August 18. 1992. Somerville, Texas. A grandmother, her daughter, and four grandchildren were discovered dead in a home that was the scene of a fire. All six had been brutally murdered. Investigators got a big lead in the case at the funeral for the Davis family members and it ultimately resulted in the confession of one suspect and the identity of his accomplice. But the case wasn't that simple. As time went on, issues with the interrogation of their lead suspect and a review of the prosecution's case would cast serious doubts on their theory of the case and the trial itself. Join us as we discuss a case that shows the hunt for justice and the hunt for the truth aren't always part of the same mission.
This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
From wondering, I do tighter a just, then I'm doing pretty good. How are you good just and recently, we had both watched An interesting series on netflix- and I know not all of you enjoyed it, but the confession killer was
I really got into because years ago we watched a movie called henry porch of a serial killer, which you know the star of that he was a big star on the walking dead for awhile it was a very interesting weird kind of india, film tons of bans in Israel, metal bans all kinds, sampled, henry portrait of a serial killer. It went kind of underground viral at the time, so any time I would listen to a new album. I would here alive being sampled and from that movie, and for those of you who don't know about Henry Lucas, supposedly here one of the most notorious serial killers in american history. The confession killer, peels back the layers of that story to show you the truth about maybe lucas and about how he came to be known as a notorious serial killer were planning to go into this whole thing and discuss it.
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how an extent vacations tonight's case is definitely an interesting one with a lot of high emotions I guess I don't know. How would you summarizes case here? This is a very different case on so many levels, because it involves murders and involves possible wrongful convictions. Well, I don't of wrongful convictions. Is right term a number of times in the past. We cover cases where the police will have a theory of the crime. they will work to establish that their theory is correct, and I'm not sure that's correct way, go about things, but that's how I go. In some cases. It can lead to really strange results. And I would say that tonight's case is very much representative of that. We're talking about anthony charles grave
Now the reason I say his name is because he's one of the convicted and we'll get into it, but the set up is in august of ninety ninety two somerville texas a number of people in a home or murdered it was by. Davis, who is forty five? She had daughter at home. He was sixteen and a number of grandchildren, four of them in fact, all were murdered one night, the authorities risk onto house fire they go when they find the bodies its devastating. This became huge news at the time, and everyone demanded justice, The youngest victim was four years old. So it's this it's hard to comprehend. How could this happen? what would be the motive for someone to murder these people left. In the wake of this, is a man by the name of Keith Davis. He was
hobbes son. He lost pretty much his entire family that night and so he also wanted answers war. A small town. It was a very brutal crime. Most of the victims were stabbed or bludgeoned to death in the House was set on fire. It was definitely an arson and gasoline was used as an accelerant. It was august, eighteenth, nineteen. Ninety two, this fire was called in at two fifty six: a am the summer EL police chief notified the fire department that they needed to come at once when they got there. Six bodies, including Bobby Davis, her daughter, Nicole, who is sixteen nine year old, granddaughter dmitri and sisters, brittany and Lee Erin, who are six sixty five and then four year old J. They believe the fire was set to destroy all evidence of what had occurred in the home,
As we know, you can use fire, to destroy evidence, but it doesn't always work in this case they responded. They put out the fires and they re able to tell exactly what happened to this poor family, the tec this rangers assist. Did the somerville police with the investigation they didn't have a lot to go on, but You know what they do. Is they start with the family and they go out. So they talk to Keith. They talked other relatives it's not really until the funeral that the big break happens, and why is that? Just as well as certain individual shows up and he's bandaged all over his face? his hands cause he's got third degree burns all over him. Well, that's kind suspicious, when there has been an arson, you have a whole whole family, that's been wiped out,
the funeral happened on august 22nd, one thousand nine hundred and ninety two, and this was for all six members of the Davis family and they held it in the high school's gymnasium about five hundred people were there. You mention it was a small town. They said that was about a third of the sea its population, so this suspicious individual is named robber carter. He happened to be the father of one of the children killed and the home he's a relative of the family he's covered and burns. This gets the attention of the texas rangers, as one would assume, and his explanation for his wounds is that his lawnmower exploded right. It doesn't make a lot of sense. because you know it's not like he can produce the lawnmower that exploded and while he was at this funeral, he tried to speak with members of the family, in fact, before
you got married to woman by the name of teresa. He was in a relationship with LISA Davis, whose, Jason was murdered. He went over to her lisa and tried to give her a hug to console her. I mean it's his two but he's trying to conceal her and she slipped away he said what happened: She can see that he had been burned badly these members of a family? They were in a house fire. So of course her. Suspicion is. Why are you burned yeah? He sticks out really bad. Here it turns into a scene. It turns into this whole escapade of him at this funeral cause everybody's. Looking like, oh now, I think we know what happened and roberts wife teresa, who also goes by cookie She has a burn on her arm, so it stiffly standing out to people that this look suspicious, so he's being interrogated by the texas rangers, he's obviously detained in pole
into custody because they don't have a lotta leads here and now they have their prime suspect. a robber is telling the authorities hey had nothing to do with these murders and they're, saying pull good all your burns, I mean. How do you explain that he said why is trying to burn weeds and my yard and flame. Got out of control, and then he got burned. So this is now a second story as to how he was burned in its overs. Face I mean to get your face. Burned is take Yeah, yes, all over his left hand his neck, his ears and pretty much the entire left, out of his face and if you seem their pictures of him with the bandages and without his messed up, he probably. should not have shown up to the funeral, but that was his undoing, because that's what got him on the radar? so. The next step is, in course, polygraph where they good, for it in the way understand it. I was recently talking to a detective and he said polly
so really only useful to help gauge a suspect were a witness its lake? Will you take a polygraph, so what's the reaction of that in mother, taking it you can kind of I urge their emotions and things than just it's a feeling out process, and I get that I and I think it's actually a useful tool, because this kind of like a formal interview now as opposed to just go. shining someone if their opposed to it. If there for it, if they're nervous, there's all these factors that one can gauge which again there, admissible, but here too says exam and after several hours. It's eleven p m at night he's failed this polygraph and, as a result, the interrogation will continue well into the night. Now they start recording him and his
mony or his statements at around three a m, so they ve had him all day and all night, and he talks about how he had been to the Davis home on the night of august eighteenth, but as most confessions go, he tries to do since himself from the actual crime. By naming somebody else, I was there It wasn't really me they did all ass. I was just there. So is Where is changed? Three times and now he's pulling name out of a hat of who actually did the crime and he says Anthony graves was to blame. He says that he dropped anthony off at the Davis home and It asked if he knew any women like anthony and them worth trying to find women to hook up with, or women to pay for sex and Robert had only come up with the teenager
whole at this house, which I don't know how you get a teenager out of a house full of people, You're two grown men, but that's their plan according to robert, so he said he dropped anthony off. He gained access to the home while he was waiting. He said he heard shouts and screams coming from inside the house and he went inside to find anthony killing the entire, higher family, blood was everywhere and anthony was going from room to room just often all the family members. So he, described how the murders occurred. Where the comes were murdered at where they were left and how the fire was started, All of this information seem to corroborate with the evidence that the police had so they knew he was there. So at this There is no doubt in their mind, robber Carter was involved, and so he says that human anthony were looking for women.
And they go to the house. Anthony goes in wipes the entire family out and then gets a gas can and burns it down. Doesn't really fill in any of the blanks of why Anthony did this? What his motive was just that he went crazy and before he knew it, Anthony had wiped out the entire family and Robert further implicates himself by saying that he burned his own clothes that he had been wearing and that he got rid of the weapons that were used to murder the family. The weapons were a knife, hammer and a gun. So, of course, the texas rangers the police there thinking there are three weapons. Why would one person go in with re weapons? This is something we've talked about before. Why would there be one individual three wept,
but their thinking. It's not likely that one person did this. It's a common sense assumption, but it's not totally impossible or even implausible that one person uses multiple weapons, but this is what they're going with and they think how could one person do this? How could one person wipe out an entire family? How could one person do it with multiple weapons or instruments, and Now they shift their focus nicole, the sixteen year old had been shot to death, and while they were so king, Robert Carter's home. They found that his pistol was missing. This is, he said it would be, but they found twenty two caliber copper coded bullets in his home and when tested those they found that they were manufactured on the same day as those that were found in Nicole, so they were able to match the ammunition to what was used in the crime, so
essentially robert saying that Anthony had access to his gun and all the staff, and it's a little shaky. If you really think about it, you're wondering what was Why did he go in? How did he know where gas can was? There are so many questions here, but again when you have some into saying ok, I did it it's easy. So why wouldn't they run with? It they had searched his home on august. Twenty third, ninety ninety two, now. There are also looking into robert and his wife's activities after the murders, because, again cookie, his wife Teresa had a burn on her arm and they found a suspicious august nineteen. Ninety ninety two they found that cookie had gone away. She found out about the murders and become distraught someone who she worked with called her husband, Robert. They were trying to say: hey, you should come get your wife, she's really upset, and he just hung up so then her boss cos.
robert for some reason it took him a long time to get there to pick her up again. I do want to make a big deal this, but this is just the thoroughness of them, trying to establish a time line of work what's going on their life after the murders and people's behaviour after murder is very telling because divert from their normal patterns or if they don't seem to care about their wives or what have you how this makes them look more suspicious, but some of cookies, coworkers notice when robber showed up there, He was wearing a long sleeved jogging suit and a baseball cap that was pull down over his face but they could see something going on with his face, even though he had the cap on, they felt something was really wrong with him and sure enough. They found out that he had been treated by a doctor. Mark english for second degree,
burns. Now the other thing that was noted, mrs noted, by a nurse at that office, is she said that roberts wife made it a point to say: don't for his ears with bandages, because here stand out at the funeral on twenty third. Ninety. Ninety two is when Robert is formally arrested for the six murders. All the evidence seems to point at robert, but because he had named many. The police get an arrest warrant an go after Anthony he was arrested at his mother's apartment and brought into the police station. There were surveillance cameras in the booking room, and You get to see anthony, be charged with capital murder and you get to see his response out there on the inner webs. It's pretty dramatic. He was
simply astounded with the charge that he was given. He had asked multiple times or that what's goin on. Why am I here and no one would talk to him when they finally told him why he was there and what is being charged with. He seemed completely taken aback like what yeah. So they read. Em is miranda rights and tell him There is no bond, so he is just arrested. Now he says is big mistake. You know I'll just talk to you. Guys will get this Austria, I doubt, as most people who are accused of a crime, there are just like oh I'll deal with this and, if they're wrongfully accused, then they definitely think truth will out, and I don't want to come off as being biased that this man is innocent or guilty. I'm just giving my thoughts on what somebody is accused, and they have committed a crime
The authority see it anthony, is not being cooperative because he's not willing to talk about robert according to anthony he only a robber in passing, he only knew because of robbers, wife, cookie, that's how they usually referred to her so he didn't have anything to tell him he's like. I can't tell you anything they like you need to confess. You now need to talk about what happened here. I don't know what you're talking about. I have nothing to confess: virtually they give up and they just whisk him off now because well does he really helps anything roberts over there seemed like a canary, so they have his confession. The running with that so Anthony gets an attorney because he has a friend name roy Alan writer. They both work at the same place. This attorney is dick, wherein that's a good friend getting you an attorney and apparently a good attorney. His friend even fronts, the ten thousand dollars for this attorney. That's how much roy believes and anthony
So he's thinking this won't take long, gotta, good attorney. I know Anthony couldn't have done this Beware and even goes in interviews several people who saw anthony at his mother's apartment. that night of august eighteen, ninety nine, you too so we're talking about his brother, whose arthur nineteen, his sister dietrich, who is twenty one, and also at these girlfriend Yolanda Mathis She got there just before midnight. All three of them said a we were there with them. And actually said that she and anthony eight food and stayed up talking and then went to bed. So you should be ok, he has three alibis but these alibis are his family members and his girlfriend right. So how much do those way out? Well,
