sing-songy “I’m your buddy” voice makes me ill. I can’t help but think detectives are the most vile people on Earth.

  11. #11 |  Ted S. | 

    @FloO #10:

    You mean police detectives. I wouldn’t mind sitting down and having six martinis with Nick and Nora Charles.

  12. #12 |  JohnJ | 

    That really is an awesome headline.

    Tragic story, though.

  13. #13 |  jmcross | 

    It’s more about fulfilling bureaucratic goal of clearing the case. If they happen to catch the crook, so much the better. But job 1 is keeping the bureaucracy satisfied. If it looks good on paper and follows policy*wink* then asses are covered and you’re one day closer to that sweet retirement check.

  14. #14 |  Anthony | 

    10,000 cops and all you need is your rights

  15. #15 |  Stephen | 

    As in The Count of Monte Cristo.

  16. #16 |  Ann | 

    you folks who are so willing to condemn the cops will be the first ones to call them when someone robs your house or assaults you. If you hate this system so much, either change the system by going into politics yourselves, or leave. Complaining on the internet is nothing more than fake sympathy and even more fake superiority.

  17. #17 |  Boyd Durkin | 

    Isn’t it ironic.

    No, those are coincidences, Alanis!

    Videos: Most ex-cops will tell you to NEVER say a damn thing (which we all know here). Getting arrested if infinitely better than saying anything to a cop. While they are active cops, they toe the line.

  18. #18 |  JonathanStrange | 

    Nothing? Situation: You’re leaving BestBuy with your purchases. As you walk across the parking lot, a police car pulls up and an officer asks “Did you see a tall guy running through here?” Can I even shrug no? Or should I just hold out my hands for the cuffs? I’m not being facetious, I really want to know if we’re talking about literally going mute or just not babbling any info that may be used against us (Like the officer thinking “Hmmm, he fits the general description (i.e., he’s a human being) and he’s talking so …what the hell, I’m arresting him…”)

  19. #19 |  Yizmo Gizmo | 

    “I agree that you should always have a lawyer and not to talk to the cops.”

    You can’t really “Not talk to cops” because by telling them
    you’re not talking to them, or asserting your rights, you end up talking.
    Better advice might be “Look I told you my name, my birthdate,
    my address, my phone number. That’s it. You want anything else,
    you’re gonna have to arrest me and I’ll call a lawyer. End of story.”

  20. #20 |  Blacque Jacques Shellacque | 

    “He now has a mountain of legal bills.”

    Seems to me that it’s the NYPD and the city of New York that should be the ones with the mountain of legal bills.

    Preferably Himalayan-sized, as a deterrent.

  21. #21 |  rdawwwwgy | 

    I hate to be a total jerk here, but as noted above, the only thing that should come out of your mouth when questioned by the police is “I want a lawyer.” Not your name, address, telephone number, what you do for a living, etc. If you are arrested and in the heat of the moment it is extremely difficult to keep your mouth shut.

    Also note that if you do get arrested, you are totally screwed on several fronts. You will have to get a lawyer, which will cost money, you will have to get bailed out from jail (and G$d forbid you get sent to the tombs in Rikers). You will lose time from work. None of this is refundable. Also nothing happens to the cops when they screw up as in this story. Most likely they will be promoted. I got arrested for DV once and tried to keep my mouth shut – the officer convinced me to write out a statement, while writing it out, I asked the officer if there was anything I could do or say that would get me out of jail that night. He said no. I stopped writing the statement and said “I want a lawyer.” That cop spent the next four months interfering with the District Attorney on my case, appearing at all of my pre-trial conferences and having animated conferences with the assistant DA before my hearings. I was eventually found not guilty but the office cost me hundreds of dollars of legal fees and lost work time because I would not accept a plea.

    Another salient point is that the cops really don’t go out of their way to deal with the real “Bad guys” because it is extremely dangerous to do so. They would rather arrest compliant citizens that don’t put up much trouble, aren’t physically capable of defending themselves

  22. #22 |  c andrew | 

    Tell you what Ann,

    When the cops and prosecutors have thoroughly f****d up your life with false charges and bankrupted you trying to force you to take a plea deal for a crime you didn’t commit, then you get back to us, okay?

  23. #23 |  richard40 | 

    The cops goal is to find a suspect, and get enough evidence to convict him. Whether they are actually guilty or not does not matter. I still think some cops are ethical, and really interested in finding truth, but too many are not. The problem is once a cop thinks a suspect is guilty, their goal changes from finding basic facts, to proving that suspect guilty. If facts start turning up that might indicate they should look elsewhere, they are often too stubborn to change their investigative focus.

    I still think it is reasonable to still talk to cops if it is obvious you are not a suspect, and they are just gathering basic facts. But the minute it appears they think you might be a suspect, then its time to get a lawyer, because the cop is no longer interested in hearing proof of innocence from you, he is interested in hearing you say something that could help convict you.

  24. #24 |  It’s Like Arraign on Your Wedding Day « Rob Greenberg | 

    […] shamelessly taken from Radley Balko, but this case of an innocent man turning himself in to police is […]