KABC Radio Interview – Raymond Lee Jennings & Jeffrey Ehrlich


McIntyre in the Morning

Wednesday, January 25, 2017.

KABC radio host, Doug McIntyre interviews Raymond Lee Jennings, a man who spent more than a decade in prison after being wrongfully convicted of murdering a young girl. Also interviewed, Jeffrey Ehrlich, Mr. Jenning’s defense attorney, who explains what went wrong that led to convicting an innocent man, and the legal process involved in the exoneration of Mr. Jennings.

Special thanks to Doug McIntyre, radio talk show host for KABC, and to KABC for inviting Ray Jennings to share his story, and to Rob Marinko for taking an interest in the story.

For more great radio visit www.KABC.com

Help Ray Jennings: www.gofundme.com/RayJennings

“The Man Who Knew Too Much”


A note on the recent NBC Dateline special on the Ray Jennings case: Dateline did a remarkable job of telling a complex story, which has so far spanned 16 years. They had a lot of ground to cover. As a result, they were unable to get into the details of our critique of the prosecution’s case against Ray. We hope that viewers of the program understand that there is much, much more evidence that demonstrates that Ray is innocent than what was presented on the show. We are optimistic that all the information will be made public by early 2017. When it is made public Michelle O’Keefe’s murder will remain a tragedy; but it will not remain a mystery.

Watch on Dateline NBC’s Website

 

#RepayRay Social Campaign Launched to Help Ray Jennings Rebuild His Life

PRESS RELEASE

copy-Ehrlich-Law-Firm-Logo.jpgThe Ehrlich Law Firm
16130 Ventura Boulevard, Suite 610
Encino, CA 91436

Website: www.ehrlichfirm.com
Phone: (818) 905-3970
Fax: (818) 905-3975

July 1, 2016:  FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Ray Jennings with his mother (left) and fiance, Kim (right). Photo Credit: Jeffrey Ehrlich

Ray Jennings with his mother (left) and fiance, Kim (right). Photo Credit: Jeffrey Ehrlich

Social-media campaign raises thousands for wrongfully convicted Iraq-war vet

Los Angeles, CA – When Sergeant Ray Jennings came home from Iraq in 2005, he was arrested at gunpoint and falsely accused of murder. This Fourth of July weekend, Americans are finally thanking him for his service.

The #RepayRay campaign has raised almost $10,000 dollars to help Sgt. Jennings rebuild his life after 11 of wrongful imprisonment. Organizers hope that figure will multiply as more people help by visiting www.GoFundMe.com/RayJennings .

The campaign was started by Clint Ehrlich, a law student who discovered Jennings’ case a year ago on network television. Ehrlich saw holes in the prosecution’s case, so he began an investigation with his father, appellate lawyer Jeffrey Ehrlich.

The duo unearthed evidence that convinced the Los Angeles District Attorney’s office to release Jennings from prison last week. He had been serving a life sentence for the 2000 murder of 18-year-old college student Michelle O’Keefe.

The killing received national attention, because Jennings was such an unlikely suspect. The married father of four held a secret security clearance, having enlisted in the military at 17 years old, and was training to become a U.S. Marshal.

In Iraq, Jennings commanded a five-man team that searched door-to-door for high-value terrorists. He was nearly killed when an IED exploded beneath his Humvee.

Jennings witnessed the shooting on his second night working part-time as a security guard. He was patrolling a Park-n-Ride lot in Palmdale when he heard gunfire and immediately radioed for help. O’Keefe had been shot to death inside the brand-new Mustang she had just received as a graduation present.

The physical evidence all pointed away from Jennings. There was no gunshot residue on his uniform, and no DNA, hair, or fibers to suggest that he had any contact with O’Keefe. Blood from a different man was found beneath her fingernails.

In February 2005, the D.A.’s office declined to prosecute the case. “There is simply insufficient evidence to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Jennings did the killing,” wrote Deputy District Attorney Robert Foltz.

Ten months later, without finding new evidence, Foltz charged Jennings with first-degree murder. “I can’t put my finger on precisely what the difference is,” said Foltz, “but it was clear we had a fileable case.”

Last week, the D.A.’s office admitted that it had actually had no case against Jennings. On June 23, he walked out of court a free man. However, the State offered him no compensation for his 11 years of wrongful imprisonment.

Jennings had no money, no clothes, and nowhere to stay. “That’s why we started #RepayRay,” said Clint Ehrlich. “Ray risked his life for our country. This is the least we can do to pay him back.”

# # #

For more information about the Jennings case please see the website for the Ehrlich Law Firm, www.ehrlichfirm.com. Jeffrey I. Ehrlich can be contacted at 818.905.3070.

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Recent News: Ray Jennings Wrongfully Convicted, Released from Prison



ABC 7 Eye Witness News, June 23, 2016, by Melissa MacBride and Hanna Maxfield. Judge Orders Release of Man Convicted in 2000 Palmdale Shooting Death.


Courtroom Video of Los Angeles Deputy Dist Atty. Bobby Grace Asking for Release of Raymond Lee Jennings

Source: KTLA5, June 23, 2016, by Los Angeles Times and Christina Pascucci. Man Convicted of Murdering College Student in Palmdale Is Ordered Released Amid Questions Over Guilt

Los Angeles County Prosecutors Set To Ask Convicted Killer Be Released From Prison

June 22, 2016

“My office has been presented with credible new evidence that brings this conviction into question,” District Attorney Jackie Lacey said.  “In the interest of justice, I am asking the court to release Raymond Jennings on his own recognizance while this investigation continues.”


More News

 

Los Angeles District Attorney’s Office agrees to free Iraq-war vet wrongfully convicted of murder

PRESS RELEASE

copy-Ehrlich-Law-Firm-Logo.jpgThe Ehrlich Law Firm
16130 Ventura Boulevard, Suite 610
Encino, CA 91436

Website: www.ehrlichfirm.com
Phone: (818) 905-3970
Fax: (818) 905-3975

June 22, 2016:  FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Los Angeles District Attorney’s Office agrees to free Iraq-war vet wrongfully convicted of murder

Los Angeles, CA – The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office today accepted the recommendation of its newly-created Conviction Review Unit (CRU) and has agreed to ask a court to release Raymond Jennings, who was convicted of murdering 18-year old Michelle O’Keefe in a Palmdale, California parking lot on February 22, 2000.

Jennings’ attorney, Jeffrey I. Ehrlich of the Ehrlich Law Firm in Encino, California, first requested that the CRU vacate Jennings’ conviction in October 2015. In April 2016, the CRU agreed to re-open the investigation of the O’Keefe murder, and is now actively pursuing a murder investigation focusing on new suspects.

The District Attorney will appear with Ehrlich in Department 100 of the Los Angeles Superior Court on June 23, 2016 at 8:30 a.m., and they will jointly request that the court release Jennings from prison on his own recognizance. In 60 days, the parties will return to court, and the District Attorney is expected to ask the court to vacate Jennings’ conviction based on new evidence that shows that Jennings is innocent.

On the night of the murder, Jennings, then 25 years old, had been patrolling the parking lot as an unarmed security guard. He heard gunshots and saw a car slowly rolling backward into a planter. Ms. O’Keefe’s body was inside, slumped over the steering wheel. She had been shot multiple times.

No forensic evidence tied Jennings to the crime. There was no gunshot residue on his clothes, nor was there any hair, fibers, or other trace evidence to suggest he had been in contact with the victim. No witness claimed to have seen the crime. At the time, Jennings was a 7-year veteran of the Army National Guard, with no prior criminal record. He held a “secret” security clearance and was studying to be a U.S. Marshal.

