Saturday, 7 July 2012

Saudi woman sparks 'right to drive' movement By M. JABEENA /THE MEDIA LINE07/05/2012

Saudi woman sparks 'right to drive' movement

07/05/2012 14:11


But blazing new territory in women’s rights in Saudi Arabia fraught with danger, peer pressure for unwitting 33-year-old leader.

Saudi women shop at Al-Hayatt mall in Riyadh


Manal Al-Sharif, the 33-year old Saudi woman who sparked a nationwide demonstration over the right of women to drive in Saudi Arabia last June, has unwittingly become the face of thewomen’s driving movement.

She was arrested and jailed, lost a plum job at Aramco and the house that came with the job. Although she frequently faces death threats, nothing has stopped Al-Sharif from realizing the goal of many Saudi women: to have the right to drive a car.

While there is no written law prohibiting women from driving, the government makes it impossible for women to drive. Saudi Arabia does not issue drivers licenses to women, and the law says all drivers must have locally issued licenses. Most religious authorities say that women driving is “haram” -- forbidden. Every woman, regardless of age, must also have a male guardian, and only 21 percent of Saudi women are in the workforce.

Al-Sharif is the lead advocate of the Internet campaign “My Right to Dignity” launched last year along with a petition to King Abdullah, demanding the right to drive. She was briefly arrested and promised that she would not attempt to drive again.

Her work has earned Sharif a spot on Foreign Policy magazine’s list of Top 100 Global Thinkers of 2011 and the Forbes list of Women Who (Briefly) Rocked in the same year. In 2012, The Daily Beast named her one of the Fearless Women of the Year, and Time magazine named her one of the 100 Most Influential People of 2012. She was also one of the three people awarded the first annual Václav Havel Prize for Creative Dissent at the Oslo Freedom Forum.

In an interview with The Media Line, the activist says she does not want to overthrow the Saudi regime, but she will not give up her fight.

TML:   How is the petition this time different from all the previous ones?

MAS: The petition launched by the My Right to Dignity Campaign, also known as “Women2Drive,” not only asks the King and the government to allow women to enjoy their right to drive like women all over the world, but also demands the protection of women drivers so that they are not sued or harassed until they are issued Saudi driving licenses. The petition asks to allow women to get driving licenses in nearby countries and then allow them to drive here. The petition also seeks compensation for women and their families who paid a price for participating in the driving campaign and urges the development of a robust public transport system. It also asks the king to open driving schools in Saudi Arabia that can issue licenses to women. It thanks the king for giving women the right to vote in municipal elections starting in 2015.

TML:  How has the response to the petition been so far? How many have signed?

MAS: In just two weeks, we have had over 1,000 signatures on the petition. The ‘Women2Drive’ Twitter account has over 19,000 followers.

TML: How has your prominence in Saudi Arabia and high name recognition affected your life?

MAS: While there has been harassment from the police, there has also been much support, especially from the youth. None of my articles are published in the newspapers, my tweets are analyzed, and my religious inclinations are questioned. But I always knew there was a price to pay for bringing about any change.

TML:   Since there is no actual law against women driving, wouldn't one course of action be just to encourage women to drive as long as they have an international license?

MAS: This is exactly what we are doing. We are urging women to go to the traffic departments and apply for licenses in an effort to show that we are serious about driving.

TML:   How do you answer those who say that the time is not right for women to drive or that it is dangerous for women to drive alone? Even a woman in a car with her driver or guardian is not safe from the men on the road, who chase cars, make indecent gestures, block the woman’s car, etc. Wouldn't the situation be worse if the woman is driving all alone?

MAS: These are the same people who say that ours is a secure country. So when they say it is not safe for women to drive, they are contradicting themselves. Why not introduce laws to protect women? These people are punishing women by restricting them instead of punishing men who harass women. This shows they are really stupid people.

TML:  Since there is no explicit law banning women from driving, what is proving to be the biggest impediment to women's driving?

MAS: The officials themselves. The authorities say it is up to society, but punish women who drive. They should leave it to society and open driving schools for women. The other obstacle is from women themselves. They fear the consequences of driving, of being punished. We must prove we are serious about this. Unless there are large numbers of women involved, there won’t be any action.

TML: Have you received death threats from a section of society after the Oslo Freedom Forum speech? Is that why you cancelled your US trip?

MAS: Yes, but that is just one of the reasons. There were other personal reasons. I had to leave my company house then and so was tied up with the moving process. Althoughmy family and I have been subject to threats for a long time, this time it was really intense. So I was keeping a low profile for my family’s safety. But that does not mean I am stopping. I will be attending the UN Watch conference in Geneva soon, in addition to several other conferences in Italy, London and Canada.

TML:  Some of the international media describe you as a “Saudi regime protester.” Would you agree with the description?

MAS: I totally disagree with that. The international media loves things like that. How can you be a regime protester when you are living in the same country? Even at the Oslo Freedom Forum in May 2012, I made it clear that my presence there was apolitical. 
TML:  What are your work plans after you lost your job as a computer scientist at Saudi Aramco?

