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8.15.2003

If the Devil Says It, It Must Be True

Purposefully releasing incorrect information in news reports is a clever little trick officials have long used to verify the credibility of what they are told. These are - most often - not accidents. A few slight adjustments to true evidence can help the police wade through hundreds of crazies who would claim responsiblity for a crime (this technique is most famously used with serial murders, such as with the Zodiac Killer or the Son of Sam), and also to prevent a vengeful person from pointing their fingers at enemies innocent of the crime. In Kirstin Lobato's case, the police did the same thing.

One example: Seperate news reports claim the victim's body was found in the trash bin, and in other cases, behind or vaguely "near" the trash bin. Only the police - and the murderer - know for sure. (If you'd like more examples, scan the various news reports for the locations of Bailey's stab wounds).

Enter Korinda Martin, jailhouse informant and the prosecution's star witness.

Martin described Kirstin as bragging about the murder, in effect setting herself up as a hearsay witness. Martin, however, is hardly a poster girl for witness credibility. She had a history of doing everything she could to alleviate her own sentence, including the mailing of forged letters to a judge. She also quoted some of the newspapers' misrepresented facts as though Kirstin had told her about them. And jurors would probably not realize the weakness inherent to Martin's claim to have been unable to read the papers, mostly because your average juror doesn't think about - or know about - the nuances of reality in a prison.

So how could Korinda Martin's self-involved and obviously falsified testimony be taken legitimately by a jury, when Kirstin Lobato's own alibis (six of them) were never put on the stand to defend her innocence? Well, that can be summed up with two words:

Public Defender.


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