Jury convicts man of killing Ind. family

Jury convicts man of killing Ind. family

There are 45 comments on the Yahoo story from Jul 21, 2006, titled Jury convicts man of killing Ind. family. In it, Yahoo reports that:

A jury convicted a man Friday of killing his father, stepmother and two stepsisters 17 years ago inside their church parsonage home so he could attend some high school prom events.

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Cant Believeit

Glens Falls, NY

#1 Jul 22, 2006
I never knew people could be convicted without any evidence; its amazing. This country is turning into a bunch of crazed vigilantes running around in the night with torches, ready to hang someone. Whether there is any evidence the person did the crime seems to be irrelevant.
CantBelieveIt2

Naples, FL

#2 Jul 22, 2006
I agree it is a frightening situation when there was absolutely no evidence to tie this man to the crimes, especially when there were other possibilities to explore that apparently were not. Since when did circumstantial evidence alone become the criteria for conviction? What happened to a reasonable doubt? There was all kinds of reasonable doubt. I am sickened by this display of arrogance in the judicial system.
Kids

Naples, FL

#3 Jul 22, 2006
Who among you is without guilt? What teenager hasn't argued with his parents and thought they were being ridiculous with discipline on occasion? What family has never had problems that they didn't have to ask someone for advice? I've known that family for nearly 30 years and Jeff loved & respected his dad, even if he was angry at the time. Any hard evidence there? I don't think so.
huh

AOL

#4 Jul 23, 2006
come on folks, you were not in the courtroom to hear the evidence. I am confident that if 12 people on a jury heard the evidence presented and all 12 decided this guy is guilty then the guy is guilty. From the facts I heard about the case, Jeff was the prime suspect. Again, this decision was not made by 1 person in a few minutes.
Disappointed and stunned

Columbus, OH

#5 Jul 23, 2006
No, we weren't in the courtroom, but the testimony was online from every day of court. I doubt they would only publish part of it. I am not 100% convinced he didn't do it, but there is reasonable doubt from what I can see. It amazes me that they finally decided after all these years that they had enough evidence to arrest and bring him to trial when they had no more than in the beginning. If he was their main suspect and they didn't feel the need to even dust for fingerprints because they were so sure he was the one who did it, then why didn't they do this 17 years ago? It seems pretty political to me. grrr!
huh

AOL

#6 Jul 23, 2006
good point, disappointed and stunned. thanks for the input. it is in interesting case and I am perplexed why it took so long to bring charges against him.

btw, did you read all of the court testimony?
Disappointed and stunned

Columbus, OH

#7 Jul 24, 2006
I only read what was available online. As someone else stated here, we weren't in the courtroom. Therefore, there may be elements missing such as the facial expressions of the witnesses and Mr. Pelley as well as body language. As I said before, I'm not completely convinced he's not guilty, but there should have been other factors considered.
Disappointed and stunned

Columbus, OH

#8 Jul 24, 2006
Also I'm sure there was way more available then I had time to read.
A friend

North East, PA

#9 Jul 24, 2006
I believe in my heart Jeff did not do this. I realize there are others posting here who know him and believe in his innocence.
A student

Fort Myers, FL

#10 Jul 24, 2006
I am in shock and dismay, trying to figure out if there is any truth to this. I have known Jeff and his wife for the last 5 years. They are very devoted Christians and loving parents. Jeff was my Sunday school teacher and I took a class of his he taught at the church on Wednesday nights. I for the life of me can't see him committing such an act. I'm really having a hard time believing it and I think tragically another innocent man has gone to jail. Jeff & Kim you will be in my prayers. God Bless.
Curious

United States

#11 Jul 24, 2006
Where can I read the trial testimony online? I am an attorney from NY and at first glance I am appalled by I have read so far.
A friend

Naples, FL

#12 Jul 24, 2006
You can find info at southbendtribune.com or wndu.com . That is the only place I was able to find any information regarding this case. Thanks for your interest.
in shock

Fort Myers, FL

#13 Jul 24, 2006
i too am in total shock over this conviction. no concrete evidence seemed presented by the prosecution - just speculation that b/c he was home when they might have been killed, it must have been him. and, too, if the police were so sure he was the guy then - why not arrest and try him 17 yrs ago? seems the "politics" just needed to get someone for this horrible crime and he seemed the most likely - but no evidence to prove beyond a "resonable doubt" as I understand from the evidences reported online. i feel for both sides of this tragedy - but convicting a man based on circumstantial evidence doesn't seem like it would heal any wounds - it has only created more.
Old Classmate

Athens, TN

#14 Jul 24, 2006
I went to school with him and was an familiar with him and his family. I have no doubt that he did it. I agree that if 12 people found him guilty without a reasonable doubt, then he is guilty.

