« Reveal

The Jail Tapes in the Dumpster

2021-04-17 | 🔗

Sixteen-year-old Myon Burrell was sent to prison for life after a stray bullet killed an 11-year-old girl in Minneapolis in 2002. Amy Klobuchar, who was Minneapolis’ top prosecutor, brought first-degree murder charges as part of a national crackdown on gang violence – a crackdown that engulfed young men of color.  

Burrell maintained his innocence for 18 years in prison. Associated Press reporter Robin McDowell spent a year looking into his case and found that multiple people had lied about Burrell’s involvement in the shooting and that police didn’t talk to his alibi witnesses. In December 2020, the state commuted Burrell’s sentence, allowing him to walk free. 

This end to a prison sentence is rare: Burrell’s case was the first time in at least 28 years that Minnesota commuted a sentence for a violent crime case. But the factors that put Burrell in prison are not rare at all. According to The Sentencing Project, over 10,000 people are serving life sentences in the U.S. for crimes committed when they were juveniles. Half of them are Black. Burrell’s long shot reveals just how difficult it is to right a wrong in our criminal justice system. How many others like Burrell are there?

This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
Reveal is brought to by progressive one of the countries leading providers of Otto Insurance with progressives name, your price tool. You say what kind of covered you're looking for and how much you want to pay and progressive will help you find options that fit within your budget, use the name, your price tool and start an online quote today at progressive dot, com, price and coverage match limited by state law from the sooner for investigating, reporting and p or ex vis is reveal an elegant dreams was working as a maintenance man in Minneapolis and two thousand five when his boss told him too. I sell some junk left behind in a vacant office. He will only a cave article. One lawyers was leaving, he started hurling
access from the lawyers old office into a dumpster, then something at the bottom of the dumpster caught his eye. A big box of these will lose untaped about some cities about our guide dogs and get to see these out. You know, look down didn't buy any known low named at the time, but the cities were marked with something the James did recognise gonna, see. If I'm counting on you can it be counting on it. I wonder cities as at ease. jail. Take us after jail tapes, other recordings of every phone call in may make swelling custody. Often awaiting trial prosecutors are interested in these conversations, because sometimes they can evidence like people confessing to a crime or pressuring P on the outside to hide evidence. The cause can also be things the point to innocence,
gag cues. You know what you will be seen on the phone, so I took among Jim, I knew something about how the criminal justice system worked for young black men and I in eighty nine he played guilty to something. He says he didn't do in order to avoid longer, since James in his wife start listening to the jail tapes trying to piece together the story. One thing weekly even the skids was a street name of IP major, nay, my on morale, the lad I feared No, the Elgin Bertha did you, you got a quiet. Had the fat boy, you man his eye.
Do you remember you they, like you? Are you trying to help you re right away? Some things sounded strange to James and ass. He kept listening story unfolded James and his wife, and all the characters it centred on my on barrel, who is just so Sixteen, when he was arrested for gang shooting in two thousand to a stray bullet struck, and killed and eleven year old girl from the jailhouse tapes. James was listening to my aunt Co. Defendants were saying he wasn't there. My own was also saying he was innocent and James believed as somebody I need to do something about this guy, this little guy do I do he said Knee jerk do not, but he didn't do nothing, but by that time my on had been sentenced to life in prison. James called is pastor. Looking for connections who could help he got in touch with attorneys asking if they could take the case pro bono.