according to his family and according to his friends, they don't care if this is a family member who is wiped out an entire family they're not going to cover for him now, and I can say that everyone can lie for a family member. But when little kids were staff, and burned. I think that might be a line that some family members won't cross and be like yeah. He he wasn't home and he was out doing something, I'm not going to vouch for him, but in this case all their stories are lining up, so that doesn't seem suspicious at all. Be sure to check out where the crowded sing in theatres July, fifteenth based on the best selling Book comes a juicy mystery full of romance murder and deadly secrets. Daisy Agur Jones plays kyar an outsider, who grew up alone in the marshes of north carolina
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three and the lights were still on any at a step over anthony and Yolanda to turn off the light. Does its small place at the rat you're, not gonna, miss. If somebody So I mean his brother even says at about three m. He had to step over anthony and Yolanda to make sure the front or is locked august six nineteen. Ninety two robert carter went before a grand jury, historic changed again, but this time he totally doesn't one eighty, the problem as he says he involved, Anthony involved his wife cookie, wasn't involved and tries to get away from everything this is? Is I'm just run for it? This point, but both men are indicted and placed in jail. This is while they wait for trial The rangers are looking at cookie and her testimony. She wasn't very believable, she
urge the nurse that was looking at robert to make him look less suspicious. This is also where they find out that she had a bitter rivalry with LISA. She was the woman that Robert carter wasn't a relationship with before cookie, so the two women. Obviously there is a bit of a rivalry there. It was said that LISA wanted robber back and she was hoping that he would leave cookie for her, but she also ordered that paternity test, which may have been a factor as well may have been hey. I'm going to prove to your wife that this is your kid so this is building a motive for Robert carter and cookie really. Yet it kind of looks bad for her because she does have a burn on her arm and because she had tried to get the nurse to make him look less conspicuous. We wouldn't stand out so much, but there's no way to make someone who is cover
and second degree burns less conspicuous at a funeral where the victims had been burned. The very fact that she said anything at all. It really stood out to the nurse and now, of course, the authorities are running with it and there really hoping that robert, despite his denials, now that he was involved in all this and that their hoping, he will discuss his wife's involvement in october. One thousand nine. Ninety they had a bond hearing for anthony graves. There we're a couple of you can say: law enforcement individuals. There was a sheriff's deputy and a jailer who said that they had heard anthony, admit the killings, the jail. said he heard, and You say robber yeah. I did it and don't say a thing about it. However, he said he had never written down. He just said he heard it so he's giving you his from memory. What he had heard Anthony say that this is.
you're a vigorous measures. It is here that I don't even know if it's here said this is literally some guy saying something with no evidence it. I guess he didn't write it down. He didn't mark down what time it was said. Anything he just said. Here's what I heard them say it's because when they were holding these two gentlemen, robert and anthony they were in cells across from each other, and there was an intercom system down there and they could hear everything they were saying so the sheriffs deputy said, I heard mr grave state to Mister carter that he had done the job forum and to keep his damn mouth shut, So he said I just heard that the intercom, how does he even which gentlemen said what at that point. Well, it was very hot out at the time and there saying that the jail had huge fans running. They also say that have these inner comes didn't work, but somehow some way this jailer or this
conversation, which is cool, hey, we got to believe law enforcement when they say that they heard two gentlemen talking about a murder, so this is testimony at trial. So the judge heard from the jailer and heard from the show deputy and said I'm denying your bail anthony so now Anthony's looking at a big trial, The costs are astronomical, so he loses his attorney february. Nineteen, eighty. Ninety four robert carter was tried and they tried him in the town of Bastrop. They had tried to move the trial to another town, but they didn't think it was necessary. probably because its Robert carter, I mean who, is he right- the trial things ridiculous me, as they have a good amount of evidence on Robert, they can establish that the was found. His home were connected to the murder of Nicole, who was sixteen. They so have those burns they also have. Is
for changing stories. This is a guy that no one can trust and they're like he had motive. You know his wife had an issue with LISA. He had an issue with LISA. Obviously, something happened at that home. Some kind of an organ Some kind of aggression which result in the murder of these six people. Unsurprisingly, on February eighth, he is found guilty and sentenced to death death row inmate again, there is no way from the battle that He probably should have just tried to take a plea deal, but maybe no one would have given one I dunno, but it just seemed like this was a foregone conclusion now for anthony graves kind of a different story, because guess what they don't have evidence on Anthony graves. They have the word of Robert Carter, that's what they have on him, but they're taking him to trial. Why well because of district attorney?
