Report: “Jesse Friedman Was Not Wrongfully Convicted”

June 26, 2013 Comments Off on Report: “Jesse Friedman Was Not Wrongfully Convicted”

Report: “Jesse Friedman Was Not Wrongfully Convicted”

Independent advisory panel says that the Review Team was “prepared to recommend without reservation that Friedman’s conviction be overturned. But that was not how the facts played out…”

MINEOLA – The District Attorney affirms the 1988 child sexual abuse conviction of Jesse Friedman. In a 155-page report released Monday by Nassau County District Attorney Kathleen Rice, the Review Team tasked with conducting the conviction integrity investigation wrote that “…by any impartial analysis, the re-investigation process…has only increased confidence in the integrity of Jesse Friedman’s guilty plea and adjudication as a sex offender.”

An independent advisory panel appointed to guide the process found the Review Team’s conclusion to be “reasonable and supported by the evidence.”….

Three victims affirmed their prior accounts to the Review Team, and at least three others maintained their accusations at various points within the last decade.

None of the five individuals who Friedman advocates suggest “recanted” have, in fact, recanted to any degree of legal certainty. Three have not recanted at all. Reviews of transcripts concerning these individuals reveal that abuse occurred. Another who spoke to the Review Team stood by his account, in contrast to the statement he gave to filmmakers. The subject of the most recent purported recantation has refused to speak to the Review Team or even confirm he wrote the letter outlining the claim, which was provided to the Review Team by Jesse Friedman’s lawyer…..

Friedman codefendant Ross Goldstein privately confessed to a childhood friend in 1989.

Unedited film transcripts of Judge Abbey Boklan and Detective Anthony Squeglia show that each was the subject of selectively edited and misleading film portrayals in Capturing the Friedmans.

The “Meyers Tape” – one of only two pieces of direct evidence of heavy-handed police interviewing techniques cited by Friedman, his advocates and the Court – is, in fact, no tape at all….

A sworn affidavit from the therapist who treated former student “Computer Student One,” stated that she never performed hypnosis on the child. A portion of an unedited transcript of the film’s interview with “Computer Student One” contradicted his claim of pre-outcry hypnosis and had been edited out. “Computer Student One” claimed in a 2004 media report that Capturing the Friedmans “twisted” his account….

While maintaining his innocence prior to his eventual guilty plea, Friedman commissioned and failed at least two lie-detector tests….

Howard Friedman, brother of Arnold and uncle of Jesse, admitted to the Review Team that Arnold had privately confessed to him shortly after his arrest, and that Arnold admitted to him that Jesse was also involved in the abuse that occurred in the Friedman house, and that Arnold admitted molesting Jesse.     In a post-conviction interview by law-enforcement personnel, Arnold Friedman admitted to abusing 41 children and denied abusing 12 others….

In a separate letter written by the Advisory Panel following the conclusion of the investigation, the independent experts involved in the case wrote that the DA’s Review Team

“…approached their work with no preconceived notions about Jesse Friedman’s guilt, and no agenda to preserve his conviction…the Review Team was prepared to recommend without reservation that Friedman’s conviction be overturned. But that was not how the facts played out…” (p. ii)

“While it was not the role of the Advisory Panel to make an ultimate judgment about Jesse Friedman’s culpability or make factual findings, we do have an obligation to express a view as to whether we believe the conclusions expressed in the Review Team’s Report are reasonable and supported by the evidence it cites. We think they are.” (p. iii)

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