[conspire] Reiser trial: DNA tests partially flubbed, defence motion for mistrial

Eric De Mund ead-conspire at ixian.com
Wed Feb 6 02:37:45 PST 2008


Rick Moen <rick at linuxmafia.com>:
] I'm well aware, and try to disclose, that I have known Hans socially
] -- which means the notion of his being a murderer is offputting on
] several grounds, including proving me a lousy judge of character. How-
] ever, personally, based on known data: I currently think it extremely
] likely Nina died, very likely she was murdered, and more likely than
] not that Hans murdered her. (Other people also could have murdered
] her, which is part of prosecution's problem.)

Deirdre Saoirse Moen <deirdre at deirdre.net>:
] My problem with the case is that I'm not convinced beyond a reasonable
] doubt that Nina's even dead, much less that Hans killed her.

Christian Einfeldt <einfeldt at gmail.com>:
] Without a body, there is too much speculation. If we are going to de-
] prive someone of liberty, we should have a body and a cause of death
] tied beyond reasonable doubt to the accused.
] I have been uncomfortable with this case on several levels. On one
] hand, it does appear that Hans did some unusual things around the time
] of Nina's death. So it is horrible to think that Hans might have
] killed her and gotten away with it.
] On the other hand, it is more horrible to think that something else
] has happened, and that Hans will lose his liberty without a body and
] a causal link to him. Conviction based on innuendo is scary to me.
] Nina's death, if she is dead, is sufficiently tragic. But to compound
] her loss with a skewed conviction only aggravates the tragedy of her
] loss, IMHO.

First, to what all have said above, hear, hear! It is very heartening to
see such clear thinking.

Now, to some particular points. I don't know Rick terribly personally
well, but I do believe that his statement above of "I currently think
it... more likely than not that Hans murdered her," would not be swamped
by what I've seen of the care he exercises in legal/moral judgement. I
believe that like Deirdre, and Christian, he would *not* convict here.

I myself would not convict. Even if there *was* a body, to go along with
Hans's suspicious behavior, I would not convict; I *could not* convict.
I need proof beyond a reasonable doubt, and suspicious behavior plus
motive doesn't cut it for me.

I, like Christian, and as I believe our legal system is intended to be,
strongly wish to err towards false negatives (i.e. acquittal of the
guilty) rather than towards false positives (i.e. conviction of the in-
nocent). Also like Christian, I believe there are many, many possible
scenarios for what actually happened. Several of them involving criminal
non-homicidal activity by the primary (Hans, Nina) parties. If I can
come up with a dozen possible scenarios that fit the evidence, no matter
how odd they might seem, then I have to conclude that the prosecution
simply hasn't done their job.

"A judge is a law student who marks his own examination papers."
--H.L. Mencken

Eric De MUND   | Ixian Systems           | Jab: eadixian at jabber.org/main
ead at ixian.com  | 650 Castro St, #120-210 | Y!M: ead0002
ixian.com/ead/ | Mountain View, CA 94041 | ICQ: 811788

More information about the conspire mailing list