MAS: I know that if I take up another job, it will be used to pressure me. It is time to reorganize my life now. And yes, leaving the country can be one of the options.

TML:  Expatriate women who are dependent on their husbands are not allowed to work. And when they do, it is illegal. They need to hire a driver on the black market, who charge high fees. On the contrary, Saudi women can work legally and legally hire drivers. Do you think that expatriate women in Saudi Arabia are in a worse situation than their Saudi counterparts?

MAS: Expatriates, who make up 67 percent of the Saudi workforce, can hardly speak up for their rights. However, I feel expatriate women, who come to the Kingdom on work visas are in a better condition than Saudi women because they don’t need permission to work, are allowed to rent places, stay in hotels, etc.

TML:  What are some of the other issues that you see yourself campaigning for?

MAS: The My Right to Dignity campaign focuses on a number of issues such as full citizenship for Saudi women, removal of guardianship laws, issues related to marriage, divorce and custody of children, setting a minimum age for marriage, and justice for children sexually abused by family members. Our most important task is to spread awareness about women’s rights, challenge taboos and the misinterpretation of sharia (Islamic religious) laws. We are largely succeeding in doing so as more and more women are finding out about their rights. The social media has a big role to play in this. Additionally, we are soon launching a YouTube channel for women’s rights in Saudi Arabia.

Friday, 6 July 2012

projectbrainsaver visitors for the last 6 months were from....

# Location



Alderley Edge
Banja Luka
Belo Horizonte
Campo Grande
Cerqueira Cesar
Cherry Hill
Ciudad Juarez
Colorado Springs
Dearborn Heights
Ellicott City
Ft Mill
Hermosa Beach
High Wycombe
Hong Kong
Kempton Park
Kuala Lumpur
La Romana
Los Angeles
Mechanics Bay
Mercer Island
Milton Keynes
New Delhi
New York
Newcastle upon Tyne
Niagara Falls
Palo Alto
Port Au Prince
Porto Alegre
Redwood City
Rio de Janeiro
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Royal Tunbridge Wells
San Diego
San Francisco
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Santa Cruz
Sao Paulo
South Jordan
South Whitley
Tarnowskie Gory
Thanh Pho Ho Chi Minh
Thousand Oaks



Cheers folks (-:

Tous Avec Mountaha Cheikh Avaaz dot org

Tous Avec Mountaha Cheikh

Tous Avec Mountaha Cheikh


Publiée Juillet 3, 2012



20 signatures. Atteignons 5,000,000

Pourquoi c'est important

Mme Mountaha Cheikh Conseillère au Commissariat aux Droits de l'Homme en Mauritanie, Militante des Droits Humains et des Droits de l'Animal , c'est fait agressée sauvagement dans les locaux du Commissariat aux Droits de l'Homme en Mauritanie, par un Criminel nommé Mady ould Hamadi , et ce sans que le Commissariat aux Droits de l'homme Mauritanien ne lui apporte aucune assistance, une Violation Flagrante de tout les Droits Humains, 

Dossier : 675/RP/2012 et Instruction N°131.2012 6ème cabinet d’instruction du Tribunal de la Wilaya de Nouakchott au Commissariat de police Ksar 1 ( Mauritanie )

