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djc8 OP t1_j20t7ip wrote

This article has a lot more detail on the story

TL;DR - Jeff Ross visited the prison to do a roast special, did interviews with inmates (who signed releases) to get material, and then some of that footage was used by the court in this guy’s sentencing. He’s now appealing the sentence on the grounds that the inmates’ lawyers were not notified about potential use of the footage.


P2PJones t1_j21rg2b wrote

The jail had a 'no contact' order on file with the jail, while on remand (pre-trial detention), saying that under no circumstances was ANYONE to speak to him without his attorney's present.

The jail ignored a lawful notice, and then the prosecution used footage out of context to incriminate him at trial. State argues 'yeah, there was a no contact order in place, but comedy central isn't a state actor, so they don't count'.

It's the same thing that cops used to do, try and persuade 3rd parties to act like cops to get them evidence they couldn't otherwise get, like bribing bestbuy geeksquad people to [illegally] snoop through peoples hard drives and account infor to look for any evidence of potential crimes, which they 'report' having 'just come across it'. The geeks committed multiple crimes, and the evidence is fraudulently obtained, but courts let it in because 'they're not state actors', and mysteriously the prosecutors fail the do anything about the criminal acts.

It's just any attempt to get around legal protections and throw legal rights out the window in the desire to 'get that conviction' (a bit like the story that came out today, of the cop who's spent almost 20 years marketing '911 call analysis', which almost no-one not a cop has heard of, and outside of his own little private study (that no-one has seen the data to) there have been 5 studies done all showing it's crap, but the cops and FBI are still putting it out there as good, and intimidating people with it.

Seriously, you should read the expo on that. It's more 'bite mark' and 'stitch pattern' bullshit.


Hei5enberg t1_j226iak wrote

Yea, sounds like the inmate is a piece of shit murderer but that doesn't mean his rights weren't violated...

When I was younger I used to be of the mindset that bad people(like murderers) didn't deserve to be treated like humans and I was a proponent of punishment(including the death penalty). As I have gotten older and the more I learn and understand about just how flawed our legal system is and how many incompetent cops and prosecutors are out there and how unreliable witnesses and evidence can be the more I have changed my views. Allowing ways to bypass rights and due process just opens up avenues for lazy cops and prosecutors to abuse our legal system even more than they currently do. If they do that to convict someone "everyone knows" is guilty that's one thing... but "beyond a reasonable doubt" needs to set that bar... not violating someones rights... otherwise, the risk to innocent people getting convicted is just too high.


P2PJones t1_j22dzb2 wrote

>If they do that to convict someone "everyone knows" is guilty that's one thing...

yes, the WORST thing.

If 'everyone knows' it, why don't you have lots of properly acquired evidence to prove it.

At the witch trials 'everyone knew' they were a witch.

Remember, what 'everyone knows', is usually '100 bullshit'.


Londonforce t1_j24bqw4 wrote

Just to be clear, the guy was found guilty without this tape (meaning they had evidence beyond reasonable doubt).

The tape was used during sentencing to determine what penalty he should get. The fact that he's a murderer is not in question.


P2PJones t1_j25ylyy wrote

Correct, they used this tape, shown heavily out of context, to show the jury he had no remorse, lading to the death penalty.


Londonforce t1_j2609sb wrote

Exactly, I'm just raising it because your points about the witch trials seemed to imply that he wasn't a convicted murderer. In this specific case his only options were to die in prison, the only thing for debate was how long he had to wait


P2PJones t1_j27mnzz wrote

no, I was talking about the 'everyone knew', that's 'prejudicial', and can cause a mistrial. And no, He could have gotten as little as 20 years if I've read the court documents right. That's why the Prosecution went for this out of context video, to try and show a lack of regret.


bob0979 t1_j22fniq wrote

It may be bullshit, it may not be but that's not up to hear say and gossip to decide, it's up to a clearly defined legal system to determine through a consistent process. As soon as it loses that consistency it stops being a useful process for its purpose (justice) and is now something else entirely (a tool for injustice).


RoughConqureor t1_j249or5 wrote

I have no problem with the death penalty in theory. But like you said in practice the system is not good enough to make life and death decisions. Even if everyone involved is honorable and intelligent. (they aren’t) Even good cops lawyers and judges make mistakes.


