EvidenceProf Blog

Editor: Colin Miller
Univ. of South Carolina School of Law

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

The Serial Podcast: The Possible Legal Implications of Jay's Interview for Jay & Adnan

I've posted 25 entries Sarah Koenig's Serial Podcast, which deals with the 1999 prosecution of 17 year-old Adnan Syed for murdering his ex-girlfriend, 18 year-old Hae Min Lee, on January 13, 1999. These posts are collected in my Legal Companion to the Serial Podcast. The key witness in the prosecution's case, the only witness who really incriminated Adnan, was Jay Wilds. By the proscutor's own admission, Jay gave wildy inconsistent versions of the events that occurred on January 13th during his police interviews (here and here) and his trial testimony. But the prosecutor asked jurors at Adnan's trial to "look at the big picture" and told them that the main plot points in Jay's story had been consistent.

I took the prosecutor at his word until Rabia Chaudry posted some excerpts of Jay's testimony at trial, which showed that even Jay's testimony on key events varied over the course of his various accountings. This was troubling and led me to conclude that the prosecution's case was dead and that I would not use Jay's story or the prosecution's theory of the case as any type of starting point for determining Adnan's guilt or innocence. As I noted in that post, Jay's inconsistencies tore out the heart and ripped out the brain of the prosecution's case

Yesterday, The Intercept posted Part 1 of its exclusive interview with Jay Wilds. I said before that the prrosecution's case was dead. With this interview, Jay has now burned the corpse. So, what are the legal consequences of this interview for Jay and Adnan? I will address these issues in succession in this post.

As always I will start this post with the caveat that I have limited information about this case. As such, I'm relying on an incomplete record and forced to make certain suppositions and assumptions. That said, let's jump in.

Jay: Maryland Perjury Law 

In relevant part, Section 9-101 of the Maryland Code of Criminal Law states that

(a) A person may not willfully and falsely make an oath or affirmation as to a material fact:

(1) if the false swearing is perjury at common law....

(b) A person who violates this section is guilty of the misdemeanor of perjury and on conviction is subject to imprisonment not exceeding 10 years....

(d) A person who violates this section is subject to § 5­106(b) of the Courts Article. 

In turn, Section 5-106(b) of the Courts Article reads as follows:

(b) Notwithstanding § 9-103(a)(3) of the Correctional Services Article or any other provision of the Code, if a statute provides that a misdemeanor is punishable by imprisonment in the penitentiary or that a person is subject to this subsection:

(1) The State may institute a prosecution for the misdemeanor at any time; and

(2) For purposes of the Maryland Constitution, the person:

(i) Shall be deemed to have committed a misdemeanor whose punishment is confinement in the penitentiary; and

(ii) May reserve a point or question for in banc review as provided under Article IV, § 22 of the Maryland Constitution.

Put simply, a person who commits the offense of "perjury at common law," he is guilty of misdemeanor perjury, which is punishable by up to 10 years imprisonment and which may lead to a perjury prosecution at any time.

So, what is common law perjury in Maryland? As the Court of Appeals of Maryland noted in Brown v. State, 171 A.2d 456, 458 (Md. 1961):

Perjury is generally described as set forth in Wharton, Criminal Law, § 1511 (12th ed. 1932), p. 1782, as follows:

"The offense consists in swearing falsely and corruptly, without probable cause of belief; not in swearing rashly or inconsiderately, according to belief. The false oath, if taken from inadvertence or mistake, cannot amount to voluntary or corrupt perjury. * * * That the oath is wilful and corrupt must not only be charged in the indictment, but must be supported on trial. An oath is wilful when taken with deliberation, and not through surprise or confusion, or a bona fide mistake as to the facts, in which latter cases perjury does not lie."

In essense, "the gravamen of the offense is intentional lying."Attorney Grievance Com'n of Maryland v. Goldsborough, 624 A.2d 503, 517 (Md. 1993).

So, did Jay commit perjury by intentionally lying about a material fact at Adnan's trial? Again, I don't have the trial transcripts for Adnan's trial, so I don't know exactly what Jay said. But let's take what the Serial Podcast said about Jay's testimony and compare it with some of what Jay said in Part 1 of his interview:

Trial

Adnan suggested the idea of Jay borrowing his car so that he could buy a gift for his girlfriend Stephanie.

Interview

Adnan agreed to let Jay borrow his car after Jay said, "Hey, I need to run to the mall ’cause I need to get a gift for Stephanie."

Trial

When he is loaning Jay his car, Adnan tells Jay he is going to kill Hae.

Interview

When asked about whether Adnan said he was going to kill Hae when he was loaning him his car, Jay responds, "No. I didn’t know that he planned to murder her that day. I didn’t think he was going to go kill her."

Trial

Jay was waiting on Adnan to call him at about 3:30 after Adnan killed Hae.

Interview

Adnan told him he would call Jay after track practice. According to Jay, Adnan said, "I’m going to be late for practice, so just drop me off. Take my car, take my cellphone. I'll call you from someone else’s phone when I’m done."

Trial

Adnan showed him Hae's body by popping the trunk of Hae's car at the Best Buy parking lot.

Interview

When asked whether Adnan showed him Hae's body at Best Buy, Jay responds, "No. I saw her body later, in front of of my grandmother’s house where I was living. I didn’t tell the cops it was in front of my house because I didn’t want to involve my grandmother." Jay also says that Adnan didn't "have any car with him" when they met in the Best Buy parking lot.

Trial

Jay isn't entirely clear about when Adnan and he bury Hae's body in Leakin Park, but he testified that he got home for the night by 11:00 P.M. Jay either testifies that an incoming call to Adnan's cell phone at 7:09 that pings the Leakin Park cell tower is from his friend Jenn, or the prosecution is able to make this assertion based upon the general timeline established by Jay.

Interview

Adnan calls Jay at his house, asking for his help in burying Hae. After Jay agrees, Adnan arrives at Jay's house "closer to midnight in his own car. He came back with no tools or anything. He asked me if I had shovels, so I went inside my house and got some gardening tools. We got in his car and start driving." Eventually, they make their way to Leakin Park, where Jay helps Adnan dig a hole, allowing Adnan to bury Hae's body.

 

So, is any of this perjury? Again, the question is whether Jay intentionally lied about any material fact at Adnan's trial. I'll let readers draw their own conclusions about whether Jay's trial testimony consisted of lies or mere mistakes. Do I think that Jay will actually be prosecuted for perjury? It's exceedingly unlikely that the prosecution would have any interest in prosecuting its own witness from a case 15 years later, especially when the proof is an internet article. The reason I mention Maryland perjury law is primarily because of the effect a finding of perjury could have on Adnan's appeal.

I should also mention that Jay could also be in trouble because his plea agreement states in relevant part that

The Defendant represents that he/she has fully and truthfully responded to all questions put to Defendant by law enforcement authorities during all prior interviews. If at any point it becomes evident the Defendant has not been truthful concerning his involvement in this incident, the State is immediately released from any obligation under this agreement, the agreement becomes null and void, and the State is free to bring any charge against the Defendant supported by the evidence. The Defendant shall continue to cooperate fully with the State by providing full, complete and candid information concerning the murder of Hae Min Lee of which Defendant has knowledge. 

Do I think that Jay actually will be in trouble? Again, it's highly doubtful. I've never seen a case in which the prosecution has alleged breach of a plea agreement more than a decade later. Moreover, it seems to me that the prosecution knew what it was getting into with Jay as a witness, based upon his inconsistent police statements. And again, I'm using the prosecution's knowledge about Jay's shifting story more to show how it could help Adnan on appeal than to show that Jay will face any actual legal consequences. So, what could be those legal consequences for Adnan?