He contacted the media and a car, the newspaper, the lady who was investigating it. She said well make a victim line that we can do about it. I submit this. Do you listen to the sea? These I got a network so that we can do a by fifteen years. Went by James bought a suit case for the tapes and love them each time he moved. I use capital with me. Captain take with me. I'm gonna move several times by. I got him tapes room with me is that one day you know Ass Tom away, we always say we're getting money. Don't I get this well out of jail? You know cohesion media James didn't know that someone else had taken an interest in my arms seemingly hopeless case. An investigative rapporteur for the Associated Press may rob Macao. For now might sound familiar Robin was a part of the eighteen that broke the story of
They re in the sea, food industry and one a Pulitzer prize after years of breaking stories like that major Robin move back to the states and settled in Minnesota, but she wasn't expecting to find her next human rights investigation, their robins re, your partner in the story such as lenient of opium reports, has more. When robbing got back from living overseas. She moved to a small town, not far from Minnesota's older. Prison prisons always really intrigues me and made me sad. People just drive I'm on the highway and adjust its just this place. Where people got put away and you didn't really know what happen Robin called Stillwater prison and asked if she could volunteer there. The lady who answered the fawn was pleased to get someone with Robins experience the prison had a newspaper. I was so
price. There was a paper and excited by a mean. One of the things I ve always like doing is kind of mentoring, journalists and the fact that they had won at still water and that it was the oldest prison paper in the country was really exciting to me The prison mirror newsroom has three desks a tv stacks of newspapers and a White Board, but they can't call sources outside the prison and they don't have internet access. Robin small staff of three turned over frequently, but they were always white guys in a prison where half the prisoners are black Rabanus white. To one day she got a new batch of reporters, three men who were black and I'd here You know things about that lack of evidence or things that the police tactics and I was seeing it totally different side of the criminal justice system and its when
asked them at one point in alike. Is there any? one in here that you guys think is innocent and they all came up with the name, my own brought the name, My own barrel didn't mean anything to Robin, I'm new to Minnesota, so I didn't know anything about the case. They say. He was a juvenile at the time and that really interested me. My own was serving a life sentence for them. Of eleven year old, Tunisia, Edwards back in two thousand to tell you. She had been sitting of the dining room table at her home in Minneapolis, with her little sister doing homework when a bullet pierce the wall and struck her in the heart parties believe the stable it was intended for a rival gang member. There was immense pressure to solve the case. The hunt for love you're all girls killer, continues tonight. Minneapolis police are taking their intends, search through the streets, surcharges killer,
tonight's stop story. Within days, police had rounded up their suspects, sixteen year old, my unbearable and two men in the early twenties, Ike Thyssen and HANS Williams, the top prosecutes, many apple us at the time was Hennepin County attorney, Amy Cloe Bashar. She would go, onto when a U S Senate, seat and run for president closure announced first grew murder, charges for Al Thyssen and Williams are believed to be gang members. Last Friday, they drove by a person that they thought was a member of a rival gang just north of tat. He should Edwards home. They went and got a gun and came back. Thyssen Inverashiel jumped out of the car and ran between the house's through the arts and the neighborhoods, and then varietal began firing his gun at the intended target
I can HANS pleaded guilty. I got forty five years and HANS who drove the getaway car cut thirty. My aunt said he was innocent and went to trial. He was convicted when Robin started. Looking into his case, he was serving a life sentence, thorough above ten thousand people serving life sentences in the United States for crimes committed when they were juveniles. That's according to the sentencing project, a group that works to end mass incarceration most of these juvenile lifers for locked up between one thousand nine hundred and ninety three and two thousand and three, the heyday of the tough on crime. When my son was arrested, half of them are black Robinson S black. He was sixteen the same age my on was when he was arrested. Robin hung my answer, on their fridge at home. She drew a map of crime scene on her bedroom lol. so initially when I sat down to look at the court documents I started.
