Murder Confessions Tossed as Oregon Police Interview Tactics Ruled Coercive

The Oregon Supreme Court affirmed an earlier ruling which found that interview and interrogation techniques used to elicit murder confessions from a mentally-ill suspect undermine the credibility of the confessions, thus making them inadmissible.

From Oregon Public Broadcasting:

Homer Lee Jackson is charged with 12 counts of aggravated murder. In October 2015, Portland police detectives interviewed him over the course of two days in connection with four murders from the 1980s. All the victims were believed to be engaged in prostitution in North Portland.

Jackson is schizophrenic. During the course of the interrogation, he denied knowing anything about the murders. But after hours of interviewing, Jackson told detectives he did remember the incidents and confessed.

In October 2017, Multnomah County Circuit Court Judge Michael Greenlick tossed out Jackson’s confessions.

Greenlick said in his oral ruling that the police were actively working to make things as bad as possible for Jackson.

“Which I think is very different than what you see in some circumstances where somebody is just told, ‘Hey, if you don’t admit, then this will happen.’ It’s like, ‘If you don’t admit, then you will be considered a monster; we will consider you a monster; and we will actively work to make this as bad as possible for you,’” Greenlick said in open court.”

A full copy of the Court’s ruling can be found HERE.

While the confessions have been tossed, Police still have DNA evidence that links Jackson to two of the crime scenes, and the case against Jackson remains ongoing.

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