Arson Case: A Crime That Never Was
Kenny Richey in the case faces death row for a crime he did not commit and which, as a matter of fact is not viewed as a crime at all. After living for five years in the states, Kenny made a decision to return to his native Scotland. However, one week before departure, a fire broke out in the apartment they were living with his father, from the upper floors. The flames had spread fast engulfing the living room and the hallway before the arrival of the firemen to extinguish the blaze. Minutes later, a body of a child was carried out of the building where the she was trapped in her room and died inhaling smoke. A witness acknowledged that as the firefighters approached, Kenny was heard shouting there was a baby in the room. The firefighter had also prevented Richey from entering the blazing structure.
It fell on the Kenny Richey because the mother of Cynthia, the child argued that she had left the her in the care of Kenny Richey. When Hope, Cynthia’s mother left, she claimed to have asked Kenny to watch over her. Kenny maintained that he never gave consent to that as he was too drunk that night. Two witnesses confirmed that Hope did not ask Kenny to watch over the child. After the fire and she got the news of her daughter’s death, she did not mention about any babysitter that she had left the child with. Kenny Richey became the prime suspect due to the claims of Hope that she had left her daughter in his care despite the factual evidence presented that he had tried to unsuccessfully rescue Cynthia from the burning apartment.
It all turned upside down, when days later, Kenny Richey was arrested with the charges of arson, aggravated murder and child endangerment. While Kenny insisted, he was innocent, the circumstance become worse as it was an election year and Prosecutor Randall was vying for county judge position. Seeking positive and popular image among the voters, he illustrated he was tough on crime by applying the principle that a child is dead and the ultimate punishment should be served to the suspect. The Prosecutor had an election to win and only needed to convict a killer which he made it out of Kenny Richey.
The prosecution presented the case to portray Kenny as a calculating killer. They fabricated the story that Kenny stole cans of petrol and climbed on the shed to gain access to Hope and into the living room where he splashed petrol and set the fire. The fabricated reasoning was that Kenny did that due to the proximity of his former girlfriend who was just below the Hope’s apartment which was on the theory of transferred intent. The reasons why death penalty was in trouble include, prosecutorial misconduct, inadequate defense, tampered defense, unreliable witnesses and tampered evidence which brought Kenny Richey to death row despite his innocence.
From a scientific view, it is true to consider the fire was set with an accelerant due to the fact that the apartment was engulfed quickly.
Based on the three requirements of fire, the deck boards charred between the boards due to the lack of oxygen to continue burning in between the boards.
The problem on the reliability on information about the analysis of carpet involves the consideration why the traces of petrol found did not burn when they were set on fire.
I think he is not guilty, the evidence presented and the witnesses against him tell a fabricated story supported by the prosecutor seeking to get the county judge position at the expense of Kenny’s freedom.
Conviction overturned. (2005). The case of Kenneth Richey. J12.org. Retrieved from https://www.j12.org/ps/richey.htm
Glenn, S. A. (2017). Improvement and Development of Analytical Forensic Methods: Arson Investigation and Drug Detection in Fingerprints and Hair.
Kenny Richey. (2000). Justice Denied – The Magazine For The Wrongly Convicted. Retrieved from https://justicedenied.org/kenny.htm