Sunday, July 31, 2011

Convicted killer Crosley Green in search of redemption

Maintains innocence.
Crosley Green, seen in 2003 at the Moore Justice Center in Viera, is serving his 21st year in prison. / 2003 FLORIDA TODAY file

Crosley Green timeline

1989
March 16: Crosley Green is released from Madison Correctional Institution.
April 4: Charles "Chip" Flynn Jr., 22, is shot in the chest in a Mims orange grove.
June 8:
Green, 31, is arrested and accused of killing Flynn.

August to September: A jury finds Green guilty of murder. The next year, Judge John Antoon sentences him to die.

1992
April 1: Sheila Green signs an affidavit from prison recanting her testimony against her brother, Crosley Green. Sheila Green says she "was pressured to commit perjury against my brother."

1993
April: Defense attorney Rob Parker files a motion for a new trial. He points out that Kim Hallock was only "pretty sure" Crosley Green was the suspect. The court takes no action on the motion.

1999
Early summer: Chicago investigator Paul Ciolino agrees to look into the case after being contacted by Nan Webb, a Viera housewife.

July 31:
Ciolino and three other investigators from across the U.S. arrive in Brevard to review the case and interview witnesses, jurors and others connected to the case.

August:
Brevard County Sheriff Phil Williams and Assistant State Attorney Chris White meet with Ciolino and agree to review any new information about the Green case.

2000
Florida Department of Law Enforcement says that a DNA test on two hairs does not rule out Green as the perpetrator and the hair could come from the maternal side of Green's family.

2002
Green's attorney continues appealing his case, trying to win a new trial.

2003
A hearing takes place in front of Judge Bruce Jacobus.

2007
June: Lawyers from both sides square off before the Florida Supreme Court. The state challenges an appellate ruling from 2005, which threw out Green's death sentence.

October: Florida Supreme Court upholds Green's conviction but says that he should be resentenced.

2008 The state attorney's office says it no longer will pursue the death sentence for Green.

2009 Green is resentenced to life.

2010 Green's attorneys petition for a new trial.

2011
May: The first part of a two-part hearing for Green takes place in front of Judge David Dugan. Defense attorneys produce two new alibi witnesses for Green.
1:15 p.m. Aug. 8: Second part of scheduled hearing.





































































In the early morning hours of April 4, 1989, a distraught young woman called emergency responders and said her male companion had been shot in an orange grove in Mims after they were kidnapped by a black man.
When police arrived at 1:42 a.m., they found Chip Flynn face down on the ground, his hands tied behind his back with a shoelace.
"Get me out of here," he told sheriff's deputies. Flynn never disclosed the events leading to the shooting and died soon after.
Rumors swirled in the small community of Mims. Flynn's ex-girlfriend Kim Hallock, then 19, picked a man out of a photo lineup. It would be two months before Crosley Green would be arrested and charged with first-degree premeditated murder, kidnapping and robbery in Flynn's slaying.
The next year, a jury convicted Green of murder and recommended the death penalty by a vote of 8-4. Judge John Antoon upheld the recommendation.
Green is no longer on death row, the result of a Florida Supreme Court decision 18 years later in 2008 to overturn the penalty because the jury mistakenly heard about his juvenile criminal record during the trial.
Crowell and Moring, the Washington, D.C., law firm that now represents Green, is asking for a retrial, citing myriad issues, including recantations by key witnesses. The last part of a two-part hearing in front of Circuit Judge David Dugan is set for Aug. 8.
The state remains convinced Green is guilty of murder.
But Keith Harrison, who represents Green for Crowell and Moring,
believes there was a rush to judgment in the Green case and his client is innocent.
Green remains incarcerated; 2011 is the 21st year he has spent in prison.

Reviewing facts

Harrison, who works in Washington, D.C., got involved in the Green case through the American Bar Association.
For 25 years, the Bar has had a program called Death Penalty Representation Project to connect defendants with competent lawyers in death penalty cases during trial, post-conviction and in federal courts.
"I was asked to find volunteer counsel for Crosley Green because there were no local defenders available to represent him," said Robin Maher, director of the project.She recruited Crowell & Moring, a firm that employs 500 attorneys nationwide and in London and Brussels, to work on the case for free.
"I started looking at this case, and looked at it from a prosecutor's perspective," said Harrison, who specializes in white collar crime. "I kept looking for more evidence and there was nothing there."
In his experience, the weakest cases are "one-witness ID" cases like Green's.
"I used to hate those as a prosecutor," said Harrison, who worked as an assistant district attorney in New York City early in his career.
He said Hallock's depiction of the kidnapping and the shooting did not make sense.
The problems, according to Harrison:



  • No fingerprints tie Green to the crime even though Hallock testified that "the black guy" climbed in and out of Flynn's truck more than once.




