Tag Archives: false

False missile alarm tests journalism’s response

One of the big stories in the Honolulu Star-Advertiser Saturday morning was that military “brass” updated island officials on how the military would respond to a nuclear attack from North Korea. Military authorities warned there was a “real” threat.

At 8:07 a.m. Saturday, Hawaiian residents saw a terrifying alert message on their phones.

The same alert, with even more terrifying details, broke into a live NBC Sports Network broadcast of a soccer game. The same automated alert interrupted an SEC basketball game being shown in Hawaii.

That alert told viewers to seek “immediate shelter in a building” and “if you are driving, pull safely to the side of the road and seek shelter in a  building.” 

Though it ultimately turned out to be false, many who saw the alert took it to be real, including journalists who were working or vacationing there.

Lorenza Ingram, a CNN producer who is in Hawaii a

Read more at: https://www.poynter.org/news/false-missile-alarm-tests-journalisms-response

2017: A Roller Coaster Ride of a Year in False Confessions

In a 4-3 decision, with two dissents, the Seventh Circuit, sitting en banc, reinstates Brendan Dassey’s murder conviction. As the year ends, Dassey, whose case outraged many of the millions worldwide who watched clips of his interrogation in Making a Murderer, has one more card to play. In 2018, he will seek review of his case in the United States Supreme Court.

Read more at: https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/2017-a-roller-coaster-ride-of-a-year-in-false-confessions_us_5a3bf9f2e4b06cd2bd03d8ff

What Leads to False Confessions? ‘Making a Murderer’ Attorneys Weigh In

Steven Drizin appears on “Chicago Tonight” on Aug. 24, 2016.

What makes someone confess to a crime they didn’t commit?

Two days after arguing their case before seven appellate judges in Chicago, attorneys for Brendan Dassey held an open discussion at the Chicago Bar Association to address that very question.

“‘I would never confess to a crime I didn’t commit’ is the biggest myth, and the one juries have the hardest time grappling with in these cases,” said Steven Drizin, a Northwestern professor and attorney with the university’s Center on Wrongful Convictions of Youth, which has taken up Dassey’s appeal.

“If you confess, and if that confession is false and you go to trial, you have an 81-percent chance of still being convicted wrongfully.”

The case of Dassey and his uncle, Steven Avery, has gained international attention thanks to the 2015 Netflix documentary series “Making a Murderer.”

During their hourlong talk, Drizin

Read more at: http://chicagotonight.wttw.com/2017/09/29/what-leads-false-confessions-making-murderer-attorneys-weigh

What Leads to False Confessions? ‘Making a Murderer’ Attorneys …

Steven Drizin appears on “Chicago Tonight” on Aug. 24, 2016.

What makes someone confess to a crime they didn’t commit?

Two days after arguing their case before seven appellate judges in Chicago, attorneys for Brendan Dassey held an open discussion at the Chicago Bar Association to address that very question.

“‘I would never confess to a crime I didn’t commit’ is the biggest myth, and the one juries have the hardest time grappling with in these cases,” said Steven Drizin, a Northwestern professor and attorney with the university’s Center on Wrongful Convictions of Youth, which has taken up Dassey’s appeal.

“If you confess, and if that confession is false and you go to trial, you have an 81-percent chance of still being convicted wrongfully.”

The case of Dassey and his uncle, Steven Avery, has gained international attention thanks to the 2015 Netflix documentary series “Making a Murderer.”

During their hourlong talk, Drizin

Read more at: http://chicagotonight.wttw.com/2017/09/29/what-leads-false-confessions-making-murderer-attorneys-weigh

Is Chicago Really the ‘False Confession Capital’?

Adam Gray took his first steps as a free man in more than 20 years in May. Now in his late 30s, Gray was only 14 years old when he was arrested in 1993 in the arson death of a brother and sister in Brighton Park.

