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Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Is the Hernandez Confession in the Etan Patz Case False?

     When a schizophrenic with no history of violence or pathological crime says he committed a 33-year-old child murder in a case recently in the news, chances are the confession is false. On May 16, 2012, Pedro Hernandez, a 51-year-old from Maple Shade, New Jersey, told detectives he choked 6-year-old Etan Patz to death in the basement of a lower Manhattan, New York bodega. The confession led to Hernandez's arrest and psychiatric evaluation at Bellevue Hospital. (See: "Pedro Hernandez's Confession in the Etan Patz Case," May 25, 2012.)

     The Hernandez confession has been the subject of debate between forensic psychiatrists, law enforcement personnel, and legal scholars, over its reliability. Everybody knows that celebrated crimes like the Lindbergh kidnapping case, the John F. Kennedy Assassination, and the JonBenet Ramsey case draw false confessors out of the woodwork. In the Patz case, a known child molester and mental patient named Jose A. Ramos confessed to sexually molesting, but not killing Etan. In 2004, the boy's family won a wrongful death lawsuit against Ramos who is currently serving time in a Pennsylvania prison. While the burden of proof in a civil suit is not as high as a criminal trial, there was obviously enough evidence to convince the civil jurors that Ramos' confession was true, and that he had murdered Etan.

     Dr. Michael H. Stone, the New York City Psychiatrist who wrote the 2009 book, The Anatomy of Evil, doesn't put much stock in the Pedro Hernandez confession. According to Dr. Stone, the vast majority of men who kill children do it for sexual reasons. Pedro Hernandez has not admitted to a sexual motive in the Patz murder. In his confession, Hernandez told the detectives that "something just came over me." This does not ring true.

     Men who are convicted of sexually molesting and murdering children, long before their convictions, were considered dangerous sexual predators. Mr. Hernandez not only doesn't have a history of this kind of behavior, he is married, and helped raise two children. Had Hernandez murdered Etan Patz in 1979, how did he control his deviant sexual urges for 33 years? According to Dr. Stone, "For him to go from being that person to a marriageable, somewhat pleasant guy with his own children--that's a very unlikely scenario."

     There is a good chance that Pedro Hernandez's confession is a schizophrenic's delusion, and not the solution of a 33-year-old murder case. 

1 comment:

  1. Hernandez? Nope! Not him! Too many holes in that story. I'm not buying it for one minute. He was programmed/mind controlled into making a false confession. And on the 33rd anniversary? You do know the significance of the number 33, to "certain people", don't you?

    Ramos? Yep! It's him! Just after Etan crossed Wooster, Ramos saw him and said, "Hey, remember me? I'm Sandy's friend". Etan being friendly and trusting, accepted Ramos' invitation to go to his place. They took a cab and went to 234 E 4th Street. There, Ramos sexually abused Etan. Etan said he was going to tell on Ramos. That set Ramos off and he killed the boy. Classic case of a paranoid schizophrenic. Like Jekyll and Hyde. People like that are particularly dangerous when their desires are being rebuffed but especially dangerous when they are threatened with exposure. "I'll tell on you" is what set him off. Later that evening, Ramos was at Sandy Harmon's place. When he heard about the massive neighborhood search, he said, "I'm going out to help look for the boy". What he actually did was to go back to his place, in a panic, to get rid of the body. He dumped it in the boiler in his building. That's why he kept saying over the years that no body would ever be found.

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