Charles the Besta, he cut a deal with Robert in exchange for his testimony against anthony. He had also talk to anthony's friend Roy they'd, never actually found the murder weapon. The knife that was used so they talked to Roy and they pretty much questioning him and Roy admits to giving a knife to anthony at some point in that he actually had the same knife in his possession a very similar knife, and this prosecutor takes that knife from Roy and they give it to the forensic experts who determine that this knife was a perfect match for the worse, once found on the bodies, especially the children. Now a perfect match a knife womb I'm just gonna go out on a limb here I mean we know that hair follicle analysis is
pretty much pseudoscience by mark analysis, not the past Somehow we can match a knife to a wound. I think it's possible, but here's the problem. the knife that Roy handed over to the a was pretty flimsy, they're not lie, actual knives. That soldier the views or a hunter, these are souvenir knives. In fact, Roy had to use a rubber band to rap round the housing of then I have to hold it together. So if you're sick having somebody multiple times, but this flimsy knife you're going to get a blood on that handle which, by the way the handle wasn't rubber anything. It was a metal handle So if you're stabbing specially a skull, your hands gonna start slipping and this is something that we see a lot it doesn't mean it has to be there, but the perpetrator. A stabbing, usually has wounds on his hands from the knife because they get in
two anthony didn't have any wounds on his hands. Yet this is the perfect match and anthony was given a knife that was never produce the later. So this is their theory. Is this now existent murder weapon. Well, now we have what would have been used and it's a perfect match seems a bit flimsy and not only that, but if you're having to hold together rubber band. How are you going to convince me that was used to stab victims a dozen times, each or more? I dont understand that it just doesn't make any sense, but again, if europe, ready figure or, if you're a fancy da. You can get up there and say this is the weapon, and maybe people won't question it. Maybe from afar that souvenir knife looks deadly. October twentieth. Ninety ninety four anthony charles graves faces his trial. This was held an angle ten and, of course he wanted it
of venue. Here's the interesting thing, though, the day before that trial began, this will be on the nineteenth of october. the d a wind went, visited proper carter who is being held in jail, said you're, gonna testify forest us tomorrow right cause anthony's trials. Beginning you gotta make sure everything's go before you put somebody on the stand. Well, Robert told them. I did all by myself. It was all me so another recant meant that Anthony was not involved, so he goes and gets Roberts brother, has him talk to Robert he's, trying to get everything lined up because he really wants to get anthony for this. The authorities texas, rangers the police and charles of esa, they all say there were multiple people involved. They needed least two of them and without roberts testimony their case against Anthony gets real flimsy. So what is the best to do next he starts really trying to hammer home like we think your wife,
involved think Anthony was evolve. We need you to talk they even give him another polygraph which again he fails. So then Robert says cookie was there. She had the hammer robert had the gun and anthony had the knife. He said I'll testify, but the dna is still work. reed he's like we need to collect him early the next morning and make sure he's on board. We need to stick with them because, He could change his mind, in thirty a m though that next morning now you're saying I can't give her up, meaning I'm not going to. say anything about my wife at all, Sebastian says alright, look will forget about her, but what about anthony? And so he says, okay, so they cut a deal. He agrees to testify against anthony graves, which, let's break this down quick. He said he wasn't going to testify the d.
Yea says I'm going to go after your wife and you need to talk about your wife which, by the way, I thought they couldn't force you to testify against your spouse, but that's thrown out. So is this not an attempt at intimidation by a to get somebody to testify from an outsider point of view, yes, you're the d. No Robert testified at this trial against anthony. He gives another story. He said he and Anthony went to the Davis home. He said that then he was one who stabbed all the victims and robert had shot Nicole. He didn't talk about the hammer, didn't elaborate on that. He said then they poured the gasoline throughout the house set on fire and that's how he got burned and he said that anthony was there because he was angry with Bobby Davis. She had gotten a promotion, despite the fact that thought his mother deserve that promotion. They both worked at the same place, so he was really upset about that. That's the motive why Anthony graves would have been at this?
house. He also said that he hadn't talked about all of this to the grand jury, because Anthony graves had threatened him and even choked him when their cells have been unlocked, so he was attacked by anthony and that got him to be quiet, as he was afraid. But there is no record of this attack from the jailers. Okay got it. So I'm just going to say this now cause it's an important thing. I had said that declaring had dropped off as graves attorney A new attorney had come in garvey, but garvey didn't know, apparently about the recant recruitment from Robert carter. then he said, and then he wasn't involved so couldn't really use that a trial. There is no way for him to cross examine in a way that would have been more effective because he didn't know about that. Apparently.
