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Tags "A Wilderness of Error" , "Fatal Vision" , errol morris , Jeffrey MacDonald , Joe MacGinniss , murder cases

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Old 31st May 2013, 04:01 PM   #121
Matthew Best
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Originally Posted by weak kitten View Post
on the other hand just think of all the legal presidents and refinements that came out of this case. I'm sure it will be quite useful as a teaching tool for future lawyers and judges.
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Old 31st May 2013, 04:15 PM   #122
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Quote:
Quote:


I'm afraid to click for fear of horrific images? Is there anything there that will give me nightmares for months?
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Old 31st May 2013, 04:16 PM   #123
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In other news, water is Catholic, or something.
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Old 31st May 2013, 04:20 PM   #124
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Who the heck pays his lawyers? The People?
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Old 31st May 2013, 04:21 PM   #125
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End This Legal Circus

"On the other hand just think of all the legal presidents and refinements that came out of this case. I'm sure it will be quite useful as a teaching tool for future lawyers and judges."

WK: Unfortunately, the only lawyers that have benefitted from the legal machinations in this case are defense lawyers. Take the 4th Circuit's 2011 decision on MacDonald's 8th attempt at relief. From 1970-2010, MacDonald's lawyers seemed to exhaust every legal tactic in the book, but the 4th Circuit threw them a bone by allowing the defense to skip over basic requirements for requesting a new trial. This included gatekeeping requirements, meeting the high burden of proof that is a part of the 2255, and constructing pre-filing authorizations to present "new" evidentiary arguments.

MacDonald's lawyers must have sent candy and flowers to the 4th Circuit Court for wet nursing their client and focusing on a singular aspect (e.g., evidence as a whole) of the 2255. The current panel of 4th Circuit flat-out ignored the 1998 conclusion drawn by the 4th Circuit Court who stated that this case needs to come to an end.

http://www.macdonaldcasefacts.com
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Old 31st May 2013, 04:24 PM   #126
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CSPAN Book TV
A Conversation with Edward Jay Epstein and Errol Morris
Quote:
Edward Jay Epstein; Errol Morris
About the Program
Edward Jay Epstein, author of "The Annals of Unsolved Crime," and Errol Morris, author of "A Wilderness of Error: The Trials of Jeffrey MacDonald," talk about notorious crimes that were never solved or only partially solved. The authors spoke at the Harvard Coop in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

About the Authors
Errol Morris
Errol Morris is the director of several documentaries, including "A Thin Blue Line," "The Fog of War," and "Standard Operating Procedure." He is the author of "Believing is Seeing: Observations on the Mysteries of Photography." For more, visit: errolmorris.com.


Buy the author's book from: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Indiebound
Edward Jay Epstein
Edward Jay Epstein is the author of "Inquest: The Warren Commission and the Establishment of Truth" and "The Big Picture: Money and Power in Hollywood." For more, visit: edwardjayepstein.com.
Re Errol Morris' book, A Wilderness of Error: The Trials of Jeffrey MacDonald
Quote:
Errol Morris has been investigating the MacDonald case for over twenty years. A Wilderness of Error is the culmination of his efforts. It is a shocking book, because it shows us that almost everything we have been told about the case is deeply unreliable, and crucial elements of the case against MacDonald simply are not true. It is a masterful reinvention of the true-crime thriller, a book that pierces the haze of myth surrounding these murders with the sort of brilliant light that can only be produced by years of dogged and careful investigation and hard, lucid thinking.

By this book’s end, we know several things: that there are two very different narratives we can create about what happened at 544 Castle Drive, and that the one that led to the conviction and imprisonment for life of this man for butchering his wife and two young daughters is almost certainly wrong. Along the way Morris poses bracing questions about the nature of proof, criminal justice, and the media, showing us how MacDonald has been condemned, not only to prison, but to the stories that have been created around him.
Haven't read the book, but the CSPAN book TV program was well worth watching. The two gentlemen don't talk fast enough for my taste so pick a time you can stand to watch two knowledgeable old guys who are painfully slow getting to the point, but worth the time after you've spent it.

My interest is not in this case though miscarried justice is something that should concern us all. My interest is in how people can come to be certain of things which are not certain.

From the sounds of the thread comments, people are certain. I've had enough arguing legal cases in this forum at the moment to take on another one right now. But for anyone interested, I recommend at least listening to Morris. You can watch it online.



BTW, this is a redundant thread: Jeffrey MacDonald did it. He really did. And you surely know that JTF since you posted in the other thread that Henri McPhee who disagrees with you is a MacDonald groupie. I do believe starting this thread is a rule violation.

Last edited by Skeptic Ginger; 31st May 2013 at 04:34 PM.
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Old 31st May 2013, 07:48 PM   #127
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It Has Returned

"My interest is not in this case though miscarried justice is something that should concern us all. My interest is in how people can come to be certain of things which are not certain."

SG: I spoke with Morris on the phone for 90 minutes in 2011, and he played the same game with me that he played with others he spoke to about the MacDonald case. Morris stated to anyone who would listen that he had yet to formulate a definitive conclusion about MacDonald's guilt or innocence, but once the book was published, everyone who chatted with him realized he was a b.s. artist. Morris admitted to several interviewers that he has believed in MacDonald's innocence since 1990. As a matter of fact, he wrote an endorsement on the back jacket of a book (e.g., Fatal Justice) that advocated for MacDonald's innocence.

Jay Epstein relies heavily on the data in that book and I pointed out to him via e-mail that the book was filled with assumptions, distortions, half-truths, innuendo, and falsehoods. Not surprisingly, Epstein didn't respond to my e-mail.

"From the sounds of the thread comments, people are certain."

