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Twisted Justice: A night that changed three lives forever
January 19th, 2012
12:21 PM ET

Twisted Justice: A night that changed three lives forever

On October 3, 1996, New York City transit police officer Richard DiGuglielmo Jr. stopped by his family’s deli in Dobb’s Ferry, New York, to help his father, who was recovering from a heart attack, with the pre-dinner rush.

Due to tenants’ complaints about the lack of parking, Richard Sr., was protective of the small lot in front. So when amateur boxer Charles Campbell pulled into a spot reserved for “patrons only,” DiGuglielmo Sr. asked him to move to a nearby lot. Campbell refused and a fight ensued. Campbell then produced a baseball bat and DiGuglielmo Jr. produced a gun.

When it was over, Campbell, who was black, was shot dead.

DiGuglielmo Jr., who is white, says he was trying to save his father’s life.

CNN's Deborah Feyerick examines the case against an ex-cop who's now sitting in prison - maybe for life - even after a judge ruled that his trial was full of holes.

It is a story of anger, and a death that started over a parking space.

Twisted Justice is one of two revealing investigations you won’t want to miss on CNN Presents this Sunday at 8 p.m. ET, reairing at 11 p.m. and 2 a.m.

What do you think? Was it a case of murder or a miscarriage of justice? Read the story and then cast your vote below.

FULL STORY
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Filed under: Deborah Feyerick • DiGuglielmo
soundoff (190 Responses)
  1. Emily Fast

    Sorry, I lived in Dobbs Ferry across from the Deli in an apartment over the pizza place. The DiG father was the angriest craziest scariest guy I ever met and once I parked there, and the father ran out screaming "YOU're a JEw aren't you (actually I'm Irish) You're a Jew get out of here. It was dark, I had no idea I was'nt supposed to park there. I thought the father was going to kill me. I am sure Charles Campbell felt the same way. If I hadn't known how crazy the father was I too would have fallen for this story. The father is a well known scary bastard.

    March 5, 2012 at 1:08 pm |
    • EX NYPD COP DIGUGLIELMO

      I live in the area and if you ever parked in that lot you couldn't help but see the clearly posted signs on the front of the building, signs facing the building accross the street, as well as signs near the entrances facing out and also toward the building. The signs are hard to miss.

      March 16, 2012 at 7:26 pm |
  2. Richard Loose

    A gross miscariage of justice. The prosecutor should be required to serve out the mans sentence.
    Stay away from those yankees, prosecutors, they will come out from under the porch and bite you.

    March 4, 2012 at 3:18 am |
  3. Jimmy

    The courts made the right decision in this case. He deserved and needed to be put back in prison for simply killing someone over a parking space. Just because we have a witness issue does not exclude the fact that he went inside the store, got a gun, and pull the trigger 3 times! Also, what makes this case even worse is that a public servant was behind the gun. When you are in law enforcement, you are trained to diffuse situations without them reaching this point. Rich Jr. could've easily flashed his badge or told the guy he was a cop in order for things to have been better when settling this conflict. He doesn't deserve life in prison because there obviously was adavantage that the victim had over the father. But still no reason to kill someone, especially when you are a police officer. He got exactly what he deserves and needs to serve out the rest of his sentence just like anybody else who kills someone.

    February 6, 2012 at 1:02 pm |
    • Anthony

      I totally agree with your impartial statement. It's one of the very few you will read here.

      February 17, 2012 at 2:03 am |
  4. keith

    justice NOT served.
    If witnesses changed there stories without any questions asked or reasons given, The entire picture is skewed.

    February 1, 2012 at 4:33 am |
    • Darnell

      ONE witness reportedly changed his recall of the event. If this were critical to the case, the defense should have called him to the stand to explain, or " truly" restate the events as he saw them. To mount this issue after the fact in an effort to free a convicted murderer is simply wrong headed.

      February 1, 2012 at 11:21 am |
  5. mocking bird

    The question of why DeG did not shoot to wound Campbell is easy to answer. Police officers are not trained to shoot to wound because a wounded person can kill you. In the make believe world the Lone Ranger Shoots the gun out of the villian's hand and no one is permenantly injured.
    When I was a kid we had a guy in our neighborhood who we called crazy John. John would singularly fight all the kids in the neignborhood one at a time. He would loose by saying "i give up ! When back on his feet he would start fighting again.
    When the DeG family released Campbell from the ground they thought the fight was over. The had made their point. The sticker that they put on Campbell's car was probably one that would be difficult to remove. But to Campbell the incident was not over.. To many American Males (all races) especially the owners of prestige vehicles like a corvette the automobile is an extension of the penis. Campbell went to the car opened the trunk and produced a metal bat. At this point the entire dynamic of the situation shifted..Was Campbell now on the offense or was he still on detense? What was the time frame from the opening of the trunk until the gun was fired? Was it 10, 20, 30 seconds? Was it like an automobile accident over before anyone realized what was happening? This is why the supressed and coericed testimony is so important.
    In this case the jury was prostituded by the D.A. and the Dobbs Ferry P.D.. There should be a class action civil suit filed against the D.A.and the Dobbs Ferry P.D. on behalf of the Jury,Campbell and DeG families all of whom were the victims of unethical ,illegal and deceitful conduct.

    January 29, 2012 at 3:25 pm |
  6. injustice

    It may have been three on one, but if they intended to kill him or seriously hurt him they would have. They let him go. He then went for the bat. He had the opportunity to leave, but came back swinging the bat at an elderly man. This has nothing to do with race. I agree that sometimes police abuse their power, but this doesn't seem to be the case. They let him go and Campbell returned and continued a deadly assault on the man's father. We are losing all of our rights in this country. We have to be able to defend ourselves and our family. The system is failing the people. There is no justice in our courts.

    January 29, 2012 at 11:48 am |
  7. sue

    i live in spain and have just watched this.i am at a loss as to how this can be called justice.to release a man then return him to prison is,in my opinion,a total travesty.
    i cannot for one minute imagine how the prosecution sleep at night.to call it murder is an outrage and the supreme court should be made to hear this case.also the court of human rights and even though it´s tragic that a man lost his life this is no way correct and the american justice system should be ashamed of itself.
    someone get a petition going and get it emailed around the world....the supreme court need to hear from the people.....

    January 29, 2012 at 8:36 am |
    • roe

      the supreme court refused to even hear the case....

      January 30, 2012 at 7:20 pm |
  8. christiaan

    This is again a other case of injustice in "great Amirica", 20 years for defending your self?...regardless of skin-colour a basebal-bat is a reason of defending your self, and waht about these witnesses....

    January 29, 2012 at 7:28 am |
  9. No Justice. No Peace.

    One thing is certain. Charles Campbell won't be driving his Corvette and parking in spots reserved for "PATRONS ONLY" and causing grief for any other family. He should have moved his car when asked. To all those in Charles' camp, answer me this, "Why didn't he move his car when asked?" Actually, answer me this, "What right did Charles have to park in one stores parking lot of limited spaces and then cross the street to patronize another establishment?"

    Amateur in boxing – amateur in respect – amateur in manners! Good-bye Charlie.

    January 29, 2012 at 4:32 am |
    • Joseph

      You are absolutely correct.

      February 1, 2012 at 11:32 am |
      • Myra

        I don't think that parking in the wrong place warrants the death penalty. Mr DiGiglielmo is a MURDERER. He deserves what he got.

        February 1, 2012 at 1:59 pm |
  10. Walter

    He murdered Campbell and he should stay in jail that's were he belongs. An officer should know how to fire a warning shot, since he was really trigger happy. If Campbell was really swinging a Bat in front his dad (we all know that's a dirty lie), and he fired his gun 3 times not thinking he might hit his dad, even if he was just 10 feet away. It's obvious that Campbell was't in front of his dad swinging when Mr. Officer came out with his gun.

    January 29, 2012 at 3:56 am |
  11. mocking bird

    This was not a racilally motivated incident. At the time I heard stories that the DeG family had a history of challenging people who parked in the reserved parking area.. Campbell was probablly the last challenged due to the tragedy that ensued. The fact that he was a black man probably played no part in the incident prior to him being shot. However, after he was shot race became a factor.

    Once large crowds of black people descended on the scene claiming racism as the motivation for the shooting this became a high profile case. This undoubtably influenced the actions of the D.A..who saw this as an opportunity at self engrandizement. Dobbs Ferry P.D. has no problem playing along with the D.A. because a DeG conviction would mean the Dobbs Ferry would not have to suffer the consequences of the angry crowd turning into an angry mob.

    If Campbell had been a white man there would have been no trial because the D.A. and the Dobbs Ferry P.D. would have nothing to gain. There would be no reason for the D.A. and the Dobbs Ferry P.D. to intimidate and coerice one witness and withhold the testimony of a second key witness from the defense council.

    This is a case of reverse racial discrimination after the fact. The D.A. and the Dobbs Ferry P.D. engaged in this illegal and unethical behavior because DeG was white. If DeG was Black there was no reason for them to do this. They commited a violation of DeG rights under Federal Civil Rights laws because they committed this illegal, unehical behavior against DeG specifically because he was white.

    Don't be shocked. A white man convicted to placate a black mob. We have a rich history of black men being convicted to placate a white mob. That's why we have civil rights laws. To try and protect all people from this crap.

    January 29, 2012 at 2:45 am |
  12. Russ W. Bill

    I lost faith in the justice system when OJ Simpson was found not guilty in the murder trial & guilty in the civil trial of Nicole Brown. We need consistency: guilty or not guilty for both. We have profesional judges, attorneys & police. Maybe we need professional jurors. OJ & DiGugliemo should have had profesional jurors.

    January 29, 2012 at 1:51 am |
    • Lewis Marlman

      Russ...you are spot on. Although we are supposed to be judged by a jury of our peers, lawyers today twist and distort the justice system through the Voir Dire process to stack juries with people who act (vote) on emotion and not on facts and reason. Let's have JUSTICE FOR ALL–BLACK & WHITE and EVERYTHING IN BETWEEN. This can only be accomplished by intelligent, well-informed, unbiased professional jurors.

