Update on the Kevin Driscoll Case
So then. . . who among the jury voted for conviction? Could it have been some person or persons who were sure that "something MUST have happened", or that "lack of evidence doesn't mean that nothing happened"? That method of thinking is undoubtedly widespread after years of feminist indoctrination in a culture that was already deferential toward women and inclined to anti-male bias.
Since the trial ended in a hung jury the case may, at the discretion of the prosecution, go into retrial. And behold: the prosecuting attorney, Jody Vaughan, has indeed made clear that she intends to pursue this option!
So Kevin Driscoll remains under house arrest, just as he has been since February. The fact that he was not found guilty has not made a dent upon this; the fact that the charges must be refiled has not made a dent upon this; the questionable morality (or legality) of imposing house arrest in the first place has not made a dent upon this; nothing has made a dent upon this! Kevin remains a prisoner in his own home. Granted, there are worse places to be a prisoner.
The first trial was a circus. A sham. A farce. The prosecution was afflicted with a kind of hubris that I surely can't hope to imagine. By the look of it, the same kind which afflicted Michael Nifong. An arrogance born of unreflecting certainty that they could get away with it unchallenged, so cocksure that they couldn't even be bothered to cover their tracks. And oh, did they ever get egg on their face—tubs of it! And now they want to give it another go. Manifestly, they don't know when to call it quits, so they are once more snarling after Kevin Driscoll with bared fangs and foaming spittle.
This time, mark my words, the prosecution will go about their work very, very methodically, and they will build their new case slowly and painstakingly. No preposterous, fourth-rate, cheesy-sounding witnesses called at the last minute—heavens no, not this time! On the contrary, they will construct the case in a very different way, a way that I wouldn't presume to second guess, knowing only that they will spare no trouble to nail it together solidly. Or at all events as solidly as they can manage, evidence and circumstance permitting. (And let's be honest, those factors have not improved since the first time around!)
In the meantime, Kevin Driscoll himself has descended into a cone of silence, a profoundly arctic deep-freeze incommunicado. On 23 Dec he will have a court hearing to ascertain whether his house arrest will be lifted, and the prosecution has made clear its displeasure at the wide exposure the case has recently garnered, and at the disgraceful light that was cast upon Jody Vaughan, Mike Dugan, the Redmond Police Department, and so on. Also made clear by the prosecution, was that Kevin had best not be "talking" if he wishes for a favorable outcome on the 23rd. Therefore, Kevin is not talking!
Our blitz of internet exposure arrived as a boulder landing in a quiet pond. Although it wasn't nearly so impressive as it might have been if we'd had months to pull it together instead of mere weeks, trust me, it did not go unnoticed! Why, it has even attracted academic scrutiny at the University of Oregon, where Professor Kyu Ho Youm, instructor in media law, characterized it as "extraordinary". And in the days following the hung verdict, I noticed a very large spike of visitor traffic arriving at the blog from Eugene, Oregon—where the University of Oregon is located! (Something tells me our little escapade will become a standard case study in future academic articles and textbooks!)
But again, Shefong and crew are very unhappy about this, so Kevin Driscoll stays in the icebox if he knows what is good for him. However, they cannot silence independent mouths like my own—and I will certainly not be bashful in voicing my personal opinion concerning these matters.
As you may recall, a news story appeared in the Bend Bulletin on 18 Nov, 2009. It was written by Cindy Powers, a reporter with that publication, and it concerned the Driscoll case. I talked on the telephone with Cindy Powers the day before the article was released, and informed her on a few subjects pertinent to what she was writing about. Cindy explained to me that she had no "side" in the Driscoll case, that her position was that of the neutral, objective media professional reporting the facts. She also explained that her article was not meant to be focussed on the Driscoll case as such, but rather the extraordinary worldwide attention which the case had gathered by way of cyberspace—a truly phenomenal thing!
But the article, when it came out, was indeed focussed on the case as such. Moreover, I cannot in good faith inform you that it lacked bias, for it was indeed partial to the side of the prosecution—and it put District Attorney Michael Dugan especially in a favorable light. And I say this from a place of knowledge, as one better informed of the back story than the average Bend Bulletin reader would be.