Tom_Bombadilio t1_j24vin7 wrote

Even if they don't execute them they are still making life or death decisions. Imprisonment of over 30 years (literal) is essentially a death penalty. Taking someone away from their family and withdrawing them from society for 30 years or more is essentially a death sentence. They come out as a felon with virtually no relevant skills and a rudimentary at best understanding of technology, in thier 50s minimum, most likely with a body feeling its age, unable to do hard labor. No one wants to hire them and they don't have the social skills or understanding of society to be successful and have lost the majority of their life already. Like congrats your free, now go struggle like the 20 year old fast food wage slaves for the rest of your existence until you decide to give up or act out.


RoughConqureor t1_j27f40t wrote

Yes it can be harsh. But at least there is a chance of new evidence freeing the innocent.


Natsurulite t1_j22hwdm wrote

>stitch pattern bullshit

They should have brought that shirt to r/fashionreps

Like legit, even a newbie could’ve shit all over that “experts” head


P2PJones t1_j22woz4 wrote

yes, it's possible to, BUT prosecutors like to get their experts in. And once they've managed to slip it in one court case somewhere, then it becomes easier elsewhere, and once you've got 3-5 cases accepting it (because the judge didn't know its bullshit and the defense didn't know anything about it to counter it) then it becomes VERY hard to challenge the claims in court. It's how expert testimony works, is that when an expert becomes 'accredited' by the court system, you can't challenge his validity of general process any more, as it's become 'accepted'.

Trust me, been there, done that


Londonforce t1_j24bhth wrote

If his lawyers object (send the notice) but then he decides to do it anyway, isn't that just him not following legal advice?


P2PJones t1_j25z2qw wrote

no. Because he never got the legal advice. The notice was on the prison, who are in a position to intimidate, lie, etc. In any case, when you're represented by counsel, they MUST contact the counsel, they can't go around it and decide to contact the defendant. It's literally to stop this sort of thing happening.


Londonforce t1_j261luh wrote

That's the only part that confuses me. What I know from the article is that;

  • the lawyers sent a notice to the prison for their client to not participate
  • the client participated, and even signed a release to do so
  • the lawyers never provided legal advice to the client about doing it not doing the interview

I don't get how the lawyers involved could take action against participation (by notifying the prison), but then never discuss this with their client?


P2PJones t1_j27lsnf wrote

It's not that it was a letter about participating 'in this'.

It was about ANY contact with their client by any outside people. It was a "ANYONE that wants to speak to our MUST Contact us first."

Doesn't matter if it's a cop, the DA, comedy central, some random guy writing a book - ANYONE.

The lawyers were unaware of this 'roast' being filmed until the trial when the prosecution introduced the video.

The lawyers DID provide legal advice that the client was not to be contacted about meeting with anyone, that it had to go through them, which the client signed off on, in the form of the 'no contact notice'.


You're too fixated on it just being about the roast, and it's not, it's anyone.

It's a critical part of your rights. If they Mirandize you and you say you want a lawyer, you are from THAT POINT ON considered to be represented by counsel, and cops absolutely can NOT question you until you have your lawyer with you. they can't go 'well, you want to talk anyway, I mean, your lawyer's not here, but that doesn't matter....

Once you are represented by counsel, any contact MUST go through them or with their agreement. That didn't happen here.


Londonforce t1_j28a8pq wrote

>The lawyers DID provide legal advice that the client was not to be contacted about meeting with anyone, that it had to go through them, which the client signed off on, in the form of the 'no contact notice'.


>You're too fixated on it just being about the roast, and it's not, it's anyone.

That's not what I'm fixated on. I'm fixated on whether or not his lawyers ever told him "don't talk to ANYONE without our presence" BEFORE he signed a release to participate in the interview. Lawyers told him what to (never) do, and then after he decided to do that.


P2PJones t1_j2duptn wrote

You're not getting it.

When you sign a release, that's at the end of a long chain of things.

That's after 3-4 hours of talking.

The prison was REQUIRED to talk to the lawyers about his participation BEFORE anything.

You're again fixated on the idea that 'he chose to sign'. Tell me, Given he had a legally signed document in force that says anyone wanting to talk to him MUST talk to the lawyers first, would you like to explain how they interviewed him and got him to sign the release, or even asked him to sign the release... without first talking to his lawyers?


deadocmike t1_j25c2yj wrote

So. The guy voluntarily spoke to a tv show, and you guys think his rights have been violated? Are you crazy or stupid?


