Brian banks case
Banks, who spent five years in prison for a crime that he did not commit, feels that the leniency in Turners rape sentencing is simply a case of privilege. To add insult to injury, there are reports that if Turner behaves while behind bars in county jail rather than federal prison, he may only serve three months. After maintaining his innocence and turning down multiple plea deals, Banks was sent to Chico State Prison for a 90-day observation that his attorney said would end with probation. That didnt happen though and Banks was sentenced to six years in prison by a judge who put up his sentence so quickly that Banks likened it to ordering food at a drive-thru. This ruling has left many to wonder about his victim? Certainly she wont have an easy time adjusting and dealing with the fact that she was brutally victimized by Turner. In the days since the sentencing of Brock Turner, there have been petitions, outrage, and even pleas to have the judge who let him off the hook with nothing more than a slap on the wrist removed from his position. How and why do innocent people confess or plead guilty to crimes that they did not commit? Roughly 20 percent of those that have been exonerated confessed to the crimes with which they were charged and convicted. Most of those involved persons who had actually gone to trial, but we have no way of knowing how many there are who merely entered guilty pleas through bargains and never appealed as a result. Although we hear and read about criminal trials, the reality is that only about 5 percent actually go to trial and the balance are resolved by plea agreements. When pleading guilty a defendant is required to "allocate" before the judge -- admit the crime and furnish sufficient details to satisfy the court that he is indeed guilty. The defendant, frightened, most often poor, uneducated, a minority member is advised that a trial is likely to end with a conviction and a long sentence, whereas a plea will guarantee a much shorter sentence. Despite his protestations of innocence, the defendant seeks guidance frequently from an over-worked, underpaid defense lawyer who would much prefer a quick deal rather than a long drawn out trial. Many do not, but even the best and most devoted are required to put this draconian choice to their clients -- a guaranteed short sentence versus a potentially long one -- possibly life in prison. Once a person has admitted guilt and spelled out the details of the crime sufficient for the court to accept the plea, the chances of reversing such convictions are very slight if not nil. I recognize that there is no avenue to absolute certainty because the knowledge of guilt or innocence lies with the defendant, but all involved must strive not to imprison the innocent -- even those who profess to be guilty.
I will suffer no competitor near the throne; I shall exact an undivided homage: his devotions shall not be shared between me and the shape he sees in his mirror. Dent and Louisa Eshton, dressed also in white, took up their stations behind them. Some time elapsed before, with all my efforts, I could comprehend my scholars and their nature.