SG: This case is open and shut. Jeffrey MacDonald was convicted of killing his wife and two young daughters due to the mass of inculpatory evidence presented at the 1979 trial.

"I've had enough arguing legal cases in this forum at the moment to take on another one right now. But for anyone interested, I recommend at least listening to Morris. You can watch it online."

SG: To each his own, but Morris is a literary con man and his book is a mess.

"BTW, this is a redundant thread: Jeffrey MacDonald did it. He really did."

SG: I started a new thread on this case after being unable to find the old thread on the MacDonald case. I assumed that the thread was removed, but it appears that my creation of a new thread unearthed the old one.

http://www.macdonaldcasefacts.com

Last edited by JTF; 31st May 2013 at 07:51 PM.
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Old 31st May 2013, 08:23 PM   #128
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Originally Posted by Skeptic Ginger
From the sounds of the thread comments, people are certain. I've had enough arguing legal cases in this forum at the moment to take on another one right now.
Why? Are you well versed in the Macdonald case and positive a miscarriage of justice occurred? Or are you simply in the mood to play devil's advocate? Either way, what would be served by a debate?

Quote:
But for anyone interested, I recommend at least listening to Morris. You can watch it online.
Have you read Fatal Vision? Final Vision? Fatal Justice?

ETA: A note to JTF - it's an exercise in futility.You'll see what I mean.

Last edited by desertgal; 31st May 2013 at 08:31 PM.
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Old 31st May 2013, 08:25 PM   #129
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Originally Posted by JTF View Post
"My interest is not in this case though miscarried justice is something that should concern us all. My interest is in how people can come to be certain of things which are not certain."

SG: I spoke with Morris on the phone for 90 minutes in 2011, and he played the same game with me that he played with others he spoke to about the MacDonald case. Morris stated to anyone who would listen that he had yet to formulate a definitive conclusion about MacDonald's guilt or innocence, but once the book was published, everyone who chatted with him realized he was a b.s. artist. Morris admitted to several interviewers that he has believed in MacDonald's innocence since 1990. As a matter of fact, he wrote an endorsement on the back jacket of a book (e.g., Fatal Justice) that advocated for MacDonald's innocence.

Jay Epstein relies heavily on the data in that book and I pointed out to him via e-mail that the book was filled with assumptions, distortions, half-truths, innuendo, and falsehoods. Not surprisingly, Epstein didn't respond to my e-mail.

"From the sounds of the thread comments, people are certain."

SG: This case is open and shut. Jeffrey MacDonald was convicted of killing his wife and two young daughters due to the mass of inculpatory evidence presented at the 1979 trial.

"I've had enough arguing legal cases in this forum at the moment to take on another one right now. But for anyone interested, I recommend at least listening to Morris. You can watch it online."

SG: To each his own, but Morris is a literary con man and his book is a mess.

"BTW, this is a redundant thread: Jeffrey MacDonald did it. He really did."

SG: I started a new thread on this case after being unable to find the old thread on the MacDonald case. I assumed that the thread was removed, but it appears that my creation of a new thread unearthed the old one.

http://www.macdonaldcasefacts.com
After 49 posts you might want to learn how to use the 'reply with quote' function.

[quote=SG] what I said [/quote]

I found the duplicate thread with a simple search of thread titles for "MacDonald". Also a useful task for any new member to learn how to do. But even simpler was to just go to your "subscribed threads". You appear to be subscribed to only 6 threads.[/url] You'll find "subscribed threads" in the drop down box under "user CP" in the forum menu bar.

As adamant as you are about "knowing the truth" others are equally adamant that they know a different truth.

I did not get the idea Morris was "playing games". I don't know enough about the case to have an opinion on MacDonald's guilt or innocence. I do have an opinion on the too frequent police and prosecutorial incompetence and misconduct. I also have an opinion on the effect of a narrative on people's perception of 'evidence'.

Why should we believe your truth and not Morris' or Henri's? You present your reasons, they present their reasons. At some point you just have to say, the case appears certain to you, but not everyone sees it that way.

The whole world works that way in case you hadn't noticed.

I'm curious, why does this case mean so much to you? And is that your own web page that you've linked to?
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Old 31st May 2013, 08:29 PM   #130
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Originally Posted by desertgal View Post
Why? Are you well versed in the Macdonald case and positive a miscarriage of justice occurred? Or are you simply in the mood to play devil's advocate? Either way, what would be served by a debate?



Have you read Fatal Vision? Final Vision? Fatal Justice?
I'm not versed at all on the case, I know what it was about. I was interested in what Morris had to say about the errors in the case and the effect of the publicity on beliefs after seeing the CSPAN Book TV episode that recently aired.
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Old 31st May 2013, 08:41 PM   #131
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The Salon article from Nov 2012 has a good summary:

Maybe Jeffrey MacDonald was innocent after all

Lynn Parramore has a different take on Errol Morris than JTF's dismissal. It's the "Fatal Vision" author that may be the con man.
Quote:
Morris researched the MacDonald case for 20 years and knows each labyrinthine turn of its progress through the criminal justice system. Even before bureaucratic stalling and federal machinery overtook the search for truth, things were working against Jeffrey MacDonald. A crime scene was left open to bystander traffic. Inexperienced military police failed to pick up a woman near the house who fit MacDonald’s description. Many think this woman could have been Helena Stoeckley, a drug abuser and professed member of a witchcraft cult who repeatedly confessed to having been at the MacDonald house the night of the murders, but recanted her story whenever she seemed to fear prosecution. Now deceased, she remains a pivotal figure in the case.