La plaignante Mountaha Mint Cheikh a fait sa déposition devant le Parquet de la république, laquelle déposition est consignée dans le Procès verbal.
Mountaha Mint Cheikh, Conseillère en Communication au Commissariat des Droits de l’Homme et à l’Action Sociale s’est fait agressé dans son bureau en date du 22/05/2012, aux environs de 13 heures par le nommé Madi Ould hamadi, un infirmier à la retraite qui s’est donné pour mission, à travers son ONG qu’il dénomme ONG pour la lutte contre la Rage, l’extermination des chiens dont il découpe les têtes guise de preuve, afin de collecter des fonds auprès des autorités locales, lorsqu’elles initient des campagnes de cette nature.
C’est au cours de l’une de ses missions (normalement destinées aux chiens errants) que l’agresseur s’est présenté devant le domicile de la victime et ordonné aux gardes de tirer à bout portant sur Dixie, une chienne domestique qui de surcroit ne présentait aucun symptôme de l’endémie (si endémie il y a).
Mountaha Mint Cheikh, totalement choquée par cet acte et les conséquences qu’il a eu, a tenté vainement d’obtenir justice, en faisant condamner les auteurs de ce qui constitue une agression doublée d’une violation manifeste de domicile. La santé fragile de son père (Docteur en Médecine et personnalité imminente du monde médical et politique de l’époque), s’en est trouvée affectée du fait que sa promenade matinale avec Dixie prenait fin et lui laissait un vide apparent.
En désespoir de cause, Mountaha met en ligne, sur Facebook un forum où elle invite à sauver les animaux et spécialement les chiens.
L’agresseur, au courant de toute cette activité, ne manquait pas de se montrer au service où travaille Mountaha (sous prétexte de suivre des dossiers). Le jour de l’agression, il prétend avoir été appelé par une personne à l’accent français et qui se présentait comme étant conseillère dans le commissariat.
Arrivé dans son bureau, il engage une discussion avec la victime et finit par porter sa main sur elle, lui assenant quelques coups de poings et la bousculant contre le mur.
Un vigile attiré par les cris de la victime se présente et mobilise L’agresseur qui continuait de se débattre pour accomplir sa tâche.
Effondrée, Mountaha est en pleurs, le Commissaire en place est au courant mais ne daigne pas sortir de son bureau se satisfaisant de comptes rendus que lui font sa secrétaire et l’agresseur lui-même. 
L’agresseur quitte les lieux sans être inquiété et la victime décide d’appeler un avocat qui avait déjà en charge la plainte formulée contre les auteurs de la violation de domicile.
Instruction judiciaire
Lorsque le dossier a quitté les locaux de la police du Ksar I, il a été transmis au Procureur de la République. Celui-ci décide de traduire l’agresseur par devant le juge d’instruction du 6ème cabinet, pour chef d’inculpation de Coups et blessures Volontaires contre Mountaha Mint Cheikh qui a obtenu après réquisition à médecin une Incapacité Temporaire de Travail de 21 jours.
Le parquet demande un mandat de dépôt contre l’agresseur, ce que le juge d’instruction exécute immédiatement en envoyant Madi Ould hamadi à la prison civile de Dar Naim.
Une semaine après, pendant que l’instruction est en cours, la chambre d’accusation de la Cour d’Appel, accepte de donner une liberté provisoire à l’agresseur.
Le juge d’instruction, sur demande de l’avocat de Madi Ould Hamadi, ordonne par la suite une contre-expertise médicale par son ordonnance N° 225. 2012.
Le dossier en instruction comporte les arguments de chaque partie et devra être clôturé sous peu, sauf prolongation demandée par le juge d’instruction.

Remarques :
- Des doutes persistent quant à la démarche du juge d’instruction qui a donné suite à la demande de contre-expertise médicale. En effet, les blessures subies par la victime se sont forcément consolidées depuis l’agression et l’ITT constatée par le médecin réquisitionné par la police est un constat en temps réel qu’il n’est pas juste de remettre en cause. La demande de contre-expertise prouve d’ailleurs, si besoin était que l’agresseur et son conseil reconnaissent au moins que la victime a subi des dommages corporels. En conséquence n’étant pas dans le domaine de l’archéologie, il est tout simplement impossible de déterminer après consolidation, le degré des blessures subies par Mountaha.
- Le juge en ne donnant importance qu’à l’aspect physique, ignore un aspect psychologique très important chez toute personne victime d’agression. Attitude typiquement locale et difficile à faire admettre, même aux personnes instruites.
- L’attitude du Commissaire aux Droits de l’Homme constitue d’ailleurs un élément d’aggravation psychologique, dès lors que jusqu’ici, il n’a procédé à aucune réaction par rapport au sujet. Il s’agit d’une agression qui s’est déroulée dans ses locaux et contre l’un des cadres de son service. Son devoir indique qu’il doive se constituer partie civile, ce qu’il n’a pas fait. Au contraire, il semblerait même se moquer de la victime selon certaines déclarations au sein du service.
- Le dossier exposé devant la justice n’a pas suivi la procédure classique qu’il devait suivre : il s’agit d’une agression constatée directement par le Substitut du Procureur, une heure après les faits. Il était de son devoir de poursuivre l’agresseur en flagrant délit et donc le citer directement devant la Cour Correctionnelle, au lieu de l’envoyer en instruction. L’instruction implique un contradictoire et des investigations de nature à amoindrir les faits (comme c’est le cas). En réalité, dès lors que l’agression est constatée, l’agresseur devait faire l’objet d’une citation directe et défendre sa cause devant un juge assis. 
- Les démarches sociales en vue d’endiguer l’affaire sont très avancées et le dossier de plus en plus banalisé, ce qui ne sert pas la justice au stade actuel.

Les demandes
La victime réclame justice et souhaiterai qu’il soit mis fin aux activités illicites de l’ONG, ce qui pourra mettre hors d’état de nuire le nommé Madi Ould Hamadi. Elle souhaitera que l’attitude suspecte du Commissariat aux droits de l’homme soit clarifiée et condamnée.


Murraj Upi

Tuesday, 3 July 2012

USA - Jury Nullification - A Power of the People


Jury Nullification - A Power of the People

In the US last month, a judge ruled that Jury Nullification, a jurys ability to over-rule the law, was still lawful and very much in effect.

This follows a case in which 80 year old Julian Heicklin, was arrested by FBI agents for passing out pamphlets which informed jurors of their right to nullify a case if they thought the law being applied was unfit or unjust.

The prosecution had accused Mr Heicklyn, who was handing out the pamphlets for an organisation known as the 'Fully Informed Jury Association', of trying to influence jurors through written communication.

