Courthouse News Service
A Texas woman spent six years in prison for a murder she did not commit based on the results of a contrived “dog-scent lineup” – a discredited technique that “epitomized the worst of junk science,” she claims in Federal Court.
Megan Winfrey sued the technique’s developer, former Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Deputy Keith Pikett, along with San Jacinto County and three officials: former Sheriff Lacy Rogers, former Sheriff’s Deputy Lenard Johnson and current Sheriff David Clark.
Some accounts put Keith Pikett’s “have dog, will travel” participation in criminal investigations at around 2,500 cases, more than twice that of also-DNA discredited one-man traveling dog show, John Preston.
What Preston and Pikett have in common – aside from not being able to track scent – is that the FBI participated in some of the same investigations, and the same holds true for the K-9 “expert” Preston claimed trained him, Thomas McGinn.
This stinks-to-high-heaven mess could have been over with in 1986 if the investigation ordered of John Preston by then-Florida Governor Bob Graham had been on the up-and-up, and had acknowledged that Preston had already been found to be unable to track scent and unwilling to testifying truthfully as to his training or his dog’s lineage in Dale Sutton’s Ohio federal case.
Here’s hoping that the mainstream media is somehow forced to connect the dots, freeing those who are still behind bars because of the likes of Keith Pikett, John Preston and federal officials and legislators who’d rather people like Gary Bennett die behind bars without so much as even one fair day in court.
Bob Graham went on to become a U.S. Senator, and spent ten years on the committee that provided Oversight of Intelligence agencies, including the FBI. The FBI is the agency mandated to ensure that public corruption does not affect trial outcomes.
Bob Graham chaired that committee in 2001-2002.
Linroy Bottoson was executed in Florida in 2002. Bottoson was a schizophrenic. Orange County deputy Greer had thoroughly discounted Preston’s testimony. The jailhouse informant had recanted.
Last month, Gary Bennett endured his 30th anniversary of being framed by Preston in the same Florida judicial circuit where Juan Ramos, Wilton Dedge and William Dillon had their Preston frames upset.
For Gary’s sake, and for the sake of all others whose dog handler frame-ups remain intact – Go get ’em, Megan!!