Reopening Adnan's Postconviction Proceeding

I previously posted a timeline of Adnan's case, including his current appeal. Adnan's current appeal, claiming that he received the ineffective assistance of counsel, was rejected by the Baltimore City Circuit Court. Adnan responded by filing an Application for Leave to Appeal with the Court of Special Appeals of Maryland, and the State is supposed to respond to this application in January.

Jay's interview, however, has now possibly opened up another way for Adnan to seek relief. Section 7-104 of the Maryland Code of Criminal Procedure states that

The court may reopen a postconviction proceeding that was previously concluded if the court determines that the action is in the interests of justice.

Section 7-104 would allow the Baltimore City Circuit Court to reopen Adnan's postconviction proceeding if its finds that the "interests of justice" compel reconsideration based on Jay's interview. This is by no means an easy case for Adnan to make, but let me lay out the theory.

The key case here is Gray v. State, 879 A.2d 1064 (Md. 2005). In Gray, Julian Gray was convicted of second-degree murder and use of a handgun in the commission of a violent crime. Gray's convictions were in large part based on the testimony given by Shauna Hantz and Erika McCray. Just like Adnan, Gray subsequently brought a petition for postconviction relief, claiming that he received the ineffective assistance of counsel. The circuit court denied Gray relief, just as the circuit court denied Adnan relief. Like Adnan, Gray then filed an Application for Leave to Appeal with the Court of Special Appeals of Maryland. The court denied Gray leave to appeal, which hopefully is not the case for Adnan.

But this is where things get interesting. After the Court of Special Appeals of Maryland denied Gray leave to appeal, McCray gave a statement in which she said that "the only actual knowledge she had of the shooting was provided to her by her friend Shauna, who is now deceased." Gray thereafter used this statement to move to reopen his postconviction proceeding under  Section 7-104. The circuit court, however, summarily denied Gray's motion to reopen without a hearing. On appeal, the Court of Appeals of Maryland agreed with the circuit court's decision to deny the motion without a hearing.

At this point, you might be wondering why I'm citing to Gray and claiming that it gives Adnan hope. The answer lies in the reason the Court of Appeals of Maryland reached its conclusion. Here it is:

As for McCray's recantation itself, we note that it occurred after the death of McCray's friend Shauna, the person who allegedly told McCray that she had seen Gray with a gun. In addition, there is no indication that the officer who obtained McCray's testimony believed it to be false or that the State knowingly used false testimony at trial. The allegation that perjured testimony was offered at trial, "absent a showing that the State knowingly used perjured testimony," is not a ground for postconviction relief....As a result, it was not an abuse of discretion for the court to conclude that McCray's new statement did not present a reason, "in the interests of justice," to reopen the postconviction proceedings.

So, a few key points guided the court's decision:

1. McCray didn't recant until after Shauna had died. This means that Shauna couldn't refute the allegation that McCray's knowledge came solely from what Shauna told her. It also meant that Shauna, of course, couldn't recant her testimony about what she had seen. This meant that, even if McCray's testimony was worthless, Shauna's testimony still stood as strong evidence of Gray's guilt.

2. There was "no indication that the officer who obtained McCray's testimony believed it to be false." Here, we have every indication that the officers who obtained Jay's statements believed at least some of them to be false. Here's one example. Jay initially said that Adnan showed him Hae's body at a strip off of Edmondson Avenue. Jay later told the cops that Adnan actually showed him Hae's body in the Best Buy parking lot and that he lied because he was worried there were security cameras there (now, of course, Jay has told us that he lied again).