However, in a victory for justice, U.S District Court Judge Kimba Wood disagreed with the prosecution, emphasising that, though it is unlawful for jurors to be told how to decide a specific case, Jurors can be informed about nullification.

Jury nullification, a legal concept that dates back to 17th century England, remains perfectly lawful in both the UK and the U.S and can be used by any jury which believes that the law is not fit for purpose in a specific case.

The concept of jury nullification is that juries should be able to not only decide whether a defendant violated the law, but whether the law itself is just and proper.

It is a constitutional doctrine that allows for the acquittal of defendants who are technically guilty of a crime, but who the jury does not feel should be punished for their actions because the law itself is unjust.

Jury nullification highlights the fact that, though we may feel constrained by over oppressive laws and legislation, we, as individuals, still have the capacity to override the law using the common sense that we all have.

Serving on a jury is something people are often afraid of. It should be seen as a right we should fight for at all costs.

Roger Hayes Arrested, Tried In Secret Court, Imprisoned


Roger Hayes Arrested, Tried In Secret Court, Imprisoned

At 0930 this morning, in scenes reminiscent of Stasi East Germany, 2 police cars and 4 policemen from Merseyside Police arrested British Constitution Group Chairman Roger Hayes at his Wirral home and drove away.

ARTICLE | JULY 2, 2012 - 9:39PM
Roger Hayes

The first his family heard of him was at 18:30 this evening via a telephone call from a Warder in Liverpool prison, to say that Roger had been tried and sentenced to prison.

At no time were the family or any other members of the public informed of his arrest, and it is understood that he was tried in a secret court without a Jury.

Denied the right to argue his case, denied the right to a Jury, denied the right for the public to see justice being done, Roger was imprisoned in the secretive gulag system that Britain has become in 2012.

Roger's "crime" is that he has been refusing to pay his Council tax, because along with other state taxes, a proportion of the tax revenue gathered is being sent to the European Union, used to fund unlawful wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya and Syria, and promote terrorism right around the world. To pay tax under these circumstances is, at the very least, unlawful under Section 15(3) of the Terrorism Act 2000.

As such the present government of UK in Westminster is complicit to terrorist action and war crimes and therefore the payment of taxes to an unlawful, criminal regime is itself a criminal act - one in which Roger refused to participate.

The state has never forgiven him for the arrest of Judge Peake at Birkenhead court as part of this campaign.

In addition to his stance on taxes for unlawful purposes, Roger has also been campaigning for the Lawful Bank - a monetary initiative in which money can be issued to the public as credit, rather than as crippling debt under the existing corrupt and fraudulent International Monetary System.

As Chairman of the British Constitution Group, Roger Hayes has been an outspoken public speaker warning the British public that their rights and freedoms under Common Law and the Constitution are being stripped away and replaced by a dictatorship of secret courts operating under Administrative and Statute Law.

There is no doubt that his success in alerting ever more people to the dangers of the British / EU dictatorship being built by a criminal element now masquerading as British politicians, has caused the state to imprison Roger. His challenge to the fraudulent banking system, as evidenced by the criminal acts of Barclays bank and todays resignation by arch Bilderberger and BBC advisor Marcus Agius, will also have made Roger enemies within Britain's wide criminal banking cabal.

Roger's family is shocked both at his arrest, and at the realisation that Britain is now sliding into a police state, where husbands, fathers and other good people can be lifted off the streets and imprisoned. There is now no doubt that Britain is further under the control of domestic terrorists in Westminster.

We ask that all those who value their freedoms and liberty call Meryside Police for further information and an explanation of their actions, and also call Liverpool prison to establish Roger's physical safety and well-being.

Merseyside Police Tel: 101 local or +44 (0)151 709 6010 in UK.

Liverpool Prison Tel: +44 (0)151 530 4000

Crimestoppers (UK only) Tel: 0800 555 111

Stop calling it a sex scandal Dear media: Learn the difference between abuse and sex -- otherwise, you're sensationalizing violence and rape BY MARY ELIZABETH WILLIAMS


Stop calling it a sex scandal

Dear media: Learn the difference between abuse and sex -- otherwise, you're sensationalizing violence and rape

TOPICS: , , , ,, , 

Let me fix this for you, headline writers. When you’re dealing with a story that involves rape or harassment or abuse or molestation or child porn or anything that falls under the rubric of criminal behavior, you should call those things rape and harassment and abuse and molestation and child pornography. You know what you shouldn’t call them? Sexy sexy sex scandals, that’s what.

For example, when you’re covering a story involving charges of “rape, aggravated sexual contact and multiple counts of aggravated sexual assault” at the Lackland Air Force Base, you might want to reconsider framing it, as the Washington Post does, as a “widening sex scandal,” or as the Boston Herald calls it, a “growing sex scandal,” or even, as the Christian Science Monitor says, a garden-variety “sex scandal.” If you happen to say, as the AP does, that the“Air Force says 31 victims so far in sex scandal,” or as already credibility-strained CNN declares, that there are now “31 victims identified in widening Air Force sex scandal,” please note that word “victims” there. It’s the important one.

