Advanced Criminal Law :: West Memphis 3
Professor James R. Elkins College of Law
West Virginia University




Assignments Archive

Monday, January 6, 2014

An introduction to the WM3 case and to the course work.

For a descriptive summary of the WM3 case: West Memphis Three

Monday, January 13, 2014

Pretrial Hearing: Transcript pp. 7-235 [Hearings on Aug.4, 1993 & Sept.27, 1993]

Monday, January 20, 2014

Monday is Martin Luther King, Jr.'s Birthday and a holiday.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Suppression Hearing: Transcript pp. 440-630

In conjunction with the suppression hearing transcript, read the transcription of Jessie Misskelley's statements made to the police.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Opening Arguments Misskelley Trial

Opening Arguments: The Art of Advocacy

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Prosecution Case | Transcript | 686-855 | Packet 1

This opening part of the trial consists of testimony by the victim's families, by police detectives involved in the search and discovery of the victims, and by Frank Peretti, the medical examiner who presents testimony and is cross-examined about his autopsy report.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Prosecution Case | Transcript | 856-1050 | a substantial part of Packet 2

In this early part of the Misskelley trial, we begin to see the importance of defense counsel's cross examination skills. Peruse and review: Cross Examination. For F. Lee Bailey's cross examination of a police detective in the O.J. Simpson trial, see: F. Lee Bailey

See also: Cross Examining Police in False Confession Cases

On the "relevance" and "foundation" issues raised by the admissibility of certain evidence (in particular, the alleged "cult stuff," see David S. Schwartz, A Foundation Theory of Evidence, 100 Geo. L. J. 95 (2011) [online text]

Wednesday, February12, 2014

Finish Packet 2:

pp. 1051-1088 (prosecution finishes its case)

pp. 1088-1095 (defense motion for a directed verdict)

pp. 1095-1099 (preliminary matters before the defense opens its case)

pp. 1099-1135 (defense opens its cases)

Begin Packet 3:

pp. 1136-1253 (defense case proceeds)

Monday, February17, 2014

Finish Packet 3:

pp.1340-1502 (defense case proceeds)

Review Federal Rules of Evidence 702, 703, & 704. See the Resources on the Qualification of Expert Witnesses (in regard to Dr. Wilkins testimony and in particular the questions raised as to Dr. Wilkins's reliance on the Gudjonssen suggestibility test)

For a recent case discussing the admissibility of the Guðjónsson suggestibility scale test (under the Frye standard), see People v. Shanklin, 2014 Il App (1st 120084; 2014 Ill. App. LEXIS 41

Monday, February 24, 2014

Packet 4:

pp. 1503-1628 (defense testimony)

pp. 1631-1636 (defense motion for a directed verdict)

pp. 1636-1693 (state's rebuttal case)

pp. 1693-1706 (defense motion for a directed verdict)

Further Review of Federal Rules of Evidence 704 (ultimate issue testimony)

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

pp. 1723-1762

pp. 1762-1775

pp. 1775-1797

Closing Argument Resources

Wednesday, March 5, 2014 :: Jason Baldwin/Damien Echols Trial: Packet 1

Pretrial hearing: pp. 398-446

Fogelman: Opening Statement for the Prosecution

Paul Ford: Opening Statement for the Jason Baldwin

Scott Davidson: Opening Statement for Damien Echols

Opening Statement Resources

Witnesses for the State

Dana Moore, Pam Hobbs, Melissa Byers, Debra Tinger, Bryan Woody

Police Officers: Reginia Meek, John Moore, Mike Allen, Bryan Ridge

Medical Examiner: Dr. Frank Peretti

Monday, March 17, 2014 :: Baldwin|Echols Trial: Packet 2

Packet 2 begins: Conference on chambers on the testimony of Micahel Carson, who the prosecution will use as a "snitch" in its case against Baldwin. [The use of "snitch" testimony raises a good many issues that inquire your attention. See: collected resources on "snitch" testimony]

Michael Carson testimony.

Detective Michael Allen (testifying on the recovery of the "lake knife")

Joel Mullins (Arkansas State Police)

Shane Griffin (narcotics dective, West Memphis Police)

Glen Masengale (patrolman, West Memphis Police)

Detective Bryan Ridge

Detective Gitchell

Anthony Hollingsworth (sister of Tabitha Hollingsworth who testified in the Jessie Misskelley trial about seeing Damien Echol and Domini Terr in the vicinity of the Robin Hood area on the evening the killings took place)

Narlene Hollingsworth (Anthony Hollingsworth's mother)

Kermit Chanell (forensic serologist)

Michael DeGuglielmo (director of forensic analysis for Genetic Design; DeGuglielmo testified in the Misskelley trial)

Jerry Driver (chief juvenile officer, Crittendon county)

James Sudbury (Lieutenant, West Memphis Police)

Bench Conference (March 3, 1994)

Monday, March 24, 2014 :: Baldwin|Echols Trial :: Packet 3

--Hearing to determine admissibility of statements Damien Echols made to the West Memphis Police (and whether he was denied requested legal counsel)

See: Moran v. Burbine, 475 U.S. 412 (1986) [online text]

--Bill Durham, detective WM Police department

--John Fogelman, the prosecutor, testifies as to his presence at the WM Police department when the statement from Echols was taken

--Bryan Ridge, detective

--Damien Echols, hearing on his interrogation by the WM Police
detectives and his request for an attorney

--Reconsideration of motion in limine that barred prosecution from
using a Luminol test results for blood at the scene of the crime

--Lisa Sakevicius, Arkansas state crime lab, providing fiber evidence favorable to the prosecution

[Fiber Evidence]

[For a 2012 follow-up on the Sakevicius fiber evidence testimony, see: Attorneys dispute, lab head defends work on WM fibers] [Jason Baldwin's lawyer's letter to the prosecution questioning the Sakevicius fiber evidence]

--Ralph Turbyfill, chief latent fingerprint examiner, Arkansas State Crime Laboratory

--Deanna Hoccomb, Echols's former girlfriend

--James Parker, owner of a Tennessee knife company

--Bill Durham, WM police detective

--James Sudbury, WM police detective

--Bill Durham

--Bryan Ridge, WM police detective

Other Suspect Evidence: Introduction on the Basic Legal Issues. For application of the legal principles, see: Smithart v. State of Alaska (Sup.Ct. Alaska, 1999) [online text]

"Devil's Knot" (2014), Atom Egoyan's adaptation of Maria Leverett's book, Devil's Knot: The True Story of the West Memphis Three (New York: Atria Books,2002) is expected in theaters and on video on demand on May 9, 2014.] [film trailer]  

Monday, March 31, 2014 :: Baldwin|Echols Trial :: Packet 4

[For the Dale Griffs, occult expert testimony, you may want to review materials and legal issues on "expert testimony" that I have assembled: Expert Testimony]

--Bench conference

--Dale Griffis (allegedly an expert on the occult) (hearing to determine his qualification as an expert)

--Lisa Sakevicius, Arkansas State Crime Lab

--Kermit Channel, Arkansas State Crime Lab

--John L. Murray, criminal investigation, Crittendon county sheriff's department

--Bryan Ridge, WM Police detetctive

--Dale Griffis's testimony as an "expert"

--Bench conference

--Bench conference and testimony of Christy Van Vickle

--Jodee Medford testimony

--Donna Medford (Jodee Medford's daughter)

--Discussion: Judge Burnett and the Attorneys

completion of the state's case

Monday, April 7, 2014 :: Baldwin|Echols Trial (Defense Case) :: Packet 5

--Pamela Hutchison, Damien Echols mother

--Michelle Echols, Damien Echols sister

--Damien Echols

--Bench Conference; cross-examinaion of Echols continues

--Christopher Morgan (in camera)

--Stacy Sanders

--Jennifer Sanders

--Randy Sanders

--Gail Sharp

--Gary Gitchell

Monday, April 14, 2014 :: Baldwin|Echols Trial ::
Packet 6

--John Mark Byers

--Marty King, manager of the Bojangles Restaurant

--Bench conference; Robert Hicks, law enforcement specialist

--Bench conference (re: Chris Morgan)

--Price (attorney for Echols) rests their defense case; Charles Linch, first witness for Baldwin called to testify

--Motions at the end of the defense case

State's Rebuttal Case

--Peggy Simmons

--George Pokorski

--Duke Jennings

--Lisa Sakevicius :

--John Kilbourn

--Scott Kelin :

Closing Arguments

Prosecution closing argument (Fogleman)

Echols's closing argument (Price)

Baldwin's closing argument (Ford)

Prosecution's closing argument (Davis) :

[audio of the Fogleman, Price, and Ford closing arguments is not available]

Last Day of Scheduled Classes: Wednesday, April 16, 2014