to wonder myself, you know is: is he innocent, because, basically, what you're getting air is the police, narrative and the prosecutors and whatever witnesses they have pulled up to kind of strengthen their case. So when you just look at, documents. Initially, it's very confused. gene and Even I started to feel like is this case that is really worth pursuing. It looks guilty police first heard Mayans name in connection with the shooting from jail inmate, and so the story about patients killing on the tv news that night was hoping to tradesmen tell to help his own case. He'd worked with police. Before, from that point on, documents show police cementing their narrative around my on as the gunman Robin read through the police report and watch the Inter patient videos and the evidence box to piece together how they built their case no good
No dna, no fingerprints linked my aunt I use a shooting up. Police had to go on with what people had told them. Please try to flesh out the tip from the original jailhouse inform it. They picked up a guy named here, from my own neighborhood. Here's the lead homicide detective, Richard Zimmermann, offering Harold Cash for any information he might have, even if it was just things he heard on the street with your usual worship. because here sometimes, if you were back hearsay working around here, say here say here. Sometimes it's like a jigsaw puzzle. This was three days after this I saw the names of the people that the distance little girl for some major dollars to me, Nobody ever know Zimmermann offers
five hundred dollars per name heralds response is hard to hear, but he says he doesn't know anything, and then he gives a handful of names anyway. He gets paid for one of them. My arms that same day, police picked up the guy. Who is the intended target of the bullet that killed TAT Asia? His name was Timmy Oliver. He was seventeen police question Timmy for eight hours, there's no recording of that, but after midnight, Timmy signed a statement saying that It was my own barrel with their eye witness statements. Secured police went looking for my on where mine was picked up for his interrogation. He initially, did not seem to understand exactly why he was there or what was going on. He thought they were there not ask about a friend who a warrant and ran away. My
three hour interrogation was videotaped. You can see him his five for three his eyes: full junior he's wearing baggy, pants, red sweatshirt and matching baseball cap. Man had head scrapes what the law small drug bust, a curfew violation, but nothing like this by this point in his life is the father of a one year old son. But when he's left alone in the room, he looks like a kid who doesn't quite understood. The gravity of the situation he spends and in his chair at one point it has some pushups when police ask him where he was the day of the shooting. He first says the Mall of America, but that wasn't true. The detective tells him the other guys. Talk to say he did it happen, tell us about about that
and as soon as he started realising that they actually were interested in him and suspected him of something he started asking for it. Mother do Russia before in most states, including Minnesota, its legal for police to question a child without notifying the parent. We asked for her and totals thirteen times it wasn't until after he asked for her the third time that they read his Miranda rights and then he continued to ask and ask and ask- and they kept saying you know like You know, like you'll, get to talk to her. You know just wait. We just want to talk to you first, when in She was in one of the rooms right next door
skin to see her son. That's also on tape, a mile to see my son, yet they were telling her the same thing. Just wait. Just wait just wait. Then they told her son suspect in a murder investigation again number one through in star wars. I would say that must be viewed in any ass. You do what you said about other people, s so enable about the opposition your lawyer issue here. And at that point they had no evidence and your convincing a mother that your son has killed a little girl The video shows Mayans mother, sobbing ass. She makes
calls on a borrowed cell phone to tell family members, the devastating news detectives go back and forth between mother and son. And they use an interrogation technic aimed at breaking down suspects. They try to make my own think his mother has turned on him and shakes her. I talked to your mom and dad's about it, and you know what your mom told me cuz. She told me you're, capable of doing that hold on You know why you came more shooting because that's that's actual, that's that because I don't even I don't even I don't even believe in that it's legal for police to lie during interrogation, but my imply about being at the Mall of America would cost them. Prosecutors would use it as evidence the old man was certified as an adult and placed in solitary confinement. A month later, his mother was killed in a car accident driving home from visiting him in jail.
When his trail came the next year he was convicted my unchallenged his conviction, the Minnesota Supreme Court overturned it. The court said the fact that he'd asked for his mother. Thirteen times indicated he didn't. understand his Miranda rights and he was granted a new trial, but five years after his first trial, he was convicted again by the time Robin started. Looking into his case he was nearly out of legal options really to get him back in court. You needed to and new evidence that would prove he was innocent and that after eighteen years seemed impossible, Robin was sceptical, find it. She wasn't sure if she could seller editors on the story, but the guise of the prison newspaper had gotten are interested
why there were such radically different takes on Mayans innocence or guilt. My and learn from the prison rumour mill that a reporter was potentially interested. In any case, his family ran or free my umbrella website and Facebook page, but they weren't getting much traction. They asked Robin if she would meet with them. They had gone through. Numerous lawyers by this point they were pretty desperate, I would say, and we're just really excited that somebody was gonna, look at their case and so over there, and you know my dad was there and his brother it was there and his stepmom was there and sister was there and everyone talking a little bit about it and an Mayans dad and his brother had both spent time in jail themselves for for crimes said they said they committed We did it, you know like we went to jail and we did it, but I wasn't there