during this trial. Those best really tries to get this trial locked up in under his control and on redirect he says- and this is when he's talking to rob- carter. With the exception of the time you went to the grand jury and denied any involvement. All the different stories you have told have all involved Anthony graves. Have they not, and robert said they have. That's that's controversial simply because that might be an over simplification, that should tell you mostly why Sebastian believes that Anthony grew. was involved in these murders. More than anything else, that's why he's prosecuting him, because again they don't have any kind of forensic evidence tying him to the crimes. It's all down robert car. This is why sebastus spent so much time for our carter making sure he was there and he was testifying because without him, there's nothing so again,
souvenir knife. It looks like a switchblade Roy Reuter, which is Anthony graves good friend. He talks about giving anthony one of the two knives that he had purchased. They could never find that knife and, of course, Anthony had said I dunno where it is. You know. Frankly, the knife looks cheap. I probably wouldn't have kept it either. Here's where the medical examiner testified that the knife match the dimensions of wounds, but then again on cross examination, garvey asked him about it and he said well, it was a common dimension, so it's not like you could match it all depends on how you ask the question: isn't it yeah? It really is and any knife that was the same with could have made that's a wound, so you can't say it's a perfect match. But again we see this kind of stuff go in testimony and if it's not challenged by the defense all now
ble and now they have for people who testified as to having heard the two men, robber carter and aunt. Charles graves discussing the murders while they were in cells across from each other. They're. All these reasons why we shouldn't necessarily believe their testimonies but the best. I had him there and they testified. It is no that one of the men was jailed for forgery charges. At the time Really all you need to know is they had four people willing to testify that they overheard them discussing the murders- and I hate this because here about jailhouse confessions, all the time jailhouse niches whenever they testify there always told. Were you given anything for your testimony and again, depending on how you ass, question they can say no, I wasn't given any material I item, I wasn't given any kind of gift, but they usually get
a reduction in their sentence. So you have to ask specifically about that. Otherwise they can literally not perjure themselves by saying no, I didn't I'm just doing this out of the this in my heart and trust me now. buddy imprisoned. Just does something out of the kindness of their hard. They all have a price. That's the bartering system of our jails, their defence attorney does a good job again of establishing that yeah, there's and intercom system, but it doesn't work consistently and there was a fan and a television going on nearby so how they pick out anything. Frankly, it's pretty preposterous, but you know it is what it is the DA's trying to prove his case, So the defense also does one more thing. That's really amazing here I say amazing because it's like a lot of times will save the defense, didn't really mount a good defence, but here is
seems, like the defence is doing a good job in one of the things that they go after is the motive for anthony graves. They called to testify Wanda more, who was a supervisor at random state school. where Bobby Davis and anthony Charles graves mother worked. They said that, when Bobby had been promoted, that Anthony's mother didn't show any interest in that position. She didn't seem to care, because you know she would know. Did she ever come in and ask you about the position? Did she ever express interest? No, no! No! So where's the motive, their blows it out of the water. It just doesn't make sense, and I know people kill for the stupidest reasons, but to wipe out an entire family for work position. Dispute seems ready extreme, but there are some issues with a defence, and I think one of the major problems is unique alibi witnesses. Just an answer
we had multiple alan witnesses but one ended up testifying his brother arthur what went wrong here. You can't just have one person show up to defend you, while his girlfriend Yolanda, who should have been his prime alibi witness because they went and got food. They did all these things that night she's going to be the star witness for him, but she's, approached by I said, basta and the judge. Well, what happened was semester, and this is just out in the courtroom asked the judge: hey for we bring in Yolanda. She should be read her rights because she might be charged. well. When you Yolanda heard about that, she laughed she was gone because she was afraid that they were going to go after her, and she didn't want any part of that. She got scared charged as an accessory to the murder of this family. This is something we talk about even more before.
This episode is over, but intimidation, all. in this attorneys mine he's probably like this is just smart cuz. I can get away with it and you can't go after me on that. I'm surprised you didn't, do it against all of the alibi witnesses, because if anthony saying he was with all these people that night essentially they're all accessories in the da's mind rise a good point. Maybe he didn't think of it until after arthur testified is difficult to say, but either a she laughed. So he's out his main alibi, witness his brother testifies, but it's his brother and of course he would live so the jury, maybe not buying into this alibi. Most of you No I've been an audible subscriber for like a decade now, audible offers an incredible select,
of audio books across every genre. I personally love the audible originals. They have everything from top celebrities. Down experts and, as an audible member, I get access to a growing selection of audio books, the originals podcast, it's all included in my membership I get one title a month to keep and I get to hear exclusive podcast that I can't find anywhere else. I just did the audio book anti social about online, extremism, techno, utopians and the hijacking of the american conversation. Audible hope you discover new ways to laugh, be inspired or be entertained. New members contrived for free for thirty days does audible dot com, slash gaeta, BP or text gaeta BP, two five hundred five hundred: that's audible, dot com, slash cheetah, BP or text gaeta BP, two five hundred five hundred to try audible free for thirty days. we'll dot com, slash, J, w twelve hours of deliberation and they found anthony guilt,
of six counts of capital, murderer, and during the sentencing phase the death penalty is on the table again. Multiple children involved in these murders here. So Why should they go easy on such a suspect or a convicted person right? So there you have the victim impact statements are read, the judge gives his usual hung lashing of the accused and anthony is sentenced, sentenced to death for six martyrs. When you find out really weighed heavily on the jurors minds. It was the testimony of Robert carter the man who actually did the crime scene that Anthony was with him. That's it the man who didn't want to testify and who was told your wife is going to be charged. Also, if you don't do this century,
now cookie, who had a burn on her arm and is married to Robert all. Charges were dropped against her due to lack of evidence and due to lack of testing. Robert. Just he had really had it in his mind that at a certain point he was Ever going to turn on her- and I might say, turn on her meaning. She was definitely involve. I'm saying he just really wanted to protect her and despite all the pressure by the prosecution, he wasn't going to say anything to implicate her from now on. It's interesting that somebody who might have had direct evidence linking them to this a burn charges are dropped meanwhile another man where there is no direct evidence, except for this testimony is charged an found guilty well, both of the men, robber carter and anthony Charles graves were sent to huntsville texas to sit on death Oh Anthony, he's trying to get out here,
trained his innocence all along and has steadfastly denied any involvement, so Ninety ninety seven texas court of criminal appeals reviewed conviction and they rejected his arguments. There saying Where is your proof that Robert wasn't telling? The truth is what happen when you are found guilty of any crime really is the burden of proof is now on you to prove that you didn't do it and to disprove the states argument which tell you right now. I won't even called out an uphill battle. It's a fool's It was in january of nineteen. Ninety eight, when Robert wrote a letter to marilyn atkinson it was a high school english teacher and his letter, said. The reason why he had falsely testified against ethnic graves was to protect his wife and their son. There. You have his motive for talking, but anthea
the authorities kept saying more than one person was involved here, give us names, and so he gave them anthony charles graves. How did he come up with anthony as the name eventually, robber would stay why he chose anthem charles grace, because he saw him driving before he was question about it. Just the last person he saw it was in his mind. He didn't really know that well, it was like they knew each other, but even talked about how then he didn't. You really know the Davis family that well he knew of them. but he didn't know them that. Well, so, there's really just not much there. But again when the authorities are on the hunt and they have a theory, a mind and they're trying to prove their theory instead of just trying to figure out what happened, man! It takes you down some weird ways and that's what we saw in this case. Why are we saying this is because literally, they don't have evidence against anthony ages, just have testimony and now the guy that actually did it is- continuing to say and give more.