P2PJones t1_j25yfql wrote

We don't know it was voluntary.

For all we know, the guards might have threatened him. Or lied to him that the footage couldn't be used in court, or something like that. It's exactly WHY there was the 'no contact' order in place.

Tell me, if it was so 'on-the-up', why do you think the prison, and the prosecutors went out of their way to avoid contacting his lawyers?

Prosecutors and cops go out of the way to try and screw people out of their rights, and mislead them to make their job of prosecuting easier.


deadocmike t1_j276uz9 wrote

What part of “the prisoners signed releases” is unclear?


P2PJones t1_j27mey2 wrote

The part where even being given the release (which is a TV release, not a release of legal counsel. It permits the likeness to be used on screen commercially.) means they've contacted him without going through his lawyer, which is a BIG constitutional no-no.

I'll make it clear as can possibly be for you.

If you are represented by counsel, ANY contact not related to everyday conduct in a prison MUST be arranged through or with the agreement of Counsel. It's kind of the point of having counsel. If they can just ignore the point of having counsel, and just talk to him, that's a MAJOR 6th amendment violation, because you've taken away the assistance of counsel.


deadocmike t1_j28n0o2 wrote

There has to be some “not a lawyer or law enforcement “caveat to that. Signing that release should (not saying it is) be the equivalent of waiving right to counsel.


P2PJones t1_j2dv2dx wrote

Why should there be?

As shown here, it's not like it 'can't be used against you'.

And as I linked above, law enforcement would love such an exemption, as they have a history of trying to get 3rd parties to do their job, so they're not considered 'state actors' (so don't need petty things like Warrants or probable cause etc.)

Why are you so keen and eager to throw away your 6th amendment right?


deadocmike t1_j2f3mg4 wrote

You sound like you know what you are talking about, so I’ll cede that you are correct. But if I as a private citizen convince a criminal to sign a release and he agrees to film himself incriminating himself, logically, that should be admissible. Because the guy agreed to it. Not my fault he didn’t listen to his lawyer.

Just my 2 cents.


HalcyonDias t1_j21z37b wrote

This would be handled differently on Game of Thrones.


Londonforce t1_j24bave wrote

The inmates lawyers also specifically sent a letter to the prison that he would not be participating.


deadocmike t1_j25c754 wrote

But he did anyway. Sounds like he’s stupid.


menlindorn t1_j20o7t1 wrote

>Hall's legal team is now arguing that footage from the special was later used to sentence their client to death.

>On October 10, 2011, Hall entered a Brazos County residence where he fatally stabbed and shot a 68-year-old male; he also stabbed the victim's 69-year-old wife, who survived the attack.

Hm. I'm no lawyer, but I think probably the murder conviction was what was principally used to sentence him to death.


TwilitSky t1_j20rnz5 wrote

This is just the usual legal wrangling that drags out death penalty cases for a long length of time.

I don't believe in the death penalty, but its use here is clearly not negated by showing a jury what a county jail looks like. I'm kind of surprised the attorneys aren't embarrassed by pulling this chicanery, but then again, I'm not.


BunchaCreeps t1_j21rg0b wrote

When you read the article, you learn it’s about what was heard on the video and the resulting arguments and not about what the inside of the jail looks like


euph_22 t1_j22kzn2 wrote

And the main issue is that the murder had filed a order with the jail that he was declining any outside contact without his lawyer presence. The jail ignored that for this interview, and it's at best questionable that the interview was shown under those circumstances.


MetricVeil t1_j21l5t4 wrote

>Hall's legal team is now arguing that footage from the special was later used to sentence their client to death...
>​... However, Hall's legal team is claiming that additional footage, outside that segment, was later presented to the Brazos County Jury before they voted to sentence him to death.

Who selected this footage and where, when and why was it shown to the jurors prior to sentencing?


RandomComputerFellow t1_j242hod wrote

It was probably part of the approved evidence. My guess is that the approval was for a specific time frame but when they played the video they fucked up and showed a few seconds more.


MetricVeil t1_j243yan wrote

>... but when they played the video they fucked up and showed a few seconds more.