Similarly, if you’re ABC and you want to talk about priests who’ve abused children, don’t couch it as a “guide to Catholic sex scandals.”If you’re the L.A. Times or the Hollywood Reporter, don’t say that Jerry Sandusky made for a “Penn State sex scandal.” If you’re the Village Voice, don’t say that  the molestation that allegedly went on for years at a New York private school is a “Horace Mann Sex Scandal.” Just don’t.

A sex scandal is Mark Sanford ditching his state to cavort with his mistress. A sex scandal is Tiger Woods and a waitress. The San Antonio Air Force base story is certainly a complex one, involving charges that range from assault and rape to obstructing justice, all the way down to “having a personal social relationship.” But when the media uses the word “sex” within a story about something where there are alleged victims of assault, it’s a semantic failure on an epic scale. It diminishes crime. It sensationalizes it. It removes the distinction between a normal, consensual act and violence. Sure, you could say that sex is an element of those stories. But you’d be missing the part about force and pathology. It’s like calling armed robbery a “shopping scandal.” It’s lazy and it’s dumb and it’s hurtful to victims. Rape and abuse are not sexy. So stop making it sound like they are.

Mary Elizabeth Williams

Mary Elizabeth Williams is a staff writer for Salon and the author of "Gimme Shelter: My Three Years Searching for the American Dream." Follow her on Twitter: @embeedub.

Monday, 2 July 2012

Make a call on behalf of Davontae Sanford.. Posted by Delaproser on June 2, 2012 at 11:30am

Make a call on behalf of Davontae Sanford..

Make a call on behalf of Davontae Sanford

.Innocent and in prison. Want to know more? read this >> then make that call on Monday!!

Contact the Wayne
County Prosecutor's Office, Kym Worthy, to ask her to do the humanly
right thing and set Davontae Free. She still has that power, regardless
of the proceedings had so far, and she knows it.
The prosecutor's office is 313 224-5777.

Even a call would help remind her that we have not forgotten

Views: 110

Tags: CountyDavontaeDelaproserKym,OfficeProsecutor'sSanfordWayneWorthy

DAVONTAE SANFORD – BRING HIM HOME! Posted by Delaproser on May 7, 2012 at 11:30am

Transcript of Speech by Roberto Guzman, Legal Assistant of the

People’s Task Force to Free The Wrongfully Convicted, given on the steps
of the Frank Murphy Hall of Justice on April 23, 2012.
Davontae Sanford  

A nation that prides itself as having the best justice system in the

world should tolerate no room for corruption, lies and misconduct that

sends an innocent child to prison for a crime he did not commit. Not

even for a day, much less 37-90 years in prison.

And if we remain silent in the face of that injustice, we are

committing a greater crime than the oppressors by not standing up, hold

our heads high, and fight for his life. For the life we save today may

very well be our sons’ and daughters’ tomorrow. And in the end we are

defending not only his rights, but rights of each and every one of us to
due process and equality under the law.

Indeed, one of the most fundamental principles under our Constitution
says that no man, woman, or child should be deprived of life, liberty

or property without due process of law. The inalienable right to liberty
draws from that principle of due process – a principle the new founded

nation saw fit to include in our Constitution as a covenant to the

people that our government would never commit the sins of the British

Crown in denying its citizens their inalienable right to liberty.

We stand here today to remind this prosecutor and her minions next

door at 1300 Beaubien who stole Davontae Sanford’s liberty without due

process of law that those guarantees are not written in our federal

Constitution for mere window dressing! A child who was stolen from his

mother’s embrace and given to the state as a slave in violation of due

process of law is an act of wickedness, treachery and deceit by the

highest levels of government on this corner!

Today, ladies and gentlemen, we come on the authority of a power

higher than any judge of this court, soldiers we are with truth as our

weapon and courage as our armor to stand before this court and tell the

world what the Wayne County Prosecutor and Detroit Police have lied and

denied about for five years now. And in that endeavor, we will not

cower, we will not whisper and we will not be afraid. For truth is our

guiding post.

Here today we stand at the Crossroads of Justice and Righteousness,

for we are guided by an almighty hand to stand here and condemn the

Wayne County Prosecutor and the Detroit Police for their enormous


Due process and liberty are inalienable rights to us all. Those are

sacred principles written in our Constitution and sung from the hearts

of souls like Dr. King, Harriett Tubman, Sojourner Truth, Frederick

Douglass, and far away heroes like Nelson Mandela, Ghandi and Che

Guevara. It is a universal language understood by all mankind. Liberty –
more valuable than gold. As Patrick Henry, one of the nation’s founding
fathers once remarked, “Give me liberty, or give me death!”

And it is on the shoulders of giants like these heroes that we draw

the courage today to condemn the shameful misdeeds of the Wayne County

Prosecutor and Detroit Police in stealing liberty and depriving due

process of law from 14 year old Davontae Sanford. Shame on you all!