As I read Morris’ meticulous examination the evidence, the picture in my mind became less clear. I began to see that Joe McGinniss’ creation of Picture No. 1 might be just that: a creation. Some of the “facts” I thought I knew began to look more like ideas conjured by eager prosecutors and a journalist who had dealt so disingenuously with Jeffrey MacDonald in writing ”Fatal Vision” that he was sued after publication. McGinniss’ publisher settled with MacDonald out of court, after the judge called the author a “con man.” (This story, in its own right, became a famous book about journalistic ethics by Janet Malcolm.)
Interesting that you should use the same language, JTF, as the judge used about the "Fatal Vision" author.
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Old 31st May 2013, 08:48 PM   #132
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Originally Posted by Skeptic Ginger View Post
The Salon article from Nov 2012 has a good summary:

Maybe Jeffrey MacDonald was innocent after all

Lynn Parramore has a different take on Errol Morris than JTF's dismissal. It's the "Fatal Vision" author that may be the con man. Interesting that you should use the same language, JTF, as the judge used about the "Fatal Vision" author.
Says SG, who hasn't read any of the books she is discussing. Way to go, SG.

And the Fatal Vision/Final Vision author is Joe McGinniss. If you can call Errol Morris by name, surely you can do the same for the other author.

Last edited by desertgal; 31st May 2013 at 08:51 PM.
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Old 31st May 2013, 10:13 PM   #133
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Originally Posted by desertgal View Post
Says SG, who hasn't read any of the books she is discussing. Way to go, SG.

And the Fatal Vision/Final Vision author is Joe McGinniss. If you can call Errol Morris by name, surely you can do the same for the other author.
Have you seen the CSPAN Book TV 1.5 hour talk by Morris and Epstein about the issue of police following a narrative they started with despite any further evidence before deciding only your own path to the 'facts' is valid?

Do you know what an ad hom argument is?
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Old 31st May 2013, 10:16 PM   #134
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Originally Posted by catsmate1 View Post
Nitpick: I don't see his guilt as being proven beyond any doubt just beyond and reasonable or probable doubt.
There are many unreasonable scenarios that could explain MacDonald's family's deaths without him being responsible, aliens, time travellers, doppelgangers, parallel universe. It's just that none of them are even remotely reasonable and can be ignored.
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Old 31st May 2013, 10:17 PM   #135
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Originally Posted by DragonLady View Post

I'm afraid to click for fear of horrific images? Is there anything there that will give me nightmares for months?
Not on the front page! You have to go digging a bit to get to the really hard to look at stuff.
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Old 31st May 2013, 10:41 PM   #136
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Originally Posted by Skeptic Ginger View Post
Why should we believe your truth and not Morris' or Henri's?
How does a skeptic ever know what to believe in the face of competing claims? One has to delve into the facts.
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Old 31st May 2013, 11:02 PM   #137
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Originally Posted by Charlie Wilkes View Post
How does a skeptic ever know what to believe in the face of competing claims? One has to delve into the facts.
Without looking at the CSPAN episode I linked to, and taking JTF's word for it that Morris is "a con man" is a good example of how not to be a skeptic or critical thinker.

Listen to the first half of it, don't even invest the whole hour and a half, and you'll see the topic is about how confirmation bias affects how we view the evidence. It's not about the evidence in the case, it's about the way prosecutors latch on to a conclusion and pursue it. That is something we should all be very familiar with as critical thinkers, there are so many thousands of examples.

There are ways to delve into the facts. Start with understanding how the faulty human brain misinterprets the evidence.
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Old 31st May 2013, 11:03 PM   #138
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Just The Facts

"After 49 posts you might want to learn how to use the 'reply with quote' function."

SG: I've posted on discussion boards since 2004, and that has been my style from Day One.

"I found the duplicate thread with a simple search of thread titles for "MacDonald"."

SG: A few days ago, there were 5 pages of threads on the Social Issues topic, but this thread was gone.

"Also a useful task for any new member to learn how to do. But even simpler was to just go to your "subscribed threads". You appear to be subscribed to only 6 threads.[/url] You'll find "subscribed threads" in the drop down box under "user CP" in the forum menu bar."

SG: Thanks.

"As adamant as you are about "knowing the truth" others are equally adamant that they know a different truth."

SG: Different truth, eh? Nonsense. Morris is simply blathering away about perception in order to gloss over the facts of this case.

"I did not get the idea Morris was "playing games"."

SG: In regards to this case, Morris is the ultimate game player. Judging by the FACT that he avoids 90 percent of the government's case in his book, he is also a coward. He chides Joe McGinniss for misleading MacDonald about the conclusions drawn in Fatal Vision, yet Morris flat-out lied to me and everyone he spoke to about this case in regards to his stance on MacDonald's guilt or innocence. So, Morris is a con man, a coward, and a hypocrite.

"I do have an opinion on the too frequent police and prosecutorial incompetence and misconduct. I also have an opinion on the effect of a narrative on people's perception of 'evidence'."

SG: The prosecution presented over 1,100 evidentiary items at the 1979 trial and that was only about 60 percent of their case file. This included blood, hair, fiber, bloody footprint, fabric damage, and bloody fabric impression evidence. The AFIP's DNA test results produced 5 inculpatory results. Not one hair, fiber, or fingerprint has been sourced to a known intruder suspect. Not one. Morris, however, is so arrogant that he flat-out ignores all of that in favor of a gut feeling. Morris isn't big on critical thinking.

"Why should we believe your truth and not Morris' or Henri's?"

SG: Morris is an attention-seeker with an agenda whereas Henri is a MacDonald groupie. Henri has been posting for years on MacDonald case discussion boards and his information is culled directly from MacDonald camp propaganda. My truth is the same truth embraced by the CID, FBI, DOJ, and anyone who has taken the time to read the documented record in this case.

"I'm curious, why does this case mean so much to you? And is that your own web page that you've linked to?"

