This is a tale that needs to be told, and it is being told. It is graphic, so proceed with caution. This is a tale of deception, of coerced witnesses, young children ages 7 and 9, testifying clearly on abuses that no young child would have any knowledge what they were saying, such as guns pointed at their heads, pinned down and sexually assaulted in an “alcohol-and-drug fueled frenzy.
This should have been a red-herring to the jurors but, social taboos, incompetent experts and expert witnesses, and prosecutors who found their only mission was to convict, regardless of evidence and common sense resulted in charges of child sexual abuse and lengthy prison terms – 15 years for aggravated sexual assault and 10 years for indecency!
Herein lies the plight of these 4 lesbian women, whose only true crime, according to society, was their sexual orientation. According to Innocence Project attorney, Michael Ware, “they were young, they didn’t have a lot of money […], and therefore they were vulnerable targets for the police and the prosecutors, who would not have dared to pursue such an investigation against members of more mainstream society.” All of these facts led to a frenzy, a media exploitation, a witch hunt of satanic sexual abuse panic, which was the term used in that era.
Fast forward to today. The Four are out of prison, one of the children recanted their story almost 20 years later, but the stigma still remains and they have not been exonerated waiting to face the same judge. The stigma still exists for many still incarcerated on bogus charges. The Innocense Project is overloaded with similar cases.
This is a stain on our society. Are we so motivated for justice we overlook the facts? Are we highy influenced by what’s trending? Thanks to the Innocense Project and to those who stand up for right and wrong!
By Sharla Esparza