Sunday, March 13, 2016

Bulletin: Douglas Prade; Ohio; A judge has denied the former police captain's request for a new trial - even though another judge had previously ruled that this evidence exonerated him. (Defence lawyer) Alden argued during a June hearing that the DNA evidence isn't strong enough for analysts to develop a full profile, but is strong enough to rule out Douglas Prade as the source of the DNA).

"A judge denied former Akron Police Capt. Douglas Prade's request for a new murder trial. Summit County Judge Christine Croce ruled Friday in favor of Summit County prosecutor's arguments that DNA evidence found on Prade's ex-wife's lab coat is not enough to warrant a new trial. "The Defendant has failed to introduce any new evidence that the jury had not already considered," Croce wrote in her 18-page decision. Prade was convicted in 1998 in the death of his wife Dr. Margot Prade. He was in prison until January 2013 when then-Summit County Common Pleas Judge Judy Hunter exonerated him based on DNA evidence found on the wife's lab coat. The DNA did not belong to her ex-husband. Prade was freed from prison and spent 18 months in Akron repairing his home and living as a free man. The Ohio 9th District Court of Appeals overturned Hunter's exoneration in October 2014 saying there was overwhelming evidence that Douglas Prade killed his wife. The Ohio Supreme Court declined to hear the appeal of that decision. The case was sent back to Croce, who replaced Hunter on the bench, to decide whether to hold a new trial.........(Defence lawyer)  Alden argued during a June hearing that the DNA evidence isn't strong enough for analysts to develop a full profile, but is strong enough to rule out Douglas Prade as the source of the DNA. Chief Assistant Summit County Prosecutor Brad Gessner countered that the 1998 jury's conviction came from other evidence, including that Prade was a serial stalker, that he benefited from Margot Prade's life insurance policy and that he repeatedly threatened to kill her, Gessner said. Gessner pointed out that an appeals court found "overwhelming" circumstantial evidence supporting Prade's guilt. He also said that the swatch of Margo Prade's lab coat might have been contaminated by various tests and from sitting in a box for 17 years."

See blogger Mike Bower's (CSIDDS: Forensics on Trial) at the link below: "Nothing but eyewitness testimony was used to convict Prade of murdering his wife. The court refuses to concede that neither unknown DNA taken from the “bitemark area” nor the pseudo-science of the prosecution’s bitemark expert would be grounds for a new trial. It uses the off-topic reasons listed in OHIO case law that are silent regarding  junk forensic identification (the bitemark on skin) used to identify Prade as the killer. The court says new objections to bitemarks are nothing new. What the judges refuse to consider is that new research supports bitemark identification as being a psuedo-science. In TEXAS, this conviction would be held as compelling evidence of prejudice and considered evidence of an unfair trial."