  • No shell casings or bullets were found despite her saying that Green fired a gun multiple times.



  •  No DNA from Green was found on the shoelaces that tied Flynn's hands.

    In addition, Harrison said, Hallock made several inconsistent statements, including changing her version of who tied Flynn's hands. She told a deputy at the scene that Green made her do it, while at the trial she said that Green tied the shoelace.

  • He then points out the photo line-up from which Hallock identified Green.
    "It is a target with a bulls eye on Crosley. His picture is smaller and darker. Your eyes are naturally drawn to it," Harrison said. "It was the exact opposite of how it should be done."
    Three main witnesses -- Sheila Green, Lonni Hillery and Jerome Murray -- have recanted, saying they lied about Green confessing to them. Sheila Green, who is Crosley's sister, later said that she made up the confession under pressure because she was facing sentencing on federal drug charges and hoped to get a favorable deal.
    Another witness, Layman Layne, who testified in 2004 that Green confessed to shooting someone, said five years later that Green did not tell him anything.



  • Harrison said his legal team also has collected eight sworn affidavits from alibis who either saw Green or were with him away from the scene around the time of the shooting.

    Repealing death

    Green's trial took place in the Melbourne courthouse on Nieman Avenue in early fall of 1990.
    Rob Parker, Green's attorney at the time -- who now works as a prosecutor for the Brevard State Attorney's OfFice -- remembers the atmosphere in the courtroom being intense.
    At one point, the state put a plea offer on the table.
    "Listen, we can resolve this, if you will plea to a second-degree murder . . . we can avoid death," Parker remembers telling Green.
    But Green, who was 32 at the time, refused.
    "I'm not going to do it. I didn't do it," Green told his attorney.
    Parker was dumbfounded.
    "My sense was pretty much I was begging him," Parker said.
    If he had accepted that deal, he would have been a free man by now.
    The next year, Green was on Florida's death row. But the appeals that follow every death penalty were just beginning.
    In 1999, the Green case got national attention when Paul Ciolino, a brash tough-talking investigator, arrived in Brevard County to pursue the case.
    Ciolino, a Chicago native, had built a reputation for helping overturn death penalty cases in other parts of the country.
    He and three other investigators started questioning some of the witnesses in Green's original trial. A CBS News crew traveled with them as they shot footage for an episode of the TV newsmagazine "48 Hours."
    Investigators, who offered a $25,000 reward for information, outlined 132 problems with the Green case at a press conference in Cocoa Beach.
    "He was not the greatest man. But they manufactured a murder case against this guy," Ciolino said recently.
    That same year, in 1999, Brevard-Seminole State Attorney Norman Wolfinger asked the Florida Department of Law Enforcement to revisit the case.
    But the 11-month investigation concluded that the hairs found in Flynn's truck tested for mitochondrial DNA did not exclude Green as a possible suspect.But the inmate kept up the challenge.
    In 2007, the Florida Supreme Court upheld his conviction but ordered a re-sentencing.
    Two years later, in August 2009, he was sentenced to life. The Florida Department of Corrections likely will begin an investigation in 2013 as to when he can be paroled.

    High court rule

    Assistant State Attorney Chris White and Phil Williams, an assistant state attorney who later became sheriff, were the prosecutors during Green's original trial.
    White is scheduled to retire in September. Wayne Holmes, the chief of staff for the Brevard State Attorney's Office, will now handle the Green case locally.
    Holmes points to the state's high court listing a "plethora" of evidence of Green's guilt: trial testimony from Hallock, testimony from witnesses who saw Green at Holder Park and original testimony from the recanting witnesses.
    He cites a ruling from the Florida Supreme Court in 2008 that the recantations by the three witnesses were unreliable and dubious and said he "respectfully disagrees" with the trial court having another hearing.
    "They keep repeating that the witnesses recanted, but that issue was specifically dealt with in 2008 by Judge (Bruce) Jacobus and the Florida Supreme Court," Holmes said.
    Lost in all this, he said, was the nightmare that the Flynn family had to go through.
    "In their minds, they did not see justice in their lifetime," he said. "It is something that has gone on and on. There has never been a finality to it."