SG: That is my website. The About Me icon located on my Home Page provides the reasons why I started the website and why this case interests me. I've researched this case for the past 28 years, had conversations with several people involved in this case, and have accumulated a mass of case material (e.g., written correspondence, lab notes, court records, books, and DVD's).

http://www.macdonaldcasefacts.com

Last edited by JTF; 31st May 2013 at 11:06 PM.
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Old 31st May 2013, 11:19 PM   #139
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Fact VS. Feeling

"There are ways to delve into the facts. Start with understanding the faulty human brain."

SG: The problem is that Morris doesn't delve into the facts of this case. As I stated in a prior post, Morris IGNORES 90 percent of the government's case at the 1979 trial. Considering that this case presentation resulted in a conviction in less than 7 hours, Morris' faulty human brain gibberish is worthless when compared to the mass of evidence that led to MacDonald spending 32 of the past 34 years in prison.

Ironically, Morris fails miserably in rebutting the 10 percent of the government's case that he does include in his mess of a book. For example, he spends an entire chapter debating the merits of the Pajama Top Theory, yet he doesn't understand the concept that you cannot force a pattern to exist. The following link describes the evidentiary value of the Pajama Top Theory.

http://www.macdonaldcasefacts.com/ht...op_theory.html
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Old 31st May 2013, 11:38 PM   #140
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Originally Posted by Skeptic Ginger View Post
Without looking at the CSPAN episode I linked to, and taking JTF's word for it that Morris is "a con man" is a good example of how not to be a skeptic or critical thinker.

Listen to the first half of it, don't even invest the whole hour and a half, and you'll see the topic is about how confirmation bias affects how we view the evidence. It's not about the evidence in the case, it's about the way prosecutors latch on to a conclusion and pursue it. That is something we should all be very familiar with as critical thinkers, there are so many thousands of examples.

There are ways to delve into the facts. Start with understanding how the faulty human brain misinterprets the evidence.
I understand that this is a huge problem. I spent years supporting Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito. I saw what was happening early on, because I was familiar with other cases that bear many striking similarities. It's a particular interest of mine.

In MacDonald's case, the police made many classic mistakes. They ran roughshod over the crime scene. They failed to investigate alternative suspects thoroughly once they decided MacDonald was guilty. But police errors do not necessarily mean a suspect is innocent. It is important to look at the facts of the case as well as how the investigation was handled.
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Old 31st May 2013, 11:44 PM   #141
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Lets start by fixing your post so I can read it more easily since you don't seem to want to yourself.

Oh look, you can even do it with the menu bar.
Originally Posted by JTF View Post
Originally Posted by SG
"After 49 posts you might want to learn how to use the 'reply with quote' function."
SG: I've posted on discussion boards since 2004, and that has been my style from Day One.
So you post your way and the rest of us can just figure it out. Nice.

Originally Posted by JTF View Post
Originally Posted by SG
"I found the duplicate thread with a simple search of thread titles for "MacDonald"."
SG: A few days ago, there were 5 pages of threads on the Social Issues topic, but this thread was gone.
The thread was gone and now it's back? That's your claim? Hard to believe.

Originally Posted by JTF View Post
Originally Posted by SG
"Also a useful task for any new member to learn how to do. But even simpler was to just go to your "subscribed threads". You appear to be subscribed to only 6 threads.[/url] You'll find "subscribed threads" in the drop down box under "user CP" in the forum menu bar."
SG: Thanks.
You're welcome.

Originally Posted by JTF View Post
Originally Posted by SG
"As adamant as you are about "knowing the truth" others are equally adamant that they know a different truth."
SG: Different truth, eh? Nonsense. Morris is simply blathering away about perception in order to gloss over the facts of this case.
So say you. I don't get that impression at all.

Originally Posted by JTF View Post
Originally Posted by SG
"I did not get the idea Morris was "playing games"."
SG: In regards to this case, Morris is the ultimate game player. Judging by the FACT that he avoids 90 percent of the government's case in his book, he is also a coward. He chides Joe McGinniss for misleading MacDonald about the conclusions drawn in Fatal Vision, yet Morris flat-out lied to me and everyone he spoke to about this case in regards to his stance on MacDonald's guilt or innocence. So, Morris is a con man, a coward, and a hypocrite.
So say you again. Critics don't agree. I didn't hear any of that from the Book TV program.

Originally Posted by JTF View Post
Originally Posted by SG
"I do have an opinion on the too frequent police and prosecutorial incompetence and misconduct. I also have an opinion on the effect of a narrative on people's perception of 'evidence'."
SG: The prosecution presented over 1,100 evidentiary items at the 1979 trial and that was only about 60 percent of their case file. This included blood, hair, fiber, bloody footprint, fabric damage, and bloody fabric impression evidence. The AFIP's DNA test results produced 5 inculpatory results. Not one hair, fiber, or fingerprint has been sourced to a known intruder suspect. Not one. Morris, however, is so arrogant that he flat-out ignores all of that in favor of a gut feeling. Morris isn't big on critical thinking.
Definitely not what Morris has to say on the matter. But at least here's something that can be addressed. See where I addressed this below to make it more clear, that is the actual discussion of the case.

Originally Posted by JTF View Post
Originally Posted by SG
"Why should we believe your truth and not Morris' or Henri's?"
SG: Morris is an attention-seeker with an agenda whereas Henri is a MacDonald groupie. Henri has been posting for years on MacDonald case discussion boards and his information is culled directly from MacDonald camp propaganda. My truth is the same truth embraced by the CID, FBI, DOJ, and anyone who has taken the time to read the documented record in this case.
Sounds to me like you are an anti-MacDonald groupie yourself. How should I deal with that?

