IN RETROSPECT, the ability to convict Morin, relied on the capacity to frame him. The clear absence of evidence which even suggested, let alone proved his guilt had clearly defined two distinct prosecutorial capacities; in the absence of credible evidence, the charge against Guy Paul Morin could have been dropped because there was no justifiable reason to detain him, or evidence could have been manufactured to implicate him in the murder. The charge against Morin was certainly never dropped, and there is still no reason to believe that it was ever warranted.
Police had been steered towards Morin by the victim's mother Janet Jessop, who claimed that her neighbours were "weird."29 Janet Jessop had allegedly suspected everyone, including her relatives at one point or another, but her evidently irrational assertions were never supported by evidence. In 1990, four years after a jury found Morin to be not guilty, her response to a reporter who wondered about her insistence that Morin "did it," was, "Because I know he did."30 Such frivolous standards of proof do not even merit attention, but the emotion and the frenzy that the Jessop murder provoked, demanded answers and justice not questions and an unsolved murder file. The only surefire alternative to answers and justice, is answers and the perception of justice. But like a high-strung mob that lynches an innocent suspect, the perception of justice is a perversion.
Since the discovery that Christine Jessop was tragically murdered, horror, fear and suspicion gripped the tiny Queensville community where Christine had lived and everybody's neighbour was suddenly a potential murderer. The horror was eternal. A nine year old girl had been brutally murdered and nothing said or done, could bring her back. The fear and suspicion however was potentially manageable, and the authorities did their very best to resolve it, by seeking to bring the killer or killers to justice. On January 1, 1985, the police located Christine's body and a month latter, they posted a $50,000 reward for information leading to an arrest. In March of 1985, police asked FBI agent John Douglas from the Violent Crimes Behavioral Sciences unit in Virginia, to piece a profile of the killer. According to John Douglas, the killer was likely someone from Queensville and someone that Christine knew. On April 11, 1985, the police released the profile to the media. It described a 19-26 year old unemployed male, and that very same day, police claimed that their suspect list had been reduced to "less than five people" and that they expected "to make an arrest in less than a month."31 On April 22,1984, Guy Paul Morin, one of the suspects on the final "short list" was arrested.
The investigation which lead to the arrest of Morin was inept, to say the very least. Remarkably, Morin was evidently arrested, not because the police had evidence that he was in fact the murderer, but because in their opinion, evidence which suggested that he was not, did not exist. Supt. Doug Bulloch disclosed this rather odd investigative practice when he said; "You don't find suspects as much as you eliminate them.32 The arrest of Guy Paul Morin suggested that every other murder suspect had been "eliminated" , but even that was not entirely true. For example, a maladjusted young man who frequented the Queensville area, was missing for most of the day Christine disappeared. A day or two latter, he hosed down the inside of his delivery van, upholstery and all, and about six weeks latter, he disappeared without a trace.33 If Morin had also vanished without a trace, would he too have been dropped from the suspect list? Remarkably, that is what the evidence suggests.
Armed with mere suspicion, the drive to prosecute Morin, was never substantiated with credible evidence. Indeed, the entire campaign was fuelled on the bid to satisfy a blindingly emotional need. For example, according to the police, the psychological profile supplied by the FBI "gave us a good feeling about what we had."34 And as soon as Morin was arrested, the police claimed that the fear and paranoia which had gripped Queensville had subsided and the sense of general satisfaction was described in terms like; "I think there's a great sense of relief now. People will be able to get back to living their normal lives."35
While the singularly emotional drive to prosecute a suspect in a highly publicized murder case prompted relief, it simultaneously paved the road to one of the most obvious judicial perversions in Canadian history. Criminology Professors Thomas Gabor and Julian Roberts, illustrate the dynamics of the judicial capacity to tyrannize, when they say; "when undue pressure is placed on the system to make an arrest and achieve a guilty verdict, wrongful convictions are sure to follow.36 Asserted in a piece titIed "how the innocent end up behind bars," they clearly expose the potential consequences of undue community pressure and excessive zeal on the part of the police and the prosecution. And the trials and tribulations of Guy Paul Morin provide a textbook example of the fact that innocent people do indeed "end up behind bars."
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