Donald Trump indicated this week that he still believes the five teenage boys exonerated after being convicted in the brutal 1989 assault of a Central Park jogger are guilty.I have a personal input into this controversy. Some years later, long after the shock had faded, I was at a private dinner in New York where Linda Fairstein was present. Fairstein ran the prosecution of this case. She was already launched in her novelist career. She remarked, without any particular prompting, that the doctors who dealt with the victim judged that she had been raped by at least 30 men. In telling us this, of course, Fairstein was admitting grievous failure as a prosecutor since only 5 were convicted.
The case against the men, all minorities, and the rape that left the victim, who is white, in a coma, transfixed a nation reeling from rising big-city crime rates.
At the time, Trump took out full-page ads in the New York newspapers calling to "bring back the death penalty" and said the "murderers" should "suffer."
After the fact, when DNA testing became more useful, a lowlife whose DNA was found in the woman was induced to take entire responsibility for the crime.
Our Nicholas Stix has supplied us with devastating refutations of this outrage. In Sotomayor Supporter Robert Morgenthau And His Regime Of Racialized “Justice” In Manhattan in 2009 he observed:
In 2002, after the statute of limitations for the Central Park attacks had passed, delusional psychotic Matias Reyes, a convicted murderer and serial rapist already serving a 33 1/3 years-to-life sentence in the same prison as Kharey Wise, announced that he had “found God”—something that he had been saying for 11 years—and that he alone had attacked Trisha Meili.In “It Was Fun”—Robert K. Tanenbaum vs. The Central Park Five, 25 Years Later he reported
The unidentified sperm proved to be Reyes'. Otherwise, his story was bunkum. The victim's doctors denied that the then slightly built, 5'8,” 18-year-old had without help dragged a remarkably fit if petite woman, fighting for her life, 290 feet; and had without accomplices so tortured and harmed her.
Reyes had either found and raped the unconscious Meili after the wolf pack had moved on to other victims, or had been a part of it. At the time, some of the boys had said they'd held the victim down, while a “Tony” raped her. Reyes' street name was “Tony.”
Their attorneys commented that the defendants had made so many self-incriminating statements that a successful defense was impossible:And dealing with the sycophantic and dishonest Ken Burns’ propaganda documentary he added
Afterward, Mr. Richardson's lawyer, Howard Diller, said he was “shattered.”
“They convicted themselves with their own statements,” he said. “We could not overcome them.”
Colin Moore, the lawyer for Mr. Wise, said his client's “vivid” videotaped statement “proved to be too difficult to overcome.”
[2 Teen-Agers Are Convicted in Park Jogger Trial by Ronald Sullivan, New York Times, December 12, 1990.]
Why would Reyes confess to everything? According to law enforcement sources, someone had carried a threat to him in prison in 2001 that he had better take sole responsibility for the attack on the Jogger, or suffer violence. [Inmate says Reyes raped her after teens attacked by Barbara Ross and Alice McQuillan, Daily News, December 5, 2002.] Since by then the statute of limitations had passed, Reyes couldn’t be prosecuted for the Central Park crimes, and getting other minority felons off for their crimes would make him a cell block hero…Taken together these three essays make clear that the reversal of the Central Park Five convictions was simply a function of racial political power.
A key source is the Armstrong Report…
Armstrong argues that the likeliest scenario is one in which five or more attackers beat and sexually molested the Jogger, Reyes heard her moaning or screaming, and after the first wave of attackers left, dragged her to the second crime scene, where he raped and beat her, causing the “carnage” (Armstrong).
The Central Park Five issue is history.
The issues voters have to consider is: Who else would dare to challenge it?