Originally Posted by JTF View Post
Originally Posted by SG
"I'm curious, why does this case mean so much to you? And is that your own web page that you've linked to?"
SG: That is my website. I state on my Home Page the reasons why I started the website and why this case interests me. I've researched this case for the past 28 years, had conversations with several people involved in this case, and have accumulated a mass of case material (e.g., written correspondence, lab notes, court records, books, and DVD's).

http://www.macdonaldcasefacts.com
Fascinating. Where's your book?


I don't know anything about this case except the basics and Morris' book discussion. But right away I find the issue of suppressed evidence is clearly controversial and contradicts your claim no such evidence exists.
Quote:
Suppressed Physical Evidence Indicating That Someone Else, Not Dr. MacDonald, Murdered His Family

Although the Army's hearing officer cleared MacDonald, he was later brought to trial in the civilian courts. During that trial, prosecutor Brian Murtagh assured the jurors that nothing was found at the murder scene to support MacDonald's story of intruders. When the defense attorneys asked to see the withheld laboratory notes, so that they could determine for themselves if any corroborating evidence existed, the prosecutor untruthfully insisted that the documents held nothing that supported MacDonald's claims. Upon this promise, the judge then refused to force Murtagh to turn over the documents.

As shown below, those documents, later released through the Freedom of Information Act, contradict the prosecutor's statements. They demonstrate that the Army deliberately suppressed a great deal of evidence that indicated the presence of intruders in the house.

Suppressed Evidence on the Body of Colette MacDonald

Human skin under Colette's fingernail, left hand, was lost. ...

Unmatched black wool fibers were found on Colette's mouth and shoulder and the murder club.. These were not reported. The government tried to source the black wool to garments in the MacDonald home but could not. At trial, the presence of black wool fibers on the murder club was kept from the jury. These fibers were also important because Stoeckley was known to have affected a wardrobe of black clothing.(CID Lab Note, March 6, 1970; FBI Lab Notes)
A 2 inch long pubic hair between Colette's legs, not belonging to Jeff MacDonald or any known source, was identified via DNA tests.
A blue acrylic fiber found in Colette's right hand could not be sourced to the fabrics and clothing in the MacDonald home. Another blue acrylic fiber was found where Jeffrey MacDonald said he lay unconscious. ...

Suppressed Evidence on the Bodies of Kimberley and Kristen

A brown hair, with root intact, was found under Kimberley's bloody fingernail. This hair was found not be Jeffrey MacDonald's. It remains a foreign hair in the hand of a murder victim, and was unreported. ...
A bloody hair, root intact, under the nail of 2 year old Kristen was not presented at trial and only disclosed via DNA testing- it remains unsourced. ...

Additional Suppressed Evidence

Blonde, synthetic wig hairs, 22 inches in length, were found in a clear-handled hair brush on a table near the living room where MacDonald said he saw the blonde female and near the phone, which Helena Stoeckley said she answered. These wig hairs would have been critical to MacDonald's defense. Army investigator William Ivory knew Helena Stoeckley wore a blonde wig, which matched the descriptions given by MacDonald and MP Kenneth Mica, but didn't reveal the presence of these long blonde wig hairs at the crime scene. ...

A bloody, adult palm print was found on the footboard of the master bed on the morning of the murders, near Colette MacDonald's body. The print did not match palm prints of either Jeffrey or Colette MacDonald, nor could it be matched to palm prints from persons known to have been at the crime scene that morning. Despite extensive efforts by the FBI, the source of this bloody palm print remains unidentified. ...
Corroborated here in a MacDonald-is-guilty site:
Quote:
As expected, there remain hairs with DNA sequences that do not match any of the victims, Jeffrey MacDonald, or any now-deceased “hippies.” However, any residence such as the MacDonald apartment would be expected to contain hairs from persons other than the four people who lived there. Evidence presented to the jury in the 1979 trial included numerous unmatched fingerprints, hairs, fibers, and candle wax remains.
Despite his portrayal in "Fatal Vision," a new book contends he was wrongly convicted of murdering his wife and children
Quote:
In all, Bost and Potter describe in detail 21 items of physical evidence never presented in MacDonald's defense that clearly point to the presence of others. Among them: a bloody syringe and an unidentified piece of skin under Colette's fingernail that was extensively tested and subsequently disappeared when it did not match MacDonald's.
So, with 28 years following the case, whose bloody palm print was that?
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Old 31st May 2013, 11:47 PM   #142
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Originally Posted by Charlie Wilkes View Post
....But police errors do not necessarily mean a suspect is innocent. It is important to look at the facts of the case as well as how the investigation was handled.
I am definitely not saying police errors mean the suspect was innocent. I don't claim to know about this case, other than the basics and Morris' talk about his book.

But it wasn't hard to find evidence reported that does not fit the scenario MacDonald was convicted on.
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Old 1st June 2013, 12:02 AM   #143
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Myths

"In MacDonald's case, the police made many classic mistakes. They ran roughshod over the crime scene. They failed to investigate alternative suspects thoroughly once they decided MacDonald was guilty."

CHARLIE: The CID didn't run roughshod over the crime scene. That is a myth created by the MacDonald camp.

The potential suspects in this case were investigated thoroughly. How thorough were the CID and FBI? Here you go.

http://www.macdonaldcasefacts.com/html/suspects.html

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Old 1st June 2013, 12:28 AM   #144
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Open And Shut

SG: For someone who knows next to nothing about this case, you certainly feel comfortable cuddling up to MacDonald camp propaganda. There is a reason why MacDonald has spent 32 of the past 34 years in prison. The CID, FBI, DOJ, Joe McGinniss, Robert Sam Anson, Gene Weingarten, and many others certainly don't have the critical thinking skills of Book Forum critics, but they don't ignore the SOURCED evidence in this case. Hate to break it to the Book Forum critics, but ALL of the SOURCED evidence in this case points to Jeffrey MacDonald as the lone perp.

