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Carrie Brown/Ameer Ben Ali Discussion Thread Including The Trial & Aftermath

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  • Originally posted by Howard Brown View Post
    The final argument by the State delivered by D.A. De Lancey Nicoll, is notable to those who have read it for its inflammatory statements ( by 2022 standards ) regarding
    Ali's homeland, his ethnic group, and the interracial relationships between Ali and the local whores. ( It appears all of those women who had had intercourse with Ali
    and are listed in the papers were Irish-American women as was, most likely, Carrie Brown). I think Ali would have bumped uglies with anyone with a heartbeat.
    Nicoll is featured in East River Echo Number 91. I've added that PDF..


    In this presentation on July 3, 1891, Nicoll mentions Ali stealing from his friend Jen Ali in Brooklyn. This was incorrect.

    Ali was alleged or actually did pilfer from George Frank. Jen Ali, known by his Anglicized name, John Allen, provided positive remarks concerning Ali as did his wife in a few newspapers
    in New York during May of 1891. In fact, Jen Ali offered to go see Ali in The Tombs in early May, but the reporter balked. Eventually, Emmanuel Friend took Jen Ali
    and Sheikh Bozieb, his other buddy, to see him. Ali had called for them in order to see friendly faces.


    It may just be me....but since Ali had no one to speak on his behalf as to his character at the trial, I think I would have brought Jen Ali and his wife to Manhattan to fill that need.

    Ali's problem, even with praise from the Allens, would be his track record on the east side of the Brooklyn Bridge.
    That’s a good point How. Another omission by the Defence to add to their decision not to call Kelly with his description of a bloodied and strangely behaving Glenmore Man to be paired up with Miniter’s description of Brown’s roommate.

    Ali was never going to pass for a saint but having a voice or two in his favour could at least have shown that there was a half decent side to him. The jury might then have stopped to think that any ‘incidents’ that he might have been involved in might not have been all his fault. They could have gone for the ‘Ali is a decent guy who just mixes with the wrong crowd after a few beers’ angle.

    I wonder if there are any more examples of possible tactical errors by the Defence?
    Regards

    Michael🔎


    " When you eliminate the impossible whatever remains no matter how improbable......is probably a little bit boring "

    Comment


    • Mike:

      Prof. Bob has stated that Ali had the right to appear on the stand regardless of what anyone believes or wanted. That's true.
      I, however, would have tried my best to prevent that considering the three defense attorneys had to know what sort of person he was and might come off as on the stand.
      As we know it was a disaster.
      Add the decision to not call Charles Jansen as a possible oversight...as well as not calling Kelly, the latter the three might not known about although I think they did.

      This man claimed he approached the defense after the conviction but the defense was not going to appeal the case.
      My guess is that he may have been turned away because he would ( naturally ) ask to be paid for his services.
      None of the three defense attorneys were paid...so why should he eh ?

      I've attached a pdf of an 1894 article and a pdf containing information about that man, Marshall D. Ewell

      By the way, where were the 5 reporters just before, during and shortly after the trial....the 5 who signed affidavits ten years later ?
      House claimed they ( Levy, Friend, and House) planned on appealing the verdict in July 1891. For whatever reason, they didn't.
      Attached Files
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      • Originally posted by Howard Brown View Post
        Mike:

        By the way, where were the 5 reporters just before, during and shortly after the trial....the 5 who signed affidavits ten years later ?
        House claimed they ( Levy, Friend, and House) planned on appealing the verdict in July 1891. For whatever reason, they didn't
        .
        A question that certainly has to be asked How.

        What could possibly have dissuaded them from coming forward at the time? I can’t help wondering about their honesty. It wouldn’t surprise me if, around the time of the appeal, one of the reporters just happened to mention that he never actually noticed any blood and someone had a lightbulb moment and they suddenly had an opportunity to strengthen Ali’s appeal whilst discrediting the Police at the same time. A few reporters mightn’t have been able to turn down an opportunity of putting the boot in and bringing the great Byrnes down a peg or three?

        Personally, I have trouble trusting those reporters.
        Regards

        Michael🔎


        " When you eliminate the impossible whatever remains no matter how improbable......is probably a little bit boring "

        Comment


        • I'm with you, Mike....
          The press in 1901-1902 was little better.....the mantra of Frenchy being pardoned is an example. I believe I have over100 papers in my newspaper repository which make this erroneous claim.