3. There was "no indication...that the State knowingly used false testimony at trial." I have no idea whether this was the case at Adnan's trial because I have no idea what Jay told the prosecutor in private. That said, let's look at maybe the most incriminating argument at trial: The prosecutor is able to claim at trial that Jay's testimony places Adnan and him in Leakin Park at 7:16, when an incoming call from Jenn pings the Leakin Park cell tower. When I told people I had reasonable doubt about Jay's guilt, the biggest question I got was how I could explain this Leakin Park ping. Now, my biggest question is how Jay comes to testify that he was in Leakin Park for this 7:16 ping when he now claims that the trip to Leakin Park happened after midnight. Was this something Jay told the prosecutor? Again, there's no way to know this, but I think this and other questions should be asked to the prosecutor at a reopened hearing.

The long and short of this is that the Court of Appeals of Maryland found that it was proper not to hold a hearing on a motion to reopen in Gray because (1) a finding that McCray's testimony was perjured still left Shauna's testimony; (2) the officer taking McCray's statement had no reason to believe she was lying; and (3) the prosecutor calling McCray at trial had no reason to believe McCray was perjuring herself. Conversely, in Adnan's case, (1) a finding that Jay's testimony was perjury leaves no testimony incriminating Adnan; (2) the officers taking Jay's statements had every reason to believe Jay was lying; and (3) the prosecutor at least had reason to believe that Jay could be perjuring himself. Therefore, I think the Adnan has a decent argument that a hearing should be held to determine whether his postconviction proceeding should be reopened, regardless of whether he is granted leave to appeal by the Court of Special Appeals of Maryland.

[Edited to add: Regarding the materiality of Jay's possible lies on the witness stand, keep in mind that Adnan was convicted of kidnapping by fraud. As I've noted, this required the prosecution to prove that Adnan lied to Hae to get her to drive him to a location (likely Best Buy) where he intended to harm her and ended up killing her. At a minimum, Jay's statements about (1) him asking for Adnan's car; and (2) Adnan not mentioning a plan to kill Hae on January 13th certainly seem material in this regard.].

-CM

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/evidenceprof/2014/12/ive-posted-25-entriessarah-koenigsserial-podcast-which-deals-withthe-1999-prosecution-of-17-year-old-adnan-syed-for-murderin.html

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Comments

Re: potential perjury charges for Jay: I'm finding it really odd that Jay would go ahead with this interview in the possible knowledge that he would be perjuring himself in doing so. Do you think it's incredibly strange? I also think it would have been extremely unwise of him to do this without consulting some kind of legal expert first re: what he could and couldn't say.

I think that either it was irresponsible for this publication to produce this without informing Jay of possible legal implications (and Jay should have known better, too, but the deal with Jay is an eternal mystery), or, he has had advice in some form. If the latter, is their any legal way that this could not count as perjury? Ditto, I suppose, for breaking the terms of the plea deal.

Thanks! Your posts here and on reddit are always interesting.

Posted by: History_today | Dec 30, 2014 10:02:46 AM

It's really tough for me to say anything definitive about perjury without seeing exactly what Jay said on the witness stand at trial.

Posted by: Colin Miller | Dec 30, 2014 11:20:59 AM

He also made statements in two trials, and contradicted his own statements between the two of them. How is that not also perjury, especially since he was under oath in both cases?

Posted by: fn0000rd | Dec 30, 2014 11:55:06 AM

I'd like to see his exact testimony from both trials. That will give us a much better sense of how much he's contradicting himself.

Posted by: Colin Miller | Dec 30, 2014 12:19:25 PM

So with respect to his plea agreement - how does that work? Now that he clearly wasn't truthful in his testimony (both regarding the BB/grandma's house issue and just generally admitting that he willingly misled the police until he felt he was safe to tell the truth), could he be sentenced to the full time for the accessory charge? Could they investigate and charge him for various drug infractions? Does the plea agreement toll any of the statutes for those?

Posted by: SMS | Dec 30, 2014 1:39:43 PM

You keep saying you would like to see the statements made at the trial. Sarah Koenig and Susan Simpson have already done it and Susan has written several thorough articles on the subject, complete with links to the actual documents. I found them in, like, five minutes of searching. Why don't you start there?