When government begins to assault our freedom, we must fight to

defend it, lest the nation descends into the abyss of tyranny. For sure,
they who are corrupt have committed a tremendous dishonor to the

people, are the greatest threat to our freedoms, and have declared war

on liberty. Indeed, when government descends into tyranny and deprives

people of their right to due process and a fair trial, freedom is on the
throes of extinction.

Nearly five years ago, on September 17, 2007, Davontae Sanford, a

fourteen year old mentally disabled boy who could only read on a second

grade level, and blind in one eye, left his home in his pajamas shortly

after 1 a.m. to investigate police activity at a home on Runyon Street

not far from his home. Curiously, as most children would do, Davontae

walked up to the scene and asked one of the officers what was going on.

One of the officers told him, “You know what’s going on,” and took him

into custody.

Ever since that day, that fateful day, Davontae has suffered a

tremendous injustice, ladies and gentlemen. After hours of

interrogations that began at 4 a.m. and again at 9:30 p.m. that

following day, and after two police-prepared statements were put in

front of this 14 year old kid and told this is what he did, Davontae was
instructed to adopt the police officer’s typewritten confessions that

sent him to prison for 37-90 years – a virtual life sentence for a kid

who was only 14 years old. Tragically, he did not realize what they had

just done to him in that interrogation room.

In the first statement prepared at 4 a.m. by police, Davontae’s role

in the killing was not clear at all. He does not even place himself at

the scene of the crime. They knew they had a problem getting a

conviction with that statement because it was seriously lacking any

evidence of admissions of guilt to anything. So they were not satisfied,
ladies and gentlemen.

Seventeen hours later, at 9:30 p.m., they picked him up again, and

prepared another statement in which they told Davontae he actually

helped commit the murders and had him sign a confession to it all.

Davontae, who suffered from a reading comprehension disability, never

read either statement. It was read to him in a leading manner and he was
told to agree to its accuracy.

Now, never mind that the interrogations were done in violation of

Michigan law that required a parent or attorney present for a child

under the age of 16 to ensure the proceedings were done without

violating his right to remain silent or to seek the assistance of

counsel. But we know from having watched the video of the interrogation

and having read the two statements prepared by Detroit Police, Davontae

did not confess to anything. Information from the crime scene was fed to
him by the interrogating officer who then leadingly asked Davontae if

the statements were true. Davontae, willing to please his interrogator,

answered affirmatively. And this they call a confession? Don’t insult us
with that nonsense!

In the interval between 4 a.m. and 9:30 p.m. interrogations, Detroit

Police, realizing they had a mentally disabled kid, employed a buddy

system whereby they took him to the Coney Island, let him play on the

computers in their office, won his trust and deceived him into believing
he would be a big man if he confessed to the murders on Runyon Street.

Davontae answered affirmatively to their questions to please his

interrogators, believing they would let him go home. You can’t blame a

child under those circumstances! Instead, look at the officers’ conduct!

But Detroit Police got sloppy. Oh yes, they got very sloppy. They

induced Davontae to identify four accomplices in his statements but

against whom the prosecutor never filed charges the moment those

accomplices’ alibi defenses stood up. If the accomplice portion of

Davontae’s confession was not true, would that not cause you to question
the reliability of his entire statement? Of course, his version of

events were not reliable!

In addition, ladies and gentlemen, ballistics evidence at the crime

scene seriously undermined the statements in which the officers induced

Davontae to say he used a Mini-14 to help kill the victims. It is

undisputed, however, that Mini-14 casings were not found at the scene.

It is also undisputed that police never found the Mini-14 they say in

Davontae’s statement that he used. Nor for that matter did the

prosecution ever argue that Davontae threw the gun away. He did not

throw the gun away, ladies and gentlemen, because he never possessed

that firearm, he was never at the Runyon Street house, he did not commit
those murders, and they know it!

They got sloppy, oh yes, no doubt. The injustices go on, ladies and

gentlemen. Then, there was the confession and testimony by another

defendant, a total stranger to Davontae, who confessed to the crimes

with greater detail and for whom all the forensics evidence corroborated
his version of the murders – well known freelance self-professed hit

man Vincent Smothers. The AK-47 weapon Smothers admitted to using

matched the ballistics evidence found at the Runyon Street killings and

at the scene of another murder he committed. In addition, Smothers

identified an accomplice in the Runyon Street killings who used a 45

pistol, which when found, also clearly matched some of the casings and

bullets at the crime scene. Again, the forensics evidence in this case

clearly corroborated Smothers’ rendition of events that day in which he

confessed to committing the murders.