In terms of taking the suppressed evidence claims at face value, the problem is that the appellate courts ruled that the government didn't suppress evidence in this case. Almost everything in your post contains issues that have been previously litigated and the defense has lost every single time. This is what the MacDonald camp does. They continue to put forth claims that have been debunked by the government and have been shot down by the appellate courts. Morris and his fellow camp members seem to feel that if you repeat something enough times, it will magically gain credibility.

In terms of the defense claims, well...

http://www.macdonaldcasefacts.com/ht...se_claims.html

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Old 1st June 2013, 12:34 AM   #145
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Originally Posted by Skeptic Ginger View Post
...The whole world works that way in case you hadn't noticed...
Well, one might not notice if *their* whole world revolves around the Macdonald case. Jeffrey Macdonald is quite a charismatic figure. So we can't be surprised he generates both obsessed groupies like Henri, as well as fanatical haters like JTF who are jealous of the enduring interest he attracts. This sort of case seems to fill a void for a certain sort of person who otherwise have no real connection to the people who's lives were directly affected by it.

And you couldn't be more right about there being some tangible level of uncertainty in this case. Not that this particular fact is any longer within the grasp of those who need the truth to be whatever it is they need it to be.
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Old 1st June 2013, 12:48 AM   #146
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I Heard That MacDonald Is A Top Notch Toilet Cleaner

"So we can't be surprised he generates both obsessed groupies like Henri, as well as fanatical haters like JTF who are jealous of the enduring interest he attracts."

LANE: Methinks you have a crush on the Ice Pick Baby Killer.

"This sort of case seems to fill a void for a certain sort of person who otherwise have no real connection to the people who's lives were directly affected by it."

LANE: The only void is in your armchair psychoanalysis. My life is very full, but I do derive enjoyment from responding to those who post half-truths, assumptions, innuendo, and b.s. about this case.

"And you couldn't be more right about there being some tangible level of uncertainty in this case."

LANE: Really? Jeez, I thought the Randi forum prided itself on members who adhere to critical thought? Let me guess, a big fan of conspiracies? It's important to note that MacDonald advocates believe that the CID and FBI conspired to railroad the former Golden Boy.

"Not that this particular fact is any longer within the grasp of those who need the truth to be whatever it is they need it to be."

LANE: Whatever they need it to be? Listen, Carl Rogers, the truth is simple in this case. Jeffrey MacDonald murdered his pregnant wife and two young daughters. The evidence of his guilt is overwhelmming. He is a coward, a serial liar, and a psychopath.

http://www.macdonaldcasefacts.com
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Old 1st June 2013, 01:00 AM   #147
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Originally Posted by Skeptic Ginger View Post
I am definitely not saying police errors mean the suspect was innocent. I don't claim to know about this case, other than the basics and Morris' talk about his book.

But it wasn't hard to find evidence reported that does not fit the scenario MacDonald was convicted on.
What evidence are you referring to? Perhaps I can shed some light.
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Old 1st June 2013, 01:30 AM   #148
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You got that right. Or did you?

Originally Posted by JTF View Post
...Gene Weingarten...don't have the critical thinking skills of Book Forum critics...
Forgive me if I detect some sarcasm there, and you are, in fact, actually endorsing his "critical thinking skills".

Well, Gene Weingarten has said he immediately *knew* Macdonald was guilty as soon as he heard Macdonald give his version of what happened.

How? Macdonald claimed the alleged intruders were "hippies" and were heard to say "acid is groovy". From this, Weingarten, being the omnipotent linguist that he apparently understood himself to be, just *knew* that no self-respecting hippie would have used the word "groovy" at that time. And therefore Macdonald must be lying. And therefore must be guilty of murder.

I would hope I don't need to explain to anyone how unsatisfactory this kind of "critical thinking" and/or "reasoning" is. And how suspect the conclusions of those practising, or endorsing it, are.
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Old 1st June 2013, 01:42 AM   #149
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Timeline

Speaking of scenarios, the biggest problem facing those who advocate for MacDonald is using the evidence collected at the crime scene to create a murder timeline involving SIX hippie home invaders. The Army had no problem creating a timeline at the Article 32 hearings, Paul Stombaugh had no problem creating a timeline at the Grand Jury hearings, and the DOJ has had no problem creating a timeline.

I first posed the challenge to MacDonald advocates to create a timeline in 2005, but after 8 years, no takers. I can empathize because I attempted to do so in 2006, and failed miserably. It was a classic case of one step forward, two steps back. The evidence simply doesn't back his ridiculous home invader tale.

Creating a timeline that demonstrates his undeniable guilt, however, is easy pickins.

http://www.macdonaldcasefacts.com/html/timeline.html
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Old 1st June 2013, 02:07 AM   #150
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Mythical Tale

"Forgive me if I detect some sarcasm there, and you are, in fact, actually endorsing his "critical thinking skills"."

LANE: Yeah, my Irish sarcasm came rushing out in that sentence. I'm of the opinion that CID investigators, FBI investigators, DOJ lawyers, Joe McGinniss, Robert Sam Anson, and Gene Weingarten have relied on their critical thinking skills to come to the only salient conclusion in this case.

"Well, Gene Weingarten has said he immediately *knew* Macdonald was guilty as soon as he heard Macdonald give his version of what happened."

LANE: In fairness to Gene, my father actually watched MacDonald's appearance on the Dick Cavett show and he immediately "knew" that MacDonald was guilty. My father was a highly intelligent individual who didn't believe MacDonald's story when he first heard it during a news segment with Walter Cronkite. MacDonald's awful performance on the Cavett show was icing on the cake. Back in 1994, I was discussing the case with my father and he stated, "There is no way that a band of drug crazed intruders would slaughter a pregnant woman and two children, and leave him alive. No way."

