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Balanced Fare: We Report, You Deride

Tuesday, October 08, 2002

Does Anyone Remember This?

Remember the three people jailed for killing a baby that may have never existed? Down in Alabama? Bob Herbert of the NY Times wrote about it over the summer, and, we learn from this story, NBC Dateline had a story about a month ago. Well, there is good news for the accused, as shown here.

if I could get into my archives, I expect I would find a post in which I wondered whether Bob Herbert had presented us with all the material information. It seemed to be such a bizzare, unmotivated prosecution that I wondered what he might have left out. For example, Herbert had, I recall, left out the potentially inflammatory fact that one of the three had also been convicted as an accessory in the abuse of a minor. That is the "unrelated charge" referred to in this story.

Well, I may never know what I wrote, or whether there really is more to this. The closest I found to a story speculating about the prosecutor's motive was this BBC piece. Bob Herbert pretty much left it to his readers to assume that law-folk in Alabama are racist and stupid. Maybe he is right in this case.

Anyway, this result looks like mixed news - Medell Banks can withdraw his guilty plea, but the local prosecutor is eager for a new trial, for reasons which still elude us. Unless, of course, he really believes a murder took place. Anyway, a triumph for Bob Herbert and concerned citizens everywhere. Which I think included me.

UPDATE: Yes, I have tucked a new motto under the optimistically-named "Archive" link.

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