It does not stop there, ladies and gentlemen. Here’s some more truth

medicine that the prosecutor and Detroit Police have kept from the

public. In his various statements admitting to the Runyon Street

killings, Smothers also provided evidence that a .40 caliber pistol

taken from that home was used in yet another contract killing he carried
out on an officer’s wife at a CVS store in Detroit. Davontae, in his

statement, never mentioned anything about a 40 caliber pistol. That

makes sense, don’t you think when Detroit Police at the time they

prepared his statement did not know about the 40 caliber pistol until

Smothers confessed to the crime a year later! Who do they think we are

to believe this nonsense!

But the sloppiness does not stop there, ladies and gentlemen. Let me

know when I am really hitting the nerve cell at 1300 Beaubien! Smothers

in his confession described in detail the amount of drugs and money

taken from the Runyon Street killings, a fact conspicuously missing from
Davontae’s so-called confession.

Oh, I’m not done yet! Allah take my hand as I speak the truth! In

Smother’s unadulterated confession, he also identified a six year old

boy who was in a back bedroom with a female victim who survived the

killings. In the statement Detroit Police prepared for Davontae,

however, there is no mention of this six year old kid. Good police work,
or sloppy interrogation? You tell me. Sloppy, and they were slipping.

I’m not done yet. Even more interesting is the fact that in neither

of their respective confessions does Davontae or Smothers identify the

other as aiding each other in the murders. In fact, Smothers, a

methodical, professional hitman, admitted he never previously knew

Davontae or employed him to help carry out these murders. It makes

sense, don’t you think? Why would Smother’s, a professional hit man who

identified his accomplice as someone other than Davontae, need a 14 year
old mentally disabled kid who is blind in one eye help him commit the

murders? Also, why would Smothers take the risk in allowing such an

amateur killer escape his grasp and allow him to go home rather than

keep him under his watch to be sure he would not tell his mother or the

police about his role in the murders?

Let me know, Kym Worthy, when you want me to stop! She wants to play

Lady Macbeth, treacherous as she is, in now silencing Smothers! She and

Judge Sullivan of this Court, who recently denied Davontae’s motion to

withdraw his ill-advised guilty plea to these murders based on

newly-discovered evidence of Smothers’ confession. Smothers, ladies and

gentlemen, after several legal maneuvers with the prosecutor’s office in
attempting to get immunity in exchange for testifying on the witness in
Davontae’s favor, recently indicated to the Associated Press that he is
now willing to take the stand without a grant of immunity, feeling

atoned for his crimes after learning that Davontae was wrongfully

convicted of them based on police and prosecutorial misconduct in

extracting a bogus confession from him and inducing him to plea to the


Just recently in a 29 page opinion and order, Judge Sullivan of this

Court compounded the wrongs committed in this case by abusing his

discretion in refusing to allow Smothers a third chance to finally get

on that witness stand and tell truth. In his ruling, he said –

incredibly – that despite newly-discovered evidence of Smothers’ role in
the murders, Davontae has not met his burden of establishing actual

innocence. Judge Sullivan ruled that there is no basis to conclude that

Davontae’s confession was false. He further ruled that Smothers’

confession, standing alone, is insufficient to warrant granting

Davontae’s motion to withdraw his ill-advised guilty pleas. Really?

Perhaps Judge Sullivan was asleep when all the facts and evidence about

Smothers’ role was played for the world to hear and which we repeat

today! No, he was not asleep! He knows better than to believe that

fanciful make believe law he issued! He further corrupted this case that
started at the crime scene on September 17, 2007 and ended right on his
desk with his 29 page ruling that distorted the facts, contained

critical gaps with respect to problems with Davontae’s confession, and

ignored other key evidence pointing to Smothers’ guilt in the killings.

For instance, Judge Sullivan talks about a crime scene sketch Davontae

drew pinpointing the victims’ locations in the house. I have that sketch
and it was not drawn by Davontae; it was drawn by the officer who

interrogated him and as with his confession, he had Davontae sign it.

Judge Sullivan:

How dare you deliberately misrepresent the evidence, while ignoring all the other evidence of this child’s innocence!

How dare you ignore the fact that Smothers provided detailed

evidence, ranging from the amount of drugs and money taken from the home
to the forensics evidence corroborating his version of the types of

weapons that were used in the murders!

How dare you ignore the fact that one of the murder weapons used in this case was indeed found at Smother’s accomplice’s home!

How dare you ignore the fact that Smother’s also correctly stated

that a six year old kid was in the back bedroom of that home the night

of the murders!

How dare you ignore the fact that the AK-47 used in that crime was

the same weapon Smothers used in a different contract killing!

How dare you ignore the fact that the .40 caliber weapon Smothers

used to kill a police officer’s wife was taken from the Runyon Street


You, Judge Sullivan, are not worthy of garnishing your robe for

further corrupting this case and condemning this child to a life

sentence by willingly sweeping all this evidence under the rug! What are
you hiding! You are hiding the truth! You and the prosecutor are hiding
the truth that the officers who extracted Davontae’s confession did so

under highly coercive tactics in which trickery, deceit and mischief

were employed. Indeed, this judge, the police and the prosecutor’s

office are in lockstep in denying justice, betraying our trust and

committing a great crime.

