Convictions of woman on Arizona death row overturned - New York News

Convictions of woman on Arizona death row overturned

Posted: Updated:
Debra Jean Milke Debra Jean Milke
  • Crime & JusticeMore>>

  • Upskirt video victim speaks out

    Upskirt video victim speaks out

    Clinton HollisterClinton Hollister
    A woman who says she was one of the victims of a man videotaping up women's skirts is speaking out about that awful experience.She says she knew something wasn't right when the man kept creeping up to her in the aisles of the store.
    A woman who says she was one of the victims of a man videotaping up women's skirts is speaking out about that awful experience.She says she knew something wasn't right when the man kept creeping up to her in the aisles of the store.
  • Man indicted in fatal freeway crash in Gilbert

    Man indicted in fatal freeway crash in Gilbert

    A man has been indicted in a freeway crash last year that killed a passenger in his car and injured an Arizona Department of Public Safety worker.
    A man has been indicted in a freeway crash last year that killed a passenger in his car and injured an Arizona Department of Public Safety worker.
  • Tempe police uncover heroin operation after traffic stop

    Tempe police uncover heroin operation after traffic stop

    Tempe Police say they busted a heroin smuggling operation.Officers first discovered during a traffic stop Tuesday.The whole thing happened near Southern Price in a neighborhood just east of the intersection.
    Tempe Police say they busted a heroin smuggling operation.Officers first discovered during a traffic stop Tuesday.The whole thing happened near Southern Price in a neighborhood just east of the intersection.
PHOENIX -

It's been more than 22 years since Debra Milke was convicted and sentenced to death for the horrific murder of her 4-year-old son.

But on Thursday, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals overturned that conviction, saying it hinged on a confession made to a detective with a history of misconduct.

It was a crime that sent shockwaves through the valley.  A mother accused of dressing up her son in his favorite outfit and promising him a visit to Santa Claus in December 1989.

But the little boy never made it to see Santa.  His body was found in the desert -- shot three times in the head.

Milke was convicted of first degree murder and sentenced to death.

Two other men, James Styers and Roger Scott, were also convicted and sit on death row.

Christopher Milke's father is not happy with the decision of the federal appeals court in California.

"My message?  I think they are a bunch of pompous a****..they are ultra liberal.  Let them pony up the money for her to stay on death row," said AZ Milke.

A jury convicted Debra Milke of first-degree murder based on her confession to then-Phoenix police detective Armando Saldate. But Saldate never recorded the confession and he has a long history of lying under oath, having confessions tossed and violating constitutional rights during interrogations.

"It is perjury after perjury, interrogations that are without tape recorders. It borders on criminal," said Paul Huebl, a private investigator.

Not only was Saldate a bad cop, the appeals court said prosecutors failed to disclose his long history of misconduct to Milke's lawyers. The result: conviction thrown out and the State of Arizona must decide what to do next.

Follow this story:

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Trench collapse traps workers

    Trench collapse traps workers

    Thursday, July 31 2014 2:56 PM EDT2014-07-31 18:56:22 GMT
    Two construction workers were rescued from a collapsed trench outside a home in Rye, N.Y. on Thursday.  Firefighters from across Westchester County responded to the scene at 15 Bradford Ave. at about noon.
    Two construction workers were rescued from a collapsed trench outside a home in Rye, N.Y. on Thursday.  Firefighters from across Westchester County responded to the scene at 15 Bradford Ave. at about noon.
  • 5 annoying things about the New York City subway

    5 annoying things about the New York City subway

    Thursday, July 31 2014 2:55 PM EDT2014-07-31 18:55:21 GMT
    Subway problems are annoying, but it’s just a part of living in New York City. Public transportation isn’t glamorous. It’s a pain. It’s a convenience that can cause an inconvenience. Here is a list of five annoying things about the subway system.
    Subway problems are annoying, but it’s just a part of living in New York City. Public transportation isn’t glamorous. It’s a pain. It’s a convenience that can cause an inconvenience. Here is a list of five annoying things about the subway system.
  • Woman plunges to death over cliff in Catskills

    Woman plunges to death over cliff in Catskills

    Thursday, July 31 2014 2:42 PM EDT2014-07-31 18:42:28 GMT
    Authorities say a 23-year-old woman trying to take a picture by the edge of a cliff in the Catskill Mountains died after falling more than 150 feet.
    Authorities say a 23-year-old woman trying to take a picture by the edge of a cliff in the Catskill Mountains died after falling more than 150 feet.
Powered by WorldNow
Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices