One of our readers was following along with our comments about recent articles in the press, and had some observations about this recent article in the Mercury News (pdf).
Chris from the Internet provides this analysis of Joshua Melvin's article (Text from the Mercury News article is in italics):
REDWOOD CITY -- In a wide ranging court filing Tuesday, the defense for a once-renowned Peninsula child psychiatrist accused of molesting his patients sought to delay his retrial, revealed an accuser lied, and wants local prosecutors thrown off the case.
You say “revealed an accuser lied” as if that is what happened. To have revealed something to you it would have to have been something he discovered and no one else knew about. The fact is the only legit way to convey that idea is to say “The defense attorney told me he believes a victim lied on the stand based on Police record and transcripts of prior testimony.”
Not only didn't he reveal anything to you it is impossible for him to have since he bases the allegation on an existing record.
William Ayres' defense attorney said he wants to delay the March 11 trial in San Mateo County Superior Court on nine counts of child molestation because he needs more time to prepare and the prosecution hasn't turned over key pieces of evidence.
"To date the prosecution (has) failed to provide a significant amount of discovery that has been requested since December of 2012," wrote defense attorney Jonathan McDougall.
Among the evidence McDougall wants is the prosecution's proof that "a named victim perjured himself on the witness stand" at Ayres' 2009 trial, which ended in mistrial. Prosecutors on Tuesday named the accuser as Steven S. The alleged victims' full names were not used at trial.
2nd paragraph: Straightforward enough - 3rd & 4th paragraph:
What stands out here is that he is requesting the proof for the thing you claim he revealed to you. Exactly how did he reveal something to you that he has yet to get proof of?
That’s some ace reporting there.
Steven S. testified he didn't file a police report in 1992 alleging he'd been sexually assaulted at San Mateo County's juvenile lock up. But, prosecutors said, he did lodge a complaint with law enforcement agents.
Apples and oranges. “Steven S. testified he didn't file a police report in 1992 alleging he'd been sexually assaulted at San Mateo County's juvenile lock up. But, prosecutors said, he did lodge a complaint with law enforcement agents.” Aside from that sentence being bad use of English, filing a Police report and reporting to law enforcement agents aren't even comparative. What are “law enforcement agents” in this context?
The story as I have read it is that he reported to his counselors in the situation and they reported it to the police and apparently he never knew this. Even if he make a report himself, did his forgetting something of the events during the most traumatic interaction of his life so inexplicable that it is proof of criminal intent? Does the alleged fact of this report existing change anything materiel in the case or his testimony about being abused?
How is it an ace reporter can’t see through such semantic manipulation by an attorney?
Deputy District Attorney Melissa McKowan also has evidence victim's advocate Victoria Balfour "altered the memories and testimony of several witnesses," McDougall wrote.
Non sequitur here, “Deputy District Attorney Melissa McKowan also has evidence victim's advocate Victoria Balfour "altered the memories and testimony of several witnesses," McDougall wrote.” From an unsupported accusation about witnesses to an unsupported attack on a previously unnamed person by the Prosecutor in this case. Hmmm Where exactly does this non sequitur come from? What is this evidence?
What info does the ace reporter have that justifies using it?
Prosecutors say they will not again put the lying accuser on the stand or any witness that wouldn't be
credible to a jury. They also say there is no evidence they can't present the case fairly.
Apparently you have spoken to or read a statement by prosecutors, otherwise who did they “say” these things to? Did they really say “lying accuser” or is that your applied moniker?
"If I were the defense, I'd want us off the case too," said Karen Guidotti, the chief deputy district attorney. "We're committed in seeking justice for Dr. Ayres."
McDougall didn't respond to an email seeking comment Tuesday.
You already have what he wants you to say why reply and risk changing that?
The charges against Ayres stem from allegations made by men who were children when they were his patients in the late 1980s and mid-1990s. On the stand they told how Ayres had molested them under the guise of giving a physical. During Ayres' testimony he claimed the exams were an appropriate part of treating the boys.
Factual on it’s face but you leave out a critical fact here. These boys were sent to him by the County of San Mateo for evaluations. You also manage to miss the fact that the allegations include threats of having them removed from their homes if they report him.
More ace reporting?
Ayres is free on $900,000 bail.
The legal filing gives a glimpse into McDougall's strategy in fighting the case, which appeared all but dead until a shocking development this summer.
If you’d bothered to look at any of the case history his strategy has been to avoid conviction by any means necessary.