everyone in the neighborhood knows it Mayans, wife, Lucretia Luck. It was falsehood friend who married him when he was in prison? She knew every detail of his case. This is Lucretia speaking at it community meeting by him. How are you ok the atmosphere it's hard to hear, but she sang How do you stand up against the Minneapolis Police Department? Lucretia tat? Her husband had been railroaded when Robin talked with her. Lucretia knocked down all the evidence against him. Every time she Blackwell that person's life That person must have been given something you know you if you're hearing that, again and again and again its kind like? Oh, my god, how many people are line here like this can't be. and by the end, that's what I was saying and is still you start feeling like you're kind of in this conspiracy thing, but then
then people are admitting their line or they got a crazy deal or they were pressured or threaten when we come back Robin digs into what investigators left out when they built a murder case. Again sixteen year old, mayan Beryl, including them Who says he was the real trigger man our rather him you'd still be locked up for some where did at which point did you admit to being the actual shoot, I told him that I was shooting from the beginning. You listening to reveal
hey, hey, hey, this is AL, and I don't know if you know it or not, but reveal is a non profit news organization, and that means we rely on support from listeners. Like you become a member by texting. The word reveal two hundred and forty seven, four thousand seven hundred and forty seven standard data rates apply and you can text stop at any time. Again. Text reveal to forty seven thousand four hundred and seventy four.
Thanks for supporting the show centre for investigative reporting in p r eggs, this is reveal a reality my on barrel had been locked up for half his life. when an investigative reporter started looking into his case and twenty eighteen, he was in his early thirties. serving a life sentence rub Macao had started investigating the case because she wanted to do a story about the impact that, They get tough on crime era had on teenagers, but the more she looked, the more she came to the evidence against my on so as leaning of opium reports, continues, our story in twenty nineteen Robin requested interviews with the mania
was police to talk about their investigation into my own case. She especially had questions about that video and the evidence box showing they'd offered money for hearsay. They stonewalled her, so she went door knocking briefly Zimmermann. Thank you. Watch a mere lieutenant Zimmermann. Yes, I went in problem needs our rapporteur with Associated Press. I would try and the lead homicide detective refuse to talk with her blue color Do you know what I'm gonna do I'm here to talk about? Excuse me, Mr Zimmermann, I'd like to show you a video. Can I send you a video Robin set out to find people who were there are heard something or knew something. It was slow work, A lot of the key people were dead, other people were in prison and it was just like how am I gonna find his people.
Please in their nicknames on Facebook. Now is in their real names. Super Damien leave here, Baby Damien. They know how do you know where he lives now drew up on Brian one thing that became evident to Robin is police hadn't, put much energy and collecting evidence that would support my own side of the story. on the interrogation tape, he told them or to look you dont know until you listened to the whole tape and get near the end that he says I was up. Foods get the tape police records, indicate the convenience store, surveillance footage was reviewed, but never collected and entered as evidence. My on also named to alibi witnesses. Who is supper with him at the store? As my starting to get more and more frustrated and realize you know like wait a minute, they don't believe me there being no they're coming down on me hard that they should
Just talk to his friends who I was there with Tosh or talk to Dino, and they basically are like whose Are they going to say that you were together guys like yeah, go talk to them? but neither of them was ever approach by police. It took a while, but Robin found both of them. Latasha Evans recalled standing outside CUP foods with me on that and then I don't know what we're talking about, who is definitely just out their hand and arm. I think I was smoking I, on let's say you know: we are gone. A few minutes later. A lot of police and stuff so have we here are that we just left this. My Zack, where is essential as it makes you take your ass homeless and go home,
a whole scene that I do not want to see. You get blamed for this esquires Zack worse, and I can't I can't believe. I just said that he Dublin for the other friend Dino, whose real name is John L Jones, told Robin. He went cup foods with my own that afternoon, when Dino contacted Mayans attorney, he never got back to him. That's the attorney whose tapes when the dumpster he was later suspended for neglecting client matters. The case against my unhinged on the island is testimony of Timmy Oliver, the seventeen year old, who was the intended target of the bullet that killed teacher Timmy, told the police Mayan was the shooter Timmy was killed the next year in another gunfight, so it's impossible to confirm his story, but a friend of Timaeus, who is at the scene
day says: Timmy told him a different story immediately after the gun was fired. That friend's name is Anton Williams and aunt once said to me, told him. He couldn't see this. tutor in all ran outside the irish language. What it shows for shoddy SIRI clear not only to the decision, crazy. He really our former motion and one told that story to a private, astrogator hired by Mayans family and twenty ten and one told the investigator Timmy had been pressured by police crazy use. One major me, you know poster born pursue funny You know you die? You was in trouble because you are you here. you're, really real pressure on genes are removed. Cheers
Timmy wasn't alive to testify in my on second trial, so prosecutors had to change tactics. they basically shored up the case by combing the prisons and looking for jailhouse informants. They found seven of them. I was told that that is an extraordinarily high number that often the prospect there's will rely on one jailhouse, informant, sometimes too, but seven seven kind of raises red flags. They don't have anything else in their baggage tricks, basically, jailhouse informants motivated. They can shave years off their own sentences. Some deals are hard to resist. We interviewed one of the informants whose back in prison again, The police approached me when I was in federal hoed and they ask me Did I want to do some negation, TAT bag, Terry Harrington?
