Sunday, March 26, 2006

Stoddard Online


Stoddard Online:

Webster defines the word Justice as "behavior to oneself or to another strictly in accordance with currently accepted ethical law," or to take it one step further, "rectitude of the soul enlivened by grace." Modern day judicature tells us that "Justice must be fair, and as well, display the appearance of being fair." These are all very pretty three dollar words used to wrap the parcel, but once the wrapping is off, the present contained inside unleashes it's fury.

Society does not have to look very far to find illustrated examples of "Justice Gone Wild." These are not isolated examples, but rather serve to display a true picture of what is really happening, when a flawed system is allowed to prevail.

From a collage of many in my files, I will cite several celebrated cases in Canada whereby "a miscarriage of justice" prevailed.

Firstly, lets take a look at Karla Holomoka, of whom I personally consider to be a true waste of human skin. This person was just as guilty as her husband, Paul Bernardo. She freely and cooperatively took part in the confinement, sexual torture, and finally the death of two innocent school girls from southern Ontario. As if that was not enough to satisfy her criminal demented lust, she also took part in the drugging and rape of her own sister, which resulted in her death. They were arrested, they were charged. Karla saw her chance to make an exit. She cut a deal with the province of Ontario. Mutually, the province and Karla agreed she would not be facing a murder rap if she would testify against her husband, and in exchange, she would plead guilty to the much lesser charge of manslaughter, and thus, be sentenced to 12 years. The province took the position that they would have problems establishing her guilt and intent. The chilling aspect of this arrangement was the fact that it was made with nearly two dozen video tapes depicting her direct involvement with her husband in the crimes. The province argued they were not aware of the tapes when the deal was cut. Can we believe that? Either way, a miscarriage of justice occured because otherwise Karla Holomoka would be caged for the rest of her days beside her partner, which is where her unrepentant butt should be, in the absense of capital punishment. Karla is now out and enjoying life under the protection of Canada's Charter Of Rights And Freedoms.

Clifford Robert Olson, the low life, self proclaimed "butcher of British Columbia." Olson cut a deal with the province of British Columbia. In the deal, he would plead guilty to eleven child murders in exchange for $110,000.00 being paid to his wife. The province accepted his offer. This one is particularly chilling as well, because there is documented evidence that three of his victims would be alive today, if various members of the RCMP and other police agencies would have cooperated with each other, but in their zeal, the personal quest to be the hero prevailed, allowing Olson time to carry on. In Olson's case, when he was charged with all these murders, he was walking a free man with 98 criminal convictions under his belt, including rape, attempted murder, numerous assaults, and a whole host of others. Without doubt, the judiciary is guilty here for creating a miscarriage of justice that allowed this to happen. I personally covered Olson's application for early release in 1996. He was as unrepentant then as he was back in 1981 when he was sentenced.

Some years back, I was asked to make a submission to a law and order debate in Burnaby, B.C. One of the panelists that night was Justice Wally Opal, who by the way, is now the Attorney General of British Columbia. On the very day of the debate there were two stories which I extracted from the Vancouver Sun. Though unrelated, and not meant to be connected, they were on the same page. In one excerpt, a man had killed someone, was charged with manslaughter, and received a sentence of 11 months. In the other excerpt, a fisherman from Newfoundland had shot a moose out of season to supplement his family's food supply. He was sentenced to 2 years. My question to Justice Opal that night was to clarify justification for the obvious disparity in sentences, where the more serious crime garnered far less of a sentence than the much lesser offence. His reply was simply that one judge dealt with the high end of the scale for punishment and the other involved the lower end. Very definitely another miscarriage of justice, however, does not leave a good taste.

I have mentioned these cases purely as examples of what an inept system is able to bestow upon us, and at the same time set a very dangerous precedent in society, because in the above examples, the miscarriages of justice clearly aided the guilty.

There is a plethora of other cases, names such as Donald Marshall, David Millgard, Thomas Sophonow, Guy Paul Morin, and the most famous of all, Steven Truscott, who have been scarred for life because a flawed system was allowed to dictate their demise.

