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Wednesday, February 25, 2009

I Told You So

I mentioned the "victim defense" in two recent blogs. It's when someone accused of something negative looks for sympathy by attempting to turn the tables.

We saw it again yesterday.

Harlow Cuadra is accused of the January 2007 murder of Bryan Kocis in Dallas Township. The defense attorney was giving his opening statement to the jury yesterday morning. He said Cuadra was under the control and influence of Joseph Kerekes, who pleaded guilty to second degree murder last year. The defense attorney also mentioned a couple of people who had reason to see Kocis dead.

Mr. Kocis was in the gay porn business, as was Cuadra. It was also clear in the defense's opening that Kocis will be on trial here almost as much as Cuadra. Kocis was no saint. That doesn't mean he deserved to die. On top of that, he's not here to defend himself.

Cuadra is innocent until proven guilty, and what the defense attorney said may very well be true. On the other hand, it may be an attempt to throw as much crap against the wall as possible, hoping something sticks. That's up for the jury to decide at the close of the trial.

It's great drama and an interesting case.

And, a note about the use of the phrase "gay porn producer." Often, a person's occupation plays no role in that person's death. Here, it's key. It might be offensive to some and repetitive to others, but it's an important part of the story.