Posted by: Jordan | Dec 30, 2014 5:31:37 PM

SMS: Aside from the statutes of limitations, any crime would be on the table if the plea agreement is deemed null and void. I honestly have no idea whether a plea agreement violation tolls statutes of limitations. Every case I have seen on the issue involves a breach that is realized at the time. This might merit some research.

Posted by: Colin Miller | Dec 30, 2014 6:08:57 PM

Jordan: Susan and I are using the same publicly available documents: recorded police interviews, appellate briefs, and the snippets of trial testimony disclosed on the Serial Podcast and Rabia's blog. Susan also posted the unpublished opinion of the Court of Special Appeals of Maryland in response to Adnan's direct appeal yesterday, and Rabia posted the transcript from Adnan's first trial today.

As far as I know, no one other than SK, Rabia, and Adnan's attorneys has the full transcript from Adnan's second trial, which is the key trial. When I say that I don't have the statements from trial, I'm saying that I don't have full statements, including context. Rabia is in the process of redacting the second trial transcript before she posts it. Once she does, I'll have the information I need.

Posted by: Colin Miller | Dec 30, 2014 6:13:05 PM

Adnan was convicted of "kidnapping by fraud." Is this in addition to first-degree murder? Clearly Jay's new version goes to the issue of premeditation, but is not necessarily exculpatory of the murder charge itself, right?

Posted by: Tony Cape | Dec 31, 2014 6:04:36 AM

In the podcast, it seems that Jay changes his testimony between trials. Are you familiar with the Baltimore local court rules regarding using testimony between trials where the first trial ended in a mistrial (or the federal rules)? It seems like if Jay referred to his "plea" as a "truth agreement" and he had different stories between the trials then he could not have been telling the truth both times. and if that is the case, then it would seem like the defense would like to pound that point to make the case that Jay was beholden to the prosecution, and was changing his story to make Adnan seem more guilty.

Posted by: Keith | Dec 31, 2014 7:03:10 AM

Tony: Yes, the kidnapping by fraud was in addition to the murder conviction. The new version isn't exculpatory of any murder, but it is seemingly contradictory to the State's theory of the murder.

Posted by: Colin Miller | Dec 31, 2014 7:32:16 AM

Keith: I addressed that in this post:

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/evidenceprof/2014/12/ive-done-seven-posts-herehereherehereherehere-andhere-about-sarah-koenigsserial-podcast-which-deals-withthe-1999-pro.html

Basically, under Maryland law, inconsistent testimony from a prior trial is nonhearsay. So are inconsistent recorded police interviews.

Posted by: Colin Miller | Dec 31, 2014 7:34:17 AM

Proefssor Miller,

In your view, might Urick's comments regarding Syed's Pakistani heritage and religious beliefs be misconduct under ABA Criminal Justice Standard 3-5.8(c), and do you think they may be sufficient to have deprived Syed of due process?

Great blog, and have been appreciating commentary.

Posted by: Mike | Dec 31, 2014 7:49:04 AM

Mike: The standard you're citing says that "[t]he prosecutor should not make arguments calculated to appeal to the prejudices of the jury." Do we know exactly what the prosecutor said about Adnan's heritage and religious beliefs at trial?

