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We need your help getting Tyler Perry’s attention regarding Rodney’s case

Reed family in front of Supreme Court of the United States

Good morning family and friends, 

My family and I thank everybody who supported us in getting to the US Supreme Court and who shared the media attention we received while out in DC. 

We finally made it to Bastrop Saturday night after being stuck in the DC/ Maryland/ Virginia (DMV) area days longer than we had anticipated (and hoped). We were so glad to see Mama’s face and finally get to hug her when she picked us up from the Austin Bergstrom airport.  Hearing how proud she was when she mentioned the comments people made to her about how successful we had been in raising awareness about Rodney’s current situation while at SCOTUS was icing on the cake.  Needless to say, it felt so good to finally be home in Texas.

I want to share with yall something that God placed on Mama’s heart.  What Mama said during the car ride from the airport confirmed my belief that with the way things have been developing recently, Rodney will be home SOON!

We were about halfway to Mama’s house when she described having a very strong feeling that God was calling her to reach out to someone about Rodney’s case.  I asked her who.  She responded Tyler Perry.  With such intense emotion in her voice, she talked about how there have been so many people going through situations like Rodney’s and that the only difference is that there is actual evidence in Rodney’s case that proves the rampant prosecutorial misconduct and corruption which led to his wrongful incarceration.  Mama expressed her belief that Tyler Perry could tell Rodney’s story in such a profound way that Rodney’s situation would be amplified substantially. And at such an astonishing magnitude, the likes of which we have yet to see, that it will leave us all in awe of God- and also have the power to enact major changes to how things are done in Bastrop, in Texas, in our country, and the world.

Mama does not play when it comes to God and family.  So, I know when Mama says she has been called by God to make something happen, it will be done.  And not only will it be done, but it will be done in such a way that everyone will fear; they will tell what God has brought about, and ponder what God has done.” -Psalm 64:9. 

Mama proclaimed from the very beginning when Rodney was falsely convicted, “God has His hands in this”.  And my family stands as we have always been, standing firm in knowing that God is good all the time and that God will ensure we see justice! 

We are asking for your help in getting Tyler Perry’s attention so he can help us bring more awareness to Rodney’s case. Here is how:

1. Go to our Reed Justice Initiative Instagram account

2. Go to this picture that includes Richard, RJ, and me holding up the “Rodney Reed is Innocent” banner in front of the US Supreme Court (there will be a long accompanying caption addressing Mr. Perry) : https://www.instagram.com/p/Bzr1zNTp1NC/

3. Post a comment under this picture and here’s the key— MAKE SURE TO MENTION TYLER PERRY in your comment by typing @tylerperry somewhere in your post.  Also, be sure to include either one or all of the following hashtags:

#RodneyReedIsInnocent
#FreeRodneyReed
#GrantRodneyReedANewTrial

Here is the caption we’ll be using that you can respond to:

“Good morning @tylerperry.  I am asking you to help my brother Rodney Reed cross to freedom and exoneration.  My family just got back from Washington DC to plead with the US Supreme Court to take up his case.  Rodney has been on TX death row since 1998 for a crime he did not commit.  All the evidence in this case points to Jimmy Fennell and his known associates being the actual murderers. 

Rodney is represented by the Innocence Project.  This link to our postcard campaign includes more information about Rodney’s case: https://www.reedjusticeinitiative.com/to-bastrop-county-district-attorney-bryan-goertz/

The first paragraph of the following url links to specials on Rodney’s case produced by CNN, A&E, the Discovery Network, MSNBC, etc.: https://www.reedjusticeinitiative.com/help-remove-this-knife-from-the-reed-family/

On June 26, 2019, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals (CCA) rejected Rodney’s appeal to DNA test all of the crime scene evidence and admit the expert testimonies of renowned forensic pathologists including Dr. Michael Baden (who chaired the federal committee that re-investigated the deaths of President Kennedy and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr). https://www.kxan.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/40/2019/06/Reed-CCA-press-statement-6-26-19-for-immediate-release.pdf  There is the widespread belief that the Texas CCA is involved in a cover up.

Right now, the Texas CCA’s decision is subject to review by SCOTUS.  We pray SCOTUS considers my family’s plea for Rodney’s freedom and chance to prove he’s innocent via a retrial.  

Mr. Perry, we could really use your expert storytelling skills to amplify Rodney’s story.  We believe you could make such a huge difference in accelerating the wheels of justice and be a major force in leading my brother to freedom and exoneration.  Will you help the Reed family cross to being a whole family again by joining us to light a fire that burns and shines so bright that Texas is put in a position where they have no other choice but to free my brother Rodney and grant him a new trial to prove his innocence?

#JusticeForStaceyStites
#RodneyReedIsInnocent
#FreeRodneyReed
#GrantRodneyReedANewTrial
#JusticeForRodneyReed

We can do ALL things through Christ who strengthens us. We’re bringing Rodney home! And so shall it be!

**This is an abridged and edited version of the post published an hour earlier.

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Help Remove this Knife From the Reed Family

Someone once asked me, “What does it feel like to have your brother on death row for a crime he didn’t commit?” To have all this evidence out there. Everybody seeing it. **His case being on *A&E, CNN, the Discovery Channel (ID), MSNBC, detailed in Framed: How an Innocent Man ended up on Texas Death Row, and the award-winning documentary State Vs. Reed, etc. On ALL these different major media outlets. Probably the most talked about death row case in the state of Texas, yet he’s still there on death row. “How does that feel?”

The only way I could try to make them understand what it truly felt like- the only analogy I could come up with- was to have them imagine:

You’re walking along one day. Everything in your life is going pretty well. And then- out of the blue- somebody just jumps out and stabs you. And they stab you deep. And for no valid reason at all. And they put that knife in you in such a way that you can’t remove it yourself and they leave it there. The embedded knife doesn’t kill you, but it causes you pain- such deep agonizing pain. You can still move. You can still breathe. You can still do all your activities of daily living, but not like you used to. Every move you make, you feel it. Every time you’re awake, you see it. You’re never able to feel comfortable because that knife is stuck so deep in you.

Now, YOU imagine: having that knife deeply embedded within you and living with that pain everyday 24/7 for 22 years. And you yourself can do nothing about it. Imagine that nightmare.

You hope and you pray for the day that you can be free of that knife. The day that you can start to feel whole. The day that you can start to heal. The day that you can start to truly love. But you know you can experience none of those things while you have this wound in you that cannot heal. With this blade poking at you. Poking in you. Poking through you. Every day. 24 hours of the day.

Some people in your life have been there with you since the beginning- hoping, praying, screaming, yelling, fighting, crying alongside you- helping you try to get the attention of someone with the power to get this knife out of you. Some people in your life don’t do much at all even though they’ve been seeing you suffering in so much pain. They say things like, “We see you’ve got a knife stuck in you. We hope you get it out” or “I hope you can heal one day.”

The craziest thing though is that there are people out there with the knowledge and the power to get this knife out of you. They are fully aware of this blade deep within you that you did nothing to deserve. Yet they sit back and they do nothing. Why is that? Do they lack the courage? Maybe. