If the courts ever needed a reason to work harder at jury diversity, the police in Gary, IN have given them one. In an effort to get McLynnerd Bond Jr, who is black, to confess to killing Kadmiel Mahone, the Gary detectives informed Bond during his 3-hour interrogation that he would not have any blacks on his jury. Specifically, half way through the interrogation, in which Bond ultimately confessed, one detective told Bond the following:
Don't let twelve people who are from Schererville, Crown Point, white people, Hispanic people, other people that aren't from Gary, from your part of the hood, judge you. Because they're not gonna put people on there who are from your neck of the woods. You know that. They're not gonna be the ones to decide what happens to you. You know that. I know that. Everybody knows that.
Bond, who has yet to go to trial, is attempting to get his confession suppressed. However, to date, he has been unsuccessful. On an interlocutory appeal, the IN Appeals Court in a 2-1 decision found that Bond's confession was voluntarily obtained. The appellate court stated that "[l]ike the trial court, we do not approve of the comment made by Detective Gonzales. However, this does not necessarily render the confession involuntary." Yesterday, the IN Supreme Court agreed to hear the defendant's appeal of his motion to suppress.
For more background on this case, go here.