          Most people who have a casual interest in the case believe that Gov. Odell's decision to release Ali somehow meant that the key proved Ali's innocence. That's not true, since Ali's sentence was simply commutated.
          .
          Let's look at it from the legal perspective : These are the 4 types of pardons
          • Full. Unconditionally absolves the person of the conviction and all of the crime's consequences.
          • Partial. Only relieves the person from some of the crime's punishment or consequences.
          • Absolute. Granted without any conditions.
          • Conditional.

          A pardon is forgiveness by the Governor for a crime committed. A person who is pardoned cannot be further punished for the forgiven offense and should not be penalized for having a record of the offense

          Commutation:

          After a person has served part of his sentence, the remainder is commuted owing to specific circumstances. Commutation of sentence differs from pardon, which, if unconditional, removes the stigma both of the court decision and of the punishment and restores the person's civil rights; commutation does neither.

          In short, the Governor believed there was reasonable doubt as to Ali's role in the murder and freed him on that basis....the key being instrumental and the involvement of attorney Ovide Robillard as well as the French Consulate playing a big part.


          On another note:

          I'm the first one to admit I made an unwise decision to flat out discount the possibility of Ali being Brown's murderer : that the police 'settled' for Ali: and that there was no way C.Kniclo wasn't her killer.

          However, one would have to go a long way to top the list of gaffes in just three minutes made by ex-NYPD detective Ike Ilkiw ( who also appeared in the ridiculous series, American Ripper, where he discussed Carrie Brown with the female co-host....its on the Carrie Brown You Tube Channel)

          This is Ike, who ran a NYC Tour, in the Carrie Brown video which lasts 3 minutes and 30 seconds.

          https://vimeo.com/92337615

          This is the list of his goofs....not to bust his balls.....but goddamit, he gets paid for conducting these tours !!!!

          1. That Carrie Brown was murdered on the second floor of the ERH - Brown was murdered on the 5th Floor
          2. That Carrie Brown was a 'young lady'......Age is but a number .....but Carrie Brown was pushing 60.
          3. That the police on Mulberry Street was contacted first after the corpse was discovered. : It was the Oak Street station approx. 10:00 AM-10:15 AM April 24th
          4. That Inspector Byrnes claimed he'd have solved any Ripper like murders within 2 days. What he said was that he did not think a Ripper-like murder would go unsolved in NYC.
          5. That Jacob Riis ( a no-show for the defense in 1891 but a player in 1901's pardon attempt) publicly challenged Byrnes to go and solve the case. No evidence of this exists
          6. That the origin of the phrase ' the third degree' came about as being a play on Byrnes' name. It came about because there were three steps of increasing intensity employing
          violence as a necessary adjunct in acquiring the truth or what the police wanted to hear.

          7. That Ali originally told the arresting officer that he knew Brown. Needless to say, he didn't say any such thing. He denied knowing her for a period of time until admitting it.
          8. Byrnes had other officers plant blood on places the NYPD found blood. Impossible to prove one way or the other but nevertheless, no evidence of this exists.
          9. Byrnes was fired for his 'handling' of the Brown murder. Byrnes retired rather than face the Lexow Commission in 1896. His departure had nothing to do
          with the Brown murder, which was just one of the numerous cases he was involved in during 1891.. The Lexow Commission was determined to weed out corruption in the NYPD. Rather than face the inquiry, Byrnes retired. He served the force for 33 years.



          Another ex-cop from NYC ( who spent time in prison for a multitude of charges in Maryland ) hosted a show a 12 years ago, "Jack The Ripper In America" focusing on the equally ridiculous theory that James Kelly ( who was neither Jack The Ripper or even in America in 1891) was Brown's killer. It's also on our Carrie Brown You Tube channel

          https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCpS...2e2wwGg/videos

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ed_Norris

          At least, these two cops didn't bring up vibrators in their presentations.
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          • Fair’s fair How. They got her name right.
            Regards

            Michael🔎


            " When you eliminate the impossible whatever remains no matter how improbable......is probably a little bit boring "

            Comment


            • I suppose we should be grateful for small favors, buddy.
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              • This comment comes from outer space.