      March 4, 2012 at 1:19 am |
  13. Russ W. Bill

    I lost faith in the justice system when OJ Simpson was found not guilty in the murder trial & not guilty in the civil trial. We have to be consistent: guilty or not guilty for both. We have professional judges, attorneys & police. Maybe it is time for professional jurors. OJ & DiGugliemo should have had professional jurors.

    January 29, 2012 at 1:09 am |
  14. Andtea

    This us Bs...corrupt police workng with DA's...typical for African Americans to play the race card when he was the one that pulled the first weapon, a bat, and showed intent to kill or harm a un armed, elderly man.

    January 29, 2012 at 12:47 am |
  15. susan

    Yes justice was served! I grew up with Charles anf his btother Billy in Elmsfotd, NY not far from Dobbs Ferry
    This appears to be a case of an over zealous cop motivated by racial intentions. Why not fire into to the air?or aim lowet .His intent was to kill. He and his family musy now pay the consequences!

    6

    January 29, 2012 at 12:41 am |
    • Joseph

      Where are the witnesses and documentary evidence that the Cop or any of his family members made negative racial statements? Even if they did which i doubt very much considering the civil and polite manners of the owner of the Deli to report to the Police and was told to place a 'no parking' sign on his car, the aggressive and arrogant posture of the late campbell would have been to have abused them racially first, considering he also threw the first punch at an innocent man. Do you think if the innocent Cop (Rich) in prison was in uniform during the fracas, would the late Campbell have been that boisterous and lawless?

      February 1, 2012 at 11:39 am |
      • Myra

        The senior DiGuglielmo should be happy now. It was he that caused his son to go to jail with his overzealousness over a trivial parking spot. Maybe he should be in prison instead. It was 3 against one and the one is dead. The murderous cop is in jail where he belongs.

        February 1, 2012 at 2:03 pm |
  16. Dan

    A truly messed up situation. I would love to hear more of the politics behind it all.

    Also, why was this labeled as something along the lines of a "hate crime." Even if the story presented by the prosecution was indeed true, I don't see how that could come about. All crimes characterized of that nature involve emotions of "hate"... so why label this as race-related violence?

    January 29, 2012 at 12:37 am |
  17. Frank L

    I just watched this story on cnn and rich was treated so unfair by the justice system. The way i see it is when a white man does anything to a black man its automatically racial. If it was the opposite and it was a black man killing a white man it would have been a different outcome. For example when the white kid on long island had a problem with a black kid from school over a girl and the white kid and friends showed up at the black kids house and the father came out and shot the white kid to death and claimed self defense and felt threatened and was found not guilty. Whats the difference rich was protecting his dad in defense and he goes to jail. The justice system just doesnt want marches and protests and figures by just sending the man to jail will stop that and justice would be served for the black man and the courts dont seem racist. Its sick and i hope he gets out soon and somebody with power and a brain releases him and the courts stop trying to be politically correct and make the right decisions..

    January 29, 2012 at 12:33 am |
  18. raul

    It was wrong to sentence this man. He was defending his father from Campbell's assault on his father. Campbell after the initial fight took place and said he was done fighting, went to his car and got a bat. He did not retreat once the initial fight was over. It does not matter that he was outnumbered. He was subdued and he wanted to keep fighting. Digugliamo sees cambell hitting his father with the bat and did the right thing. He defended him. Peop are saying what about a warning shot? Ah hello this isn't tv this is real life. Police officers are trained not to fire warning shots. Digugliamo went back to his training and did what he was taught to do. He used enough force necessary to stop the threat. In this case unfortunately was deadly force. I think if the deli would have had video, this would have been clear ad to what really happened.

    January 29, 2012 at 12:22 am |
  19. Greg

    Wow picking up the same guy again and again untill he gives them the story they want to hear and then think a jury would agree with that?

    The DA and the cops that picked that witness up should be in jail. If they are willing to break the law in this case I'm sure there are many many others we don't know about as well.

    January 29, 2012 at 12:08 am |
    • mr Benjamin

      SINCE THE REPUBLICAN DEBATES BEGAN, CNN HAS BECOME THE SOUNDING BOARD FOR EVERY RACICIST WITH A SOB STORY, FIRST NEWT GINGRICH NOW THIS GUY

      January 29, 2012 at 12:21 am |
      • Dan

        Not the case. Calm down.

        January 29, 2012 at 12:39 am |
      • Paul

        No matter what happens, it clearly never is right to hit another person with a metal baseball bat. Anyone that would think about doing such a violent act should be stopped.

        January 29, 2012 at 3:14 am |
    • mr Benjamin

      ALL IN ALL IT SOUNDS LIKE THE OJ CASE, DUDE CLEARLY MURDERD THAT BLACK MAN, BUT BECAUSE OF LAW ENFORCEMENT HI JINX THEY TAINTED THE CASE AGAINST THE COP...IT MIGHT OF BEEN DONE IN AN EFFORT TO CAST DOUBT ON ANY OF THE EYEWITTNESSES....WE KNOW ONE THING THE COP MURDERD THE ONLY WITTNESS THAT COULD HAVE SET HIM FREE ...

      January 29, 2012 at 12:52 am |
      • Sean

        Not true at all. He did not kill the only person that could set him free. There was a cumstomer in the Deli that saw the whole thing, but the prosecution suppressed his statement and testimony, so the just never heard this witness say flat out that the deceased was swinging the bat at the father at the time he was shot. This was turned into a high profile case by the DA and she could not lose with the media frenzy she had made it in to.

        January 29, 2012 at 7:02 am |
      • Darnell

        I, too, am perplexed by what seems to be a shift in reporting by CNN. Indeed, this is a noteworthy story that I appreciated learning about. However, the report is imbalanced. Dr. Gupta, who everyone widely respects, notes that a gun shot wound would have had the victim with his arm raised suggesting that the victim was in an aggressive and offending mode. Conversely, in the face of three, irate, burly men should we not also consider that the victim was in a DEFENSIVE mode? Moreover, if the victim's arm's were upraised with both hands holding the baseball bat, why was he shot in the upper body? The convicted murderer, an experienced police officer, most likely was trained and able to shoot at the lower body to disable the victim rather than kill him. CNN also reported on the autopsy report, but made no mention of the substantial injuries the victim must have sustained, particularly if you consider that he was under attack not by one, not two, but three men – all of whom appeared to be large in size and more than capable beating the victim senseless. Again, this is a noteworthy story, but CNN as THE most creditable news organization in the world should give more care to the facts and analysis, rather than painting a sympathetic picture of an off duty policeman taking the law into his own hands.

        January 29, 2012 at 9:29 am |
  20. Anthony Laccetti

    The way I see it deadly physical force (bat) was being used against the father. Any person, police officer or not would be justified to use the same deadly physical force to stop it.

    This is a true miscarrage of justice.

    January 28, 2012 at 10:52 pm |
    • mr Benjamin

      as an officer of the law the first reaction should have been 2 call the police and or a towing company...not confront an unarmed man with your whole family jumping on them...i would have hit his dad with a bat too...this was obviously a racial assault gone wrong...they only wanted to harrass this black man with a corvette from parking in front of their whites(italian) only establishment....JUSTICE SERVED WHEN THEY PROSUCUTE THE REST OF HIS FAMILY...

      January 29, 2012 at 12:07 am |
      • john hall

        The D.A. in the original trial did not mention any racial issue whatsoever. You are making up a story about race.
        This is clearly self defense because the Dad was unarmed, but the man ran to his car and grabbed a bat(which at thet
        point is a potential lethal weapon. What would you do if someone attacked you or loved one with a bat?

        January 29, 2012 at 12:34 am |
      • Mz. Dee

        I totally agree with you, Mr. Benjamin. Mr. Campbell was assaulted by the three men prior to his getting the bat out of the trunk of his car. If anyone had a justifiable defense to the assault, it would be Mr. Campbell. His only crime would be "being a Black/African American man, with the audacity to drive a luxury Corvette, and park in the wrong place." There is no where in the world where a person is sentenced to death for parking illegally! The initial verdict (lower court) was correct. The second trial (appellate Division) was wrong and the case was finally resolved by the Appellate Court.

        January 29, 2012 at 12:39 am |
      • Sean

        Mr Benjamin, you are truly showing your ignorance. It was stated that the local police told the owner of the deli to place the sticker on the vehicle. They had already contacted the police. The "off duty" police officer has a obligation to protect himself and the lives of others when a deadly force is being presented. He is a peace officer 24/7, this is the reason that peace officers are permited to cary a weapon off duty pretty much at all times.

        January 29, 2012 at 7:06 am |
    • Kensingtongirl

      I was just wondering... if he had enough time to unlock the trunk and grab a bat, then why didn't he just get in his car and leave? You know if he felt threatened etc.. Go to the cops and file charges, but NO. He got a bat and swung at an old man. He was pissed and no longer thinking clearly. Testosterone took over. He was a boxer after all. They don't give up. They come back swinging.

      January 29, 2012 at 2:14 am |
      • Joseph

        You are absolutely right. This is nothing but a miscarriage of Justice. Campbell must have been proud, haughty and arrogant when told to remove his car parked in the wrong place. He must have felt that no one could challenge him on any illegal parking. If when told to move his car, he had pleaded with them to just give him 3 to 5mins, it would have been sensible. But for him to have been deliberately deaf to warnings to remove his car, cross over to the other side to buy whatever, came back in arrogance and ready for a showdown because he is a Boxer, brought out a BASEBALL BAT to hit an innocent man (who probably would have been killed over his property had Rich not been there) shows that it was a POLITICAL JUDGMENT that needs to be corrected immediately! YOU CANNOT JUSTIFY THE GUILTY AND CONDEMN THE INNOCENT IN THE NAME OF POLITICAL EXPEDIENCY! Rich must be released immediately and compensated! and the Justice guys who refused to take cognizance of the change in the Witnesses statement due to pressure from Police quarters should face a panel of Disciplianry action!

        February 1, 2012 at 11:26 am |
    • Paul

      Thank you for your comment. It is clear as day to see that this was a miscarriage of justice. The fact that off-duty officers have the same responsibilities as when they are on duty, means that he had a moral responsibility to protect the citizen being assaulted with a deadly weapon with that very same force. The fact that the DA would not even comment on the story speaks VOLUMES about the nature of this case and her motives behind his prosecution.

