Spin Cycle

News, views and commentary on Long Island, state and national politics

'Cannibal cop' case: How long did ruling need to take?

U.S. District Judge Paul Gardephe made headlines this week by freeing "cannibal cop" Gilberto Valle, ruling there was no evidence from which a reasonable juror could have concluded that his Internet chats about kidnapping and eating women were anything but fantasy.
 
While the judge, an ex-prosecutor, got some credit for acting on principle in a case involving an arguably odious defendant, there is the awkward question of timing. Valle spent 21 months in jail -- 15 of them after Gardephe presided over a trial where he now concludes that no reasonable view of the evidence supported the verdict.
 

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