Was twenty two years old and locked up on drugs and weapons charges? Suddenly he had a way to get home much faster. He knew my but he says he didn't really know anything about the shooting, so instigators brief them basically wrote me, though, what to say the hidden is hit me. So I had now still young and ahead. Fresh key is about China gowns also, do they? Terry have been facing more than sixteen years of prison time after he testified. That was cut to three. He says the decision to lie ways on him. Most of the others also had time shaved off there. Sentences according to one of my answer attorneys. Another informant has also recanted so has Ike Thyssen.
One of the three men originally arrested and tasteless killing. Remember those funds us from jail that were on the cities James White found in the dumpster. I take some was telling people that my own wasn't there. He called them skates Oh my level, we interviewed, I can print where he is serving a forty five year sentence for his role and tasteless murder. I pleaded guilty and in his plea deal he said my aunt shot the gun. I says the prosecutor and detectives told him he'd, never see the outset a prison unless he said it was my on our world free just below this. Dude in boots, we love- you still got the person. I really did it is me, I'm Lothar.
I'm sorry, I can't say who the third person actually was, but how Williams. The getaway driver named someone when he was on the witness stand and even pointed out his picture police say they looked into. It ruled that suspect out the case file. Indicates the recording of the interview with that suspect was permanently checked out in two thousand seven on behalf of the Hennepin Conny attorney's office. We were told they can't located when I can HANS and my aunt were arrested in two thousand to minneapolis- was just starting to recover from sir bring homicide rates that had earned the grim, nickname, murder apple us,
but guns and gang warfare continued to ravage poor neighborhoods after tedious killing her mother spoke at a vigil ways ways I stopped by Redondo Way that was just one of these is defenceless. Now that we ve got your attention, please. Everybody. We need to pull together as a community and do something about the rights of sick kids, get you Mallory as an editor for the Minneapolis spokesmen Recorder, the oldest black on newspaper in Minnesota. He says the crackdown that fucked up. My on is a well worn story of pinning blame. Not finding justice Amazon get shot bodies of an arms and can sobering communities like look out here, work immunity is were killing kids and so politicians is Perker Amy colleges in the world scene. Opportunity- and I take it- you know we're gonna, be don't cry, may get away. When I community one of folks in return on crime goes crime,
in our community. Right now says: the black community is over policed and mistrust runs deep, black people as intelligent enough to know that the system does not work for us or just hope for the best one of the dividing lines and how people view Mayans case as over a detail early on one police. question, my on he lied about where he was police prosecutors. Even his own white defence attorneys were suspicious if you're innocent. Why lie in Mayans community? The question was different. Why trust
lease. When we interviewed my on and stillwater prison. He told us when we learn that lesson. He was twelve neighbour attacked his older sister with Switchblade and cut her hand, Mayans mom called police when the squad rolled up to their apartment, man was out front on his bike. Police told him to freeze and put his hands in the air. Mayan was confused and didn't comply. One of the guards grab me of my boy, Drag me down. The stairs drive me through the front of my yard and put me on. It was like a fence in the front, so my mom said no. She crying she like. That's my baby likes. You know he didn't do anything so they like put our guns on em. In my shut up, you know like whatever was handled is an arm. Everybody came out as a whole. Bunch of people out there, like you, know us a little kid like no get your hands off and he's
like our member till daylight pages digging is offence and a gas like points at the top of the fence. Ages, no Gran Ma Ma much has entered into a fence nor Pauline Old seriously the free nominal tar You now want to really breakdown from everybody, but I'm heart now remember just be a shook ideas. The police police took my I'm downtown and his mom had to go. Get em out. Mayans older sister confirmed his account of the incident, the encounter with police seared, two things into my arms memory: the police warrant on his side, and he remembered his moms look of helplessness ass. She watched them. Take him away. when my and was arrested in the early two thousands, both Democrats and Republicans core embracing a tough on crime message to get away.