In Steven Truscott's case, his is the oldest one of all, and yet he is still being put through the hoops. There is a mountain of evidence pointing to a smeared and tarnished conviction. The province of Ontario has acknowledged that a miscarriage of justice very likely took place. That being the case, the only plausible fix to remedy the situation is for the Attorney General to immediately have the original trial results set aside, overturn the conviction, and order a new trial. A simple stay of proceeedings is not enough. A stay only means that the crown is not proceeeding, it does not restore innocence. After enduring for 47 years, Steven Truscott is deserving of proving his innocence. It is now up to the Ontario Attorney General, Michael Bryant, to put this in motion without further delay.

Our Charter Of Rights And Freedoms guarantees our rights as citizens in this country. Our charter protects citizens from illegal confinement.Our charter guarantees our citizens the right to equality in the eyes of the law, and it guarantees our citizens the right to justice in an expedient fashion. Our charter also guarantees and protects our citizens from wrongful actions from government, and provides for a presumption of innocence until proven guilty, and in Steven Truscott's case, it is apparent that he was found guilty as a result of an elaborate scheme, merely to speed the process, and at the same time, soothe a bruised ego on the part of the lead criminal investigator. World wide, Canada is recognized as posssessing one of the most attractive protection covers for her citizens. Steven Truscott is one of those citizens. Why did the system fail him?

Lew Stoddard

25 comments:

Bill M said...

Excellent stuff Lew, couldn't agree more. Ontario you must free Steven Truscott now from all this mess. he deserves some peace in his life and mind from all this.

Bill McWilliams
Saskatoon, Saskatchewan

Greg N said...

Hey Michael Bryant, show some leadership in your ministry, Look after Steven Truscotts interests in this thing.

Greg Nevers
Ottawa, Ontario

D Chambers said...

What is the province hiding Mr. Bryant? Stand up and be counted, and make the people proud of you.

Dale Chambers
Cornwall, Ontario

Gordon M said...

Justice now for Steven Truscott, there is no justification for the way this thing has been handled

Gordon Marchand
Toronto

Bob Kearney said...

Michael Bryant if you cant handle this, move over, get out of the way, make room for someone else who can. Do the honourable thing for Steve Truscott. he is one of our citizens

Bob Kearney
Pembrooke

S McEwen said...

Lew,

Love the way you wrote that. Wondered where you were going at first, but you brought her in and set her down right where you wanted her, smack in the lap of Michael Bryant. You have good writing skills man!

S McEwen
Kentville, Nova Scotia

Bertha D said...

Hello Again Lew

I sent you a comment yesterday. Just read your editorial on this thing. Thank you for your words, you couldn't say it better.

Bertha D
Victoria, B. C.

Anonymous said...

Lew,

We have met. I am a relative of one of Clifford Olsons victims. Just read your editorial writing. You are so right in what you say. Our scars have not, and will never go away. I will send you an e-mail, have some info to discuss with you. Keep up the pressure Steve. We have you in our thoughts.

Casey L said...

It is dangerous when serious crime cases are decided on the moods of the officers of the court. Scares me to think that I could be involved one day in the process, would not know who to trust. One thing I do know though, Steve Truscott deserves better than what he has been through.

Casey Lavalee
Windsor, Ontario

Cameron Shortt said...

You say it with determination Sir, I like that. That is a good article, and I agree with you on the fact that Holomoka got a sweet deal, and at taxpayer expense. Steven Truscott however, got a raw deal. It needs to be corrected now. Should have been done long ago.

Cameron Shortt
Grand Falls, New Brunswick

Mike Freeborn said...

I just banged off an e-mail to Michael Bryant, will send one each day till they acknowledge that they have received them. This upsets me, thanks for keeping it going, only way to get attention.
You write a great article.

Mike Freeborn
Timmins, Ontario

Jim Davis said...