    Seeking the truth

    Harrison believes the Flynn family needs to know the truth about their loss.
    His firm could have walked away after Green was taken off death row.
    But they did not.
    At a hearing in May, where Harrison presented two alibi witnesses, Green appeared thin and frail, almost overwhelmed at the sight of so many attorneys rallying for him.
    Appeals are possible if Circuit Judge David Dugan denies a retrial. Harrison said his team will pursue the case in federal court if unsuccessful in Florida.
    "We are not walking away," he said.

    Contact Basu at 321-242-3724 or kbasu@floridatoday.com.

    20 comments:

    R. Angela Vause said...

    Give him a new trial.

    Helene Jan said...

    I am a former criminal defense attorney. On 48 hrs they revealed that the diagram of the scene presented to the jury did not accurately depict that the footprints, (claimed to belong to Green) actually continued out of the park. If the prosecution's case is to be believed, those footprints should have stopped when the killer got into the truck. It seems to me that is the most egregious part of the case: the misrepresentation of evidence by the prosecution, and yet another piece of exculpatory evidence that was buried. Not revealing exculpatory evidence, in violation of Brady, especially where it is likely to have changed the verdict, is grounds for overturning the verdict not to mention prosecuting the prosecutor. I would love to see those prosecutors subjected to their own form of "Justice."

    Helene Jan said...

    I am a former criminal defense attorney. On 48 hrs they revealed that the diagram presented to the jury did not accurately depict that the footprints, (claimed to belong to Green) actually continued out of the park. If the prosecution's case is to be believed, those footprints should have stopped when the killer got into the truck. It seems to me that is the most egregious part of the case: the misrepresentation of evidence by the prosecution, and yet another piece of exculpatory evidence that was buried. Not revealing exculpatory evidence, in violation of Brady, especially where it is likely to have changed the verdict, is grounds for overturning the verdict not to mention prosecuting the prosecutor. I would love to see those prosecutors subjected to their own form of "Justice."

    Anonymous said...

    All prosecutors worry about is crunching numbers. I can only pray KARMA visits Christopher White sooner than later. They will do anything to get a conviction. I couldn't believe his STUPID interview on 48 Hours. He's lying out his ass. #crookedprosecutor#crooked judicial system

    Anonymous said...

    Can anyone tell me where Crosley Green is incarcerated? I would like to write him a letter of support

    Anonymous said...

    I think he is here:

    Hardee Correctional Institution, 6901 State Road 62, Bowling Green, Florida 33834.

    Anonymous said...

    Yes, he is at Hardee.
    http://www.dc.state.fl.us/activeinmates/detail.asp?Bookmark=538&From=list&SessionID=41534531

    Anonymous said...


    Offender Picture
    DC Number: 902925
    Name: GREEN, CROSLEY A
    Race: BLACK
    Sex: MALE
    Hair Color: BLACK
    Eye Color: BROWN
    Height: 5'10''
    Weight: 176 lbs.
    Birth Date: 09/11/1957
    Initial Receipt Date: 02/20/1991
    Current Facility: HARDEE C.I.
    Current Custody: CLOSE
    Current Release Date: SENTENCED TO LIFE
    Click here to register for notification on changes to the offender's custody status.
    Send money to this inmate.

    Aliases:
    CROSLEY GREEN CROSLEY A GREEN
    CROSLEY ALEXANDER GREEN PAPA


    Current Prison Sentence History:
    Offense Date Offense Sentence Date County Case No. Prison Sentence Length
    04/04/1989 1ST DEG MUR,COM.OF FELONY 02/08/1991 BREVARD 8904942 SENTENCED TO LIFE
    04/04/1989 ROBB. GUN/DEADLY WPN 02/08/1991 BREVARD 8904942 17Y 0M 0D
    04/04/1989 ROBB. GUN/DEADLY WPN 02/08/1991 BREVARD 8904942 17Y 0M 0D
    04/04/1989 KIDNAP,ASSAULT OR TERRORIZE 02/08/1991 BREVARD 8904942 17Y 0M 0D
    04/04/1989 KIDNAP,ASSAULT OR TERRORIZE 02/08/1991 BREVARD 8904942 17Y 0M 0D

    Note: The offense descriptions are truncated and do not necessarily reflect the crime of conviction. Please refer to the court documents or the Florida Statutes for further information or definition.