Posted by: Colin Miller | Dec 31, 2014 8:29:00 AM

Question: Could justice system semantic's or loop holes lay a thick cover over one man's guilt just because a witness lied about where he saw a body and how a car was borrowed? Yes, I know the system as a whole needs to be protected and no one should lie under oath. However, in this case, in my personal opinion, Jay was not a close friend or confidant of Adnan. Furthermore, in my opinion based on Jay’s interview and lack of motive brought to light in court, the boys interactions together during or around “business” transactions do not substantiate a motive for Jay to want to involve himself willingly in the situation at all. I believe this guy exposed himself to a wrong place, time, and person (in Adnan) predicament because of his extra curricular activity choices. I believe these activity choices were taken advantage of by Adnan and the prosecution in order to make him cooperate in their agenda’s. Yes, you have a teenager lying to keep himself and others he’s trying to protect out of trouble (And I don't believe all the others were protected out of his care for their wellbeing like his grandmother, but for the sake of trying to save himself from harm or exile.) He did have a business to run after all and a reputation to uphold.
The bottom line for me is: No matter which story he is telling, Jay see’s a dead body and Jay borrow’s a car. Now, even though he lied about how he acquired the car, everyone is in agreement that he borrowed the car. I believe he also see’s a dead body and had nothing to do with how the body became that way knowingly.
And even though Jay did not know about a premeditated plan to kill Hae, Jay does say Adnan did tell him he was going to kill her. To me it doesn’t matter whether or not Jay thought he was serious. I believe the drug dealer and believe Adnan did say it.

Posted by: Dayna | Dec 31, 2014 9:47:08 AM

Dayna: Thanks for the comment. Again, I'll say that I'm not 100% sure what Jay said at Adnan's second trial, so I can't say with any certainty the extent to which his current interview contradicts his trial testimony.

But here's the general point I want to make: The State developed their theory of the case around Jay's testimony. This is how they secured (1) convictions for first-degree murder, kidnapping by fraud, false imprisonment, and robbery; and (2) life imprisonment for first-degree murder, 30 years imprisonment for kidnapping, and 10 years imprisonment for robbery.

Now, let's assume that Jay is honest and accurate in his current interview: HE asked for Adnan's car, and Adnan didn't mention killing Hae on 1/13...but Adnan did kill Hae. In this case, maybe Adnan legitimately asked Hae for a ride because Jay had borrowed his car. And, in this case, if Adnan killed Hae, it might have been a spur of the moment thing rather than something pre-planned. Maybe the jury finds Adnan guilty of second-degree murder but not kidnapping. Maybe the jury merely finds Adnan guilty of manslaughter. Maybe the judge imposes lighter sentences.

That's my point: Even if we assume both that Jay is being honest now and that Adnan killed Hae, there was still an injustice because the version of the crime told to the jury and the judge was different from the crime that actually occurred.

Posted by: Colin Miller | Dec 31, 2014 10:41:50 AM

While all the points about perjury and violation of the plea agreement in your post, Prof. Miller, seem valid, on a practical level it seems that a court disposed to uphold a previous conviction could easily attribute the differences between the trial testimony and the current interview to be due to the passage of 14 years, an interval that few memories survive intact. The counterargument to that seems to be that of course Jay had all the info about the case readily available to him on the internet, and so that should refresh his memory. But if he has the chance to refresh his memory, why on earth would he make such different statements? I think we have to conclude that Jay is telling the truth that he has not read much about this on the internet, and it seems clear he is not considering the possibility that he would be prosecuted for his statements (which, as you say, is a slim possibility). Memory issues seem really the best explanation here, even if one thinks that Jay is lying, since if so, why doesn't he remember his last lie? The half life of memory is remarkably short.

I do think Jay lied, because he told the police so at various points, and tells us in the interview that he lied to the police until he received assurances that he was not going to prosecuted, and his mother's house was not going to be seized. That provides a reason for him to lie at the beginning, and a reason for him to lie later. Yet the fact that Jay lied, and had reason to lie, was fully known at the time of the first trial, and the second. And the testimony of a witness under threat of prosecution both explicit (murder) and implicit (drugs) is unreliable in proportion to the strength of the threat of prosecution. Furthermore, if a witness testifies subject to a plea deal, and that witness must be either telling the truth or lying (cannot be telling mostly true things, cannot be relevantly mistaken), then if we consider that he is lying, Occam's razor indicates he is most likely guilty himself.