      January 29, 2012 at 3:10 am |
  21. Kelsey

    Wow, this is outrageous. Stories like these make me sick to my stomach and embarrassed to live in this politically motivated country... We should spread the word and start a Facebook petition to have this man released and reunited with his wife and family.

    January 28, 2012 at 10:16 pm |
    • roe

      he does have a face book page please join. leave your contact info or start your own we plan on asking the gov. for a pardon. thank you, thank you, thank you

      January 30, 2012 at 7:32 pm |
  22. Steve

    Wow, a trained police Officer is engaged in a 3 on one assault and then leaves the scene with the intent to get a gun. The Officer was not struck with the bat nor was he threaten with the bat but he claims it was self defense for him to shoot this guy in the upper body. Why didn't the Officer talk the young man out of using the bat or defuse the situation or even take his Dad inside? Who in their right mind would say that a 9 MM poses the same threat as a base ball bat? What kind of a country would we become if a Son saw his Dad beating the heck out of his Mother and the Son left the room and got a gun and returned and shot his Dad three times in the chest? Would we say that that act by the Son was self defense. This officer shot that young man because he assumed that his badge would protect him and wouldn't serve or protect the young man that he shot.

    January 28, 2012 at 9:55 pm |
    • Mz. Dee

      AMEN, Steve! You seem to get it.

      January 29, 2012 at 12:43 am |
    • Paul

      Clearly a metal baseball bat poses the same threat as a gun. Someone could just as easily kill with a few swings.

      January 29, 2012 at 3:05 am |
  23. Frank

    Another Wrongful Conviction in a broken system. I am a second year law student that intends to practice Criminal Law with a Wrongful Convictions specialty I am fortunate to have met my current professor, and I am currently working on a Wrongful Conviction case . What struck me was the apparent prosecutorial misconduct (Brady Violation) when exculpatory evidence and evidence for impeachment was withheld. Further, this happens more often then you think Troy Davis, the West Memphis 3, Cameron Todd Willingham, Further, the DA should not have a win at all cost attitude and the conduct in this case was egregious. The system needs an Innocence Panel like North Carolina's sysyem in every state. Unfortunately, post conviction relief goes back to the original judge.

    January 28, 2012 at 9:50 pm |
    • Alan

      Frank,

      A word of gratitude for your determination to practice with a specialty in Wrongful Convictions. What happened to Richard DiGuglielmo Jr. is a travesty.

      I would like to say that I am all for punishment that fits the crime. Unfortunately, there are DA's in every town in America who are more interested in convictions than they are in justice. I personally know an innocent man who is in prison for 25 to life because of similar circumstances. There are hundreds if not thousands of innocent men and women who have been wrongly convicted due to over zealous prosecutors.

      A comment by a police officer I once knew sums it up perfectly. He told me, "It's not about guilt or innocence, it's about who tells the most convincing story to the jury. DA's fabricate scenarios in court rooms every day so they can put one more notch in their belt. Unlike those accused of a crime, prosecutors are required to show absolutely NO proof of their accusations.

      To make matters even worse, parole board members are often more corrupt than the DA's.

      Although our system of justice is likely one of the best in the world, it is far from perfect.

      I wish you well in your endeavor.

      January 29, 2012 at 3:39 am |
      • Frank

        Thanks Alan for the kind words. I hope we get our current client exonerated and harsher remedies for prosecutors and cops that do the wrong thing!

        January 29, 2012 at 7:59 pm |
    • AlanB

      I would like to say that I am all for punishment that fits the crime. Unfortunately, there are DA's in every town in America who are more interested in convictions than they are in justice. I personally know an innocent man who is in prison for 25 to life because of similar circumstances. There are hundreds if not thousands of innocent men and women who have been wrongly convicted due to over zealous prosecutors.

      A comment by a police officer I once knew sums it up perfectly. He told me, "It's not about guilt or innocence, it's about who tells the most convincing story to the jury. DA's fabricate scenarios in court rooms every day so they can put one more notch in their belt. Unlike those accused of a crime, prosecutors are required to show absolutely NO proof of their accusations.

      To make matters even worse, parole board members are often more corrupt than the DA's.

      Although our system of justice is likely one of the best in the world, it is far from perfect.

      I wish you well in your profession.

      January 29, 2012 at 3:45 am |
  24. Genio

    What ever happened to "drop the bat or I'll shoot?" why three shots in the chest? Why did the family members come back outside of the store? They put the tag on the car and should have stayed inside and called the police. However, I believe the charges against the police officer should not have been what they were and the sentence was excessive.

    January 28, 2012 at 9:47 pm |
    • EX NYPD COP DIGUGLIELMO

      READ THE DECISION THAT REVERSED THE CONVICTION,THE BAT WAS IN MOTION HITTING HIM ALMOST IN THE HEAD WHEN THE SHOTS WERE FIRED.

      January 31, 2012 at 7:45 pm |
  25. JayL

    Hell no. justice wasn't served. He asked him nicely to move his car to a different lot. It has nothing to do with him being black or anything like that. Why get mad because someone asks you to move out of a reserved spot. Nothing to get angry over. I'm black. is wasn't any racial motivation going on. I don't care what color you are you can't hit someone in the face for asking you to move your car. I've been asked to move my car plenty of times.This man is serving time for protecting his self and his father. the guy had a metal bat. to me that's considered a deadly weapon. It seemed like this guy just wanted to fight. This is self defense in my eyes.

    January 28, 2012 at 9:42 pm |
    • Mz. Dee

      It is clear to me by your comments JayL, that you must live in a vacuum! Reread the story. Do some research, you have some of the facts wrong. This was an egregious attack, that took a life, that ultimately was over a parking space.

      January 29, 2012 at 12:50 am |
  26. Armando Rodriguez

    It goes to show you how screwed up the judicial system really is. How could the cops make eyewitnesses change their story about what really happened, especially against an off duty cop. The black community just wanted to put this white cop away for killing one of their own. The victim should not have been parked there in the first place, and he was the first to pull out a deadly weapon being the steel bat. All BS aside, if I was in that position and I felt that someone was about to kill my father, I would have unloaded the clip on his ass. I think that anyone put in that position, no matter what color they are, would have tried to save their father's life too. I would happily serve a life sentence knowing I save my father from being murdered. No justice served.

    January 28, 2012 at 9:36 pm |
  27. Orlando Viana

    This is a gross miscarriage of justice and a disgusting display of Police work by the Dobbs Ferry Police department. They are the real criminals in this case. The DiGuglielmo's followed procedure according to the police. Mr Campbell was the aggressor and attacked the owner of the deli. After the fight was over, he went to get an aluminum bat to continue his fight and hit the older man several times. What was the son suppose to do? Call the inept Dobbs Ferry police? The Keystone Kops of Westchester county?

    Pirro, the district attorney – saw an opportunity for fame – and railroaded this poor man. The black community uses racism as a crutch to soil the DiGuglielmo family. The brother of the deceased, who wasn't there, fabricated the whole story regarding racism. It made good headlines for DA Pirro and she went with it. She is con artist like her convicted husband.

    I had family who lived in Dobbs Ferry and I shopped at this deli on occasion. I don't know the DiGuglielmo's, but I was always treated with decency and respect. The issue of parking at that location is real and Campbell had no business parking his car there.

    This story, the Dobbs Ferry police department, DA Pirro and the whole justice system makes me sick. I'm so glad I moved out of NY State because of stories like this. I will send a letter to the Govenor of NY to ask for help and justice for the DiGuglielmo Family. It's a shame Campbell died, but a bigger shame that alleged racism played a role in the outcome of this trial. Shame on you Pirro. God bless the DiGuglielmos.

    January 28, 2012 at 9:31 pm |
  28. bart

    A CLASSIC EXAMPLE OF A PROSECUTOR TRADING THE TRUTH FOR A CONVICTION < WIN AT ALL COST MENTALITY< THE FOUR JUDGE PANEL THAT OVERTURNED THE APPEALS JUDGE SHOULD BE REMOVED FROM THE BENCH

    January 28, 2012 at 9:21 pm |
  29. JayL

    Hell no justice wasn't served. It has nothing to do with him being black or what they were saying to him during the altercation. I'm black. All he had to do was move the car out of the reserved spot. His father asked him nicely to move to the a different lot. no reason for him to get mad. how can you punch someone in the face when the smart thing to do is just leave. how can you charge this man with murder for protecting his father. He had a metal bat swinging it at his dad... I get tired hearing " oh it was racism"

    January 28, 2012 at 9:21 pm |
    • Dawn

      Are you from Westchester Or are you a black guy that couldn't possibly understand that racist ass town in the 90's. when you experience racism first hand. Then speak. no matter what it was excessive use of force.

      January 28, 2012 at 9:33 pm |
      • TGibson

        Sorry Dawn...I'm Black too and I know racism from the west to the east coast of America! I look racism in the eyes till I find the compassion in it's soul. I talk to racism till I have a meaningful dialog. I listen to racism and offer a different perspective. Racism is nothing but fear. We are just afraid of each other. Read my comment. If I witnessed that man beating my 85 year old Dad back and forth and in the face...:( I would have picked up everything in my presence to knock the wind out of him.

        January 28, 2012 at 9:51 pm |
  30. TGibson

    I responded to my 85 year old Dad screaming my name from a restroom at a supermarket. My Dad needed to use the restroom and he repeatedly ask the gentlemen in the stalled to hurry. There was only one stall. When this man exited the stall he punched my Dad in the face and my Dad tried to fight back with his cane. I heard my Dad screaming my name. I ran to the restroom and I found him bloody and beat up in the face. I cried and called for help. My first thought was to stay and wait for my Dad. But something pulled me to pick up another item off a shelf for him. I was visiting him from out of town and wanted to get as many groceries as possible. If I were present when he hit my Dad, i would have done everything in my power to stop that man and protect my Dad. This has nothing to do with race. Justice was not served!

    January 28, 2012 at 9:18 pm |
  31. CT

    this is what is so frustrating about our justice system... didn't his father have to go to the hospital, or at least he had to have some pretty bad bruises to help further corroborate the son's story? why not give him an appeal? this appears to be a terrible miscarriage of justice. since evidence is pretty clear that the prosecutor suppressed evidence and eye-witness testimony that didn't fit in with the fictional story she sold to the jury, doesn't he deserve another trial?

    January 28, 2012 at 9:16 pm |
  32. Dawn

    I knew Charles Campbell from the time I moved onto the sane street. He was a very nice guy. He may have gotten into fights growing up because the towns were rivals. That and those minor charges had nothing to do with the grown man who was a role model to kids in the neighborhood. For those of u who are not from around there and commenting. DOBBS FERRY WAS AND STILL IS RACIST!!!. At that time if u were of color you never wanted to drive through there let alone go to the store. No matter what it was three against ONE. It's inexcusable. He needs to be in jail regardless,he's a cop who was trained to disarm a perp,but he gets a gun and doesn't shoot one time to stop him ,but shoots multiple times. Yes finish your time in Sing Sing, Coxsackie,Attica or where ever else . Charles Campbell family can't visit him behind bars like yours can. Do your 20 to life and be happy NY don't have the chair.

    January 28, 2012 at 9:15 pm |
    • RON PAUL 2012

      Oh, now we see why your for Campbell, he is your buddy, but you didnt say that at first, you said it was racism. Make up your mind.

      January 29, 2012 at 12:24 am |
  33. David Barnes

    Outrageous that a witness be coerced into false testimony and another's testimony effectively withheld due to conflict with prosecutor's opinion. An absolute minimum threshold of justice would be a new trial with all witnesses given a chance to testify. Only then, would a conviction (or sentence) begin to restore faith in the criminal justice system. Pressure should be excerted on anyone &veryone) who has the ability to review this case and influence the decision to grant a new trial.

    January 28, 2012 at 9:14 pm |
    • RON PAUL 2012

      They need to convict the DA Pirro for tampering with evidence and witnesses statements and put her butt in jail. I'm so sick of corrupt people blatenly getting away with illegal activities. A normal citizen would have to go to jail for tampering with evidence and witness statement tampering/lying take your pick. She belongs behind bars, not the policeman.

      January 29, 2012 at 12:27 am |
  34. Stan Ginelli

    ......under Florida's "Stand Your Ground Law", Richard would not of been convicted.

    http://www.cfif.org/htdocs/freedomline/current/in_our_opinion/florida-self-defense-law.htm

    January 28, 2012 at 9:13 pm |
  35. kimberly

    Set him free. The witnesses closest to the crime descried self defense. I am white middle aged housewife. Cops over use of force scares me. This is not one of those cops. He deserves his life back and a million dollars paid to him in damages.

    January 28, 2012 at 9:13 pm |
  36. Dave Voiles

    This was not justice. Just shows that what we think justice is,.. is not!

    January 28, 2012 at 9:13 pm |
  37. gf

    This seems to be one of the risks you incur when you live in a liberal state such as New York or California. It would not have happened in Arizona, Idaho, Utah or Nevada. I have family in two of those states and they are allowed to carry loaded concealed firearms to protect themselves.

    January 28, 2012 at 9:12 pm |
  38. Nora Palmtag

    I believe Digugliemo should have identified himself when they had Campbell on the ground and before he shot him. Digugliemo could have shot Campbell once in the legs to stop him but above all else, Digugliemo should have taken his whole family inside the business to wait for the police. Campbell was wrong for not leaving at all 3 times he had a chance to do so. So Digugliemo should have been charged with 1st degree manslaughter but not murder as it was not planned or aggravated.
    His charges should be changed as he was emotionally pushed to help his father and not motivated by Campbell's race. Having the business as long as they had, they could not afford to be prejudiced and he was a police officer and knew that is the wrong action. I am a Black American Woman.

    January 28, 2012 at 9:12 pm |
    • Orlando

      I agree with you. Mr DiGuglielmo should be convicted of a crime and should be punished for using too much force. His training should of kicked in. But 20 years to life?

      January 28, 2012 at 9:53 pm |
  39. gf

    Not only should he be released immediately, but he should also be compensated a large amount of money.

    January 28, 2012 at 9:07 pm |
  40. jean

    the legal system and prosecutors are just in the business of winning even over the truth.
    This is a travesty of justice!
    No wonder why our country goes to hell

    January 28, 2012 at 9:05 pm |
  41. avezes

    How about bringing criminal charges against the DA. Couldnt that judge order an investigation into their behavior?
    Also how does double Jeopardy not apply once he was acquitted (conviction reversed)?
    I do not know if he was guilty or not. However, the prosecution should be investigated either way. We cannot sacrafice rule of law to get somebody we think is guilty. PERIOD.

    January 28, 2012 at 9:03 pm |
    • Dave Voiles

      I agree!!

      January 28, 2012 at 9:23 pm |
  42. Roger

    Does anyone else think Jeanine pirro should be prosecuted for even bringing this case to court??

    January 28, 2012 at 9:03 pm |
    • RON PAUL 2012

      I think DA Pirro should be prosecuted for her criminal activity in this crime that made her famous, thats why she did it, for the money$$$ Down with Jeanine Pirro, put her in jail, and get her lying butt off of TV!

      January 29, 2012 at 12:32 am |
  43. Carl J. Hewitt

    This cop got railroaded just like Plaxico Burress got railroaded. NY state has some f$#ked up gun laws and excessive force laws.

    January 26, 2012 at 2:53 pm |
  44. roe

    Please write to the Governor in support of a pardon. Thank you.

    January 23, 2012 at 7:15 pm |
    • Dave

      This is so wrong. How can this happen in America?

      January 28, 2012 at 9:04 pm |
  45. Bob

    This is an obstruction of justice by both the then District Attorney and by the New York Supreme Court. The district attorney has an obligation to divulge all evidence to the defence and any failure to do so is a gross violation of law. In this case the trier of fact was the jury and I think the Supreme Court's decision to keep this new information from a new jury is a furtherance of the injustice brought by the prosecutor. New York Supreme Court: Let the defendant's peers decide his fate! No justice, no peace!

    January 23, 2012 at 6:37 pm |
  46. John Grigg

    The death of Cambell is most certainly a tragedy. My heart goes out to his family. I know Richard DiGuglielmo personally and what this has done to his family, who suffer in their own way over this sad event. The corruption surrounding this case should be so insulting to every American, and we should all be not only enraged, but afraid. Afraid that one "human being" can tamper with OUR legal system for professional gain, and destroy lives in the process, with no regard. Richard was set free by OUR legal system and then that decision was overturned??? What is the message here? I'll tell you what the message is to me, and should be to everyone of us, "If something you did, is an "inconvenience" for someone elses personal gains, you WILL NOT protected by the law no matter what"!! This could have happened to anyone of us. Someone attacking your father/mother/sister/brother etc, would enrage you in such a way that you would do whatever you deemed necessary to save that person you love. Some of you would think, if you kill someone and are found guilty by a jury, and sentenced, then you should serve that time and that's that. But that is not what happened here, and still its not the reason Richard is behind bars. Corruption for personal gain is the reason. I think we should all stand up and be responsible Americans and penalize those behind this corruption. This could have been anyone of us, and someday, you never know, it might be one of us in this situation. Think about that.

    January 23, 2012 at 5:52 pm |
    • Orlando

      I agree with you Mr. Grigg. I just sent a letter to Gov. Cuomo.

      January 28, 2012 at 10:16 pm |
  47. Jacob Kling

    This case is complete crap. It sounds to me like DiGuglielmo had a few enemies in the police force that wanted him out of the way.

    January 23, 2012 at 5:27 pm |
  48. Ryan B.

    First off – 2 witnesses gave their account, and then later – after however long of police interrogation (coercion) – the 2 and only witnesses change their statements/stories, this seems pretty fishy to me, i'm not saying it isn't possible for either one to be the truth, but in a situation as delicate and necessary to preserve individual's accounts, police persuasion/interrogation tactics sure seems crucially , tragically, unwarranted , respectful from the point of view of the defendant (aka victim) , in this particular case. I feel sorry for this man (DiGuglielmo) I don't know him, nor do I know the man shot, but I do know that to be a cop in the Bronx takes some spine, and to have shot a man wielding a baseball bat USING it to beat the snot out of an old man (his own dad – flesh and blood), on and of the very owner of the property, seems of perfect legitimacy of the self defense clause, perhaps one of the few actually legitimate claims of this particular outcome (of self defense). [edited for language]. Tragic irony is – this man put his trust in the xxPD and the justice system they supported, and sadly was the victim of 'railroaded' or the legal term for (a. To rush or push (something) through quickly in order to prevent careful consideration and possible criticism or obstruction: b. To convict (an accused person) without a fair trial or on trumped-up charges. (www.TheFreeDictionary.com) . I keep this man in my thoughts.

    January 23, 2012 at 4:54 pm |
    • EX NYPD COP DIGUGLIELMO

      WELL SAID AND SO TRUE!!!!!!!

      January 31, 2012 at 7:38 pm |
  49. Carl J. Hewitt

    I live in the Bronx and no one is more mistrustful of the police than I am, but it's clear to me that this off-duty police officer was railroaded by the Westchester County District Attorney's Office. It's also clear the the Dobbs Ferry Police were working in unison to coerce supportive testimony from the two witnesses who later recanted their original stories that the son was acting in defense of his father.

    Had it been my father being attacked with a baseball bat, I'd have acted in the same manner. Seldom are shootings of civilians by off-duty officers justified, but this one certainly appears to be. Without a shadow of a doubt, Jeanine Pirro was bent on hitting a "home run" with this case, a case that obviously took place before her husband's federal conviction all but sabotaged her career goal of being a judge in one of the state's high courts.

    Mr. DiGuglielmo Jr. did not receive a fair verdict in this case - that much is clear.

    January 23, 2012 at 1:03 pm |
    • James San Diego, CA

      Carl, totally agree with you. Why couldn't Mr. Campbell just walk away? He had three chances to leave. Nobody was pursuing him. And clearly Pirro had other motives all of which were just self centered. Big shock, she is a legal analyst on a major news network now. And the witness who later changed his story... they have his original story the day of the incident on TV in an interview. How much more conclusive can you get. Such a travesty for Mr. DiGuglielmo. I hope this gains more public attention as this man does not deserve to be behind bars.

