Billy Glaze- Minnesota- Convicted in 1989 Mar 1, 2016 11:44:41 GMT -5
Post by Scumhunter on Mar 1, 2016 11:44:41 GMT -5
(Above photo credit: innocenceproject.org)
For the first time ever, this section to discuss Innocence Project cases will profile someone who we can guarantee will never have freedom- because he's no longer alive.
However, lawyers are still trying to fight to clear convicted murderer Billy Glaze's name- and stress that the real killer of three Native American women may still be roaming the streets.
(P.S. Reader warning, there are some graphic and/or sexual in nature details at times in this post)
Here is an initial Innocence Project excerpt from before when Glaze passed away:
"Newly discovered DNA points to the innocence of a man convicted of three murders in Minnesota. Billy Glaze, who is represented by the Innocence Project of Minnesota, the Innocence Project and the law firm Dorsey and Whitney, was convicted of the 1986 and 1987 murders of three young Native American women, despite a lack of physical evidence connecting him to the crimes. He has maintained his innocence since his conviction in 1989. Recent DNA testing not only excludes Glaze, but is also a match for a man who completed his sentence for the rape of another young Native American woman.
KARE-NBC St. Paul reported that when Kathleen Bullman, Angeline Whitebird Sweet and Angela Green were raped, murdered and mutilated in similar ways, police set out on a search for a serial killer.
Glaze was a known drifter with a criminal record and said to have frequently made derogatory comments about Native American women. He became a suspect in 1987. Two years later he was convicted and sentenced to three life sentences.
In 2004, he reached out to the Innocence Project of Minnesota seeking help to prove his innocence. The Innocence Project joined the effort in 2007 and in the following years, three separate labs conducted DNA testing on dozens of pieces of evidence from the three crime scenes. According to a motion filed yesterday, all of the tests excluded Glaze.
Innocence Project lawyer Olga Akselrod said, "In a case like this, where not only is it a violent homicide but there's also a sexual assault involved, you would certainly expect to see some DNA from the perpetrator at the scene and we didn't find any DNA from Billy Glaze."
The tests revealed a profile of another man whose DNA was found at two of the murder scenes and on a rape swab taken from Green. DNA from a second partial profile was located on a fresh cigarette butt collected from the Whitebird Sweet murder scene.
"You look at the evidence that they were able to present against Billy Glaze at the time of trial. It was the best they could come up with, with the tools they had available at the time," Julie Jonas, an attorney with the Innocence Project of Minnesota, told KARE-NBC.
According to Jonas, "If they would have had what they have now against this person who really did the crimes, he would have been the one who was arrested. He would have been the one on trial. Billy Glaze would never have gone to prison for all those 27 years."
The man that belongs to the DNA profile was interviewed by police in 2012 when he was in jail for failing to register as a sex offender. He still lives in Minneapolis, and despite DNA evidence linking him to Green, he denied knowing or ever having sex with her."
Since then, Glaze was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer in December of last year and died while serving three life sentences for the crimes, most recently at a prison in Delaware. He was 72 years old.
Glaze’s attorneys argue that the case should continue. If the wrong man died in prison for crimes someone else committed and the actual perpetrator remains on the streets, they say, it is very much a matter of public interest.
This is the first time a Minnesota judge has been faced with the decision as to whether attorneys for a deceased client can proceed with a DNA exoneration attempt. In the past, courts in both Florida and Texas have allowed posthumous exonerations.
Prosecutors in Hennepin County moved last month to have Glaze’s latest arguments to the court dismissed, saying the case is now moot. They had remained confident that they had the right man and argued that a new trial wasn’t needed.
Prosecutors also say a vaginal swab from Green contained DNA from two men, and it can’t be determined when she had sex with the man whose DNA was found. The cigarette butt, they say, came from a heavily trafficked area.
Thoughts? A lot of the stuff about not liking Native American women doesn't sit well with me, but at the same time it is hearsay as well. It is hearsay the jury that convicted him likely believed, but hearsay nonetheless. It also concerns me that like the Steven Avery case, Glaze didn't exactly have a clean past, including a conviction for rape and bragging about other murders but then claiming it was just to get transferred to prisons out of state. I will post that wikipedia link describing his past at the bottom of this post. Regardless of whether Glaze was or wasn't a nice guy, it is concerning if there is another guy out there who killed even one of those three women. So sorry to say, I'm not entirely sympathetic when it comes to Glaze, and I think even one rape you shouldn't get out of prison, but I still think it's important if someone else killed those three Minnesota women if they're still walking the streets.
One thing I've learned through the years is someone can be the nastiest, most despicable person on Earth, but still not guilty of the crime they're accused of. (I remember my dad was on a jury where he and the rest of them absolutely HATED the defendant but still felt he wasn't guilty of the most serious charges against him and only found him guilty of a lesser charge). Heck, perhaps they are a murderer but not guilty of the particular murder in question. So regardless of whether you like Glaze or not, it's also important to make sure the victims received the right justice and the guy who really did this to them is imprisoned. Whether it be Glaze, where justice would have already been served, or the other man in question, where justice would still need to be served.
At the same time, I'm not sure how much evidence there is to convict this other man in question based on the cigarette butt being found in a heavily trafficked area but if there's any chance it could be him and not Glaze it has to be seriously looked into.
In summary, this isn't a case I post where I like the "innocent" convict so much and feel bad for him. But it is a case where I am concerned if someone else was the real culprit. And taking emotion out of the case, legally speaking, if Glaze is found to not be responsible for the three murders, his name should be cleared in those cases. If nothing else, because it would be the legally accurate thing to do.
Here are some other relevant links about this case: