FAIRFIELD — An email has prompted defense lawyers to ask a judge to throw out the possible death penalty case of a Fairfield man accused of raping and strangling a 13-year-girl before dumping her nude body in Allan Witt Park in February 2013.
The email from Dr. Susan Hogan, who performed the autopsy on Genelle Renee Conway-Allen, was sent to the prosecutor who was handling the case at the time, Solano County Chief Deputy District Attorney Terry Ray, the day before Anthony L. Jones was arrested by Fairfield police after a weeklong investigation into Conway-Allen’s killing.
Jones, 33, is scheduled to next appear in court Feb. 10 in front of Judge E. Bradley Nelson. No dates for a probable cause hearing have been scheduled. Jones has pleaded not guilty to a murder charge with three special circumstances, making him eligible for the death penalty.
Hogan’s email mentions that the autopsy revealed no signs of trauma common in rape cases and suggested that Conway-Allen may have died during consensual sex.
The email was sent to Ray a week after Hogan’s autopsy, after prosecutors decided they wanted a second autopsy conducted by a pathologist in Santa Clara County.
Jones’ defense lawyers are calling for the case to be thrown out because they were not provided a copy of the email until September. The defense team claims the email shows there was no rape and that the killing was accidental. They also claim that not providing them a copy of the email was part of a deliberate scheme by Ray to mislead the public and the media and build animosity against Jones, who they say is the victim of unfounded charges.
Failure by prosecutors to disclose information to the defense about a case can be grounds for having a case dismissed.
Hogan left the Sheriff/Coroner’s Office in December and the Jones case has been reassigned to another prosecutor.
Solano County Deputy Public Defenders John Mendenhall and Melainee Collins, in a brief filed Monday, repeatedly label the delay in sharing the email as an act of “outrageous government conduct” and the “intentional suppression” of evidence pointing to Jones’ innocence.
The defense team also claims the delay in revealing the email is part of a continuing pattern by prosecutors of collusion and a collaborative action with coroners. They revive the troubled history in the Sheriff/Coroner’s Office that includes the 2011 review of 27 homicide autopsies done after the checkered medical career of a previous pathologist came to light.
The defense team proposes alternative punishments for the prosecution if Nelson decides that throwing out the case against Jones is inappropriate. Mendenhall and Collins propose not letting prosecutors seek the death penalty, making them dismiss the special circumstances or require jurors at trial be told about “prosecution efforts to suppress evidence.”
Prosecutors will file a response to the defense team request before Jones’ next scheduled court appearance.
Jones remains in jail without bail.
Reach Jess Sullivan at 427-6919 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/jsullivandr.
Editor’s note: The information below contains profanity and sensitive details concerning the initial autopsy that was performed on Genelle Renee Conway-Allen.
From: Susan Hogan
To: Terry Ray
Thursday, February 07, 2013 1:25 p.m.
Subject: 2nd autopsy
The 13-year-old is a very straight forward ligature strangling case. She had a ligature mark around her neck and petechial hemorrhages on her face proximate to the ligature.
She has no evidence of trauma to her genitals or her anus (this looks to me like she was having sex and someone put a ligature around her neck – what am I saying – just between you and me – is I think this may be an “Oh shit” during consensual sex).
The FBI had her out of the refrigerator for 8 hours on Tuesday so she is seriously starting to decompose – so she does not need a long unrefrigerated trip to Santa Clara – and why Santa Clara?
I am really starting to think Miss Michele is one of those pathologists whose agenda is “I am smarter than any other pathologist.”
Frankly – real pathologist are very reluctant to do second autopsies because so much information is lost in the performance of an autopsy.
Also she has a parous cervical os – which indicates she has given birth.
P.S. Eric Charm called into sheriff’s office in Vallejo after I waited an hour and a half to say that he didn’t need me today – so I have no idea when he does need me. Also Haroon Khan needs me tomorrow – the subpoena is for 10 but I asked him to give me a better approximation of when he needs me.
I wish I could drink at work !!!!!!
You know you can ask me about any case and discuss anything with me anytime.