Advertisement
YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollectionsSan Dimas

'Justice Denied'

March 21, 1986

Your editorial again illustrates much of what is wrong with today's criminal justice system. The Warren Court's radical expansion of the rights of criminal defendants came at the expense of the greatest pursuit of justice--finding the truth.

Decisions such as Miranda and its progeny have been used to exclude truthful evidence and confessions, and to let knowingly guilty criminals go free. In the Burbine case, the majority led by Justice O'Connor recognized that letting a guilty murderer go free benefits no one (except the murderer), but harms all of society, and perhaps more important, harms the integrity of a fair system of justice.

The minority of three did not "have their heads screwed on right," as you suggest, but in fact represent a thankfully dying American Civil Liberties Union breed belief that the criminal justice system should represent a game where guilty criminals can go free if they can only find the magic button to push.

To state the Burbine facts simply and fairly: the arrested defendant was given his Miranda rights, he knowingly waived those rights, and he confessed to a murder, which he did in fact commit and for which he was convicted. To reverse such a conviction is not "chicanery," as your editorial charges, it is truth and justice.

JAMES SELTH

San Dimas

Advertisement
Los Angeles Times Articles
|
|
|