Amy Clover shower ran for the: U S, Senate in two thousand and six it was a radio at her opponent. Republican Mark Kennedy ran against her if you're calling from one of the neighborhood, where violent crimes increase thirty five percent last three years, while any closure was prosecutor, we probably won't be going door to door in your neighborhood Cuba, Shahrazad featured tenacious mother. A little girl temptation was murder. Amy saw to it that those gang members put away like Kennedy should be ashamed years later, and twenty nineteen when Amy Closure was running for president. She brought up tasteless case on the debate stage in Houston. I am proud of the work our staff did four hundred people and our office the cases that came to US african american community that came to us. They said there was no justice for their little kids. There was a kidney Byron, Philips that was shot on its front porch. No one had bothered to figure out who did it. When I came into that office, we were
with the community groups. We put up billboards, we found the shooter and we put him in jail. We did the same for the killer of a little girl named Asia Adwords, who is doing our homework at our kitchen table and was shot through the window allies like loud. Did she just go there, because This really turned it into. something that was a topical story, so I jumped on a plane. Robin had been reporting lions case for months she flew to New York. to persuade her editors, it was a story worth publishing. She went to the AP office with tape of her interviews. Take a lesson. and it did. I mean there were like mouths open what
quota showers, fresh reference to my aunt case, made it a bigger story, provoked people like MEL Reeves from the spokesman recorder. She forgot that she had a gun and in a closet, a bigger one may Mayan burial, and you know, Like me, a good guy, a good point. who's gonna things out there were lots of people haven't forgotten. Do we want the free, my umbrella, Facebook page, live stream to rally in downtown Minneapolis, calling for trial for weeks Robin had been trying to get senator closer on the record. To answer questions about her offices, handling of my own case- and I was making a clear like this- is really the explosive this is not going to be something you don't want to address, and certainly I
if that they want to get in front of it. The campaign released a two paragraphs, meant that my Umberell had been tried and convicted twice, and the second trial occurred when Senator closure was no longer the prosecutor. It said if there's new evidence, this case it should be immediately reviewed by the court in January of twenty twenty robins deep dive into my arms case ran on AP and Minnesota public radio. Their reporting raises questions about how police conducted there segregation and whether the teenagers sentenced to life may have been wrongfully convicted reaction with Swift on Fox NEWS Sunday, Chris Wallace grilled club a sharp? What I allowed you to have your not answering my question: how do you know about the fact that there was this questionable evidence that the police were coming up with? I didn't know about this new.
I don't know I didn't know about this new evidence until I saw this report I I couldn't have. I haven't been in the office for twelve years, Sunny Huston when, after her on the view. You are you running, senator ringing? You're? U s senator now your powerful woman. What do you intend to do to write the jail, walk, We called for the office in the courts to review the evidence that is what we must do, and the justice system clover shower called on her successor, Hennepin Cunning MIKE Fremont to review any new evidence in the case. Freeman had overseen by a second trial in two thousand eight, the one that really on all the jailhouse informants. He released a video statement standing by the verdict. Contrary to some reports, this was solid police investigation. and prosecution. We believe the right man was convicted in this heinous crime. However, as we have said before
or if new evidence is submitted to us, we will gladly review it as I gazed about my own case swirled. Around club ashore, the candidate tried to redirect the criticism of the case to those who had the power to reopen it. She met with my own family and supported an independent legal review, but some of and supporters demanded she dropped out of the race, is almost unbelievable to see how this night unfolded. Senator code, which are set to rally in her former state only to have a determined group of testers change. Things are the protesters marched into Saint Louis High School about thirty minutes before the radicals senator closure already been pulling in the single digits. The next day she withdrew from the presidential race, breaking right now, Senator Amy Closure has announced that she is suspending her campaign.