                It's found in the 2013 book, Jack The Ripper A Terrible Legacy, from members of the Whitechapel Society. It was penned by 'Andrew' Beadle...actually former Chairman of the Society, Bill Beadle.



                Trying to determine which planet these alleged statements emanated from because they most certainly didn't appear in any newspapers here on Earth.
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                • The Secret


                  These two men probably didn't hang out in the same social circles....both highly respected in their respective fields.

                  This is Austin Flint, the medical expert at the Ali Trial ( for the prosecution )



                  This is William Thompson, one of America's leading thespians, considered America's best character actor at one time.



                  We wrote about Thompson in Ripperologist 167....his comments which were reported the Buffalo Courier ( 1902 ) in what seems to be the only paper in America to cover the article's contents.

                  This is the gist of what Thompson had to say following Ali's release from prison :



                  And this is what Dr. Flint had to say in 1903 :



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                  • It is said the the new evidence was the finding of what was assumed to be the key of Room 31 in the lodging room of an unknown sailor around the time of the murder."
                    I like it that Dr. Flint said "sailor" and not "immigrant" or "farmhand hired off the boat".

                    If he said this in 1903, I don't think he was swayed by Jansen's sailor story from 1891. It was all Damon.

                    Comment


                    • If he said this in 1903, I don't think he was swayed by Jansen's sailor story from 1891. It was all Damon.

                      Sounds good to me.,Damon said ' Frank 'was a seaman in his affidavit.


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                      • I think it is worth mentioning what Dr. Flint stated at the end of his 1903 article......that the new evidence was the finding of what was assumed to be the key to Room 31.
                        A while back I brought up what hotel proprietor James Jennings said ( mentioned first in Richard Underwood's Gaslight Lawyers and later in Bob Dekle's East River Ripper).....that that key may not
                        have been one that the hotel used back in 1891 due to the hotel undergoing renovations ( probably a brisk sweeping of the floor and shaking the lice off the pillows).

                        One point in favor of the key being authentic are the sketches ( one identical in every respect to the one currently in Albany) which appeared almost immediately after the murder.

                        I've always wondered why the key was focused upon following the murder and that separate newspapers would sketch a replica independently. One of the better things the newspaper people did and in fact, an extremely crucial act as it would turn out a decade later.

                        You would think, or at least I would have, that the last person with it would have discarded it rather quickly. It being in his possession might have provided him with a ticket to the hot seat.

                        Keeping the key. at one time, seemed to be a matter of the Farmhand engaging in souvenir collection. However, he left it at Cranford. Not much of a souvenir.
                        But taking it with him....across the city to the West Side docks...on the ferry across the Hudson...disembarking in Jersey City....hopping the CJR to Cranford...getting out...walking 1.4 miles home...and still hanging on to it might mean the key had no particular significance to him. Leaving it where it could be found ( according to Damon in the unchallenged affidavit) along with a bloody shirt ( the blood might have been there prior to the Farmhand's trip to the city) which Damon apparently had thrown out could indicate a man who didn't care if the key was from the hotel because he may not have known its significance and hadn't done anything to worry about except stay in NYC a little too long for work on the 24th.

                        As interesting and more profoundly, Dr. Flint also points out that the Damon story was not subjected to legal investigation. That's a great point.

                        ************************************************** ************************************************** ************************************

                        I'd also like to point out that one element of Damon's story has led me to consider the following as a reason for his trip to the East River Hotel supposedly to 'verify' the key's authenticity. Totally unnecessary considering any sketch of it clearly resembled the one left by the Farmhand.

                        If Damon's sojourn into the bowels of Water Street actually occurred....might it not have been to authenticate the key so that if it wasn't the key and the real one turned up....he could show the key off and not worry that he would look like a total asshole if the real key turned up after he showed it off to his boozy bourgeois buddies ?

                        Because, let's face it....there was no chance of Damon ever turning the key in the moment he knew its significance....well before he went on the useless excursion to Water Street. It could be understood if he went in order to turn it over the moment he saw it did match other keys at the hotel. He didn't although he confesses in the unchallenged affidavit that he knew it was of the very same type used at the Hotel. So why go to the hotel in the first place unless you intended to be a man and do the right thing ...unless you're not much of a man and had planned on keeping the key as a souvenir to show off to certain buddies, all along ?

                        Opinions welcome.