      January 23, 2012 at 3:45 pm |
      • Carl J. Hewitt

        James, living in New York, I've seen cops do a whole lot worse than defend their fathers! With Pirro involved, this appears on the surface to have been a politically-motivated verdict. Many prosecutors would indict a ham sandwich, if it would enhance their career objective of sitting on a bench in a black robe one day - that's what they go to law school for.

        January 26, 2012 at 2:57 pm |
      • EX NYPD COP DIGUGLIELMO

        Richard thanks you for the overwhelming responses. Should you continue to support him, please leave a form of contact information where we can contact you, for possible future use of a petition. (email address/address/phone/name.. etc. which ever your comfortable with). Please forward to SUPPORTRICH@MSN.COM.

        January 28, 2012 at 5:00 pm |
    • Rey

      Touche my gallant Musketeer.

      January 23, 2012 at 5:27 pm |
    • Ryan

      This is a clear case of defending another human being. Campbell should have just done the right thing, after all he was on their property. The officer has a duty to do whether he/she is on or off duty. I'm sure he didn't want to kill Campbell however Campbell left him with little to no choice. I am disgusted with the prosecutors office in this case and even more so at the court system. Shame on Westchester County District Attorney's Office!!!

      January 26, 2012 at 11:15 am |
    • MARVIN

      IT WILL SURPRISE YOU TO KNOW THAT VIDEO STATEMENT MADE BY THE WITNESS ON TV THE NIGHT OF THE INCIDENT WAS BARRED FROM THE JURY BY THE JUDGE THAT PRESIDED OVER THE TRIAL, YES THE JURY NEVER SAW IT, I REPEAT THE JURY NEVER SAW IT!!! THE JUDGE SAID IT COULD ONLY BE USED TO REFRESH THE WITNESSES MEMORY. TALK ABOUT JUNK JUSTICE.

      January 27, 2012 at 8:32 pm |
  50. Carter5

    Charles Campbell had a rap sheet a mile long of agressive & violent prior crimes. His decision to utilize a metal bat as a lethal weapon is just one more example of his anger, violence & criminal decision-making. The pure politics of this tragedy & the corruption within the former DA's office to push her own political agenda has made me lose complete faith in our justice system. The DA's office has essentially stripped all police officers of their legal oath to uphold justice & to protect our citizens from criminals. I simply can not understand what the appellate court was thinking here. The witnesses at scene clearly claim justification on Richie's behalf. I pray that someone will right this pure example of political injustice. I'm sick & tired of hearing Charles' friends & family talk about what a happy person he was. Clearly they are not aware of his violent rap sheet of aggressive, prior crimes. Charles, on his own, in his own violent actions, escalated this confrontation into one of lethal violence.

    January 23, 2012 at 11:44 am |
    • EX NYPD COP DIGUGLIELMO

      Richard thanks you for the overwhelming responses. Should you continue to support him, please leave a form of contact information where we can contact you, for possible future use of a petition. (email address/address/phone/name.. etc. which ever your comfortable with). Please forward to SUPPORTRICH@MSN.COM.

      January 28, 2012 at 5:02 pm |
      • mr Benjamin

        I'M A BLACK MAN FROM CHICAGO AND I'VE SEEN YOUR KIND DO THIS TIME AND TIME AGAIN....I KNOW WHAT U DID AND U KNOW WHAT U DID...THE CAUGHT YOU YOU RACIST PIG, HAVE FUN IN THE PEN

        January 29, 2012 at 12:43 am |
    • Orlando

      Wow, I did not know that. My God.

      January 28, 2012 at 10:23 pm |
  51. Michelle

    Campbell's death was tragic, but he brought it upon himself. A baseball bat can be a lethal weapon, and Campbell was using it as a device to beat up a person. Most people in Campbell's parking situation would have gotten into their cars and driven off of the parking lot. Most people would not hit someone with a baseball bat because the other person asked them to move their car off of their property. Even if racial epithets had been used (denied by DiGuglielmo family), that does not justify punching or hitting with a bat. Even if Campbell had been closer to his car trunk than to his driver side of his car (I'm not saying that he was), why didn't he keep walking into the driver's side after he had gotten the bat? Campbell was an aggressor. Young DiGuglielmo was justified in feeling scared for his father.

    January 23, 2012 at 10:01 am |
    • James San Diego, CA

      Michelle,

      I felt the exact same way and I don't understand why this wasn't addressed more (or at least in the story it wasn't addressed). Mr. Campbell had THREE chances to leave. He could have left when asked by the store owner; he could have left when he returned because of the note placed on his car; after the other men let him get up when he said it was enough, he returned to his car... but instead of leaving, he got a bat which is, as you point out, a lethal weapon. Nobody was pursuing him. He could have gotten in his car and driven away. Three chances to avoid this situation but he kept escalating it. Agreed, his death is tragic, but Mr. Campbell could have defused it. The DA does not make any case for racism.

      January 23, 2012 at 3:49 pm |
    • Rey

      Very true, I agree.

      January 23, 2012 at 5:25 pm |
      • Judgenot

        wow so many people know so m uch about this incident by beleiving an eye witness who they are not even sure was telling the truth. CNN only showed one witness and i know there were others. There was a fight and Campbell probly tricked them by calling a truce so they would stop hitting him then he went for his bat and the cop went for his gun. I think The three could still disarm And subdue Campbell because it is obvious he was not hitting anyone to kill. If I am swinging a metal bat to kill an olde guy he would have head injuries before anyone could run for a gun. It shows Campbell was a bluff and should be flogged but not shot 3 times by a cop ,maybe a by an angry civilian but a cop should have some control.

        January 29, 2012 at 1:13 am |
  52. Some Guy Named Bob

    Anywhere else in the country, during the past 15 years this prosecutor would have been pursued by this case until he had to leave his profession. This was a malicious prosecution and nothing less. What the prosecution and the courts did here is an embarrassment to New York, especially if they continue in this vein. Most places in our great land this would have gone to a Grand Jury and been dismissed. There was/is no racial component.

    January 23, 2012 at 4:23 am |
  53. George Zettles

    I cannot believe the justice system. The prosecutors are supposed to work for the people on both sides of an issue. If witnesses state the man was defending his father, then it was a case of self defense. The jury has a right to hear the whole story before making a decesion. Even if the court dosen't think the outcome would change

    January 23, 2012 at 4:22 am |
    • James San Diego, CA

      Agreed; Why are they not allowing the one witness to even testify? The one who did testify but changed his story... why don't they just look at the TV interview where he gave an account of what happened just minutes/hours after it had taken place. He gave a very clear, detailed account of what happened. Why did the police keep harrassing him? Complete injustice and Mr. DiGuglielmo does not deserve to be in prison.

      January 23, 2012 at 3:52 pm |
    • Rey

      The local officials are cowards and they fix it so to a peace the controversy in the eyes of those who would go on a witch hunt. Shame on out court system.

      January 23, 2012 at 5:23 pm |
    • MARVIN

      NOT ONLY WAS THE TRIAL TAINTED, BUT WHAT ABOUT THE GRAND JURY THEY INDICTED BASED ON LIES!

      January 27, 2012 at 8:35 pm |
  54. Kris

    Couple of things...3 on 1, yes I'd grab a bat or whatever is available for defense. With 3 on 1, I really don't think a muscular cop would need to shoot a man dead, so this reeks of racism or simply a jerk cop thinking he is justified to do whatever he wants. Third, We don't know who started it since the guy died.

    January 23, 2012 at 4:16 am |
    • Carl J. Hewitt

      But the guy with the bat was a trained boxer. A trained boxer's hands are considered lethal weapons because they can do enough damage with them to incapacitate someone. With boxing ability, why was a bat needed, even 3-on-1, which I doubt took place. More than likely, it was the dude and the father, with the son coming to jump in.

      I don't really know what happened exactly, but if someone's coming at my father with a baseball bat and he has a bad heart to begin with, I'm blowing the dude away and answering questions later.

      January 26, 2012 at 2:51 pm |
    • Willie

      really ......few things if you saw the news piece on CNN the cop as u say was back inside while the gentleman swinging the bat at his dad was going to town.....well any further hesitation would have cost his dad his life! Anymore it is always abkut racisjm....if it would have been a black cop saving his dad it would not even be under discussion right now! Anymore it is always a racist issue.....

      January 26, 2012 at 3:15 pm |
    • MARVIN

      a witness for the people (pizza delivery person) testified Campbell through the first punches.

      What about a fair trial not a fixed one.
      Think about Jeffery Deskovick who spent 16 yrs. in prision because of repeated police interviews that made him give a false confession. The same thing in the Marty Tankleff case. when you know they jury was decieved, and truthful testimony withheld, at the very least it should be a do over.

      January 28, 2012 at 11:28 am |
  55. Zoe Bokello

    Let's call a spade a spade; this cop’s miss used his rights of being a cop. The Father made a comment that there would have been no gun if there was no bat?? How about there would have been no bat if was not three against one.?? We all get into this mind frame that a cops rights or life differs or is better that one that is not a cop, but the reality is that he thought he would be justified since he had a badge. Besides look at all three of them, they all looked in shape and would do damage... even the Father that was just out of the hospital as they said. The moral of the story is, think before you act!! We are no longer in the wild wild west and you being a trained person could have at least shot NOT to kill. It’s for his actions he's paying for and nothing else, he did not use the right judgment or common sense. And for the reporter to ask him if he thinks if the guy had swung the bat again it would have killed his Father?? PLEASE!! let's be clear, since it did not happen, no one... even he would never know if the guy was going to swing, nor would we ever find out if he would have hit the father, not would ever find out if the father would have died. So his defense is that's why he had to shoot right, then get ready for the out come....

    January 23, 2012 at 3:25 am |
    • Myra

      I absolutely agree with Zoe. There were witnesses that proved that DiGuglielmo was at fault. He shot him as he was retreating. An appeals court sent DiGuglielmo back to prison after he was released. This time it had nothing to do with DA Pirro, but with the facts. It was 3 against one, and the one died. End of story. DiGuglielmo will rot in jail and it will not be enough justice for his family.

