Transcript for Death row inmate James Dailey’s last hopes of being cleared of murder: Part 10
In January of 2020, I take a ride with attorney Josh Dubin. He has recently joined Chelsea Shirley and the team trying to exonerate James Dailey and save him from execution for the 1985 murder of Shelly Boggio. People are just now discovering my case and what has been done to me. But I've had to live this 32 1/2 years of being innocent and being on death row. My biggest problem was I couldn't get anybody to listen to me. I got this new set of attorneys. And they took one look at my case, and, boy, they've gone to work for me. I'm sorry. You have a whole plan about going in there today. I mean, you're dressed in a t-shirt. You're very casual. Dubin works for James Dailey, but on this day he's going to visit Dailey's codefendant and former friend, jack Pearcy, who is now serving a life sentence for Shelly's murder. I don't want him to look at me as just some lawyer in a suit. He's got good reason to be hopeful, because three years earlier in 2017, Pearcy signed an affidavit saying he alone murdered Shelly Boggio, and that James Dailey was innocent. I went to see jack Pearcy in April of 2017. And he ultimately ended up signing an affidavit. Jack Pearcy said in the very last line of the affidavit that "I killed Shelly Boggio and Mr. Dailey was not present when she was killed." Despite signing that 2017 affidavit, when it came time for jack Pearcy to testify in court, he said he lied in that affidavit. He refused to say in court that James Dailey was innocent or much of anything else. He just kept pleading the fifth. He said, "I plead the fifth." The next question, "I plead the fifth." Next question, "I plead the fifth." Here's what I don't understand, Josh. The guy's already signed an affidavit, right, saying that he did it. Why do you need anything else? Because the last time he signed an affidavit and he was called in court to avow or stand by the affidavit, he pled the fifth. In late 2019, soon after joining the case, Dubin got Pearcy to once again sign a statement saying that he alone murdered Shelly Boggio, essentially exonerating James Dailey. The operative paragraph is, I murdered Shelley Boggio on my own. James Dailey had nothing to do with it. And so, here we go again. Jack Pearcy has again signed another confession, again clearing James Dailey. But once again it's not enough. He has to come into the courtroom. He has to testify under oath and be cross-examined by prosecutors. That's the only way this helps James Dailey. You just spent, I don't know, an hour and ten minutes in there. What was it like? He's a bit of a tortured soul that is coming to terms with the fact that he needs to come clean about everything that he did. And, you know, I think that he's going to do that. Do you think that that will help exonerate you? If jack comes in there and tells the truth. I mean, if we get the truth out of his mouth. James Dailey is present and is here in custody. I've had him travel from death row for today's hearing. Good morning, Mr. Dailey. Good morning, sir. I thought they had implemented the death penalty. I thought he was dead. I thought James Dailey was dead. We had an evidentiary hearing in March of 2020. Okay, this is the second succession motion to vacate the judgment of conviction and sentence of death after the death warrant has been signed. We were hopeful that forcing jack Pearcy to look Mr. Dailey in the eye, forcing jack to look at the person that he's partly responsible for keeping in prison wrongfully for 33 years, would move him to tell the truth. If jack Pearcy were sitting here right across from you today, what would you say to him? I'd say, do the right thing, jack. Come on. It's been long enough. All right, let's bring him in and take him to the podium. Mr. Pearcy. Good morning, sir. My name is pat Siracusa. Welcome back to pinellas county. I brought you here today to ask you, isn't today finally the day for you to tell the world your story from the witness stand as a witness? I can't help bring Shelly back or the pain her family has already suffered. I don't want to testify any further. He said he would never come into court and tell that story as long as his mother was still alive. And of course his mother was sitting right there. Even though Pearcy says he's not going to testify, he's called to the witness stand. Why bother putting Pearcy on the stand? Because you never know. This is James Dailey's last chance to get the truth that could set him free. All he has to do is just repeat what he said in that affidavit. Do you swear or affirm to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth, so help you god? Yes. Yes, all right. Have a seat. Okay, well we'll see what
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