                        Mark...almost forgot ....I don't know whether Flint had heard of the Jansen story. He may not have. Jansen would have been a witness for the defense and the prosecution witnesses unaware of his presence.
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                        • That’s a good point, Howard, about the so-called excursion to the East River Hotel. But I don’t doubt it actually happened.

                          The impression I get from what you’re saying is that it wasn’t a real excursion at all but just another trip to a sometime or regular hangout. However, I don’t remember the details of his story of the “excursion”.

                          Didn’t he have someone with him? Was he someone who would have frequented that neighbourhood with him without them having to make a special trip of it?

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                          • That’s a good point, Howard, about the so-called excursion to the East River Hotel. But I don't doubt that it actually happened.

                            Fair enough and thanks for the reply. The trip was unnecessary, IMHO, since Damon knew the key was the key from the Hotel. It was clearly marked '31" in every sketch in the papers that published articles mentioning the key. Also, how many keys with the number 31 were missing in Manhattan in that period of time ? It was the key: Damon knew it: His trip...if it happened, was unnecessary in my opinion....unless he wanted to make sure if he showed it off to his friends that he wasn't going to look like a putz. He never intended to turn it in. The only reason he did was that he was outed by John R. Lee. Plain and simple. Lee blabbing to one of the prosecutors at a party that his friend ( Damon...who outed Lee in the newspapers as having been aware of the key too) had the hotel key is the only reason why we know today of the Farmhand, the Key, Damon's excuses, and how Ali was released.

                            Without John R. Lee....discussion and research into this case would have been drastically different and less voluminous. We'd question why Ali was only given a second degree charge since there was evidence he had come into contact with Brown's corpse. We would also talk about Glenmore Man.....but it wouldn't have remotely as intriguing as it is without Lee. The primary interest in this case isn't Brown but the aspects following the murder and the post-trial events.

                            It would actually have been better if he hadn't made the trip....because admitting to having made the trip, the prime question would have been ( without his note from the Governor) "Well, you say you went to the hotel....saw it was the key....umm....why didn't you turn it in ?" Saying he made the trip makes him look worse.

                            The impression I get from what you’re saying is that it wasn’t a real excursion at all but just another trip to a sometime or regular hangout. However, I don’t remember the details of his story of the “excursion”.

                            The excursion or venture down to the hotel was made by Damon and a Beekman Street employee, Charles Brennan ( a 'truck man' at his printing facility) shortly after the Farmhand left. The trip was undertaken to compare the key left in Cranford with keys at the hotel. I've posted the 1901 story elsewhere in this section . The affidavit also is posted in this section as well.


                            Didn’t he have someone with him? Was he someone who would have frequented that neighbourhood with him without them having to make a special trip of it?

                            See above,.
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                            • Damon’s telling the story of the “excursion” as if he and his truck driver employee/buddy were Sherlock and Watson was unnecessary. That seems to have backfired.

                              Doesn’t it make more sense as a lunch-time lark? Taking the key along might not have been necessary… that’s for sure!

                              Comment


                              • Originally posted by Howard Brown View Post
                                The trip was unnecessary, IMHO, since Damon knew the key was the key from the Hotel. It was clearly marked '31" in every sketch in the papers that published articles mentioning the key. Also, how many keys with the number 31 were missing in Manhattan in that period of time ? It was the key: Damon knew it: His trip...if it happened, was unnecessary in my opinion....unless he wanted to make sure if he showed it off to his friends that he wasn't going to look like a putz. He never intended to turn it in. The only reason he did was that he was outed by John R. Lee. Plain and simple. Lee blabbing to one of the prosecutors at a party that his friend ( Damon...who outed Lee in the newspapers as having been aware of the key too) had the hotel key is the only reason why we know today of the Farmhand, the Key, Damon's excuses, and how Ali was released.
                                Did Damon see a paper with a sketch of the key? Even if he did, he wanted to check for himself. He suspected the key was the key from the hotel mentioned in the papers - but wanted to see for himself. If I post a photo of a Yale-key, would you on that basis alone be able to say with confidence whether or not it was the key to your house? Most people would want to check the key in the lock first - Damon too.
                                I don't think the trip was unnecessary in that regard - it was unnecessary or became unnecessary when he afterwards failed to inform the police of what he knew.

                                Edit: I looked for Bremman's affidavit, but I cannot seem to find it. Is it posted here?

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