The murder went unsolved for over 5 years.  In 2005, the District Attorney’s office charged Jennings with the murder, and he was arrested while he was on leave from serving in Iraq with his National Guard Unit. The case against Jennings was wholly circumstantial, and was primarily based on a now-discredited  claim that he knew non-public details about the crime that only O’Keefe’s killer would have known.

Jennings was tried three times, with the first two juries unable to reach a verdict. In December 2009, a third jury convicted Jennings of second-degree murder. He was sentenced to a life term. His conviction was affirmed on appeal in 2011.

In June 2015, Jennings’ case came to the attention Ehrlich’s law-student son, Clinton Ehrlich. Clinton had seen a link on the internet to an NBC “Dateline” episode about the case. After watching the program he concluded that the case against Jennings was flawed, and he did further research. A few days later he convinced his father to take on the case for Jennings pro bono.

Clinton continued to develop a critique of the State’s case against Jennings, and on October 2, 2015, the father-son team submitted a 34-page single-spaced letter to the CRU, refuting every aspect of the State’s case. The letter persuaded the four experienced prosecutors staffing the CRU that Jennings was innocent and that the O’Keefe murder investigation should be re-opened. A new investigation was launched in May 2016.

The new investigation immediately focused on the people other than Jennings who had been in the parking lot when O’Keefe was shot.

Jennings, who has five children, has thus far served over 11 years in prison.

# # #

For more information about the Jennings case please see the website for the Ehrlich Law Firm, www.ehrlichfirm.com. Jeffrey I. Ehrlich can be contacted at 818.905.3070.

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Raymond Lee Jennings Case Information and Documents


Case Facts, Information and Expert Reports Regarding the Wrongful Conviction of Raymond Lee Jennings in the Murder of Michelle O’Keefe
(People v. Raymond Jennings)

Exoneration

Memorandum of Decision (Motion for Factual Innocence) (January 30, 2017)

“Motion for Factual Innocence (“Motion” by Raymond Lee Jennings (“Petitioner”), represented by Jeffrey I. Ehrlich, Esq. Respondent, the People of the State of California, represented by Deputy District Attorneys Robert Grace and Kenneth Lynch.  Granted.”

News and Press Releases

  • July 1, 2016 via The Ehrlich Law Firm. Donors rally to help wrongfully convicted Iraq-War vet freed after 11 years in prison || Read Online || Download PDF
  • June 22, 2016 via The Ehrlich Law Firm.  Los Angeles District Attorney’s Office concludes that Iraq-war vet convicted of murder and sentenced to life term is innocent; agrees to vacate his conviction || Read Online || Download PDF
  • More News Stories and Media Coverage

Ray Jennings Leaving the Courthouse Thursday, June 23, 2016, with his attorney, Jeffrey Ehrlich


Letters to the Conviction Review Unit (CRU)

  • Letter from the Ehrlich Law Firm to Ken Lynch, Assistant Head Deputy, Conviction Review Unit, Los Angeles District Attorney’s Office Dated March 2, 2016.  Re:  Conviction Review Request for raymond Jennings.  Download PDF
  • Letter from the Ehrlich Law Firm to Ken Lynch, Assistant Head Deputy, Conviction Review Unit, Los Angeles District Attorney’s Office Dated October 2, 2015.  Re:  People v. Raymond Jennings, LASC No. MA033712, Court of Appeal No. B222959.   Download PDF


Expert’s Reports

Expert Review of Discovery Materials Produced in Investigation and Trial


Security Expert Report


Criminal Profile Expert’s Report

  • Report by Peter M. Kismet, Jr. BS, MS, MPA, FBI (Retired) of Criminal Profiling Associates LLC, dated March 3, 2016.  Case Title:  People of the State of California vs. Raymond Lee Jennings, Victim: Michelle O’Keefe.  Crime Involved:  Section 187 of the California Penal Code (Murder).  Download Report in PDF

Forensic Firearms and Ballistics Report