      January 28, 2012 at 8:53 pm |
  56. Veronica Hosely

    A man lose his LIFE over a parking space. Ex-cop Digugliemo took an oath, to protect and serve all citzens not just his family. He knew 3 again 1 are uneven odds. He did not shoot to wound, he shot to KILL over a d*m parking space. This was a case of Murder.

    January 23, 2012 at 3:22 am |
  57. Mike

    You never mension state law regarding like force. I understand the man getting a bat when he is being assaulted by three men to make things even. However I dont understand using a gun to combat a men with that same bat.

    January 23, 2012 at 3:20 am |
    • Myra

      Independent witnesses claimed that Campbell was beaten, and that at the moment of being shot he had been backing away.
      CNN does not mention anything at all in favor of Mr. Campbell. This is not unbiased reporting. If they are suggesting that the trial was skewed against him, they least they can do is try to be completely fair to both sides, otherwise they are guilty of the same unfairness.

      January 28, 2012 at 9:10 pm |
  58. Andrew Morris

    That Ex-cop now murderer/convict says he has remorse for the life he took. I say he is lying because he all ready knows and been train that you match deadly force with deadly force. Lets weight it. A baseball bat vs 3 gun shots center mass by a treaned police officer. One bullet was enough to put that man down. Three was just to make sure he was dead. This convict cared nothing for that mans life. Richard Diguglielmo Jr should rot in Jail.

    January 23, 2012 at 3:16 am |
  59. Sophia

    The murderer got what he deserved. I didn't even have to see the whole story to know that this was racially motivated. It's the same old story with police, on or off duty. Their behavior is disgusting and this falls right in line with their usual MO. I was screaming, "THANK YOU JESUS!!!" when he was sent back to prison where he belongs.

    January 23, 2012 at 3:06 am |
  60. Ray

    Sounds like a railroad job to me, It seems you are not able to protect yourself in New York. Most of the comments from these people have never been in a violent conflict with someone. Put yourself in his shoes, if this guy was beating one of your family members with a bat , wouldn't you try to protect them. I would have shot him too.

    January 23, 2012 at 1:29 am |
  61. Rob

    The Injustice would have been if they let the shooter were to remain free while killing another human being with a gun. He's a cop, he just had to fire 1 warning shot and the man would have dropped the bat, if in fact this did take place the way the shooter said it did. If I were caught up in such a dilemma and I were an off duty cop and it was my family member? I would have shot my duty gun in the air and yell out Police, drop the baseball bat. There must have been something overlooked in the case for another Justice Supreme Court Judge to recall the trial. I agree that this was pure and simple outright killing, and it was extremely pointless, so the ex-cop should stop his crying and just pay for his crime. Be a man and stop lying.

    January 23, 2012 at 12:41 am |
  62. .Jcdew

    This kind of thing has been happening for a long time,out Justice system is very flawed and biased.DA's lie and make up evidence just to keep thier conviction rate up. Most people don't have unlimited money like the Courts and end up getting a Public Defender who wins whether you lose or not,usually they aren't very good either.Saddest thing is noone ever does anything about it and Judges and DA's just keep doing it.

    January 23, 2012 at 12:33 am |
    • Nick

      What seems to over looked is the simple fact that there were three men fighting just one man, and then one ot them shot him three times. No one is saying that it was not right for the three of them to beat this man because he parked his car in a space! come on you have got to be kidding me right, these people took matters in their own hands so why not have a tow truck in the lot and when they park just do what you have to do, but do you really have to go outside and confront all that park there. You have 600 hundred people a day and you are outside telling people to move your car Really. A man lost his life and all that he will evry have that's it and now another is in jial so who won? So people say he was defending his family, if his family was inside cooking and doing what they ware suppose to be doing and just call a tow truck two families would be okay.

      February 8, 2012 at 1:19 pm |
  63. Corrupt DA

    This was obviously a political arrest to garner support from the black community

    January 23, 2012 at 12:27 am |
  64. william

    you people r sick to even suggest someone should die over a parking space your sick

    January 23, 2012 at 12:25 am |
  65. brooklynguy1

    you did no wrong in my eyes and my family eyes you had to protect your loves ones god helps the strong ones keep your head up jr

    January 23, 2012 at 12:23 am |
  66. jerry Thomas

    The prosecuting DA should be disbarred and thrown out of office. The only racism I see here is from a black DA intent on prosecuting a white guy who was clearly acting in self defense. II pray that justice will prevail and Mr. DiGuglielmo released from prison. What a blatant travesty of justice.

    January 23, 2012 at 12:22 am |
  67. Dreamer

    This case is a complete recipe for tragedy and I agree that this a miscarriage of justice. While I do agree with the DA and the judges who lawfully sent DiGuglielmo Jr. to prison, I feel he is imprisoned on the wrong charge. DiGuglielmo Jr.'s life was never threatened therefore his shooting the victim is undeniably a crime but more so a crime of primal necessity rather than murder thus he should have been charged for a lesser crime. I also believe that as a police officer, he very well could have used less than lethal force with the firearm to subdue Campbell. I doubt I would have acted differently in the same situation. I admire him for his integrity, something not as prevalent in society as should be.

    January 23, 2012 at 12:21 am |
  68. groupthink

    To say that this was a tragedy that shouldn't have happened is an understatement. However, America's history in accurately depicting what transpired when it comes to what happened during a crime that involves African Americans, leaves a lot to be desired. It would not be beyond any stretch of the imagination for the witnesses to harbor prejudices that led to an inaccurate accounting of the events that transpired. Don't y'all stick your heads in the sand and think that it is impossible that the witnesses lied. There have been countless incidents in American history where whites have banded together to falsely accuse blacks even to the point of murdering them., and please don't tell me that we live in a post racial color blind society. BTW I still remember seeing the Rodney King beating and can still hear the verdict from the good folks in Simi Valley.

    January 23, 2012 at 12:15 am |
  69. the facts

    This is a simple case of self defense...You have two witnesses who contradicted the state's version of events. The "Victim" was armed with a baseball bat, and he already had committed an assault.

    The problem is that Rodney King and other high profile assaults had been committed on the black community and there was a sense of seeking retribution for any crime committed by law enforcement during 90's in New York and Los Angeles.

    There was no justice in this case at all. Because an appellate court reviewed the case means a law clerk reviewed it....

    January 23, 2012 at 12:14 am |
  70. Wilson Valentin

    After viewing the program and reading the online infor ation it is very obvious that this was an assistant prosecutor banking on racial divide to railroad a man defending his elderly father......it was and is sad that the prosecutor's office withheld crucial information that would have affected the outcome of the trial.

    January 23, 2012 at 12:08 am |
  71. Jason Seeley

    I feel That the gentleman Got SCREWED everybody has been using that race card for years i would have done the same thing to save someone when a weapon is brought to a fight and you are beating on an old man with it you should do what you have to do so no one else gets hurt and if it is a differnt race that gets hurt by another the others just want to be heard and for the police horrassing the witnesses they should be arrested for messing with an investagation Let God be with you sir people will get what they get when carma gets them

    January 23, 2012 at 12:08 am |
  72. Nan Woodward

    I'm not one who normally will side with the police but this time I do. If his father was struck by Campbell, as seems to have been the case, what would Campbell have done to him if Richard G. Jr. hadn't taken action?

    January 23, 2012 at 12:07 am |
  73. wrx7182

    How can they justify putting this cop in jail for doing what he was trained to do. Wheather he was on duty or not, he is still a police officer trained to "serve and protect". How can that police department throw one of their own under the bus. I hope the federal court comes to their sences and releases this man. And believe me, I don't like cops, but seing this guy so wrongly imprisoned is just inexcusable.

    January 23, 2012 at 12:06 am |
  74. Freddy

    The responsibility for constraint lied with the three men who allowed a physical altercation to ensue over a parking space. what are the chances that one man pursued a physical resolution with three men?...not likely. Its clear he got the bat because he felt threatened and felt the threat was significant. He needs to do every minute of his sentence...period!

    January 23, 2012 at 12:05 am |
  75. Paul

    Why did a trained former police officer need to shoot him 3 times in the chest? that's what makes him guilty. He saw a black man and acted with the prejudice that was inside him.

    January 23, 2012 at 12:04 am |
  76. Sebastian D

    I don't believe justice was served. I pray for Mr. DiGuglielmo and his family.

    January 23, 2012 at 12:04 am |
  77. Jose V

    If the races were reversed we wouldnt be having this conversation the black guy would be rotting in jail.

    January 23, 2012 at 12:04 am |
  78. LibsHateJusticeNmakeUpMostOfOurCriminals

    Judge most likely a Liberal Democrat........typical. Defend your life you are a criminal. This is what liberals do, crime like the man wielding the baseball bat. Then they get other liberals like the crimal judges to justify it........you can see it every day in liberal/Obama appointees...

    January 23, 2012 at 12:03 am |
  79. jim lawson

    the story of the three men attacking one is the biggest pile of baloney ive ever heard. these people arent nice kind people that they potray themselves as. they lie. if they said they used racial slurs, maybe they would be believed. the son needs to be in prison.

    January 22, 2012 at 11:40 pm |
  80. Me

    First of all how could gang of three persons shoot an unarmed person? Being a law enforcement office doesn’t mean he has super power and authority kill an unarmed person. Is not true law informant office always need an excuse to kill an innocent person? How could three persons gangue against a single guys and then shoot him? This is just an outrageous and off course justice has been served. May be race was a motivation in his killing??

    January 22, 2012 at 11:18 pm |
  81. E. Frances

    There was no justice served here! A young man defended his father. Campbell could have gotten into his car and drove away, instead he elected to go to his trunk and take out a bat. So who was the aggessor? Twisted justice is right! The police office responded as he was trained to do. In all his years on the force he never killed a man – this was not a gun happy cop. Piero was following her own agenda and used this man to further her own career. I pray he gets justice from a federal court because he certainly doesn't deserve the situation he is in now.

    January 22, 2012 at 10:28 pm |
  82. G.H. Monroe

    I noticed that one or both of the witnesses called the Defendent "Richie" ... this is a farmiliar term which leads me to believe that they are friends. I would consider his testimony with that in mind.

    January 22, 2012 at 9:30 pm |
  83. baseman

    It's sad to see two families destroyed. As a police officer, I question why shoot to kill. The young man did not possess a gun but a baseball bat. Clearly the man was outnumbered and posed a limited threat. Three shots to the chest seems like grave indifference. His comment tonight that he "thinks not one day" of his action reiterated his grave indifference for taking a life. Are these the people trained to serve and protect? The original verdict seems correct.

    January 22, 2012 at 9:16 pm |
    • EX NYPD COP DIGUGLIELMO

      campbell initiated the first blows and when it was over and everyone walked away from him he went to his trunk and pulled out the bat and started to beat a 54 year old man. The witness on the video almost the head and the shots were fired. You can go back and forth with what should or should not have happened, I said it before the man did not have a fair trial. If it was you would you want the authorieties pressuring witnesses to change their perseption to support their theory of the case. That is why the prisons are so full of men that probably couldn't fight at all and plead guilty to lesser charges because they realized iIt is GUILTY UNTIL YOU CAN PROVE YOURSELF INNOCENT and guess who holds all the cards. In another high profiel case Pirro withheld 52 boxes of evidence that indicated someone else did the crime. His conviction was overturned at the federal level, sent back for a new trial and plead out to a lesser charge because he didn't have the money to hire a discent attorney, but most of all just to end the nightmare. Our justice system is in sad shape for anyone who gets accused of a crime, prime example Jeffery Descovic, check out his wrongful conviction at the age of 16.

      January 29, 2012 at 11:47 am |
  84. Jerusalem

    Justice was definitely not served. This case shows how there is no congruency in our justice system. How can you free a man and then send him back to prison again. These two families are victims of the most unjust practice our system. Let Richard DiGuglielmo Jr. free.

    January 22, 2012 at 9:10 pm |
  85. Bobby Deb

    Police officer Richard DiGuglielmo Jr is guilty of killing. As simple as that. People should know that a police officer is trained to react appropriately and calmly regardless of how violent the situation is. He could have shot champbell on the leg or other part of the bodys. Why does he didn't? We all know his emotion kicked in and he intended to kill and that's what he did.

    January 22, 2012 at 9:10 pm |
  86. Kandou Erik

    I HATE hearing about cases like this. Where all the prevailing wisdom would tell you that there has been a miscarriage of justice, and no one in a position to do something about it works to change it. Those judges who sent that poor man back to prison should be ashamed of themselves! The appeals process specifically exists to correct grevious errors like this.

    I want to see the DA in that area push for that man's release. There's no way the jury would have reasonably been able to convict that man if they had known how tampered with the witnesses where.

    CNN - I want you to catch that horrible prosecutor woman on the street, shove a camera in her face and get some answers. In fact – I'd suggest to the family that they sue her; you cannot be a DA and get away with suppressing or changing witness testimonies. And the fact it appear she made a carrier off of that horrible case is even more troubling.

    We don't want DAs that do anything to win - we want DAs that actually fight for the truth; not for what's politically expedient.

    January 22, 2012 at 9:09 pm |
  87. Chip

    Currently In many states if you have a legitimate fear that your life or the life of a third party is in imminent peril, you have the right to self defense. Up to and including lethal force. If someone swung a bat at him or someone else while he was in uniform and he shot them. NY would have defended him till the end. The prosecutor was kissing up and showing off to climb the career ladder, using some of the most restrictive right robbing laws that NY has in place.

    January 22, 2012 at 9:07 pm |
  88. Bryan

    When Richard DiGuglielmo Jr. picked up that gun to shoot Charles Campbell to protect his father was he thinking as a son or a police officer? Because II've been of the force for 16 years and at shames me to know that a law enforcement oficer doesn't follow his training and that is to disarm and mame a suspect who is the agressor. A leg shot or arm shot would have been enough to bring the situation under control.

    January 22, 2012 at 9:07 pm |
  89. wes

    What gets me concerning this story is that whenever a white person ,harms a black person,it is deemed racially motivated but if a black person harms a white person,then it is not deemed racially motivated.The problem with this society is that blacks are given every right and then some but other ethnicities are losing thier rights.It's like if a white person trys to protect their property,family and budsiness against blacks,then if they have to use force,they end up losing everything because the NAACP,Al Sharpton and all want to get involved and to prove my point,,black on black on black crime totally outweighs all other crimes so in these cases i suppose blacks still care ablut blacks..wake up America

    January 22, 2012 at 9:07 pm |
  90. Andrew

    This is proof, that our system has many flaws. The fact that the state attorney believed that he was guilty before hearing all the facts is real injustice. Someday she may have a similar path...By then this man will have wasted his only life on our earth and a terrible lesson will be learned. -Andrew

    January 22, 2012 at 9:07 pm |
  91. Dale Harris

    A complete and utter miscarriag of justice – he should be released immediately! It's obvious to me that the prosecutor wanted to win at all cost – maybe she should be sent to prison to serve the remainder of his sentence.

    January 22, 2012 at 9:07 pm |
  92. ken

    The justice system has a lot of flaws. People sometimes use race as an excuse to commit crime. In a modern world, the uncivilized attitude still exist.

    January 22, 2012 at 9:06 pm |
  93. James Barron

    The statements by the two eyewitnesses which exonerated the defendant would definitely have had an impact on the jury--the DA should have been reprimanded and the verdict vacated and a new trial set if the State wanted to retry the case. Definitely a travesty of justice!

    January 22, 2012 at 9:05 pm |
  94. Brittany

    He should be a free man. This was the justice systems glitch. He has served his time.
    -Journalist, Teacher, Scholar.

    January 22, 2012 at 9:04 pm |
  95. Joe

    So this guy parks illegally, starts a fight with an old man, then comes back with a baseball bat the finish the old man off... And the cop who stops this crazed lunatic and saves the old man's life is in jail? Disgusting...

    January 22, 2012 at 8:25 pm |
  96. Sashas1971

    Something smells in the NY Supreme Court. I think the case should now be appealed to the Federal level.
    I gripes me to no end when I read comments included in a story like what Campbell's brother, William, said – "he knows his brother wouldn't have grabbed the bat unless he was provoked." Now, how in the world does he know that? William wasn't there – he didn't see what transpired. No one can say what someone else would do in that situation. And shame on Pirro for not disclosing the changed statements. Just watching her TV show, you can tell she has an overinflated feeling of self-worth.
    Stick in there, Richie. I'll be praying for you, Bro.

    January 22, 2012 at 6:56 pm |
  97. Dustin Shadbolt

    I believe that justice hasn't been done. He should be guilty without a doubt, but since there is doubt he shouldn't be made to pay the time. He deserves to be free. Or at least another trial.

    January 22, 2012 at 6:25 pm |
  98. Carrie L

    So what can we do about this injustice and all the injustice that continues to go on in America?

    January 22, 2012 at 5:40 pm |
  99. titi

    HE LIED

    January 22, 2012 at 5:28 pm |
  100. dollyllama

    I grew up in Dobbs Ferry, and have heard Rich was a bully by those who knew him. I wasn't there that day and don't really know Rich personally but maybe this is his karma.

    January 22, 2012 at 7:20 am |
  101. Kate

    This is a perfect example, along with stunningly irrational verdicts such as in the the OJ and Casey Anthony case, is why people have less and less respect for the courts. Why doesn't the governor or President step in with a pardon One is apparently called for here since the NY Supreme Court didn't want to confirm what we already know - a win at all costs mentality DOES exist in prosecutor's offices across this country. They cannot admit they were wrong after committing hours and resources to convicting someone. The courts here are helping the DA save face. They should be ashamed... I wonder why/how charges were ever brought in the first place when apparently Cambell struck first with deadly force???

    January 21, 2012 at 9:20 pm |
  102. George

    I live less than 2 miles from where this happened. Although I don't know anyone involved and never attended the trial I've read hundreds of articles, blogs etc about the arrest, trial and appeal. Every objective discussion I've read (e.g. not from the DiGuglielmo or Campbell families) makes me believe the jury made the right decision – DiGuglielmo is guilty of murder. Read the Appellate Court lengthy decision – the jury properly rejected the justification defense.
    I don't have an agenda, my brother is a cop and my father in law, now retired, owned an Italian-American deli, but CNN's story is biased and one-sided. Do your homework before you believe anything in this story.

    January 20, 2012 at 9:28 pm |
    • MARVIN

      PERHAPS YOU SHOULD READ THE DECISION BY JUDGE BELLANTONI IT IS 69 PAGES AND MORE TRUTHFUL THAN NEWS ARTICLES.

      January 27, 2012 at 9:46 pm |
  103. Andrea

    I'm not the type of person who is found often at a loss for words but this has struck me speechless. I have found myself struggling more times than not over our extremely flawed judicial system but what is happening here to this man is just down right criminal!! A man defends his father from being beat to death by a man weilding a baseball bat and gets sent to prison? It just seems crazy to me that this can happen, wait what am I talking about it happens all the time in our country! It also seems criminal to me to release someone from prison, tell them they are free, and then come back around and through them back in for the same crime!!!! It just makes me sick!! I will pray that justice is reached for Richie and he is released very, very soon as it is my opinion that he should have never been incarcerated in the first place!

    January 20, 2012 at 3:58 pm |
  104. Tracy A

    We are a Dobbs family and this entire case has been a travesty of justice for the DiGuglielmo family and the town of Dobbs Ferry. We stand behind the DiGuglielmos and hope to see Richie home and free soon.

    January 20, 2012 at 11:06 am |
  105. PAT

    Clearly a shameful mark against the integrity of the Dobbs Ferry PD and the DA's office. Pirro was looking to make a name for herself at the expense of justice.

    January 20, 2012 at 9:29 am |
  106. IMMORTALDARKNESS

    And how about the pizza place owner, how did he feel about his customer getting shot over a parking spot? Would he now shoot the deli customers that parked in his spot? The brother inlaw, the father and the cop should be considered guilty. What if it was an elderly woman with a cain hitting the father would she be shot too.

