“The witness does not know what perspired in the magistrate’s office.” I am quoting verbatim from a High Court judgment. Still on the subject matter of that grisly murder case, which is the subject matter of my latest podcast.
The fruit of the poisonous tree. The alleged mastermind in the murders was let off the hook. This followed a trial within a trial on the admissibility of a confession. Our police men and women blue seem particularly partial to confessions. Once obtained, they hang up their spyglasses and investigative tools and call it a day.
The accused had a swollen arm. He also complained that he was threatened into confessing by the police. He says he was promised that if he confessed, he would be set free. And, he insists, the cops put words in his mouth. A magistrate took down the confession. In the face of all of this, the magistrate decided to proceed later saying he was feeling tired.
It’s embarrassing really. One police officer, demonstrating the imagination of a wet squibb, insisted that the accused specifically called him down to the holding cells. The accused gripped his arm. “(the accused) would have grabbed the (policeman) by the upper arm and press his face against the witness and indicated that he wanted to ‘become clean'”
I mean you cannot make this up! I don’t understand why, with all the advances in forensics, police can’t simply rely on pure science to secure convictions. You know, fingerprint evidence, surveilance cameras, dna evidence. It’s almost as if our criminal justice system is caught up in an anachronism from our colonial past.
For the family of the victims, they will see some convictions and possibly even life sentences being meted out. But the mastermind, the former employee who set this wicked ball in motion, seemingly gets away with murder. Something certainly perspired during the taking down of that confession. The whole thing stinks up to high heaven.