Curiously, there was more to Cindy Powers than met the eye, although I didn't learn of this until later. It turns out that before taking up journalism, Cindy was a legal professional who worked as a public prosecutor in Marion County, Oregon—where Salem, the state capital, is located. I learned of this from an article on the Oregon State Bar website, here:
The article is quite long and, I think, interesting. But I will cite the pertaining section for your convenience, as follows:
"In Bend, the local paper has addressed the "back story" problem by hiring Cindy Powers, a law school graduate and former Marion County prosecutor who now reports on legal and public safety issues. That, says Deschutes County District Attorney Michael Dugan, has made for better legal coverage.
"All too often, the news media assigns its least-experienced reporters to cover the legal stories in smaller communities," says Dugan. "These reporters know little about the procedure of the cases, let alone the actual legal basis for the charging decisions that are made. In many circumstances, the reporter is asking questions to which we think any person who took high school civics should know the answer. But our local daily paper has assigned an experienced, legally trained reporter to cover crime and some of the (court’s) civil cases. Doing this has made the coverage much more meaningful. The stories are much more accurate and the prosecutors aren’t confronted with non-relevant questions."
On Friday, 20 Nov, the Bend Bulletin printed another story by Cindy Powers, this time announcing, and commenting on, the final hung jury in the Driscoll trial. Here, CP expanded on some of the themes in her first article. In addition, she credits "the bloggers" for presenting evidence that was not admitted into court, but she also mentions that they said nothing about two restraining orders that were issued against Kevin in the past.
Since I am one of those bloggers whom Cindy Powers refers to, I reckon I should briefly set the record straight. Yes, it is true that Kevin Driscoll has two restraining orders in his past. The first of these was issued for trivial reasons by Kevin's ex-wife during a divorce, and soon withdrawn. The second was issued on a fraudulent pretext by a woman who was concocting an elaborate alibi for infidelity to a "significant other" whom Kevin didn't know about. And contrary to what the Bulletin article states, allegations of "rough sex" were NOT made by all three women, only by one of them—and since there has been some questionable record-keeping, it's questionable that she actually did make this allegation after all. None of these women had anything bad to say about Kevin.
No, I didn't mention any of this because, honestly, I had more important things to focus on. So I never quite got around to it. Furthermore, the judge knew just what he was about when he rejected this information as irrelevant and non-evidentiary.
The funny thing about restraining orders (although there really is nothing funny about them!) is how easily and commonly they get handed out. They are, in some sort, our present-day version of the lettres de cachet (issued under the king's seal) that were so prevalent in France prior to the French Revolution. Yes. I can't say it enough. Restraining orders are handed out almost as freely as dinner mints! So when you hear that "so-and-so had a restraining order against him", don't assume the worst. Pending further information, think "ahhh. . . somebody gave him a dinner mint!" And you know what else? I have EVEN heard that they now print restraining orders on rolls with perforations, for easy dispensing!
But seriously: Kevin Driscoll had no police record of any kind prior to his recent misfortune, whereas the plaintiff Melissa Leahy-Rossow has four counts of forgery to her name, along with a previous false rape allegation, and finally a DUI (that's Driving Under the Influence, for those outside the USA!). And in reference to the DUI, Melissa was very evidently both drinking in the bars and driving her car, even though she was forbidden to do both under terms of her probation.
In her news story, Cindy Powers supplies both inaccurate information, and information to which she could not have been privy unless she had an 'inside wire'. I say this because, yes, I am aware of the back story — in fact, more than I am now revealing, or have revealed in earlier blog writings. That's right: I know more than I am letting on! But now, this business about Kevin Driscoll's dinner mints has reached the public by way of the Bend Bulletin, even though it is inadmissible in court, and even though, in theory, the general public doesn't need to know about it.
There much more to write about, and I expect new developments to unfold. So I will post updates and further reflections on the Kevin Driscoll case from time to time as I deem fitting.
Labels: kevin driscoll