    January 20, 2012 at 3:17 am |
  107. eddie

    Let richie go

    January 20, 2012 at 12:15 am |
  108. Robtlew

    It seems as though this case would make a good argument for gun control. Three men jumped one man over a parking space. The beaten man retreated to his car and got a baseball bat to ward off the attackers. The defendant in this case was not justified in leaving the fight to go get a gun and return to shoot the retreating victim. Keeping race out of the incident, the one-sided attack would call for a conviction of the defendant. I think the jury and the Supreme Court got it right.

    January 19, 2012 at 10:17 pm |
    • Bob Boland

      When the victim went to the car he was not being followed at that point. The confrontation was over. Why didn't he just get in the car at that point and leave? Did he really think getting a bat would diffuse the situation? Here's another thing I notice a lot – if three blacks attack a white, it's just "a fight". If three white do it, it's a"vicious, racist assault." Whatever, I know the justice deck is stacked against whites, that's why I don't say "boo" to blacks, because I'm the bad guy no matter what. Now, let's assume that the victim was never shot, and allowed to continue his bat attack, and he killed the owner. If he served more than one day in jail the black community would be outraged. This WHOLE THING could have been avoided by MOVING HIS CAR. If he was white he would be expected to – but if he's black he falls under the "you know how they are" rule. This rule means you have to cut blacks slack and walk on eggshells around them or be thought of as racist, whether race is a factor or not.

      January 29, 2012 at 9:47 am |
  109. Alejandro De Frutos

    This whole story is pure insanity , anyone with a higher IQ than a monkey , will have done the same thing , some one is assaulting your father with a baseball bat , and hit him 2 times wrist and knee (after he has a heart health problem) and if you have a gun you will shoot two or maybe 4 times , so no one can say anything an if your are the type of people that will do nothing then you are an absolute imbecile , so as a conclusion sorry for this guy that have been in jai for so long , however is also a shame , in this country prosecutors no longer try to look for the guilty or the innocent, they just try to get a conviction regardless anything , it doesn't matter if the person on triall is guilty or not no one care no more and that is not what justice is about we have just become a society of 1st page of news paper if is news got to be guilty no one cares , so guess what there is some innocent man in jail and someone must do something about it DA'S no longer do what they were hire to do .

    January 19, 2012 at 8:16 pm |
  110. genebrady

    After three men beat this man, then shot him 3 times, point blank in the chest, I can ONLY see that as Murder. I don't get what the judge was thinking when he freed him. He could have shot him in the leg... he could have shot him once... he could have fired in the air.... he could have called the police in the beginning. He shot that man 3 times in the chest because he wanted to kill him, because he hated him.

    January 19, 2012 at 6:13 pm |
    • Bob Boland

      The man with the bat didn't stop at one swing, did he? My point is this: if things have gotten to the point where you need to use a gun to defend human life, would you shoot them just once in the leg just to see how it plays out? No, you shoot to stop the threat, and if you're trained with this mindset (military, police, etc) you will react in this mindset.

      January 29, 2012 at 9:57 am |
  111. Ryan

    jeanine pirro is corrupt just like today's politicians.

    January 19, 2012 at 5:40 pm |
  112. Ryan

    This is a total miscarriage of justice. The only reason Pirro went ahead and prosecuted the case was for two specific reasons. The first was she knew if would further her career if she got a conviction anyway she could. The second was because she knew she could turn it into a lucrative television career. Jeannette Pirro is worse than a pedophile for abusing her position as a prosecutor.

    January 19, 2012 at 5:37 pm |
  113. OpinionPoll

    As an criminal law attorney who has practiced in New York and outside the state, this story sounds all too familiar.

    This particular story does not adequately explain what all the witnesses said at trial. How many eye-witnesses were there? How many, if any, contradicted the two eye-witnesses who changed their testimony? Are the two eye-witnesses who changed their testimony 'officially' changing their testimony NOW, i.e., are they NOW emphatically claiming that the victim with the bat was NOT backing away? This story leaves too much pivotal info out.

    But the fact that two courts completely differ as to the speculative nature of an assessment whether a jury could have reached a different conclusion stands as clear evidence that reasonable minds could disagree. The court should err on the side of caution for that defendant. This is especially true where, as here, the D.A. "withheld" that evidence unlawfully – thus putting the case in a situation where an apppellate court had to speculate whether the outcome might have been different. Given the fact that the D.A. misconduct 'caused' this dilemma, it is the defendant who should have been entitled to the benefit of the doubt. Otherwise, the D.A. will always break the law and cheat the system because there are no dire consequences. That's exactly why DA's so often unlawfully withhold evidence from defense counsel. There are no deterrents to stop it and the DA was allowed to benefit from his illegal conduct.

    January 19, 2012 at 5:29 pm |
  114. D from Illinois

    Question is poorly phrased. All those who answered YES probably meant to answer NO.

    January 19, 2012 at 4:58 pm |
  115. Sean

    The question to the survey is confusing... justice served or not..could be read both ways... Should mainly ask if the courts erred in their findings, and/ or should he go free.

    January 19, 2012 at 4:35 pm |
  116. Matt

    Another instance of US citizens not being granted the right to defend themselves and their loved ones anymore. The shattered knee should be enough evidence this was self-defense.

    January 19, 2012 at 4:18 pm |
  117. Kim Gamero

    A baseball bat is a deadly weapon. Whether he was backing away (I doubt it – why would he get it out in the first place, if not to use as a weapon?) or not, his stance was one of attack, and this was clearly self-defense. I think this is gun-control at its worst.

    January 19, 2012 at 3:58 pm |
    • Bob Boland

      No, a baseball bat is "sporting equipment" depending on what lawyer you talk to. Just like when Reginald Denny (Los Angeles Riot) was beaten with bricks. Those were just "building materials" not weapons.

      January 29, 2012 at 10:01 am |
  118. Peter C

    You need to read the court's opinion that is linked to in the story. It focuses a great deal on the requirement of the law that the use of deadly force in self defense (or defense of another) must be both subjectively reasonable to the person using deadly force and objectively reasonable under the circumstances. The overall evidence is that the family members could have backed away after the Dad was hit on the leg but instead were continuing the confrontation at a distance out of immediate reach of the bat (5 and 1/2 feet away by all accounts even at the end and before that up to 40 or 50 feet apart). And there was no evidence from anyone that the shooter showed the gun and gave the man with the bat a chance to back down in light of the threat of deadly force. The son just opened fire immediately and fired off three shots in quick succession.

    It was an ugly situation, but everyone has a duty to back off when things are getting out of control and they have the opportunity to do so. The guy with the bat may have been guilty of assault but the point of the law is to make people responsible for stopping short of use of deadly force unless it really is unavoidable. They should have gone back into the store and called the police. They should not have continued the altercation and then used a gun without first showing it in warning at telling the guy with the bat to back off and drop the bat.

    The news article tells a chilling tale. But it is one that does fairly account for - much less repudiate - what the legal opinion actually says and what the stated basis of the opinion is.

    January 19, 2012 at 3:55 pm |
    • Peter C

      Should be the story "does NOT fairly account for – much less repudiate – what the legal opinion actually says . . . ."

      January 19, 2012 at 3:59 pm |
    • MARVIN

      PETER READ BELLANTONI'S DECISION THAT CAME AS A RESULT OF AN 8 DAY HEARING. THE PEOPLE PRESENTED THEIR CASE AND THE DEFENSE PRESENTED THEIR CASE IN SUPPORT OF THE440 10 MOTION. AS A RESULT OF THAT HEARING HE WROTE A 69 PAGE DECISION REVERSING THE CONVICTION. THE APPEALS COURT IGNORED THE CREDIBILITY DETERMINATIONS AND SAID EVEN IF THE JURY HEARD THE WITNESSES WERE PRESSURED TO CHANGE THIER STATEMENTS TO SUPPORT THE PEOPLES THEORY AND EVEN IF THE JURY KNEW THE WITNESSES LIED IT WOULD NOT HAVE MADE A DIFFERENCE!
      NO MATTER WHAT SIDE OF THIS TRAGEDY YOU FIND YOURSELF ON I THINK WE ALL CAN AGREE THAT THIS WAS ANYTHING BUT A FAIR TRIAL.

      THINK ABOUT IT: WHY WOULD THE AUTHORITIES WANT THE WITNESSES THAT SUPPORTED THE JUSTIFICATION DEFENSE TO CHANGE THEIR STORIES ? IN FACT ISN'T THAT WITNESS TAMPERING?

      January 27, 2012 at 10:06 pm |
    • James San Diego, CA

      Peter:

      I completely agree with your arugment but why don't you apply this to Mr. Campbell? He has THREE opportunities to "walk away" and yet he kept coming back and each time, escalating events. The fact that he kept coming back and escalated things made him more of a threat. It's very easy for you to say the man with the gun never showed it to Mr. Campbell demonstrating he might use lethal force. You weren't there and have no idea how much time had passed. Maybe there was no time. And don't forget, in the way Mr. Cambell was using the bat, that too was a lethal weapon. Mr. Campbell didn't show anyone that he might use the bat in a lethal manner, he just started doing it.

      January 28, 2012 at 4:57 pm |
  119. Fnordz

    "But instead of getting in the Corvette and driving away, Campbell went to the trunk and pulled out a metal baseball bat." Doesn't this show that the others weren't charging at all? Campbell had time to retrieve the bat from the trunk. You can't do that if you're simultaneously fighting 3 men.

    January 19, 2012 at 2:38 pm |
  120. DWoods

    If the witnesses who recanted their original story and was pressured into lying, I think the defendant should have another trial. Why weren't these witnesses called by the defendant's attorneys. I am African-American, but I believe in justice and the right to defend yourself. I think the attorneys made a huge blunder.

    January 19, 2012 at 2:31 pm |
  121. Sharon

    Justice served? – Absolutely Not. Who, in their "right mind" would not defend a family member from something like that? Once again, our justice system is waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay off base, and this is disgusting. Poor guy serving the time should be home with his family.

    January 19, 2012 at 1:54 pm |