I will make another point that needs to be made. The ONLY way that the prosecution can present a criminal case in court is to suborn perjury. There is no other way to get it done, and I will say up front that whoever is the ADA bringing the case (and Chris Arnt and Len Gregor no longer want to be associated with this ugly baby they brought into the world), he needs to get rid of it. Should he actually bring it to trial and suborn perjury, I can guarantee that he will have to answer to a complaint that will be turned into the Georgia State Bar.
This case already has badly damaged or perhaps ruined the legal careers of Arnt and Gregor and has made the LMJC a legal laughingstock. No use to engage in complete scorched earth policy, folks. The sooner people in this district put the Tonya Craft case behind them, the better off they will be, and the first step is to drop the charges against Mr. Echols.
Long before the representatives of the Children's Advocacy Center tried to frame Tonya Craft, they managed to do the same with Brad Wade. Unfortunately, the frame worked, and Stacy Long was successful in convincing a jury that Mr. Wade was a child molester, and he is serving time in prison for something that clearly he did not do.
First, if you want to understand firsthand what happened to Mr. Wade, please read the blog that his sister, Angie Granger, has created. Ms. Granger is a real saint, a very lovely person whom I have had the honor of getting to know throughout Tonya Craft's trial and the aftermath. Would be that every man had a sister like this.
Second, the evidence against Mr. Wade was every bit as specious and contradictory as the evidence against Ms. Craft, but the difference was that Ms. Craft had good counsel. The more I read about Mr. Wade's trial, the more I realize just what a difference a good attorney really makes, especially if the client is innocent.
In Mr. Wade's case, we see the information being put together, but it is being put together for an appeal of the conviction, not while the original trial is taking place. For this phase, Mr. Wade's defense has the services of Amy H. Morton, who is well-credentialed in her field and who is utterly critical of Long's interviewing techniques, which are dishonest and manipulative.
Ms. Morton's affidavit notes that children are especially susceptible to biased interviewing techniques, and she goes through a very detailed explanation of why it is important that interviews with children be done according to certain protocols and procedures. As one can surmise, these protocols and procedures completely were missing from what Long and others and the CAC have done.
I must admit that does not surprise me. In my own conversations with CAC people, I get the sense that these people believe that because they "help children," anyone who would question their methods is the Very Spawn of Satan. Their arrogance knows no bounds, and in a recent conversation I had with someone from the CAC, that person even insinuated that Dr. Nancy Aldridge, one of the most respected authorities in the country on interviewing children suspected of being sexually abused, is nothing but a cheap liar. Even though no one at the CAC keeps abreast of the academic and professional literature pertaining to their live of work, nonetheless they have the view of themselves that they are above the fray, and that to question anything they do is to question God Himself.
As I read through Ms. Morton's affidavit, I am struck that she gets it. Here is someone who understands interviewing techniques, and demonstrates that understanding. Thus, her criticism needs to be taken seriously.
In her criticism of Long's interview with one of the accusers, Ms. Morton writes that the interview with one of the children is:
...is riddled with errors and improper technique and represents a missed opportunity to discover whether or not (child's) allegations were influenced by anything other than his own experience. As a result, the reliability of (child's) statements may have been negatively impacted by improper forensic technique.As an academic, I can say that while the layperson might look on this as ambivalent, in reality, this is very harsh language. (We are not permitted to say something like, "Whoever interviewed this kid is a total idiot, and should be cleaning toilets instead of engaging in forensic interviews." People like Ms. Morton might LIKE to be able to say something like that, but court documents do not permit such strongly-worded statements.)
Ms. Morton points out that the interviews were biased from the start, and that Long engaged in "leading questions," along with "repeated questioning" and a "confirmatory bias," which is a bias in which the interviewer has pre-conceived outcomes. Furthermore, Long failed to deal with "coaching" and "third-party influence."
Moreover, Ms. Morton found evidence that the actions of the accusing children did not square with what they were alleging in their interviews with Long, all of which Ms. Morton writes "makes reliability a significant concern in this case." This is the professional's way of declaring that there were red flags all over the place.
Of course, Long is not a serious interviewer. The entire process was done to offer Wade up to the prosecution, and Len Gregor (who prosecuted this case) and "judge" Kristina Cook Graham were all too happy to be part of the railroad.
What happened? An innocent man was sentenced to prison while the real criminals at the CAC and the LMJC are free. If the Tonya Craft case made your blood boil, well let us just say that the Brad Wade case will turn your blood white hot.