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Appeals court reinstates suit over botched Temple murders probe; constitutional violations cited

"And they went down the hall for a long time and then came back and said, 'Well, he said he was outside most of the time, and he can't describe the inside of the house.'"

Painter's attorney, Mike DePaoli, says she never heard of Mike McGraw or any of the other Tucson suspects until after the police confronted her.

The Task Force jailed McGraw and the Tucson Four--some of whom, incidentally, "confessed" to the crimes after relentless interrogations that lasted for hours on end. It was one of the biggest stories of the year.

None of those men, however, had anything to do with the Temple murders.
Mike McGraw was a bald-faced liar, whose credibility should have been suspect from the first moment. But key authorities wanted to believe him even after the real killers--a pair of west Valley boys--had been linked to the murders by ballistics tests and had confessed.

Then-sheriff Tom Agnos and deputy county attorney Myrna Parker were among those most determined to find a link between the Tucson Four and the newly confessed killers. It wasn't there.

Maricopa County Attorney Richard Romley--overriding the objections of a so-called "Blue Ribbon Committee" of lawmen and ex-prosecutors--finally dropped the charges against the falsely accused men.

The four also sued Maricopa County for damages, settling out of court for a few million dollars.

An attorney for the defendants asked Painter in a deposition about the aftereffects of her experience.

"I still have nightmares," she replied. ". . . I have an aversion to police officers. I have trouble going out alone. I'm scared. I have problems talking about the incident. I cry a lot.

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