There is no conundrum, there is a media-generated pretense of a conundrum. Vincent Smothers confession is airtight; it led straight to one of the guns used in the quadruple homicide. Davontae Sanford tested negative for gunshot residue; he could not identify the guns (plural) used in the hit; he was 14-years-old, half-blind and developmentally delayed. Per exoneration stats, the young and those with mental health issues are easily coerced into falsely testifying. Detroit Police had years earlier coerced a false confession from Eddie Joe Lloyd for a rape/homicide. Eddie Joe died not long after being DNA-exonerated. The terms of his multimillion dollar settlement required the Detroit Police to record interrogations … but Davontae’s interrogation was not recorded. Davontae and Eddie Joe had in common attorney Robert Slameka, who had told the press that Eddie Joe was guilty, in an ugly manner. I have found no record of him ever apologizing after the exoneration. If we had a print or broadcast media that was worth a damn, Davontae never would have spent a day behind bars: reporters would have asked why a developmentally delayed 14-year-old was interrogated without a parent or guardian present. They would have asked Detroit Police for copies of the interrogation. They would asked why it is that a child walking up to officers at the crime scene, in his pajamas, and asking “what’s going on” could possibly make anyone believe he was a potential suspect. Two adults could and did pull off the Runyon Street Quadruple homicide; one half-blind child never could have. It’s time for Michigan Governor Rick Snyder and Attorney General Bill Schuette to serve their constituents instead of their cronies – for a change – and get innocent Davontae out of their hellish prison system.
Michigan Department of Corrections
In April 2008, Vincent Smothers confessed to the killing of four people in Detroit, only to find out that someone had already been convicted of the crime: a 14-year-old boy named Davontae Sanford.
Smothers has been working ever since to have Sanford exonerated, with little result.
Now, seven years later, Smothers is trying again, with an affidavit he hopes might help free Sanford, who is currently serving a decades-long prison term. In a 26-page confession, part of a motion to overturn Sanford’s conviction, Smothers asserts that the now 22-year-old had nothing to do with the murders.
In fact, he attempted to claim responsibility for the deaths as soon as he heard about Sanford’s conviction. In a conversation with police right after his arrest he recalled the killing in precise detail, including naming the weapon that was used.
“You must have the wrong guy,” Smothers told police…
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