What are they afraid of in allowing Smothers to testify, who has

nothing to gain but everything to lose by getting on that witness stand

and telling the truth? What are they hiding? Their own wrongdoing!!

That’s what! From the moment Smothers’ confessed, they realized they had
a huge problem on their hands in that Davontae’s ill-advised plea to

the charges came full circle. So what do they do? They make him their

sacrificial lamb to their corruption, lies and deceit!! It is

treacherous, ladies and gentlemen and one I will never forget!

It is unconscionable, yes, downright outrageous what you did, Judge

Sullivan, in ignoring the truth, ignoring the facts and denying this

child justice! This 29 page decision by the Court is not the law! This

is garbage in violation of the truth! An injustice further perpetrated

by a judge who is now complicit in the corruption of condemning this

young child to prison for crimes he did not commit! That child’s blood

is now on the hands of this court!

There is absolutely no physical evidence that connects Davontae to

these murders! Nor was there ever any connection between Davontae and

Smothers. Only after Smothers confessed to the crimes a year later did

the prosecutor alter its theory that he and Davontae helped each other.

But what they don’t tell you is that when Davontae entered a factual

basis for his plea prior to Smothers confession, he never identified

Smothers as his accomplice in court. I challenge the prosecutor to prove
me wrong! She won’t because she cannot!! Clear the smoke bombs, ladies

and gentlemen, and see the truth!

Why, Ms. Worthy, do you continue to deny this child justice? What

victory do you get in the war on crime by continuing to refuse to

confess error and set this child free? Kym Worthy knows she can stop the
appeals process right now by filing a Confession of Error with the

Court of Appeals. This is why we are here today. The power in his her

hands to do justice; do the right thing.

What victory is there for the family members of those four murdered

victims in knowing a child was wrongfully convicted of those murders

while Smothers and his accomplice, who walks free in the streets of

Detroit today to carry out more murders, remain uncharged! There is no

victory in sending an innocent child to prison.

Hear us, Ms. Worthy, and obey! Obey the principles of due process, a

fair trial and the laws of humanity! Obey, indeed, the word of God,

Pharaoh of this Court, and set this child free! You are committing a

greater crime in continuing to condemn him to prison, rob him of life,

liberty and the pursuit of happiness. He will never be able to get a

high school diploma, raise a family and live life to his fullest all

because her sin is pride. She, who lectures us about justice is no

Guardian of Justice, let me tell you! She who denigrates the principles

of justice just as she does violence to the presumption of innocence!

With this shame; with this crime against a child, you – you have denied

justice; killed our faith in the system, and betrayed our trust. Shame

on you!

Kym Worthy would do well to heed the admonishment of Freedom Fighter

Frederick Douglass when he said, “No man can put a chain about the ankle
of his fellow man without at least finding the other end fastened about
his own neck.” Your crime in condemning this innocent child is

enormous; and here again you leave a trail of tears. Come down from

these steps, look his mother in the eye and dare you tell her that

Smothers got it all wrong!

The police, the prosecutor and the judge in this case offer the world
a drink from the well of deception. We, however, offer you a drink from
the Fountain of Truth! They build barriers to the truth, dropping smoke
bombs, lying and denying along the way,

We refuse to settle with any notion that our son’s life is that cheap
that we must move on and let him rot with the prosecutor salivates with
the blood of innocence in her mouth! She who professes to be the

guardian of justice has violated it!

Where is there justice, where is there equity in condemning a young

boy to a virtual life sentence and rob him of all hope, all dreams of

getting his diploma, going to college, growing in this society, living a
full life and raising a family?

Where is justice and equity in knowing they wrongfully convicted this
child only to aggravate that travesty by playing ignorance about it all
today! But we will not be silent in the face of this corruption! We

will not tremble before the evildoers! We will never let this prosecutor
and the police who railroaded this fine young man to a life sentence

forget their enormous crime! Indeed, we will forever keep him indelibly

on their minds until he comes home!

I want to assure you, Taminko, that until justice is done, we will

not tire, we will not falter and we will not surrender! And in saying

so, I am inspired by the words of comrade Fidel Castro of Cuba, who

inspired a nation for more than 50 years to stare down the oppressors

who imposed a criminal embargo against that nation: Siguimos hasta la

victoria! Onward to victory! You are not alone in your suffering. We

suffer with you and stand by you until this wrong is corrected. Until

Davontae comes home!

Until that is done, Taminko, we will fight on. Because Davonte is my

son, my brother, my child as well! We will get victory and renew the

spirit of justice under the law. For I am moved by the words of a former

All my life I have been called a slave;

They tells me I belongs to my master.

That may be true about my body.

But my soul remembers a time when I was free.

So when I get a chance . . . I WILL RUN!

Transcript of Speech by Roberto Guzman, Legal Assistant of the

People’s Task Force to Free The Wrongfully Convicted, given on the steps
of the Frank Murphy Hall of Justice on April 23, 2012.
Davontae Sanford

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