Following breaking news at the moment, CBS End has learned. Senator Amy clover. Char is dropping out of the democratic race for president and will endorse Joe Biden just a few months after Amy Clue, upset, the presidential is another major news. Event happens in Minneapolis. There's an awakening. The two people are starting to ask really important questions rather than just blow trusting the criminal justice system to get it right, how the death of George Floyd puts renew detention. Mayan barrels case. That's next on reveal
from the centre for investigative reporting in p r ex this is reveal an adolescent Rob Mcdowell investigation, broad national attention to my on barrels case when it first came, January of last year, but my on was still locked up in prison serving a life sentence for murder. He insisted he didn't commit. He has to go before the pardons board, but the boy or it hadn't commuted a sentence for violent crime in decades and then for months. The Robin story was published on here after having culture hermetically that's the dispatchers call from the day, George Fluid, Minneapolis former police off Sir Deryck Chauvelin is now on trial for Floyd's death Floyd was outside of cup foods. That's the same convenience store where my
on barrels said he was on the afternoon of Are you shooting with Floyd's death, long simmering tensions between the Minneapolis police and communities of color exploded. Rob wondered how Mayans case will be affected. I think what actually happened is that it put a new spotlight on my hands case and made it more believe What are some people who may have been doubting that Minnesota actually got it wrong Sancho as lenient of opium reports continues? Our story.
after Robin Strand Mayans case, was released. Senator Amy Club Bashar called for an independent review. A panel of legal experts examined the case and in December, came out with their findings. The fifty nine page report said the police appear to have suffered from tunnel vision while investigating lands case and they ignored witnesses and evidence that might have helped clear him. The panel concluded no purpose was served by Mayans continued incarceration. They wrote two things have chain:
dramatically since TAT Ye shall Edwards killing in two thousand to one as my own barrel. The other is the way our nation looks at the sentencing of juvenile offenders, such as the sixteen year old at issue. In this case, the chair of that panel was mark as large a former assistant. U S attorney alot professor. He said the idea that young people who commit crimes are so called. Super predators has been widely discredited. Brainchild should bear in one thing when we see the Leinen report uses that has breached the idea. The juveniles need basins differently to the daughter, because there are two different states in life and are more capable of change. The harsh sentences that lead to mass incarceration may be falling out of favour, but there are still thousands of people locked up for life for crimes they committed as denials Laura Nigh Writer CO director of the centre on wrongful convictions, that Northwestern University season increasing interest in revisiting those cases.
