What About Josh?
And speaking of legalities,
The following day in a nearby town, Josh is arrested and charged for first degree murder. And it is at this time he learns of Robert's fate and that the early morning incident has turned deadly. Up into that time he thought that it was just warning shots and Robert would eventually show up. He tells the arresting officers of the events that took place and where he and Robert had a difference of opinion and parted ways. They taped the Interrogation and to this day it is still buried under a huge time consuming ball of red tape.
Josh spends the next nine months mainly in solitary confinement and a preliminary trial that was more about procedure and less about justice. The preliminary defense attorney’s mouth dropped as Mr. Moucka points out as the shooter even though he said that only one boy came back.
Only one boy (Robert) is dead outside his home. As he points out the second boy (Joshua) as breaking in and doing the shooting. The
Preliminary Judge holds it over for capitol trial and in the changeover the preliminary attorney who thought he was going to be in the capitol trial is relieve of duty and attorney Jim Rowan takes over.
On March 13th 1996 Josh is brought in to the 23rd district court. Not to be brought up to date on the evidence at hand, but to waive his right to a speedy trial if he still wants to take this to jury as his Defense team is not ready. He is not told about the three specialist reports that are already in or about the remaining specialist that aren't reporting in because they fear that they won't get paid. unlike the specialist he is not aware of the fact that the OIDS (Oklahoma Indigent Defense System) claims to have run out of funds for this case. He is not advised of the fact that his OIDS attorney advises the court that at least $5000.00 is needed to put this through a jury trial and at that time those funds have not been appropriated and it doesn't look like they will be anytime soon.
What Josh is aware of is that he is Innocent and he waives his right to a speedy trial. Josh goes back to his cell prepared to start Jury proceedings on July 22nd 1996.
On or about March 28, 1996only two weeks since Josh has elected to waive his rights needed to get a trial by jury; his OIDS attorney (Jim Rowan) makes a surprise visit to Josh in the County Jail. He does not
Tell Josh that three of the specialist that had already reported in says that Mr. Moucha's testimony doesn't hold water. He fails to tell Josh that the OIDS has no funds to pursue this to the full extent of the law.
He doesn't tell him that the rest of the specialists are reluctant to reveal their findings because they are concerned that they won't get paid.
Instead Jim Rowan tells Josh that the state is going to kill him because of Mr. Moucha's testimony. After all who is the Jury going to believe of the only two survivors of this incident? An elderly victimized landowner and longtime resident of that area, or a young state supported pain in the butt with no apparent roots. If he takes this to jury and the jury, who in his opinion has a very poor attitude (even though they haven't been picked yet) finds him guilty; they will probably get him for Robert's death as well.
Josh says "I didn't kill anybody what do I do?'
Jim Rowan says" well The DA has made us an offer.
Josh asks "well what is it?”
Jim Rowan states “second degree and 75 yrs."
Josh says "No way man, I didn't kill”
Jim quickly interrupts "Now hear me out. You will do 7 to 9 yrs and this will all be behind you, you will still have your life. You will get out of here.
Finally Josh ask is this what you think I should do?
Jim Rowan responds "Yes I think you should.” Finally Josh says "lets do it".
On April 25th, 1996 Josh enters the 23rd District Court where his charge has been changed from first degree murder to second degree murder and he goes through the procedures of plea bargaining and returns to his cell. It will be 8 yrs + before Josh finds out about the specialist reports or the OIDS Funding claims. (Appellate court please note)
Judge Vassar of the 23rd district court states in his denial for post conviction relief that the claim for "Ineffective Assistance of Council" is not factual. Many legal minds say they have seen fewer cases better than this and disagree. (Apparently the Judge does not read the support briefs or court transcripts, he just denies them.)
The state or states for that matter claim that the majority of case loads are settled this way. It has been going for a long time, and if it is not broke, why fix it?
Well people it is broke; it has been broke for a long time. How many lives have been near ruined or executed only to find out after the fact through DNA or later discovered evidence that they were innocent?
One of America's favorite sayings "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure" Ok. How about if we can't get that “better late than never ". Is that the lesson that was taught here? Not yet. For certain not to Josh, we stuck it to him. How about what man uses to evolved to where he has "Identify the problem and correct it. Followed by “the sooner the better". Any Questions? Let's get busy America.