the Jackson's Café Message Board
The 1992 non-incident revisited
by snshne on Mar 21, 2002
you've had your fill of this subject, my apologies...
was just perusing Leslie's web-site (nice job!) and was reminded of the
'non-incident' all over again. I would like to clarify a few things
that may not be quite clear to the average person.
have been a prosecutor for the City of Los Angeles for 17 years. In
1992 domestic violence was (and still is) a priority in our
prosecutions, so I not only write this with knowledge of the criminal
justice system in general, but also how it is/was applied in the Los
Angeles area specifically.
police here MUST take a report whenever domestic abuse is alleged or
'alleged' I mean someone says "he hit me" or "I saw her hit him". By
'reported' I mean, for example, a situation where neighbors hear
screaming/yelling/commotion and when the police arrive they see
injuries. One doesn't have to allege they were hit, but since it seems
apparent, the police would have to take a report. Of course that
doesn't mean we will necessarily file charges in that situation, but a
report would definitely be taken.
includes situations where someone calls the police and someone has
visible injuries, even if the victim says nothing happened. The same
was true in 1992, (although not in the mid-80s). Here in LaLa land it
makes no difference if you are famous, we have plenty of those types.
We have prosecuted OJ for abusing Nicole (before the murder), Tommy
Lee, Jim Brown and the producer who abused Farrah Fawcett, to name a
very few. If the police were at the scene and there was ANY evidence
that abuse occurred, a report would have at least been taken. I know
this as fact, which leads me to...
It is NOT up to the victim as to whether or not a report is taken or
charges are filed. A victim does NOT have the choice of whether or not
to 'press charges', prosecute; they are not the ones filing charges,
the State is. The police are not given the choice either; they simply
investigate and are required to bring the report to the prosecutors so
that we can determine whether a crime has occurred.
fact, many victims change their story when they learn charges have been
filed. They say they lied to the police or that the police made things
up. Interestingly, we very often win jury trials where the victim
insists the event didn't occur (and testify as such), but the evidence
shows otherwise. The system is set up this way to PROTECT VICTIMS. It
is a complete misnomer to state that she 'refused to press charges'.
Unless, of course, one is merely talking about her failure to file a
civil lawsuit against him.
is a well established 'syndrome' associated with many victims of abuse
- "He/she didn't mean it", "Things will be different from now on, he'll
never do it again", "I love him and don't want him to get in trouble",
"I egged him on, it was all my fault", "I won't be able to support
myself/my family if he leaves me" etc. These are all very valid
feelings held by true "victims" and it is truly tragic, but the climate
is, and was in 1992, that we need to protect people even if they don't
want nor think they need protecting. Sometimes they are just terrified
and intimidated by their abuser.
have, on many occasions, had domestic violence victims scream at me
that I am ruining their lives, I've even been physically threatened.
They have lied on the witness stand or refused to respond to subpoenas
(one can actually be arrested and brought to court for failing to
respond to a subpoena). This may sound drastic and Machiavellian, and
I'm not saying we go to these lengths in all cases, but there are times
when it must be done.
the police arrive at a scene, victims are almost always worked up and
tell the truth about what happened, it's only later they want to change
their story. Sometimes they may try to minimize the situation, but
generally there isn't the time nor the presence of mind to out and out
lie that NOTHING has occurred (and come up with a plausible story as to
how they got injured). In 1992 the police issued a statement saying
that when they got to the location there was absolutely no evidence of
abuse; she never even claimed he laid a finger on her. Under the strain
of what would have been a very traumatic experience, particularly since
she did apparently have an injury, it is extremely unlikely that she
would lie convincingly enough to make the police leave without even
taking a report. I guarantee it was NOT because of their love for
Jackson. On the contrary; knowing the chauvinism that existed (exists)
within law enforcement, if anything, there would have been a desire to
be the knight in shining armor and protect the beautiful movie star
from the crazed rocker.
wasn't there and I'm not claiming to be clairvoyant (or insist that the
above is true all across America). But despite my feelings about
Jackson, knowing all I know about the subject, it seems clear what
DIDN'T happen. Jackson's refusal to air her 'dirty laundry', and
statements by the police and JFK Jr simply corroborate it.
makes me nuts when people tell me I only feel that way cause I like the
man. I wouldn't like him so much if there were any ring of truth to
what she (never) said happened. My opinion is based on knowledge and
reason, not emotion.