but in spite of the fact that Anthony wasn't involved, you'll go on to say that he gave anthony because he figured that was such random person that there's no way they could get anthony for this crime, meaning I'm just going to give him a name and obviously his alibis will check out. So I'm giving them a name to get them off my back right now, which is what we see in interrogations all the time and Robert carter telling other inmates that Anthony Charles graves was not involved those immensity talk with carry max cook. Wow interesting comes full circle, also nothing happened was because he's on death row. He will be put to death at some point, and started writing letters to the Davis family members, so the survivors, the ones that hadn't been murdered, such as LISA Davis, that's brazen cause, this family thinks you're the one that wiped my family out?
He explains it as he had found god and he was trying to right his wrongs. One They comes up in a lot of his letters is that he was in evil person that he did not care about anything or anyone anyway abuse anyone to get what he wanted. So he wrote Please any said I just don't worry, an innocent person to die for something they don't know anything about. He also wrote to Demetrius father saying? I'm the only one responsible. I also know that I live in the past about this and I can serve Understand you and the rest for not wanting to believe me now, so he starts frank everybody, including anthony's, new attorney, who is Patrick MC, can and he's working on anthony's habeas cos this this is where, hopefully, they can present some kind of new evidence or something to save anthony, because these on death row, in june of nineteen. Ninety eight mccann went to huntsville with a court reporter and was able to speak with robert
and he said I was the only one there and the only one who committed these crimes, but that was tossed out. I mean this is why we cover these cases. Is you think the truth will prevail? You think that, oh we have this requirement. We have now deposed the person who says I did this all by myself. This statement will set my client free, but as we know, our system doesn't work that way. In the year two thousand robert, once again reiterate said he worked alone when he committed these six murders in august making a zoo. He said he went the Davis home His son jason. He said he killed Bobby by hitting or in the head with a hammer and then stabbed her. He said the others he killed in there
sleep. There were stories that supposedly he went there to kill lisa, but she wasn't there. I guess her shift had changed and she ended up being out of the house. There are a lot of things we could talk about here in terms of theories, but what we do know for sure and what he's being very consistent about is that for a guy who's got nothing to gain by it. He is certainly fighting hard to try and help Anthony Charles graves out. And he keep reiterating the fact that he's doing it because he I want any more wrongs that happen on his behalf. He wants things to be set straight. Now you can't really save yourself when you're in on death row like this, you can't save yourself and Could even have someone saying hey guys. I did it. It's all me don't worry about that guy, let him go doesn't matter either this the justice system doesn't care right. It's blind in this is part of the csi factor that I like to point
as we all look at csi and law and order and real I go there's do nay or there's this, and that something else? We believe from these court shows an investigation shows is when you have evidence pointing to the contrary, or you have somebody admitting to the murder. things. Are the person wasn't involved? Oh well now we know the truth and let that guy out all is well they're, not so much yeah. This isn't perry mason the university of the more centres, texas innocence network and Diversity of Saint Thomas journalism. Department worked together to start, invest getting claims of innocence and they took up anthony's case and some amazing things occurred this woman name nicole says areas. She was journalism, professor at saint thomas and four or five other students went to austin texas to meet with an attorney to review
trial transcripts. They started interviewing different people, they even interviewed Yolanda, who was anthony's girlfriend. They started just putting all the pieces together. You would think this would have been done for the trial, but again, pigs can fly in a trial and that's just the truth of it. So is an independent investigation and their minds they're, starting to see that anthony has a clear case for innocence here, and so them several years, but they got about hundred interviews done they all tried to track down anyone else who is known of their work what's you're talking about like even just going to the jack in the box, people that spoke with you know ante on the phone at the time all kinds of things they tracked down everything they could. This is a very thorough investigation. They also talked to one of the jailers that was there that night that supposedly anthony confessed he's like. I didn't hear anything like that, exactly why he wasn't at trial, because he had nothing to say who are the people that trial? The people were like I'll talk right
I want to put away a murderer who killed children. I help out I'll do that. Yet his jailer was helpful, apparently cause he was being honest one of the things that they pull up. That becomes a huge factor and setting anthony free. Is they get this clause? ap from an hour long NBC, special on that the justice Anthony is interviewed in that video. But so is the da ser basta in in that episode. Semester said about Robert. He did tell us, oh I did it myself. I did it so the attorney greenwood Raise the Brady claim wait a minute. You knew that he was recanting and he was saying it was all him You never told the defence. That's called exculpatory handed. Definitely is a violation. Now the prosecutors are
legally required to turn over any exculpatory evidence regarding any kind of perceived what they call veracity. So sebastus own ego came out. in this tv show saying here he said he didn't do above are not even considering that he'd be called out for this later. at the time the attorney for Anthony graves was garvey and he said oh yeah. Well, you know I did run into garvey in the hallway at the courthouse, and I told him about that. So now, they're trying to say, oh, we informed his defense, at this, but nothing was done with it. This is where it's just like with the jailer overhearing a confession: it's like oh yeah. I did that or I heard that where's your evidence. Did you write anything down?
