Abuse Hysteria in Maine: The Ghost of Michael Nifong

Week 2 Action Alert

SAVE has sent a letter to District Attorney Carletta M. Bassano calling for the immediate dismissal of the case of State of Maine v. Vladek Filler: http://www.saveservices.org/wp-content/uploads/BassanoLtr4.4.2011.pdf

This case represents a bizarre miscarriage of justice that threatens to undermine public respect for law:

  • The allegation of marital rape does not meet the probable-cause standard.
  • Ligia Filler is a proven child abuser.
  • Ligia Filler is a documented false accuser.
  • The Maine Department of Health and Human Services sided with the defendant in a concurrent child custody dispute.
  • Continued prosecution of the case is likely to harm the children.
  • The case has become so tainted with bias that justice can no longer be served.
  • The continued prosecution of this case re-victimizes the true victims of violent crime.

SAVE is now calling on persons to contact DA Carletta Bassano with a message like this:

“Vladek Filler is an innocent man. The accusations against him are scurrilous. ADA Mary Kellett’s repeated instances of prosecutorial misconduct are an affront to legal ethics. The continued prosecution of the case represents the State becoming an enabler of a known child abuser.”

Here’s where you can make your respectful complaint:

Carletta M. Bassano, District Attorney
70 State Street, Ellsworth, ME 04605
E-mail: carletta.bassano@da7.org

Phone: 207-667-4621

Please send a copy of your complaint and/or call Maine Attorney General William J. Schneider:
Contact Form: http://www.maine.gov/ag/

Phone: 207-626-8800

And while you’re at it, file a copy of your complaint with Gov. Paul LePage:

E-mail : governor@maine.gov
Fax : 1-207-287-1034
Phone: 1-207-287-3531

And sign the petition:

 
Petitions by Change.org
 

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Campaign Progress

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Michael Nifong and Maine: What’s the Connection?

Ligia Filler

During the early hours of March 14, 2006, a group of Duke University lacrosse players allegedly raped and sodomized a Black woman. Over the next 13 months, the sleepy town of Durham, North Carolina became witness to a succession of prosecutorial accusations, full-throated media warnings, and castration marches.

On April 12, 2007, the state Attorney General declared the three lacrosse players innocent of all charges. Two months later, prosecutor Michael Nifong was disbarred on grounds of engaging in fraud, dishonesty, and deceit.

Andrew Vladek

Twelve days later and 800 miles away in rural Maine, Ligia Filler was found running on the road partially undressed, screaming she was going to kill her husband for abusing their children. These allegations were known to be false. But allegations that her husband Vladek had sexually assaulted her soon escalated into criminal charges against this innocent man.

Despite the lack of any physical evidence, Assistant District Attorney Mary Kellett filed seven indictments of assault. The case was tried January 12-15, 2009. Mr. Filler was found guilty on three charges and innocent on four charges.

Mary Kellett

The case was appealed to the Maine Supreme Judicial Court. On September 9, 2010 the Court issued its decision, ordering a new trial and concluding that Keller had engaged in prosecutorial misconduct because she had “improperly encouraged the jury to use the absence of evidence regarding the marriage ending and a child custody dispute – evidence that had been excluded based on the State’s objection – as a reason to reject [defendant] Filler’s case.”

 

The new trial is now scheduled for May 23-26, 2011 in Ellsworth Superior Court. ADA Mary Kellett is expected to be a member of the team involved in the re-trying of the case, raising the specter of a worrisome continuation of prosecutorial abuses.