"How? Macdonald claimed the alleged intruders were "hippies" and were heard to say "acid is groovy". From this, Weingarten, being the omnipotent linguist that he apparently understood himself to be",

LANE: Did you read Weingarten's article on Brian Murtagh? That was one of the best articles ever written on the MacDonald case and Gene did a follow up Live Chat on his Washington Post blog. In that chat, Gene demonstrated more knowledge about this case than Errol Morris ever has or ever will.

"I would hope I don't need to explain to anyone how unsatisfactory this kind of "critical thinking" and/or "reasoning" is."

LANE: I'm curious, do you find MacDonald's home invader tale to be reasonable? Remember what we're talking about here. A pregnant woman and two small children are overkilled. The focus of this home invasion, however, receives only ONE severe stab wound and his vital signs are normal upon his arrival at the Womack ER. Ten people in a cramped apartment, yet the only SOURCED evidentiary items point to Jeffrey MacDonald as the perp. In addition, neighbors living in the same building only hear a thud, Colette's raised voice, and Jeffrey MacDonald either laughing or crying. What does your critical thinking skills tell you about that story?

http://www.macdonaldcasefacts.com

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Old 1st June 2013, 06:19 AM   #151
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Originally Posted by Skeptic Ginger View Post
Have you seen the CSPAN Book TV 1.5 hour talk by Morris and Epstein about the issue of police following a narrative they started with despite any further evidence before deciding only your own path to the 'facts' is valid?
So...watching a 1.5 hour talk is a just as valid path to the facts of the Macdonald as reading Fatal Vision, Final Vision, Fatal Justice, and A Wilderness of Error?

M-kay.

Quote:
Do you know what an ad hom argument is?
Yes.

Now, I'm simply going to sit back and watch you make an ass of yourself.

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Old 1st June 2013, 09:35 AM   #152
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Originally Posted by JTF View Post
"In MacDonald's case, the police made many classic mistakes. They ran roughshod over the crime scene. They failed to investigate alternative suspects thoroughly once they decided MacDonald was guilty."

CHARLIE: The CID didn't run roughshod over the crime scene. That is a myth created by the MacDonald camp.

The potential suspects in this case were investigated thoroughly. How thorough were the CID and FBI? Here you go.

http://www.macdonaldcasefacts.com/html/suspects.html
My source on this is Fatal Vision, not the "MacDonald camp." I hope the mods will indulge me in quoting at length from this book, in which McGinniss describes the 1970 Army proceedings, because it is important to the discussion and it's not something I can link.

Quote:
Behind the closed doors, Bernie Segal was discovering— to his amazement and to his client’s delight— just how confused, disorganized, and riddled with procedural error the Army’s case against MacDonald really was. Segal’s vigorous and exhaustive cross-examination of prosecution witnesses unearthed a series of investigative blunders far more extensive and significant than he would have ever dared hope.

From the earliest moments at the crime scene, when the military police sergeant had picked up the dangling telephone, to the later laboratory ineptitude which had resulted in the loss of the blue fiber from beneath Kristen’s fingernail and the piece of skin from beneath the fingernail of Colette, the Army had been, as Franz Joseph Grebner had known since February, grossly incompetent.

It turned out, for example, that the flowerpot whose upright position had so aroused Grebner’s suspicions had actually been set aright by an ambulance driver who had ignored all instructions to leave the crime scene untouched. The same driver, according to the testimony of a military policeman who had observed him, had managed to steal Jeffrey MacDonald’s wallet from a desk— all while the crime scene supposedly was being preserved.

The doctor who had been called to 544 Castle Drive to pronounce death testified that he had rolled Colette MacDonald onto her side in order to check for wounds in her back, and that in so doing he had removed the blue pajama top from her chest. He said he did not remember where he had placed it, but would not rule out the possibility that fibers from it might have fallen within the body outline on the floor.

The pathologists who had performed the autopsies had neglected to take either fingerprints or hair samples from the bodies, and, when a laboratory technician was later dispatched to the funeral home for the purpose of obtaining fingerprints, he found Kimberly and Kristen, already embalmed, “looking like two little angels lying there,” and he could not bring himself to disturb them further. Thus, the children’s fingerprints were never obtained, leaving many more “unidentified” fingerprints on the premises than might otherwise have been the case.

The CID had not realized that hair samples were lacking until after the bodies were buried. For “known hair samples” to match against the blond hair found in the palm of Colette’s hand, the CID chemist was forced to rely upon hairs taken from her coat collar, not from her head. The efficacy of this procedure was severely undermined when it was determined— much to the prosecution’s chagrin— that a “known hair sample” obtained from a sweatshirt of Jeffrey MacDonald turned out to be not his hair at all, but a strand of hair from his pony.

Each day’s testimony— even during the prosecution’s portion of the case— seemed to produce less evidence linking MacDonald to the crimes than it did new examples of CID bungling. The discarded pajama bottoms, the emptied garbage, the flushed toilets, the destroyed footprint which, superficially at least, had appeared to match a test print taken of the left foot of Jeffrey MacDonald— the string of errors would have been highly comical had their consequences not been so serious.

Segal learned, for example, that following Ron Harrison’s February 19 press conference, investigators and technicians alike had rushed to read the Esquire magazine found in the MacDonald living room. By the time the blood smear across the top of the pages was finally noticed and the magazine dusted for fingerprints, the only ones found were those of CID personnel and military policemen.