I have since read some communication from Jessica (the surviving step-sister) and she states that there is no doubt in her mind that he did it. Those of you who know him now don't necessarily know what he was like as a teenager and how he was struggling with his mother's death.

Unfortunately, when people are in their teens, their brain is not fully developed to fully understand the consequences of their actions and he made a life-altering move.

I'm not sure if anyone read that when he was arrested for wire-fraud he assumed that it was for the murder and asked when he was going to be extradited to Indiana. That tells me that he was waiting all his life for this to catch up with him.
Barbara

Mount Rainier, MD

#15 Jul 24, 2006
A student wrote:
I am in shock and dismay, trying to figure out if there is any truth to this. I have known Jeff and his wife for the last 5 years. They are very devoted Christians and loving parents. Jeff was my Sunday school teacher and I took a class of his he taught at the church on Wednesday nights. I for the life of me can't see him committing such an act. I'm really having a hard time believing it and I think tragically another innocent man has gone to jail. Jeff & Kim you will be in my prayers. God Bless.
Look at Dennis Rader. He was prominent in his church too. People in his parrish said the same thing. Ya can't go by that any more.:(
huh

AOL

#16 Jul 25, 2006
again, very confused on people saying they know he didn't do it. you were not in the courtroom and every bit of testimony I cannot find anywhere. people claim to have read it all but I cannot find it anywhere. Again, the great thing about our legal system is that 12 strangers had to be convinced without a doubt he did it and they did. all the evidence points to him.
also, just because he seems nice or whatever does not mean a thing. I have witnessed "nice" people do some pretty criminal things and it always amazes me.
finally, just being religious does not make you a non criminal. look at the catholic priests that molested kids for years and the higher ups just looked the other way.
Arizona

San Francisco, CA

#17 Jul 25, 2006
This guy did it!! It is time for him to rot in prison.
Arizona

San Francisco, CA

#18 Jul 25, 2006
this guy did it, it is time for him to rot in prison. What eveidence do you hneed, he shot his family with his dad's shotgun. If the gun were found everyone would say "the only reason his finger prints were on it is because the gun was kept in his home and he had to touch it occassionally". The murder scene was not a robbery!! It was all about not getting his selfish teenage way, now he pays, hopefully put to death.!!!
A student

Fort Myers, FL

#19 Jul 25, 2006
huh wrote:
again, very confused on people saying they know he didn't do it. you were not in the courtroom and every bit of testimony I cannot find anywhere. people claim to have read it all but I cannot find it anywhere. Again, the great thing about our legal system is that 12 strangers had to be convinced without a doubt he did it and they did. all the evidence points to him.
also, just because he seems nice or whatever does not mean a thing. I have witnessed "nice" people do some pretty criminal things and it always amazes me.
finally, just being religious does not make you a non criminal. look at the catholic priests that molested kids for years and the higher ups just looked the other way.
Well our so called "justice system" has failed many times in my life and lives of people close to me. So forgive me if I'm skeptical of 12 strangers who grew up hearing the rumors of this case. Secondly, I did not say religious I said Christian, there is a big difference. Jeff is someone I have looked to for guidance in my walk with the Lord, so I feel I have a personal reason to feel confused and not so eager to accept blind justice.
A student

Fort Myers, FL

#20 Jul 25, 2006
Arizona wrote:
this guy did it, it is time for him to rot in prison. What eveidence do you hneed, he shot his family with his dad's shotgun. If the gun were found everyone would say "the only reason his finger prints were on it is because the gun was kept in his home and he had to touch it occassionally". The murder scene was not a robbery!! It was all about not getting his selfish teenage way, now he pays, hopefully put to death.!!!
Oh Really? So you were there? You saw him pull the trigger?? Only God knows the real truth and only God can judge the heart. If he did it he will have to face God, if not then God will reward him for his suffering. Only God gives life and only God should take it away. Not man.

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