May 30, 2008
As for what has been going on here in my small world, I’ll have to say quite a lot.
After waiting for almost one whole year for the U.S. District Court to come back to my writ and expedite its proceedings, it has finally done it. I’m, of course, very happy about following information from the MINUTES OF THE COURT filed on March 7, 2008:
“In this hebeas corpus action on September 29, 2006, several claims in the hebeas petition were dismissed [these claims/ grounds were unexhausted when first presented, then exhausted with the permission of the Court, but found defaulted when presented for the second time], upon a motion to dismiss by respondents.
On September 4, 2007, the Court ordered respondents to answer petitions remaining claims by November 9, 2007.
Petitioner [the Court is referring to the State/ Respondents here] then filed a series of three motions for extensions of time for their answer. It appears that those motions have been made in good faith and not solely for the purpose of delay, and that there is good cause for the requested extensions of time. The Court will grant those motions, and will extend to March 31, 2008 the time for respondents to file their answer.
However, this will be the last extension of this deadline, absent extraordinary circumstances.”
The State finally filed its response on March 31, 2008. After this, my attorney and I had 30 days in which to file and serve our reply. Then the U.S. District Court will decide. However, because there is a need for us (my attorney and I) to file our first Motion for Extention of Time due to more pending investigation, legal research, and the procuring of some more documentary evidence (most of which I have already done on my own with Gods help, of course.) Beside the above, my attorney has informed me of the assistance of a more experienced attorney from her law firm to my case. This more experienced federal attorney will be preparing my reply to the State’s response. As I have mentioned to you before, an evidentiary hearing would help me so much right now. If the Court would grant it to me, I do not believe I will be coming back to prison, because then the proof of my innocence would be shining so brightly.
You know, till this day, I continue to meet with other people (inmates mostly) who have heard it from the eye-witnesses that I am innocent. Eye-witnesses that were there but never came forth to tell the truth, because they were either afraid or belonged to the rival gang. It brings me a little comfort to hear and learn of these things, but the truth of my incarceration for a crime I did not commit still remains. Hopefully, the Court will give me this opportunity, the opportunity that has never been granted to me before. One chance, a fair chance is all I ask for.
I do not mind, if people want to write for penpal reasons. I believe this is a very good way of showing someone in my situation that they care. However, I am also looking for help with knowledge, understanding, and/or referrals on the following areas:
Ballistics, ways to find old phone records, and in the area of pathology. Anyone willing to help me will not be required to testify in court, unless they want to, but mostly all I need are answers to questions I know would help me support my innocence. I will only use the acquired answers as reference and/or guidance to adopt them to my defense. In other words, I will use these answers to show the Court, by my questioning of my own expert, why I am not the culprit of the crime I am serving time for, e.g.:
Many people have told me that a .380 caliber handgun is a low power gun. I want to ask an expert, how much damage can a .380 handgun do from a distance of 153’+ to a human head, if it (the bullet) enters through one of the eyes? From this distance, does it have enough power to puncture a clean hole to the back bone of the skull? If the bullet is copperplated, what type of hole would it make – a wider than its own size or one of its own size? These questions are for a Ballistics expert.
To a pathologist I would like to ask him/her the following:
When a victim is killed by a handgun, can the caliber of the gun be established with certainty by the hole the bullet left on the bone of the skull? What about the distance from where the victim was shot? If a victim is killed with a .380 caliber, would the hole left on the skullbe smaller than the size of a .380 caliber bullet?If as a pathologist you say that the bullet that killed the victim is closer to a .22 caliber gun than to a .357, 9mm or .380 caliber gun, does this exclude the .380 caliber gun from being a suspect? These are some of the questions I would really like and need with the most urgency answers to.
If anyone who is reading this can help me by providing me with the answers, please do so at your earliest convenience. Please, keep in mind that I have never had any experts testifying to everything as it should be. The State was the only one who presented the testimonies of its own experts. Still their answers were not most favorable to the State. So please, help if you can. Thank you.
I hope to hear from you soon.
Juan M. Castillo