Back at Fort Gordon, when the fingerprint technician developed the film on which he had photographed prints found inside the apartment, he discovered that more than fifty of the pictures were so blurred as to be useless. Perhaps, he theorized, trucks passing by or firing from a nearby artillery range had caused his camera to vibrate. Whatever the cause, when he returned to 544 Castle Drive to rephotograph the prints in question, he found that moisture had penetrated the protective tape he had placed over them and that more than forty had been obliterated and would thus remain forever unidentified— markedly decreasing the certainty with which the prosecution could claim that there was no evidence of intruders inside 544 Castle Drive.

As the toll of blunders mounted, Bernie Segal suggested ever more pointedly to the hearing officer, Colonel Rock, that irreparable damage had obviously been done to the crime scene and that this damage had rendered useless— indeed, had thrust into the realm of wild conjecture— any inferences which might otherwise have been drawn from the so-called physical evidence.
In his account of the hearing, McGinniss also summarizes the testimony of Army detective William Ivory, which revealed that his investigation of Helen Stoeckley was perfunctory and less than professional.

The investigative errors in this case are significant. They created a fog of uncertainty that allowed MacDonald to evade justice in 1970, and they have provided ample grounds for him and his supporters to manipulate the public ever since.
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Old 1st June 2013, 06:47 PM   #153
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Balancing Fact And Fiction

"In his account of the hearing, McGinniss also summarizes the testimony of Army detective William Ivory, which revealed that his investigation of Helen Stoeckley was perfunctory and less than professional."

CHARLIE: I admire McGinniss for presenting this case in a balanced manner and I believe that Fatal Vision is the greatest true crime book ever written. Having said that, Joe is not perfect, and he made some mistakes in regards to the errors made by the CID in their original investigation. For example, he states that over 40 fingerprints were accidentally destroyed by Hilyard Medlin, but the documented record says otherwise. The fact is that 17-20 prints of value were accidentally destroyed due to a number of factors.

A little shout out for William Ivory. Despite all the crap thrown his way by the MacDonald camp, Ivory was an outstanding investigator whose sterling career resulted in Ivory being inducted into the CID Hall of Fame in 2007. Ivory was as professional as ever when testifying at the 2012 evidentiary hearing.

In terms of the investigation of potential intruder suspects, my link clearly demonstrates that ALL of the suspects in this case were thoroughly investigated by the CID, FBI, and by Fayetteville Reporters Pat Reese and Steve Huettel. There is no high profile murder case in history where potential suspects were more thoroughly investigated than the New York Four and the Stoeckley Seven.

"The investigative errors in this case are significant."

CHARLIE: True, but to be fair, circumstances made some of those mistakes unavoidable. It's important to note that MP's were responding to what they thought was a domestic situation. Once they entered the apartment, their priority wasn't crime scene preservation, but the preservation of life.

"They created a fog of uncertainty that allowed MacDonald to evade justice in 1970, and they have provided ample grounds for him and his supporters to manipulate the public ever since."

CHARLIE: Nobody can manipulate the uninformed quite like the MacDonald camp. IMO, the fog of uncertainty has more to do with the household debris found at the crime scene and Stoeckley's numerous confessions than the mistakes made in the original CID investigation.

http://www.macdonaldcasefacts.com
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Old 1st June 2013, 07:53 PM   #154
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Who's CHARLIE?
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Old 1st June 2013, 09:03 PM   #155
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Originally Posted by desertgal View Post
So...watching a 1.5 hour talk is a just as valid path to the facts of the Macdonald as reading Fatal Vision, Final Vision, Fatal Justice, and A Wilderness of Error?
My comments are about the things Morris discussed in his book, false beliefs and how the prosecutors and the public are influenced by certain narratives.

So yes, I have commented after watching the author discuss his work and haven't read the book itself.

Apparently you think somewhere I've posted that I know all the details of the MacDonald case and have come to a conclusion which you don't agree with about his guilt or innocence.

That's interesting since I have no such opinion and have not posted that I have.

I did post that the case is not as clear cut as is being claimed and I cited specific evidence that clouded the case. Of course after quoting very specific evidentiary issues, KatieG asked me to cite the very thing I had just cited.



Originally Posted by desertgal View Post
Yes....
If you know what an ad hom argument is, then you must know that is the argument you are using.
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Old 1st June 2013, 09:47 PM   #156
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Further Proof Of Guilt

"I did post that the case is not as clear cut as is being claimed and I cited specific evidence that clouded the case. Of course after quoting very specific evidentiary issues"

SG: Speaking of those evidentiary issues, did you get a chance to read the link I provided to you? If not, it is important to point out that with the exception of the Britt/DNA claims, ALL of those evidentiary issues have been addressed by the appellate courts. The appellate courts have stated that this evidence is "specious" and "lacks merit." So, from a legal standpoint, one could argue that no such cloud exists in this case.

The Britt/DNA claims were covered at the September evidentiary hearing and the government proved beyond all doubt that the exculpatory arguments put forth by the defense are worthless. The following is a link to the closing arguments at that hearing. You'll quickly notice how thorough the government was in proving that Britt was a serial liar and that the DNA test results are further proof of MacDonald's guilt.

http://www.crimearchives.net/1979_ma...ed_closing.pdf

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Old 1st June 2013, 10:11 PM   #157
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Old 2nd June 2013, 04:16 AM   #158
desertgal
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Originally Posted by Skeptic Ginger View Post
Apparently you think somewhere I've posted that I know all the details of the MacDonald case and have come to a conclusion which you don't agree with about his guilt or innocence.
No. As always, you take what people say and twist it into something it isn't. It's dishonest and tiresome. I'm out.

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Old 2nd June 2013, 04:26 AM   #159
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And here we have someone who refuses to use the quote function because he's "always" done it his own way. Charles Norrie was banned for that (well, for getting abusive with the mods when they tried to get him to see the error of his ways, anyway).

I'm out too.

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Old 2nd June 2013, 12:36 PM   #160
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No useful opinion, anyway.
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