Either way, it could be interpreted as a form of 'jury tampering' and, consequently, leading to a biased and unsafe verdict.


RandomComputerFellow t1_j244har wrote

Well, not arguing against or for it. Just saying this is how I interpreted the situation. I think that it heavily depends on what the actual clip showed. If this was just some random video which has nothing to do with the case I do not see any grounds. But if the video made any suggestions regarding the case then I see how this may be a problem.


[deleted] t1_j235m43 wrote



Spezia-ShwiffMMA t1_j23i6q8 wrote

The best thing for him that could come from this is a re-sentencing. The dude is not getting out of jail.


DocSpit t1_j23iti1 wrote

Getting off? No. None of the footage influenced his conviction. A new sentence? Almost certainly. Most likely his death sentence will be commuted back down to life without parole.


jayfeather31 t1_j20o5dq wrote

...come again?


funnyAmero t1_j20qob3 wrote

I need to rest a bit. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is spongy and bruised.


ChurnLikeButter t1_j20qucg wrote

This is a really stupid comment.


funnyAmero t1_j20rtka wrote

Your mom said the same thing to you when you said, "I love you mommy".


GordianNaught t1_j22bq8b wrote

So he’s appealing the sentence and not the conviction. It’s still an error by the state to have the footage but he’ll never get a judge to agree. I mean Texas!!


euph_22 t1_j22lfle wrote

And of course there will be zero consequences for either the Prosecutor or the jail officials that let this happen.


VacuousWording t1_j23e6bi wrote

Why not simply… stop killing prisoners?

I’m glad that our constitution specifically prohibits death sentences.


ja_maz t1_j211vww wrote

Does anyone have a copy of the footage in question saved somewhere?


monogreenforthewin t1_j24hhha wrote

so the guy had an order to not speak to anyone w/o lawyers present but decided to do so when comedy central came by? then he blames comedy central for him saying/doing something incriminating when he should have just clammed up til his lawyer arrived?

i couldn't open article link so i'm curious what he said/said in comedy central footage, out of context or not, that lands him death penalty


jaydeetol t1_j240vs5 wrote

Even if he wins what can they do, pay him?🤣🤣🤣🤣


BlackFerro t1_j242wqq wrote

Need to just abolish the death sentence.


bonedaddy-jive t1_j243pwo wrote

Frankly, the morality of the death penalty is such that any “trick” is justified to get out of it.


Throsty t1_j245bbi wrote

Kewpie doll looking motherfucker.


Racer-Rick t1_j24xg4b wrote

So he agreed to be filmed off the record and discuss a murder he was already convicted of. They used that footage to help show the jury how guilty he was. Unfortunately that’s still a breach of rights. They didn’t need to show it honestly they already had him convicted with prior evidence. Now they may have botched their own death sentence verdict


vikingsquad t1_j24z1oc wrote

If you’d read, you’d see there was a no contact order in place such that no one was to have contact with him outside the presence of his lawyers.


Racer-Rick t1_j251pve wrote

So that recording was in breach of that? So it’s admissible as evidence? (Ay I got to say a thing)


deadocmike t1_j25ckla wrote

Then he should have not talked to a tv show. It’s on him, not the jail or the show. How is this even a debate?


paperskeleton t1_j25mpig wrote

I’m sure Comedy Central has violated all of our rights at some point.


Rad_Dad6969 t1_j20rhn7 wrote

He only killed one guy do yall really need to enforce the death penalty here? That old guy would probably be dead by now anyway.

Save it up for maximum effect. If they didn't kill more than 4 people it's really just a waste of everybody's time to go through every appeal.


Welpmart t1_j20xcge wrote

I personally oppose the death penalty, but "meh, it was only a single guy and he was old" is appalling logic. Old people's lives aren't less valuable than young people's.


Uncynical_Diogenes t1_j21w0al wrote

The death penalty is a waste of everybody’s time and money while provably providing no benefit to society, which you would know if you were basing your comments on any evidence. It costs more than life imprisonment, tying up state resources in endless appeals, it does not function as a deterrent on crime, does not improve the mental health outcomes of victims’ families, and some percentage of those convicted are innocent and they get murdered anyway. No benefit, all costs, but you aren’t attacking that.

Instead, you’re in here awfully blasé about basing your assessment on when the state should end peoples’ lives on your own arbitrary emotional criteria.