In Houston Texas a middle-aged black woman named Mona Nelson kidnapped a 12-year-old white boy from his home on Christmas Eve 2010. She tied him up with string, then burned him with a blowtorch, and dumped his body in a ditch.
Nelson’s bench trial began last week – no jury (per her request).
The reporting on this story is scant at best, mostly local, and poorly done. The latest article about the trial is a testament to such horrid journalism – SEE HERE
The prosecution lost the affirmative eye witness lineup as evidence because Mona Nelson looked so masculine the police could not find similar looking females. Initially, because of her physique and appearance, the eye-witness thought she was a man. Against the backdrop of five additional females in a line-up looking like women, Nelson stood out like the brutal killer she is.
The judge has thrown out the line-up as evidence.
The defense asked the detective (who conducted the line-up) if he should have considered using men. The detective agreed it might have been something to consider. When the defense followed up and said: “why didn’t you“? The detective responded, ” I can’t imagine my position in this courtroom today if we’d have put five men in that lineup.”
The ABC article outlines the rest of the details, but watch the local news video at the link to understand the “burned carpet” evidence. It is about 12 foot square. (available here)