Monday, August 11, 2014


ON TO THE APPELLATE COURT:Our case is headed to the Appellate Court in NY, where hopefully it will be reviewed with a modicum of common sense and intelligence. Because the Appellate Court is comprised of a panel of judges, there is a better chance for a fair review since the final decision as to a new trial will not be made by ONE judge, as was the case with our motion hearing last summer. As you recall, our motion for a new trial was denied by Judge Richard Price.

In a letter dated August 4, 2014, Shane confirms this truth: "Appellate Courts have to clean up the mess by overturning decisions and sending the case back to the lower courts for trial.. I am glad that mostly everyone was there (in Judge Price's courtroom) to witness the miscarriage of justice. It's one thing to hear about it and believe it, but to SEE it is something else, isn't it?"

WBAI Radio ( In a recent blog posting here "Thank You WBAI", I retold the account of how I first came into contact with Shane through the radio station WBAI in New York City back in 2003. The eleven years that have transpired since have led to our present situation, filing an appeal of our motion. After eleven long years, filing a motion to the Appellate Court may seem like a minimal effort considering the time frame. Did it really take ELEVEN years to do what seems such an obvious strategy? In fact, the answer (sadly) is yes. For the past eleven years I have tried to generate wider publicity about Shane's case, contacting networks, law schools, media outlets, writers and individuals. For the past eleven years we have struggled to find (hire) an investigator, and were finally shown a stroke of grace when Doug Walters stepped forward and essentially did the necessary investigative work (voluntarily and completely unpaid) which made it even possible for our attorney Robert Boyle to file a motion for a new trial last summer. Additionally, supporters of Shane's case have contributed to the legal expenses and also have corresponded with Shane as a way to offer moral support.

After the blog posting about WBAI I called the station, and emailed Berthold Reimers, WBAI's General Manager. It seemed to me that because it was through WBAI that The Opus 30 Mission came into being, the station would be willing to participate in telling Shane's story. WBAI prides itself on being a "voice for the voiceless", and a champion for progressive reporting, which is true. Shane's story transcends Shane Watson, as it represents a common occurrence in the justice system, and I have always believed that Shane's story is compelling BECAUSE it is so "ordinary". There are no sensational elements that usually drive media interest: celebrity, power, sex, scandal, etc., etc. Shane's case is "ordinary" because it demonstrates just how easy it is for an innocent person to be tried and convicted, especially when that innocent person is poor, young, Black or Hispanic. Summary: this is a perfect WBAI story.

Why then has the station ignored my calls and emails? I have suspicions about the answer to this question, but the productive response would be to urge you and anyone else to please reach out to WBAI and ask Berthold Reimers or another producer there to give Shane's story attention.
Call WBAI! 212-209-2900 or 347-903-2986
You can also email WBAI Station Manager Berthold Reimers using THIS LINK

Thank you,
Will Duchon
The Opus 30 Mission

If you care to write a note of encouragement to Shane, the address is;
Mr. Shane Watson
DIN 93A9384
Fishkill Correctional Facility
PO Box 1245
Beacon, NY 12508

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