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Jack Carroll wins parole

I find this hard to believe myself, but Jack Carroll has been granted parole and will soon be released from prison -- after 11 long years.

A year ago he was denied parole when one of the parole commissioners voting against him was Chris Ortloff, the former assemblyman who has since pleaded guilty to soliciting sex with children.

Jack requested a new hearing – not on those grounds, since there is no provision for anything like that – but on the rather technical grounds that his file as reviewed by the parole commissioners contained misinformation.

It sounded to me like a very long shot, and I put little hope in it, but lo and behold! He got the new hearing, before two rather than the customary three commissioners, and they approved him. Just like that.

Am I getting ahead of myself?

Jack Carroll is a former boat mechanic from Troy who was accused in 1997 of sexually molesting a young girl whom I still cannot identify even by relationship, though the relationship is crucial to understanding the story. Suffice it to say the accusation was part of a family break-up situation.

He was prosecuted by a then assistant district attorney in Rensselaer County, Patricia DeAngelis, who eventually became notorious for her courtroom theatrics and was finally discredited and put out of a job because of them. But this was early in her career, and it was one of the cases in which she made her bones.

She got Jack convicted, the conviction was overturned on appeal, and she then retried him and got him reconvicted and sentenced to a fresh 10 to 20 years in prison.

I followed the case closely and believe Jack was the victim first of spousal vengefulness, second of police lies and distortions, third of prosecutorial histrionics, and finally of a general social hysteria about the sexual abuse of children which clouded people’s good sense.

DeAngelis was one of the main local players in this social movement, and she was supported by equally irrational and dishonest members of the Troy Police Department and the State Police.

Anyway, that’s who Jack Carroll is – one of the many victims of the nationwide sex-abuse hysteria.

Now after 11 years in prison, meaning one year more than his minimum sentence, he’s getting out. His tentative release date is Feb. 26, according to a letter sent to his wife, Mary, from the Northeast Bureau of the state Division of Parole. (Mary is not the wife I alluded to with “spousal vengefulness.” That was a previous wife.)

What will it be like having him home?

“There will be an adjustment period, for sure,” Mary told me. “But we just want normalcy.”

She said Rev. Peter Young, who helps many released inmates, has offered him a job, and that he has four or five other job offers also.

I’d offer him a job myself, if I had one to offer.

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January 26, 2009
8:36 a.m.

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Jack should write a book about his experiences. He may need a co-author.

January 27, 2009
11:48 a.m.

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He certainly owes you thanks. One of the things that bothers me about the current financial scandals is that while the 4th Estate identifies these thugs and their malfeasance, nothing ever happens to them!
We know who lied and cheated and bent the law to persecute (*not* a typo!) Mr. Carroll, due to your fine reporting, but DeAngelis and company go on their merry way - perhaps if we had a few public executions, these scum would think twice about upholding the rule of law!

January 28, 2009
11:55 a.m.

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The problem with this case, and many others like it, is the "professionals" who investigate and prosecute them. These sex crime vigilantes, who usually work as a team using a formula proven to get convictions, carry with them a firm belief that children don't lie about such things. As a result, once a child makes a claim--either on their own or through pressure from an adult--they ignore facts that suggest the accused could be innocent, and instead see all facts as signs of guilt. And god help the guy who puts his fate in the hands of a jury by going to trial--he doesn't stand a chance. Just ask Mr. Carroll.

February 12, 2009
9:06 a.m.

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The irony is interesting, and quite sad. One sees and hears all manner of public service messages pleading with adults to "mentor a child", become a "big brother or big sister," provide a foster home, or simply be an adult when a child or adolescent needs one, but then there is reality. Who in their right mind today would take the chance? Like doctors who ultimately eschew the practice of medicine to avoid the inevitability of lawsuits, good, solid, and caring people avoid involvement with kids like the plague. This is the manifestation of a liberal society, steeped in PC and out of control, pity.

Just look at us, we have lost our way and cannot find the path home again. More's the pity.

March 2, 2009
6:17 p.m.

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HELP THE FOCUS guy out too.....

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