and you know this is just me maybe, but I think, if you're going to turn something over, that's really important to say the defense. Maybe it should be printed up or written down on a memo pad or something not a little comment in past hey I'm off the restroom have a good day. Oh by the way. My client said this year or whatever and out to me, it's dismissive ness toward this requirement like I did something you can't really hold us against me. It's like he does made that up, because when garbage
it's like. I don't remember that to me that's honest! So where do you go with that? That's a Brady violation, right, yeah, because again it's you have to do it formerly with documentation and they didn't two thousand and three fifth circuit court of appeals, reviewed anthony's case and granted him an evidentiary hearing. They really focused on the statements made by robert the night before his testimony. He acted alone and the other was that cookie had been there and had the hammer they denied the brady claim, because they didn't think it would change the outcome of the trial. You know what it is: it's like. They had roberts testimony at the trial. It got the result they wanted. Why are they gonna back up on that right? It's such a interpretation because judges in these panels, these are the referees. These are the people there
king determinations, and we know that in a football game or a basketball game or a boxing match whatever. If there's a bad call, it can change the entire. Outcome of the game, but somehow bad call or even misconduct in a trial. they can say that wouldn't have changed anything really cause at this point the only man pudding anthony scene of the crime is recounting and that's not going to change the outcome of the trial. This is their logic, and they keep denying anthony over and over and over again all of these appeals, in two thousand and five causes errors. Who is power the research team investigator this case again independently to help anthony out joined, Anthony's defence team. She drew. did his clemency petition to the border pardons and paroles on mars,
two thousand sixty fifth circuit court. You now so we decided that the states case rested on robbers, untrue testimony, while the defences approach could have been much different and probably highly effective if they had known about his other statement, so they then went after the dossier semester because they said you got testimony from Robert and another guy that he knew was false. So when he's taking these statements and running with them. He very well that they were false with potent here is, they feel like this trial was unfair. I would say I think, that's how I'm taking nasa it. In a nutshell. His conviction,
is overturned, that doesn't mean is innocent or guilty. All it means is their overturning it. There is obviously a major problem with anthony's conviction. So at this point it's up to a prosecutor to re file charges or not, but wall Anthony's waiting for this new trial. They put him in jail. Now a lot of people might think: oh well jail jails, not as bad as prison jail is temporary housing. They don't give you the same concession the same amenities that most prisons do and I'll tell you right now. Anthony was on death row where they don't give him anything, and then they put him in jail, but for his own safety they put him in solitary confinement. Wow
how are you supposed to defend yourself if you're, in solitary, if you're in the boot you're in the whole you're going crazy? And you can't talk to your lawyers, his treatment is just one bad thing after another. So while his conviction was overturned, these state basically mounts their case again, and they're lying it up, so it'll have- the same type of trial, same type or resolve they do that because they say we're going to use over. Ninety. Ninety four testimony in this trial, which is exactly what the problem was before They also say that we're going to do that, because anthony Well, you had a chance to confront your accuser during cross examination. Back then wow. This is a common thing with courts. There, like We didn't do anything wrong. We don't care what some appeal court said was. Do it again, so
so Besta, he is no longer the d. So they bring on a new prosecutor, dossier, attorneys offices from washington and pearls and spend months investigating anthony's case about mid two thousand ten you're looking at prosecuting him? They bring in a woman named kelly, singular a former assistant D she's going to be the special prosecutor. Now she has put nineteen men to death. Just give you a little background. She has a reputation that she doesn't care. She will put you to death, so she's, not afraid of going after people as she's done it yeah. So the defense team is thinking. This is going to be a fight and she's going. to come. Addison she's, gonna come hard, so they're getting ready and anthony is in jail for
I think he's in there for, like almost four years- solitary confinement, anthony's talking about her their men are pleading to be murder. Her put to death because of solitary confinement or being on death row now some horrible stories they as so they're ready to go, but it's taking for ever to get this new case going and Kelly, ziegler it's taken her time. Something surprising happens, I mean again, everything was being set up. It seemed like for anti graves to be proud.
I skied in a very similar manner, but the only difference was they didn't just take what was given to them. They were investigating it, which is a lot more work than just reviewing now so Siegler reaches out to the defense team and says she wants to meet with them now the defence team is thinking. Ah, this is very unexpected, so they're like is she trying to
age. What are defenses is she trying to pump us for information? Is she trying to get something that we're going to use as evidence dismissed or made inadmissible, they're, not cool with this meeting, but they go and meet with the da and they realize that Siegler went from we're. Taking this to trial too? Can we go to trial to what is this case? What is this mess that was just handed to me and now part of her and negation is meeting with the defence team, the enemy and gathering information from them matching up the evidence in going point by point on what the state has against anthony, what
listen, do they come to her? They come to the conclusion that Anthony charles graze was not involved in the murders of those six people of the Davis family. Not only that, but siegler is not happy with the previous dear a semester, and she starts slamming him publicly and in her reports about this trial about this case now. So Besta hours back at her saying well, you're, just a bad idea. You couldn't win the case, so that's why you're dismissing charges and at that point really became apparent to me that truth, innocent or guilt did not matter too.
The previous a semester he literally based guilt off of whether or not he could win a case that's not exactly how a trial is supposed to work. If innocent or guilt no longer matters and winning or losing is the ultimate goal. Then the system no longer is about truth and justice and had nothing to do with whether the person actually had committed the crime, whereas Siegler integrity? I know that there, who is a website that you can find on the internet? He may a lot of arguments on his site for how things went down. What went wrong and how he didn't do anything wrong. I'd say for the most part, he does a very good job of defending things that he did about how things may have been manipulated in the media to make him look worse. But you know what I am
gonna sit here and go through all that because I find it unimportant when I find important here is, is that he based anthony's guilt. So We offer the testimony that robber gave that he took as the truth. He didn't way everything out he didn't say what other evidence do we have to kind of corroborate this, He literally ran with the evidence of well robbers He was there and we believe more than one person was there. So that's the person he's going to testify against will run with it. That's it! That's not good enough for me they're willing to give this guy a death sentence solely on the testimony of a person who really didn't want to give up other people, but they a lot of time work in autumn until he gave some people up meaning. While he gave an me up and eventually his wife, but only briefly, it bothers me that in the days of s. Only seems to care about smearing, see are saying she's just there for the money,
and smearing. Anyone who he thinks has wronged him, there's a guy the served a long time with no evidence against him and when you actually look at the relationships of the people in this case, man there's nothing there. It sickens me there. Internals graves had to go to prison for all that time and sit on death row and then later get on in jail and deny bond again, just because is, he so sure, and the state so sure anything was about when there is no evidence, absolutely no evidence that he was involved? Now I don't want to leave credit out for his defense team and these teachers and the students, but thank god for Kelly Siegler, the new d, a for doing the right thing She could have made this process really painful. She might have even won a retrial against anthony because
emotions run high when you have dead kids in entire family wiped out, but she actually looked tat and evaluated. The evidence like a india should, like a prosecutor, is supposed to and a lot of things came out from this case, other things changed in Texas yeah. There is an amazing moment when Anthony was released from jail. He had at eighteen years of incarceration and he got to his mother, doris. They cautious cried after that. He started working as an investigator for the states and your service they specialised in death row cases. He also went on speaking tours to share his story. He talked about the horrible things happen on death row, he's a big believer that death row is where people are. Night human rights. Here we can say where there might be innocent people there, but in an
he's my it doesn't matter what people dead. We still have to have some humanity. There have to be some basic rights. Some basic humane treatment going on in there isn't that if you want to hear about his stories, you can listen to my new to or read some things a written, but in the end the other great demands of happening is he receives common. station in two thousand and eleven governor rick perry signed the bill that awarded anthony one point, four five million dollars and he got his check at the end. The month he filed a grievance against semester and multiple people that are involved in his his incarceration. He actually got the former da disbarred. This case made semester lose his license to practice law, something else that anthony is very passionate about with regards to
reform of our justice system, is something that we don't think about, but if your accused of a crime- and you serve your time in you- it out. There are a lot of services that are available to you to reintegrate into society. But when it comes to somebody who is completely exonerated actually innocent, there's nothing and most of us think. Well, you are found innocent. You were let free. What else do you need? But after being on death row, seeing people mutilate themselves? jobs, as you heard, on the carry max cook interview that wasn't an isolated incident that happens all the time. People kill themselves on death row. People try to ended. All people go crazy.
solitary confinement in after your let out, if you were actually did the crime and did the time you have access to fair basins, mother services- probably not enough, but if you're, actually, exonerated you're not pretty to any of these services you're just screwed and let out onto the street with nothing except the support of your family This is something that he speaks a lot about yeah. At least he got to sue in get compensation because that something he was not going to get anything if he added but he got more than that. You know we talk about other cases like carrying ex cooks case or other cases. They don't even compensation. They get nothing other than their free and there's posts. We just happy with that. There's this idea that there are people who are too big to fall and a lot of times is a former d, a mix of esta, but you know what twenty fifteen he was. Disbarred
what he did in this prosecution- and I know semester- argues that and tries to excuse things, but really what can you give? anthony graves. You can just give him money, but that's like what is that pay off? What are you going to give him for justice? The justice would be to hold someone accountable, who screwed him over, who put him in prison wrongfully, so they held semester accountable for that, and companies response was it takes great courage to say. Prosecutor is so clearly acting against the rules of fair play that issue stripped of his all licence. But the panel did just that, and I appreciate it No one makes it a goal to send a death row without evidence and worse. Why evidence of my innocence deserves to be a lawyer in texas You got more than most. I mean I don't see that no rosseter just keep going on and I think there's only been like one or two cases of prosecutors actually being sentenced
to like a few days behind bars for further actions there immune. So this was something Keith Davis, who lost some of his children in this horrible crime. He had a big problem with anthony the first time he met with them. He told anthony, I hate your guts Anthony so wanted to speak with them and over time. I do believe that keith has understood that anthony wasn't involved Amy. The thirteen dot com actually has a really, thing article about this and keep Davis says that he tells Anthony because they talk once in a while. He said I would gladly trade place with you. I'd rather serve eighteen years in prison than to lose my kids, because he said he here, his kid screams and his head calling for their dad for help. His haunted
It's a reminder that these crimes have a real impact on all kinds of people. They have. The impact on the parents have lost their kids relatives who lost their mothers or sisters or the people who are wrongfully convicted, accused of doing horrible things that they had nothing. Do where preview, who want more information on this case, definitely check out texas monthly. They huge article on the ethnic group, this case on the murders of the Davis family, it's very thorough it really give you a lot more details and we tend to give on our show. We tended take issue stuff that we find important, but by all means I would encourage you to check out the texas monthly article. What happened here is horrible, but in and finally feels like someone got some justice, which I think is important not only for Anthony charles graves, but for the remaining Davis family members, because now they have a clear picture
what happened to their family members and who was responsible and how it all went long and why they were led to believe lies for eighteen years.
The mainly basically came to hollywood with a dream she wanted to be someone famous when she married.
Actor robert blake. She thought her dream come true until all went wrong on may. Fourth, two thousand one at nine, thirty p m body was found in a car bleeding severely. She had been shot in the head within the hour. She was gone. Night Bonnie went from victim to villain. I called her a drifter a liar. A scam She was in the monopoly business. She was in the prostitution, business gittin criminal conventions all around the country, various states, but who, whilst Bonnie, really in wanting to listen to the execution of bodily begging on amazon, music, apple, podcast, spotify or you can listen early and ad free by joining wonder, replaced in the wondering at.
Transcript generated on 2022-07-09.