Ayres, 81, had been sent to a state mental hospital on the belief that dementia had rendered the former San Mateo psychiatrist incompetent for retrial. Then in July a state psychiatrist said the one-time head of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry had faked the condition to avoid prosecution. A San Mateo County Judge agreed and ordered the case to proceed.
This was no valid “belief” it was at best a guise. I saw it as open deception by the defense/prosecution team to make sure Ayers was not convicted. Yes I am alleging the defense and prosecution are a team in this trial. Both sides and the judge were made aware of video taken by a PI showing Ayers behaving normally with no apparent signs of dementia in public engaging with the group he was with freely and without any help or trouble and were not interested. We the People got lucky that the Staff at Napa were professionals and uninterested in playing the game.
McDougall said he plans to ask that the San Mateo County District Attorney's Office be recused from the case. He points to the State Bar of California's investigation into McKowan prompted by complaints from Balfour and others, including alleged victims in the Ayres case. That investigation, which remains open, pitted the prosecutor against witnesses who would presumably testify at a retrial.
Yes another delay tactic. Doesn't it strike you as odd that the allegations you lead this article off with seem to have come from knowledge surreptitiously obtained from the DA’s office? And now we are presented with facts that are part of this complaint to the Bar Association that no one is supposed to have seen? Where did they come from? That said I do agree another DA’s office should be trying this case and should have from the start since SM County’s obvious conflict of interest with Ayers being their go to therapist for evaluations of children for decades and him having worked amiably with the DA’s office for decades.
The probe revealed that some witnesses from the Ayres case had made false accusations against McKowan in the state bar probe. McDougall said he wants that information because it calls into question the credibility of some potential witnesses.
Exactly how is it the ace reporter knows what the report says? Or that it reveals some witnesses made false accusations? (you do like to misuse that word) On this date 3-16-13 it is known the report does not allege any witnesses made false accusations against McKowan.
The state bar said it couldn't comment on the allegations.
"Investigations are confidential so we wouldn't be able to confirm or deny whether the accusations are accurate," Bar spokeswoman Laura Ernde said.
Of course they cannot comment on it.
Balfour said she was curious as to how any information about a supposedly secret investigation had wound up with the defense. She was also upset by the accusations she manipulated the victims.
"I worked for years to help the victims in the Ayres case, pro bono," she said. "I feel kind of sorry for anyone who would make those kind of allegations."
Balfour said she was curious as to how any information about a supposedly secret investigation had wound up with the defense. She was also upset by the accusations she manipulated the victims. "I worked for years to help the victims in the Ayres case, pro bono," she said. "I feel kind of sorry for anyone who would make those kind of allegations."
Sadly ace reporter doesn't give her room to explain the facts she knows about the misinformation that preceded this blurb.
McDougall's legal filing also revealed that he plans to ask that the case be tried in another jurisdiction. He has hired a firm, Trial Innovations, to research the potential bias in San Mateo County's jury pool. Media coverage appeared to be a primary concern, as he notes that over 445 articles have been published on the case since the mid-2000s as well as a "substantial amount" of TV coverage.
Prosecutors said there's no evidence to back that request.
"There has been coverage, but not so much it would justify a change in venue," said Guidotti. "I've seen nothing to show we can't get a fair jury."
This is the prosecution and defense working to delay this trial for as long as possible as they have been since the mistrial. They hope to delay until Ayers dies of natural causes. After all he is in his 80’s. Still you’d think ace reporter would do more research instead of just parroting the perps side of the story which is ironically coming from both the defense and the SMC DA who has a vested interest in losing.
Thanks to Chris for this analysis!
william hamilton ayres was arrested on April 5, 2007 on charges relating to his molestation of many young boys while he was alleging to provide psychiatric care to private patients as well as referrals for evaluation from the juvenile court system in San Mateo County. ayres has been delaying his way through the system free from custody until this latest gambit to skirt prosecution by playing demented for the courts. ayres is currently under the conservatorship of his daughter Barbara Ayres of Sacramento, CA.
ayres has had significant interaction over the years with local politicians on boards like the "Children and Families First Commission," including the DA who was serving when prosecution began Jim Fox and Assemblyman Rich Gordon. In fact, Gordon nominated ayres for a lifetime achievement award for his "Tireless effort to improve the lives of children." ayres has also been vocally supported during his criminal trial by local head-shrinkers like Bart Blinder, Etta Bryant, Mel Blaustein, Harry Coren, Tom Ciesla, Robert Kimmich, Larry Lurie, Maria Lymberis, Richard Shadoan, Captane Thomson, and Harold Wallach.