A blog by Miami Criminal Defense Lawyer Brian Tannebaum. Commenting on criminal law issues of local and national interest.

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Another Innocent Guy Gets Released And Disturbs Our "Everyone's Guilty" Theory

CNN.com reports here that a man who spent 19 years in prison was released after it was discovered that he was framed.

The detective who put Barry Gibbs behind bars was arrested himself on charges that in his spare time, he was a mob hit man.

A judge threw out the 1988 murder conviction and released Barry Gibbs based on new evidence that the same detective coerced a witness into identifying him as the killer.

The now arrested detective located a witness who testified he had seen Gibbs dump the body of the strangled victim near a bridge.

He hadn't. It was a lie. But Gibbs was convicted.

Under questioning by the FBI, the witness recanted, claiming the detective bribed and intimidated him into identifying Gibbs.

The Brooklyn district attorney's office sought Gibbs' release after it determined the witness' trial testimony was "suspect," which is a nice legal word to use when you're about to be sued that is interpreted to mean "lied."

A jury convicted this man.

He was innocent.

But who cares? Everybody's guilty, everybody.