Laura's post, a couple of follow-up questions were posted; hre are her
domestic violence victims both "competent and compellable" in relation
to giving evidence? I suppose not, in that you have the fifth
is no fifth amendment privilege (another common 'TV' fallacy) unless
the victim would be admitting to committing a crime, ie, maybe saying
she lied to the police in the first place. But no privilege exists to
excuse one from testifying against one's abuser. Victims often tell me
they will 'take the fifth', seeing as how they know their rights from
watching TV. Guess again!
these reasons are valid, it doth drive one nuts in a legal system where
the witness must give evidence, or no case.
the victim doesn't even have to give the evidence, testify, to make our
case these days. The legal system has created alot of exceptions,
particularly as related to domestic violence. A victim can take the
stand and lie, or possibly not even testify, and her hearsay statements
to the police at the time of the incident are admissable. Those
statements, before they have time to reconsider their story, are often
what wins our cases, when corroborated by other evidence (yelling heard
by others, visible injuries, etc.)
exceptions have been created to allow in evidence of prior police
reports and incidents, even if they were never reported and charges
were never filed. All of this is in recognition of the fact that many
victims will either recant or avoid service of a subpoena and not go to
come a long way, and the legal system recognizes just how tragic
domestic abuse can be.
following was posted to the jacksonbrowne
by a poster apparently no longer on the list. This post is recirculated
on the email list nearly every time the issue of the allegation comes
up, but never in any of those times has any one the now 800 list
members seen or heard of this interview. I joined a JFK email list
whose members keep up with JFK news to ask whether they had this on
videotape and they denied that such an interview ever took place. An
attempt by a list member who had access to old televison tapes from the
networks failed to turn up this alleged interview. My original
conclusion was that this interview never took place, but a member of
Jackson's Cafe remembers seeing this interview, and believes it may
have been on A&E's Biography, or some other documentary. Another Jackson's
member reports that a trusted friend also saw this interview and
remembers the same details and conversation. I'm
posting it here in event that someone may have remembered seeing it and
can verify it or provide enough information that the tape might be
posted to the jacksonbrowne email list Mar
interview was a television interview just before or at the time of
George magazine; the date on the tape says Nov. 96 but she's not sure
if it is the correct one because she taped over something else. The
was made from her satelite system, which gets wild feeds. So I have no
idea which network, etc. it was, or even if it was just a "local" NY
show or something.
talks about his mother and father, the murder of his father and
uncle . . . standard stuff. The interviewer is someone I don't
but (the friend who taped it) thinks it was Maria Shriver - someone
guaranteed to be "gentle." It does look kind of like Shriver, but not
quite.This woman is heavier -- pregnant, maybe? But there is a certain
familiar feel to it, as if they know each other well, so maybe.
brings up Daryl, he doesn't. He calls it a "queer relationship . . . off
and on. She was involved at one point . . . involved
elsewhere." He kind of
interviewer asks about Jackson Browne and JFK Jr says "I like him. I
like his music. He seems nice enough." She asks if he thinks "it"
happened, and he says "It? you mean do I think he . . . um, hit her? No. I
think he probably wanted to, and she knew that. She has that effect at
times." He seems to consider, then says, "Daryl sometimes exagerrates
things . . . she gets an idea . . . Daryl is more complex than you might think.
And I think there was a lot of family pressure, about Jackson . . . not his
age, just . . . the families know each other. And I
think she felt pressure
about the way she . . . they had problems, and I think some of
was upset by that. And she felt she had to say certain things to not be
blamed for the problems. She got stuck in it, and then had to carry it
interviewer than asks if he means he thinks Daryl lied, and he says, "I
don't want to give the impression she does that, but . . . yes. I think it
got out of hand on her, and now she is stuck with it. He is stuck too,
which is sad. But I wasn't there and I don't know for sure. Could he
have done it?" He shrugged. "Could she make you want to hit her? Yes.
But I'm sure I have made women want to hit me, to be fair."
then went on to other subjects.
don't understand the reference to Daryl's family and Jackson - are they
old friends or something? And it certainly isn't flattering to Daryl;
she comes off a bit shaky, you know? But he doesn't sound bitter or
angry with her, just "stating the facts" kind of thing. He sounds a bit
reluctant at points but he doesn't look uncomfortable. I don't know
much about him, so I don't know if he is always this unsure of what he
is saying (maybe) he was just trying to be honest but polite. Maybe
some Kennedy admirer could clear it up. :)
of original poster, who is apparently no longer on the list, not
included for privacy)