Wednesday, February 20, 2008

W is for WRITE!

Please write a letter to the Michigan Parole Board

Michigan Parole Board
C/O Executive Secretary
PO Box 30003
Lansing, MI 48909

Copy to:

William J. Hetherington #186155
Boyer Road Carson City Correctional Facilities
PO Box 5000
Carson City, MI 48811-5000.


Lots of reasons here at TMOTS but for my money these:

William was convicted of raping his wife, who brought these accusations simultaneously with seeking custody of their children (nothing fishy there) and sentenced to 15-30 years, when Michigan state law specifies 1-10 years. He is seeking parole, but the parole board refuses on the grounds that he will not confess that he actually committed the rape. Key points from TMOTS's post:

  • Linda Hetherington is not and has never been a battered wife. She herself, under oath, testified that he had never beaten her in their 16 years of marriage.
  • Hetherington has always maintained his innocence. As previously stated, this case was a he-said-she-said case during a custody battle; he claims that they had consensual sex, she claims it was rape. The presiding judge used Michigan's new Rape Shield Law to prohibit cross-examination of Linda.
  • For which if cross examination had been allowed, the fact that Linda had on two other separate occasions, made claims of rape against William only to rescind these claims later. Under the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, “a person has a right to face their accuser”. If one cannot question the validity and/or the possibility of serial false accusations, how is one to get a just and fair trial?
  • No physical evidence of rape was produced at the trial. A pelvic examination of Linda at the hospital three hours after the alleged offense showed no evidence of injury or forced penetration. Only her words were enough for this man to be found guilty of the heinous crime of rape.
  • The court-designated psychologist who examined Hetherington, Dr. Harold S. Sommerschield, Ph.D., concluded: "This is not a man who would force himself sexually or hostilely on another individual, as this would be foreign to his personality dynamics. ... His histrionic personality ... would substantiate his explanation of what has occurred in regards to the relationship with his ex-wife."
  • Evidential photographs of the alleged victim were never disclosed to the defense and were incorrectly handled. Specifically, ten years after conviction, Jeff Feldman, under the Freedom of Information Act, obtained copies of the five photographs taken of Linda by police at the alleged crime scene immediately after the alleged offense. The photographs were in a locker in a police garage.
  • The rape case was coincidentally prosecuted simultaneously with the custody case. This action alone put William in the middle of a ‘rock and a hard place’. Since the divorce court had frozen all his (their) assets, he had no money to hire a lawyer or to even make bond. Yet, because of his listed assets, the criminal court ruled that he was not indigent (or poor enough) and refused to provide him with a court appointed lawyer.
  • A four page report submitted with a sworn statement dated January 8, 1998 by an acclaimed forensics photographer. John Valor, utilizing new and modern techniques, stated that the pictures of Linda showed no scratches, tape marks or abnormalities of any kind, absolute. Furthermore, he states that marks would have been identifiable and clearly visible if there had been any at all.
  • This brings to the forefront an additional discrepancy that, under the law, if a witness (in this case a government witness) gives false testimony, a convicted prisoner should be entitled to a new trial, but William Hetherington has yet to receive one. In the least, the witness should be charged with perjury.
  • The State of Michigan’s sentencing guideline for this new offense at the time was 1 to 10 years yet, without cause, the judge sentenced him to 15 to 30 years.

William has been in jail for 20 years now, for what looks like a case of spousal revenge and moneygrubbing. Having served the majority of his sentance, he is now being held in jail for the mindcrime of not confessing to what he didn't do. Write that letter.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The reason they wont give him a new trial is because he will not give in and tell them he raped her. If he doesn't "admit" to the crime judge and prosecution might be liable. They want to cover their asses.