Christopher Sebela

writer, wronger, rearranger

"Rape Cop" Jurors: Moreno Definitely Raped Her, But "CSI Effect" Saved Him

A lack of DNA evidence seems to have been the deciding factor for jurors in the trial of two NYPD officers accused a raping a young woman in her East Village apartment in 2008. DNAinfo tracked down two women who served on the jury, and their comments definitely won’t send you flying into a teeth-gnashing, window-smashing rage (assuming you’re heavily sedated). ”In my heart of hearts, I believe her that the officers did it,” juror Melinda Hernandez says. Not to be outdone, another female juror says she’s certain they were guilty.

”[Kenneth Moreno] raped her,” the unidentified female juror tells DNAinfo. "There is no doubt in my mind."But never mind that whole “beyond a reasonable doubt” business, today’s modern jury demands DNA. As juror John Finck, 57, explains, “We were strictly bound by the judge’s instruction that there must be evidence beyond a reasonable doubt in order to convict the defendants of the major charges of the case.”

That does NOT mean there needs to be DNA evidence, but as one legal expert told the Post after the verdict was announced, “CSI has made things difficult, there’s no law saying that ‘beyond a reasonable doubt’ means we show you DNA. It means ‘evidence that points to a moral certainty that is beyond dispute.’” “My heart breaks for her. I think the system failed her terribly,” says Hernandez, the juror who played a crucial role in the system that acquitted the cops.

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