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Murdered boy's remains can't be released to family without murderer's permission

6
cypherpunkPerson was signed in when posted
01-31-2003
07:02 PM ET (US)
Octo - The point is, the police did exhume the body and gather the evidence - and that evidence is the boy's remains. The evidence has to be retained by the police in case the defendant seeks a new trial or an appeal.

Alternatively, the defendant can waive his right to that evidence and allow the evidence (the boy's body) to be released back to his family. The police can't do that without the permission of the defendant, and that's what they want him to do. (Or the police can go ahead and give the evidence to the family, but that would break the chain of custody and conceivably make it easier for the killer to win a later appeal or re-trial.)
5
QrazyQatPerson was signed in when posted
01-31-2003
07:02 PM ET (US)
>"I just wanna know why a crime scene team has not already exhumed the body and gathered evidence?"

The bones aren't sitting in his backyard; they were dug up and used as evidence in court, so now they'd be at whatever official facility they keep stuff like that which is evidence. If there was no possible appeal for this guy, they'd be free to release the remains. But while he still has a chance to take legal action (such as appeals) his attorneys need to be able to have access to all the evidence, which includes the boy's remains.
4
OctopusPerson was signed in when posted
01-31-2003
06:05 PM ET (US)
I just wanna know why a crime scene team has not already exhumed the body and gathered evidence?
3
QrazyQatPerson was signed in when posted
01-31-2003
03:59 PM ET (US)
Not exactly that he owns them as property, but that until all appeals are finalized, he needs to have access to any evidence in the case. This in itself is appropriate, although it's a bad situation (to say the least) in this case. Personally, I think they should release the remains without his waiver but the proviso mantioned: that if there is an appeal to come, the reamains may need to be exhumed. The family may not like that, but it's better than what they have now, and they should be wanting to have the remains able to be exhumed if needed to insure the guy stays in jail.
2
CraniacPerson was signed in when posted
01-31-2003
03:39 PM ET (US)
I believe the catch was that the remains became evidence in the trial, and this somehow made them property under existing evidence laws.

Creeps like this make me want to rethink my position on the death penalty. [!troll]
1
Fred CoppersmithPerson was signed in when posted
01-31-2003
03:24 PM ET (US)
Unless I'm missing something, this doesn't explain how the boy's remains could possibly be considered the murderer's property. If you kill someone and bury them on land you own, that means you then also own the body?

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