Gray was convicted three years later – in part because investigators relied on flawed forensic evidence that pointed to arson – but also because Gray himself confessed after seven hours of interrogation. Though he later recanted, his confession was introduced at trial and Gray was sentenced to life in prison.

Only after advancements in forensic fire investigations were made years later was Gray’s conviction called into question.

Gray is one of 11 Illinois inmates who has been exonerated so far in 2017. False confessions were involved in some way in six of those cases.

Innocence Project co-founder Peter Neufeld, in a 2012 “60 Minutes” segment called “Chicago:

Read more at: http://chicagotonight.wttw.com/2017/09/22/chicago-really-false-confession-capital

Dewey Bozella to speak on his 26 years of false imprisonment

SUNY Oswego’s public justice department and its David F. Cutler ’74 Public Justice Excellence Fund will feature Dewey Bozella, who spent 26 years in prison before his murder conviction was overturned, speaking at 5 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 27, in Room 101 of Lanigan Hall.

Bozella’s presentation, “Wrongfully Convicted: Life Lessons and Reflections After Liberation,” is free and open to the public; light refreshments will be served.

Wrongful convictions are a growing topic in law and in society, thanks to high-profile instances of prisoners, including those on death row, obtaining their freedom after exculpatory evidence confirms their innocence.

Bozella, denied parole four times, was freed in 2009 after spending more than a quarter-century in New York state prisons. The Innocence Project discovered that prosecutors in his case had withheld evidence at the time of his 1983 conviction that proved his innocence, and that the only evidence against him was given

Read more at: https://www.oswego.edu/news/story/dewey-bozella-speak-his-26-years-false-imprisonment

Common Interrogation Technique Suspected Of Causing False Confessions

As she voluntarily entered the police interrogation room in Moline, Illinois, four years ago, Dorothy Varallo-Speckeen thought she was there to help solve a child-abuse case.

She soon realized, however, Det. Marcella O’Brien thought she — a then-22-year-old babysitter with no criminal record — had abused the child, a felony punishable by up to 30 years imprisonment.

In the videotaped interrogation, O’Brien said, “I’m not trying to point fingers, but I know for a fact that the injury occurred during the time when you guys were watching Brylee,” referring to Varallo-Speckeen and her girlfriend and the 15-month-old toddler they were watching.

O’Brien subjected Varallo-Speckeen to an interrogation that sought to extract a confession.

Her tactics are common in law enforcement, but some experts say they can coerce false confessions and should be abandoned.

Last year, the conviction of Brendan Dassey, the Wisconsin teenager charged with helping his uncle murder a young woman in 2005, was

Read more at: http://www.wpr.org/common-interrogation-technique-suspected-causing-false-confessions

Common interrogation technique suspected of causing false confessions

Dorothy Varallo-Speckeen is seen during a police interrogation in Moline, Illinois, on July 24, 2013.

Read more at: http://host.madison.com/ct/news/local/crime/common-interrogation-technique-suspected-of-causing-false-confessions/article_c1b87130-948d-5987-aeeb-32b3b1071e24.html

DC’s Missing Teens: A False Number That Spurred A Real Conversation On Race

The number was nothing less than a shock to the system. In text set beside a series of photographs, each one depicting a girl of color staring back at the camera, the image that went viral on social media last week claims to lay bare an appalling truth: “14 Girls Have Gone Missing in DC in the Last 24 Hours.”

Trouble is, police say the claim is not true.

On Friday, the city’s Metropolitan Police Department told NBC’s local affiliate that at no point in recent weeks have 14 girls disappeared from the city in a single day. Rather, D.C. “has logged a total of 501 cases of missing juveniles, many of them black or Latino,” NBC reports, citing law enforcement. As of March 26, police say all but 22 of those cases have been solved.

And as BuzzFeed News points out, New York Daily News writer Shaun King

Read more at: http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2017/03/27/521655564/d-c-s-missing-teens-a-false-number-that-spurred-a-real-conversation-on-race