Over and over again, these stories are being told and capturing the public's. attention in a way that hasn't happened before there's an awakening. The town People are starting to ask really important questions rather than just blindly trusting the criminals. The system to get it right. A week after the legal panel davits assessment, my end, That is a chance to appear before the Minnesota Board of pardons. It's a three member panel made up of the governor, the attorney general and the Supreme Court chief justice. They have to be unanimous bored hadn't commuted a sentence for a violent crime. In almost thirty years, the chief justice refused herself, so it was down to two My own sat in a conference room at Stillwater prison dressed in a white muslin prayer cap he'd been elected, a mom by his fellow inmates. He prepared
to address the governor and attorney general of resume. He would have just under twelve minutes to describe the man he had become in eighteen years behind bars Please proceed. Mr Borrell man began by talking about t shut. This is not anyway. I bore me trying to minimise the tragedy of the wars eleven year old ties with Margo, Our values was everybody else. There was affected by her mother back in two thousand to, but man said he didn't. Do it
very, very old man. Who's been worn out with light and horse ready. For me, the board wouldn't determine his guilt or innocence. It would focus on his character and if he should remain behind bars, my indescribable the programmes had completed in the hopes that one day he might get to go home and live life as a productive member of society not is finally being ready for me at the decimal situation of extraction is and was no drawings and waste. I was going to give up another mine's attorney and a few others spoke on his behalf. Then the board announced its decision. I govern walls vote in favour of granting this request. Mr Byrne,
you ve been granted a commutation to your sense of twenty years. The commissioner of corrections work with you and your family immediately. I wish you the best. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you appreciate my own, would be released after eighteen years with a final two years of his twenty year sentence, unsupervised, release senator Claw Bashar issued a statement calling at the right decision. He hadn't been pardoned. He was still sullen and he would wherein ankle bracelet. But my on what free from prison that night That was Serbia with that people are lobbying us five, all in a hard on change, screaming, like any other source of real, is like coming from the darkness into the light. You know if those
oh good, just felt like every step, every step that psychologist light bricks, just break some breaks embraces the arm over. My shoulder he was walking out doors in the same doors I've been going in every week and it just really really. I can't even explain it. There was one best feelings at hand in two thousand to My umbrella came up against a system. They couldn't hear his pleas of innocence, police prosecutors, even his own defence attorneys, let him down, but it was painfully obvious to someone who had listened to the tapes
James White, the maintenance man who found the jail tapes and the dumpster emailed the AP in December. He had something he wanted to give to my on five days after is is my I'm came to his home. But at a european level for Europe, You heard from all these years, Saturday night. I think of nobody doing anything, but hopefully they said they could come out of this. You know, because you didn't deserve nothing to happen to you deserve net position and never been jogged Mayan, as so fighting for full exoneration, the tapes could help improve his innocence, so he won't be a fella anymore. The men shook hands and embraced and then they reminisce about men. They knew from prison fireflies. Oh man, five thousand year passed
Why are they dog? Aha, he just two years ago, three years you my own fights to be exonerated Robin Macao keeps getting calls melody and subject to monitoring the plan of action lines like correctional facility. direction Spring, like almost every day from somebody involved, and the martyr saw your barking up the wrong tree. You can't you, I don't know. I'm scared me. She was the one all here. No work If I hadn't done my story and Getting these same cause an looking at their cases, I'd be like yeah, he looks guilty and now, when I get the cause- and I look up, the cases
then they start seeing the same patterns that I saw with my own eyes. just have another weight on my shoulders of this guy could be innocent or at the very least serving sentence that's way too long and I are never never gets the case that was associated press reporter, Rob Mcdowell along with opium reports so Chaz lenient, most people serving life senses don't have an investigative reporter show up to volunteer their prison in Spain a year reinvested given case. Most don't have time. To a presidential candidate to make
the story more appealing to news editors and George Floyd's killing people We also played a role: Floyd's death gripped, a soda and put a spotlight on systemic racism before the eyes of the world. There, efforts around the country to review old cases. Like my ass about a dozen states have set up sensing review units or conviction, Review units Minnesota. Is establishing one, but it's unlikely All the Mayans out there will get anyone to give their old cases. A second look Our story was produced by Robin Mcdowell of the eight p and such as lenient of a pm reports. It was edited by Catherine Winter of a pm reports.
Georgie Mason CO, wrote the Ap Series and assisted with reporting, thanks to Npr news and care eleven for archival footage. Thanks also reveals, gave them espousing Victoria Baronet gives our general Council our production, man, Amy Mustafa original School sound designed by the dynamic dual J Breeze is to Jim Briggs and Fernando my man, Yo Aruba, that help this week from bread, Simpson Digital producer is Sarah Merk Arsenius Crystal Sharper sue me eh. laws are in turn, editor in chief executive producer Kevin Sullivan theme, music is by Colorado, lightning support for it. Is provided by the Raven David Logan Foundation, the John D and Catherine tumor. the foundation? The Jonathan Logan Family Foundation before Foundation, The housing Simons Foundation, the democracy fund and the in as much foundation review
physical production at the center for investigative reporting and p r x, amount lesson and remember. There is always more to the story.
Transcript generated on 2021-04-17.