ABC's Jim Avila's Interview With Andrew Thomas, District Attorney, Maricopa County

ANDREW THOMAS: Well, the…there…there may have been other people in the family who used it, but here…here's the thing. Uh, the…and I…I began…or at some point, I started to talk about the individ…the need for individualized justice.

JIM AVILA: So there was a huge amount of evidence that in fact, this kid was not involved in a sex crime. And yet, your office and you yourself continue to believe and put him through two years of hell, because you continue to believe despite lie detector tests, court psychiatrist reports, a report from the computer expert who said it could have come from anywhere…you continue to say…

ANDREW THOMAS: (Overlap) Well…

JIM AVILA: …that he did it.

ANDREW THOMAS: Well, I…again, I…I'm not sure that that's totally right. But you gotta…

JIM AVILA: (Overlap) Halfway right?

ANDREW THOMAS: …you gotta (Inaudible)…

JIM AVILA: (Overlap) (Inaudible) right here.

ANDREW THOMAS: Well, our…our experts certainly didn't think…

JIM AVILA: (Overlap) Your experts…

ANDREW THOMAS: (Inaudible) could have gotten it from anywhere.

(Overlapping Comments)

JIM AVILA: Your … your experts…

ANDREW THOMAS: I mean (Laughter) …

JIM AVILA: …your expert was not an expert who…who did any analysis whatsoever…

ANDREW THOMAS: Well…

JIM AVILA: …as to where it came from. All your expert did was say it's here.

ANDREW THOMAS: Well, right. But let's…let's back up. When you're looking at a case…again, not to…belabor the point. You've gotta look at all the evidence. Here, we had evidence that from the…the center…the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children that came to the Phoenix police department showing that this computer user in this household had access a yahoo account where there was child pornography.

JIM AVILA: Well, that's not exactly…

ANDREW THOMAS: (Overlap) We didn't obtain…

JIM AVILA: …what it said, is it?

ANDREW THOMAS: Well, no that…

(Overlapping Comments)

JIM AVILA: It said that a computer in this addr- …house at this address has some …compu - …has some child pornography on it.

ANDREW THOMAS: No, they…

JIM AVILA: It didn't say this computer user…

ANDREW THOMAS: No.

JIM AVILA: It didn't identify a computer user.

ANDREW THOMAS: It …it identified a computer.

JIM AVILA: Right.

ANDREW THOMAS: And the computer had accessed a yahoo account where there was child pornography. That was the…the uh, basis for the search warrants issued by a court.

JIM AVILA: Right.

ANDREW THOMAS Other evidence was assembled in the course of executing the search warrants. The computer was found and seized. Child pornography was found on there. The juvenile was interviewed. He admitted at least partially, the substance of the crime, which was yes, he used the computer to go on the Internet to access pornographic sites.

It turned out…he says it was only adult sites. Quite frankly, criminal defendants are not…famous for being forthcoming with the facts. So you've got to weigh that…

JIM AVILA: (Overlap) Except for this one passed two lie detector tests.

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