Mr. Stoddard,
Your editorial comment is hard hitting, articulate, and right on the money.

The Charter of Rights And Freedoms has done a lot to protect Holomoka and Olson, among others, and yet, these folks that you have named including Steve Truscott have been held hostage.

In Steve's case as you say, he was convicted with tainted evidence which is now acknowledged by the crown. That being the case, he is now being subjected to cruel and unusual punishment by the very same crown that found him guilty with tainted evidence in the first place. He must be restored to complete innocence status immediately. I am now so incensed over this, didn't really understand it all until you mapped it all out this weekend. Thank you Mr. Stoddard for doing that for us. Tomorrow, I will send my thoughts on the matter to our premier and Mr. Bryant.

Jim Davis
Barrie, Ontario

Wanda Jarvis said...

Just read the response from Jim Davis, and want to let you know ditto for me on everything that he said including sending e-mails to mr. Bryant and the premier.

Wanda Jarvis
Sarnia, Ontario

M. McCormick said...

Hey Lew Stoddard,
I've commented on your articles in the past, didn't always agree, but count me in all the way on this one. Good luck to you Steve Truscott and Marlene.

M McCormick
Hamilton, Ontario

Worn Out Old Legal Beagle said...

Lew Stoddard,

You might remember me. I am currently a "recently retired" member of the criminal justice system. I was once a guest on your TV program. Good to see that your mouth and tongue are still meshing their gears.

Lew I agree with you, with regard to Steven Truscott. If the justice system was willing to anchor him, then they, and only they, can and should now do him justice. Keep up the fight Mr. Truscott. You will prevail.

Worn Out Old Legal beagle
Vancouver, B. C.

Martha T said...

Listen up Ontario and Ottawa,

Loose his chains and set Steven Truscott free. Grant his new trial, and you will very quickly see that you had no right to bonding him for 47 years.

Martha T
Niagara Falls, Ontario

Dorothy R said...

I can tell you why the system failed him. He was an easy target and a 14 year old kid, and they manipulated him away from his home and parents with no one to advise him, and as a kid felt duty bound to trust adults in authority, especially the police. In doing this they undermined everything that used to be fundamental.

Dorothy Rogers
North Bay, Ontario

G Brandon said...

I enjoyed your comments on the justice system, and the plight of Steven Truscott.

You are graphic, perhaps some may argue, a bit too graphic, but I guess sometimes you have to strike hard to get attention for the point that you are making. In any case, one has to agree that we need to pull up our socks, especially the criminal justice system.

I am currently in law school, hoping one day to build a practise in criminal law. Truly a fascinating field.

G. Brandon
Winnipeg, Manitoba

Sandra H said...

You make some very good points, you cause one to pay attention. That is good, so easy to get caught up in the mess of the world today, and forget the real issues. Steven Truscott and his family need our help, thanks for jogging my memory. I am a high school teacher, this gives me food for thought for a topic for our debating team.

Those are my thoughts,

Sandra H
Edmonton, Alberta

M. Daniels said...

Your last ststement sums it all up. Why did the system fail Steven Truscott? I think maybe it was because we are such a society that allows politicians to look after our interests.

Most of those people can't look after their own affairs, let alone someone else's. That is when peeople grt hurt in the process.

Mandy Daniels
St. Therese, P.Q.

J Foster said...

Can honestly say that I have never had the respect for the Charter that perhaps I should have. Also, am leery of a Supreme court who's judges are appointed by cabinet.

You know the old saying, don't bite the hand that feeds, having said that, are supreme court judges always impartial, considering an independent decision might go against the wishes of the government. Hope I am wrong, just my thoughts.

Hang in there Steven

J Foster
Woodstock, N.B.

J McKinney said...

Lew Stoddard I do agree with what you are saying, a flawed process here dictated the demise of an innocent person. Needs to be corrected now.

Jan McKinney
North bay, Ontario

C Chalmers said...

you tell it better than me sir but i agree with you. has to be made right all the way.

C Chalmers
Regina

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