Posted by: Lydia | Dec 31, 2014 2:32:42 PM

Lydia: Thanks for the comment. You say in part:

"I do think Jay lied, because he told the police so at various points, and tells us in the interview that he lied to the police until he received assurances that he was not going to prosecuted, and his mother's house was not going to be seized. That provides a reason for him to lie at the beginning, and a reason for him to lie later. Yet the fact that Jay lied, and had reason to lie, was fully known at the time of the first trial, and the second."

That's interesting because, as I note in my post, the court in Gray found that a hearing didn't need to be held on the defendant's motion to reopen his postconviction proceeding because neither the police nor prosecution had reason to believe the witness was lying.

Posted by: Colin Miller | Dec 31, 2014 3:44:05 PM

Professor Miller,

I'll admit that I don't have the specific quotes. However, I believe Koenig claims this was the theme of Urick's case. Admittedly, what made this stick in my head was earlier today Rabia C. retweeted a commenter who claims that the trial transcript confirms that, within the first 5 minutes (presumably of opening) Urick referenced Syed's "Pakistani Background" and "Islamic Culture", presumably in arguing motive.

I don't have access to the transcripts but have requested Rabia C. and the person she retweeted direct me to the source. In any event, would be interested to hear your view, although I recognize that without the specific transcript cite it may be premature.

Posted by: Mike L | Dec 31, 2014 7:17:56 PM

I should also add that my thinking is colored by the juror's admission that his view's on muslim men and their behavior towards women influenced his vote.

Posted by: Mike L | Dec 31, 2014 7:45:26 PM

Professor Miller,

Rabia C. has posted the opening statement here.
http://www.splitthemoon.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/12/OpeningStatements1-pdffiller.pdf
Urick's opening is at pg 134-138.

Some of the quotes are below.
"the Defendant sacrificed things that were very dear to him - his religious values and the way his family looked at him. The Defendant is a Moslem. In that faith premarital dating is not allowed and premarital sex is absolutely forbidden. His family which was a Moslem family wanted him to live by Moslem values, and he sacrificed there too....We're going to include here her diary in which her own words will tell you "He went to Texas with his father for some Moslem convention thing....."

[later] "The Defendant got caught up in his honor. The facts will show that he felt betrayed, publicly humiliated and enraged"

Posted by: Mike | Jan 2, 2015 7:11:46 AM

Mike: Thanks. That's from the first trial. I'll be interested in seeing what he said at the second trial. I touched on this a bit in this post:

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/evidenceprof/2014/11/ive-done-five-posts-herehereherehere-andhere-about-sarah-koenigsserial-podcast-which-deals-withthe-1999-prosecution-of.html

Basically, an attorney can't use the religion of a party or witness in a negative way based on the specific religion. But if you can substitute any religion for the religion of the party/witness, you're okay. The question here is whether the prosecutor was just emphasizing that Adnan sacrificed his religion for Hae or whether he was saying something about Adnan's specific faith.

Posted by: Colin Miller | Jan 2, 2015 8:12:32 AM

At a minimum, Jay perjured himself regarding the where and when of the "trunk pop." In the Intercept interview, he says two things. 1) that the trunk pop happened late at night in front of his grandmother's house. 2) That he lied about the where and when of the "trunk pop" throughout in order to deflect the cops from his grandmother (more likely, just that house as it's where his drug business occurred).

The Intercept version of the "trunk pop" is a completely new one, never told to the Police and never told at trial.

Moreover, the collateral damage of the Intercept trunk pop statement is that it blows his entire timeline of events to smithereens... his entire testimony is replete with perjury.

Posted by: brgulker | Jan 26, 2015 7:56:34 AM

What strikes me about the interview is Wilds' use of the present tense as he tells his story. Fascinating. Appalling.

Posted by: Eric Treanor | Feb 8, 2015 1:20:45 AM

If the burial happened at midnight based on both the intercept interview and the lividity evidence, then Adnan is clearly not guilty. Phone records and all witnesses have them going their separate ways after the late evening hours.

Posted by: anon | Jun 27, 2015 9:25:50 AM

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