Whoops

July 11, 2008

Whoops, looks like all of us in the linux community here at freereiser.org were way off-base on this one! See ya over on the LKML

The media distorts a lot of evidence, making everybody think they are an expert on the Reiser trial. I went to the trials, I spoke to people who knew the involved parties, I read the court transcripts. Read up on the history of the Oakland PD, you’ll be a lot less inclined to trust them to conduct a proper investigation. Just look at how badly they bungled the Black Muslim Bakery case going on right now. Plus Nina was obviously a shady Russian. Don’t ever underestimate desperate shady Russians.

Miscarriage of Justice

April 28, 2008

In a tragic blow against innocent people everywhere the jury handed Hans a guilty sentence of first-degree murder. What a travesty.

Sure Hans looked guilty, but the prosecution failed to argue a solid case proving Nina is dead and Hans killed her. The OPD worked on proving Hans innocent, to the exclusion of pursuing alternate leads and suspects. Why did the judge (who is known among local legal professionals as being notoriously pro-prosecution and was obviously biased against Reiser from the start) not allow Sean Sturgeon’s confession to killing eight people, or his admission that Nina broke up with him because he was too into S&M to be mentioned in court? Why the fuck was Hora allowed to display a portrait of Nina smiling holding her baby in the witness box when he gave his closing arguments?

It seemed like the burden of proof shifted to the defense, rather than the prosecution as it should be in a trial free of bias. Sure, anyone would agree the defense’s argument wasn’t airtight or terribly convincing, but that doesn’t convict Hans. He is not guilty until proven innocent. Lack of a good defense (clearly Hans was handicapped by an ineffective lawyer, and he obviously shouldn’tve taken the stand at all) does not prove the prosecution’s case, and I for one was not convinced beyond a reasonable doubt Hans was guilty of murder.

Since we have no idea HOW Hans supposedly killed Nina, wouldn’t it be sensible we should choose the less offensive degree? Perhaps Reiser pushed Nina down the stairs in the heat of passion and oops she died gotta clean it up. That’s manslaughter, how in the hell did the jury come up with first-degree murder? How do they KNOW it was not manslaughter?

It’s a sad day indeed, especially when you consider the testimony you don’t read about in the blogs or see in the media. Talking to actual people involved in the case, digging deeper, actually talking to human beings who knew Nina and Hans presents a much muddier picture than Hora advanced in his case. Nina is known to have told her friends she couldn’t move to Russia with the kids as long as Hans can visit him. Why was Nina working as a translator for a mail-order bride service when she was supposedly a wonderful doctor in Russia? What about Sean Sturgeon? There are too many variables to know for sure what happened.

This has been a sad case, and shaken our faith in the criminal justice system. I’m sure much of this and the obvious bias of Judge Goodman will be exposed in the appeals.

Reiser Trial in Progress

November 29, 2007

We here at freereiser.org have of course been following the progress of the trial, and it’s been pretty interesting to say the least. The prosecution has presented plenty of evidence that Reiser was a bit of a wackjob and allegedly said some weird things, but they have not presented any hard, physical evidence that Nina is dead, much less that Hans was involved. Sure, he is eccentric and intensely disliked Nina, but that hardly proves beyond a doubt that he murdered her. The defense is expected to keep presenting testimony against Hans’ character, but no new physical evidence.

While Hans certainly does appear shifty and unstable according to the testimony so far, it’s likely the veteran D.A. prosecuting the case could make anyone look suspicious given over a year of time to research their history. It’s clear Hans was just in the wrong place at the wrong time, and is in danger of being unfairly and incorrectly accused of murder. It’s likely that the defense can convince the jury of this by the end, and hopefully Hans can be free as in beer.

Good daily coverage of the trial:

Wired Threat Level

Chronicle Reiser Blog

Reiser trial delayed

November 5, 2007

The Reiser trial was set to begin today at 10:00am in Oakland, but the judge postponed the trial until tomorrow. Attorneys for both sides say they cannot discuss the reasons why, but it’s likely due to the amount of press at the trial. Newspapers from the San Francisco Chronicle, which ran the story as the headline news yesterday, to the Moscow Times have picked up the reporting of the trial, and legal experts say it will be very interesting.

Overall the media coverage of the trial seems to be in favor of Reiser; most of the headlines make explicit note of the fact that there is no body, which despite multiple searches by police and help from friends of Nina, is still nowhere to be found. Reiser’s lawyers say they plan to lay out evidence that Nina is most likely in Russia with her children, as we here at FreeReiser.org have been saying all along.

One hurdle for Reiser’s defense is the fact that whenever he opens his mouth he sounds like a nutcase, or at least the reporters seem to pick sound bytes which convey that impression. His attorneys have stated that they do not want him to testify, yet he is insisting on doing so, and even considering firing his attorneys for not letting him speak. Perhaps he can make an excellent argument, considering that he has memorized nine thousand pages of discovery and can quote pieces of it by page number, combined with the fact he has nothing to do all day but work on his defense.

So far, things are looking good for Reiser, we suspect he will be acquitted before long. For more coverage, here are some news stories regarding the trial:

Wired

ABC News (has some great videos of TV coverage of the story)

Chronicle front page article

Mention in the Moscow Times

Interestingly enough, none of the coverage lately has mentioned Mr. Sturgeon, Nina’s ex-boyfriend who admitted to killing eight people.

We hope to bring you some coverage from the trial, stay tuned for updates.

Trial starts Monday

November 3, 2007

René C. Davidson Alameda County Courthouse
1225 Fallon St., Oakland, CA, 94612

Case Type: Criminal
Case Number:    154825
Name: REISER, HANS THOMAS
Date:   05-Nov-2007
Time:  10:00:00
Department Number:      009

We here at FreeReiser.org hope to be able to attend, but unfortunately most of us are gainfully employed and can’t make it.

In other news, last night an interview was aired on 20/20 with Reiser. We need to locate footage of it.

August 22, 2007

In case there was still any doubt in anyone’s mind that Hans will get acquitted, I’d like to quote a story NBC wrote:

But whatever suspicion their findings manage to cast on Reiser, prosecutors must still contend with California’s tough rules on circumstantial evidence. Judges in the state are required to instruct jurors that if the evidence suggests “two reasonable interpretations,” one pointing to guilt and the other innocence, they must reject the guilty interpretation.

Clearly the evidence does not even indicate for certain that any murder was even committed; there are millions of alternate explanations for the facts.

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