Longest Trial in the History of US
The longest court trial in the history of US is also one of the most expensive. The Mcmartin Preschool Trial in 1980’s is on the top post when it comes to the length of the trial period. The investigation of the day care sexual abuse case happened from 1984-1987 and the trial has been in the court from 1987-1990.
The investigation started when one of the parents of a student in McMartin preschool filed a complaint to the police about the alleged harassment of her child. Judy Johnson, the complainant, claimed that Ray Buckey, the teacher of her son, has been sodomizing her son. She filed the complaint when her child started to suffer from a problem related to bowel movement. According to her, the cause of the painful bowel movements of her child is the alleged molesting that he is getting from his preschool teacher.
There are other weird allegations that Judy Johnson has given against Ray Buckey who happens to be the grandson of the school founder. She has stated that Ray Buckey has the ability to fly in the air and his mother Peggy McMartin Buckey has drilled a child under the arm. These allegations led to a longer investigation. In 1986, Judy Johnson was found dead because of alcohol related issues.
When Judy Johnson started the claims and allegations, the police made a decision to investigate and interview the other children who were students of McMartin preschool. Hundreds of children were interviewed by the abuse clinic of Children’s Institute International (CII). In the same year in 1984, the clinic claimed that there are 360 children who were abused. Later, some researches were made and the interviews that are made with the children were reviewed. It is found out that the children answered in a suggestive way to the extent that they are already led to a false answer.
During the grand jury, only 41 children testified and the number became fewer and fewer in the next pre-hearings. Different allegations were brought up during the trial and some are just so unbelievable. Some are associating the McMartin preschool to come satanic act where there are tunnels hidden in the school where the children are brought and molested. The allegations are so bizarre and some of the people who are claiming these things have hired an expert to prove that there are passages underneath the school ground. In the end, all of these are false.
In 1990, the decision of the court finally came out and none of the accused was found guilty. Peggy McMartine was acquitted and she is proven to be innocent. After a short process, she was able to get her license to teach again. Her son, Ray Buckey was also freed on bail. He was cleared on 52 out of 65 counts and was able to go out after being held in jail for almost 5 years. Only two of the jurors voted guilty against him. This made the media overwhelmingly focused on the reasons for their decision. All in all, this case that has been tried for the longest time is something that should have been settled in the shortest period of time.