I don’t deny I am relieved that Serial is over. Not that it wasn’t a tremendous expose on Adnan’s case, and the result of so much time and effort by Sarah and her team which I’ll always appreciate, and its literally breathed new life into future prospects of exoneration. But because as difficult as it was for the general public to swing back and forth between sides, guided effortlessly by Sarah, it was even harder on those who know and love Adnan.
We never knew what parts of the story Sarah would chose to tell, and how she would chose to tell it. And I promise you, the parts you tell and how you tell it make all the difference in what the world hears. So we would wait to see which way the wind blew each week, and often wonder why Sarah left out certain things. In a way, as Sarah wondered if Adnan was manipulating her, we all wondered if Sarah was doing the same thing to us. Continue reading
Just because the Secretary of State of the US confirms Adnan is an American, doesn’t mean the State of MD has to buy it. In case you’re wondering Adnan visited Pakistan twice in his life. Once when he was four years old, for a month. And once when he was ten years old, again for a month. We like to radicalize our boys young.
The thing about racism, xenophobia, gender bias, age discrimination, and a host of other prejudices is that unless you’re part of the target group, its very hard to get it. The past few weeks have been gut wrenching as grand juries in the murders of both Eric Garner and Michael Brown returned no indictments against the police officers that killed them. While the overwhelming and appropriate response has been grief and rage against the systematic brutalization of black men, and the lack of accountability for it, there are the inevitable groups that just don’t get it. They see officers forced to make hard decisions, not institutional racism. They see a series of unconnected unfortunate events, not an epidemic of violent responses by law enforcement towards black men, another manifestation of the brutality that drove slavery, Jim Crow laws, and the extra-judicial lynching of black men by whites in this country – even though none of that was very long ago.
They can’t see what’s before their eyes, no matter how many times and how many ways the people who are affected point it out. And the saddest and most ironic thing is that even those who suffer prejudice often don’t recognize the bigotry with which they encounter others.
Which brings me to Adnan, and a courtroom full of Muslims who looked as Muslim as Muslims can look. Continue reading
*Before I get into the meat and potatoes of this post, I would be remiss if I didn’t share the work of attorney Susan Simpson, who blogs here. If you want some excellent analysis of the case from a factual and legal perspective, read her stuff. She basically nails the timeline with respect to what Adnan remembers.
I’ve said from the beginning that as Serial winds down, I’ll release more documents, but at no point will I “trump” their work. I try at all times to stay at least half a step behind their narrative. From where I stand it looks like they’ve clearly moved on from the initial parts of the case and investigation, so I thought it was an appropriate time to release some documents in their entirety.
Let me make something clear – nothing I am releasing here is confidential, it is all the kind of public record that anyone could obtain from a FOIA (Freedom of Information Act) request, which can be filed with any government agency, like the Baltimore County Police. There are some documents that are attorney notes, which cannot be obtained from a FOIA, but even in those I’m careful not to release anybody’s private information. In the documents linked here, I’ve made sure to redact last names, and sometimes first names too, as in the case of “Cathy”, as well as phone numbers and addresses.
So where did the investigation of Adnan begin? With an anonymous phone call, three days after Hae’s body is found. Continue reading