    Incarceration History:
    Date In-Custody Date Out-of-Custody
    12/30/1988 03/16/1989
    02/20/1991 Currently Incarcerated


    Prior Prison History: (Note: Data reflected covers periods of incarceration with the Florida Dept.of Corrections since January of 1983)
    Offense Date Offense Sentence Date County Case No. Prison Sentence Length
    07/19/1986 COCAINE-SALE OR PURCHASE 12/16/1988 BREVARD 8604487 1Y 6M 0D

    Anonymous said...

    The Detectives at the scene wrote notes stating the suspect would be Kim hallock... it is so obvious; what a total B.S. story she told... stupid & makes no sense lies lies & more lies. Chip Flynn had a new gf. Kim Hallock is the killer whom has stolen over a quarter of century from an innocent man. I hope she has to spend the rest of her life in prison then burns in hell. RIP C. F.

    Donna Shirk said...

    thanks!

    Sandy Antoniades said...

    Wow!what a story!!??? Poor guy if innocent spent a lot of time in jail. First I've even heard of this!!! And the other 3 men innocent in same county!!!! All about VOTES IN OFFICE!! GOOD LUCK, DEC 12,2015!!!! SEND HIM A CHRISTMAS CARD AND LITTLE CHECK.....JUST A SINGLE MOM WITH HOLIDAY SPIRIT...GOD BLESS EVERYONE! HAPPY HOLIDAYS💖💖

    Teresa said...

    Crosley is INNOCENT. This man needs set free. Moron prosecutor needs to fess up and admit they screwed up. That woman needs to admit her guilt in this.

    Tammysg said...

    Is this idiot still prosecuting

    Anonymous said...

    I was amazed at the arrogance exhibited by Chris White. The fact that 2 other men where wrongly prosecuted for crimes they did not commit by this same prosecutor should throw up all kinds of red flags. He justifies it all by stating the jury heard the case and they came to the verdict of guilt. A guilty verdict based on manipulated facts.

    How does he live with himself. Thank goodness for the attorneys that have and continue to help the victims of Chris White.

    Farmcheeck said...

    I have never seen a case that is so obviously corrupt and racially motivated. Just how Kim hollack said "black man" with such disdain. This was heartbreaking to watch!! Set him free and allow him to live the rest of his life in peace.

    Anonymous said...

    I just saw the 48hr show on Mr. Green's case. I completely agree with you the evidence sucked and the whole trial was an out rage. I agree with you on seeing the prosecutors especially that Christopher White subjected to their own form of justice. Even in Mr. White's interview when he apologized he was just so cocky like he doesn't take any of the blame for putting those poor men in prison, and still Mr. Green is still there. Please anyone who reads this message please pray for Mr. Green's release very soon.

    MaeRose said...

    I am actually appalled that Green is still incarcerated for Chip's murder. My sane mind tells me that Kim shot Chip. The things people can live with appalls me. Oh, Green is a Black man, so it's no big issue.

    rachealwilson30 said...

    My heart goes out to this man! How can we say that we live in a country where justice can be found, when we have so many Crosely Greens behind bars. I am so disappointed not in the State system, because they clearly have Mastered Screwing up innocent people lives! I am much more appalled in our Federal system, for not even taking the time to even hearing what is clearly the truth! This prosecutor must be friends of this lady family or kind to this family. I think hes being PAID OFF several times to convict innocent people! We need to look into that!

    Unknown said...
    This comment has been removed by the author.
    keith duran said...

    Very sad and a shame that this man (Green) is losing his life and getting old in prison for a crime he did not commit. When taking someone's natural life from them, there has to be rigorous proof, without a doubt, that this person is guilty. There is more than doubt in Greens case, there are just so many factors and scenarios that all point to Green being innocent. Too much coincidence, that all points to him being wrongfully convicted, none that confirms his guilt. Certainly enough to warrant his life a thorough and careful second look! You only get one life, God forbid if another human can just fraudulently take another's natural life from them without a true and complete search of the truth. With all benefit of the doubt, or something not clear enough, or able to be proven for whatever reason awarded to the humans life. This is sad and plain insubordinate that resources set forth are not exhausted in this case.