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Stuart speaks on W. Valley temple murders on ‘Horizon’
, Senior Policy Advisor at the College of Law, discussed the U.S. Supreme Court’s refusal to hear the appeal of the case of the 1991 West Valley Buddhist temple massacre on
on Oct. 11.
The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals threw out the confession of Jonathon Doody, who was 17 years old at the time, saying his Miranda Rights were violated.
Innocent Until Interrogated: The True Story of the Buddhist Temple Massacre and the Tucson Four
(University of Arizona Press, 2010), followed the case and highlighted the corrupt questioning tactics employed by officers.
“The judges actually listened to the tapes, read the transcripts,” Stuart said. “They decided his confession was coerced by the interrogating officers, that it was involuntary as it was overborne, and in addition to that, they held that his Miranda Rights were improperly given to him.”
A total of nine people- six monks, two nuns and a novice- were killed execution-style after two people broke into the temple in rural Maricopa County. The weapon used to commit the murders was traced back to Doody and another teen.
Doody was interrogated for 13 hours, after being taken into custody late at night.
The U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear the case, siding with the ruling by the 9th Circuit. Prosecuters will decide if they want to retry Doody, Stuart said.
Stuart earned degrees in business and law at the University of Arizona. He joined Jennings, Strouss & Salmon in 1967 and has tried more than 100 jury cases. He serves as an adjunct professor at the College of Law and at the James E. Rogers College of Law at the University of Arizona, and also served an eight-year term on the Arizona Board of Regents. His books include:
Innocent Until Interrogated
Miranda: The Story of America's Right to Remain Silent
The Gallup 14
, a novel.