Gary Dotson is an American man who was the first person to be exonerated of a criminal conviction by DNA evidence. I
General News NXIVM

Shadow: From John Tighe to Gary Dotson, Exoneration Is Hard Because Courts Don’t Like to Admit They’re Wrong

By Shadow State

A very serious obstacle obstructing the exoneration of John Tighe is that courts do not like to admit they’re wrong, even when evidence points clearly to miscarriage of justice.

The case of Chicagoan, Gary E. Dotson is pertinent to this point.

Dotson (born August 3, 1957) was the first person to be exonerated of a criminal conviction by DNA evidence.

In May 1979, he was found guilty and sentenced to 25 to 50 years’ imprisonment for rape, and kidnapping.  The conviction was upheld by the appellate court in 1981.

In 1985, the accusing witness, Cathy Crowell Webb, after joining a Baptist church, recanted her testimony, which had been the only evidence against Dotson.

She admitted she lied.

Dotson was not exonerated or pardoned but due to popular belief that he was a victim of a false rape accusation, he was paroled [and violated it and returned to prison], still considered guilty, until DNA evidence proved his innocence in 1988.

Dotson was subsequently cleared of his conviction.

But suppose there was no DNA?

The witness, Crowell Webb admitted she had consensual sex with her boyfriend and Dotson did not rape her.  Regardless of her recantation, it took a special hearing by Illinois Governor James Thompson to release Dotson from prison.

Only the new science of DNA finally exonerated Gary Dotson.

The Dotson case also illustrates that when a person like Cathy Crowell Webb or Allison Mack fabricates evidence, it can result in serious injustices.  Innocent people can be wrongly convicted of crimes that never happened.

Consiider what Allison falsely wrote about her father and her siblings abusing their children.

I am hoping and praying that John Tighe is exonerated and NXIVM and its leaders are ground into the dust.

But it is clear, it will not be easy. The present criminal justice system in America, often mistake the criminals with the upholders of the law. In some instances, it might better be called the Criminal’s Justice System. This may be the case with john Tighe, where criminals put an innocent man in prison.

This was the old rule – respected by freedom loving people everywhere. In America, the new rule is “Better that 100 innocent people languish in prison than one judge or prosecutor be embarrassed.”
Image result for incarceration rates by nation
Nice legacy.

About the author


News and art, national and local. Began as alternative weekly in 1990 in Buffalo, NY. Publishing content online since 1996.


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  • Shadowstate,

    Great article!!!!!

    Do not let Nutjob diminish your conviction.

  • You are good at spinning your own assumptions and passing them off as facts by the words you choose. Did I miss something, or are you related to Keith?

  • Sorry asshole, but no justice system can function if 90% of violent criminals go free just so that an occasional innocent person doesn’t get convicted by mistake.

    Nothing in human society is perfect.

    Get used to it. Get over it. That’s fucken life.

    It’s not fair that poor people die because they can’t afford medical treatment, but that’s just how the cookie crumbles.

    It’s not fair that drone strikes occasionally kill innocent bystanders by accident. Yet we don’t get rid of armed drones, cuz that’s just part of the price of war.

    It’s not fair that every year kids die or get paralyzed from football injuries, yet we don’t outlaw high school football (even though doing so would save a few lives).

    Even cheerleaders die due to freak accidents, yet we don’t outlaw cheerleading practice.


    Shit happens.

    We’ll always have innocent casualties in EVERY part of society, including the justice system.

    To those few people who were proven innocent by DNA, I say FUCK THEM.

    They can kiss my ass. Boo fucking hoo.

    I don’t give a rat’s ass about those innocent people convicted cuz they were simply in the wrong place at the wrong time. It’s no different from accidentally getting run over by a bus. Wrong place, wrong time.

    We ain’t gonna get rid of public buses just cuz every once in a while some asshole (or bitch) gets run over by one.

  • From a layman’s point of view, John Tighe’s biggest problem is that he admitted guilt rather than mount a defense. While this may have been tactically wise as a means of limiting his sentence, from a strategic perspective it was disastrous . The court has little obligation to review a case wherein the accused stood before a judge, with his attorney present, and swore that he was pleading guilty because he really did commit the crimes he was accused of. He’s in a very difficult spot, I’m afraid.

  • 3% of Americans are either in jail, in prison, on probation, out on bail, on parole, in a young offenders unit, or awaiting sentencing.

    The net benefit to society is debatable.

    Welcome to the United States of Incarceration.

    • Many Americans are in prison for drug crimes.
      Mandatory Minimum laws have landed many Americans in prison for crimes where people are basically harming themselves which is why there is a push to legalize marijuana in many states.
      Although I don’t like legalized marijuana fiscal pressures make continued incarceration for minor drug crimes increasing untenable for many states.
      Illinois just became the eleventh state to legalize marijuana.

    • Scott:
      Chicago always has stories.
      A waitress in a Chicago restaurant recently spat upon Eric Trump.
      Although Eric Trump chose not to press charges, Chicago’s new Mayor Lori Lightfoot, who is a liberal Democrat, said that the waitress’ behavior was unacceptable.
      Hear, Hear!

  • Well done, Shadow. I was wondering how you’d be able to bring Allison into the Tighe topic.

    • Nutjob:
      Would you date a woman who has a documented history of fabricating false child abuse allegations?
      If so, then you are truly a Nutjob.

      • There is evidence in the computer that had the child porn on it. We can ” believe” that John is innocent just as easily that we believe in the Easter Bunny.
        That computer shows to a computer expert who ever sent that child porn to john and that fully traceable.
        So, the evidence is there. Maybe he’s innocent. But , this constant writing that he was framed is as bogus as
        the night is young.
        I thought there was critical thinking people on this blog. I guess not.

        • Oh Miss Bunny,

          MAC addresses can be spoofed just like IP addresses…….

          ……….That is why in order to prosecute an individual for “internet” crimes the criminal’s hard drive must be retrieved.

          Bunny and all the other doubters look it up….

          That is why I believe it’s possible John Tighe was framed…..

          …..besides the fact that the child porn was only accessed one time….. and the fact that John Tighe did not posses anything else.

          A great example of a typical child porn pedophile is the male actor from the television show ‘Glee’.

          • Everyone that doubts John Tighe’s innocence should compare and contrast John’s case with the male lead actor from ‘Glee’.

            I believe you all will find it enlightening.

        • Good post Bunny.

          3 days ago I posted about asking John Tighe to take a lie detector test when he gets out of prison next year, just for the court of public opinion (not for legal reasons).

          It would help get people on his side if he’s truly innocent. If he chickens out, we’ll know that he’s worried about failing it and is probably guilty.

          But Frank has blocked that post and won’t approve it (he’ll probably approve it after another week, after that thread drops low enough that nobody will ever see my post).

          Frank likes to censor people that way.

          Frank won’t allow a fair conversation about John Tighe cuz he’s a sycophant who seeks to protect any conversation that may cast a negative light on Tighe.

          Frank ain’t no journalist. He’s a fanboy of John Tighe and wishes to foist his opinion on us about Tighe’s innocence.

        • I believe Frank has said here that the computers were destroyed by the police.

      • I think Shadow State is the Bomb!

        1) SS has made himself an expert on all things NXIVM and even contributes his distinct brand of Wikipedia fueled investigative journalism to the Frank. But strangely he only arrived at the Frank AFTER Allison Mack’s involvement with the cult was revealed.

        2) When The Vanguard penetrated Allison Mack, whether it be with his flaccid penis or hot sauce coated tongue, he was boldly going places where SS had only dreamed (and probably still dreams) of going.

        But who am I to throw stones? When Frank publishes photos of the slightly strabismic Ludwika Paleta aka Mrs Emi Salinas, I get a woody you could tow a boat with!

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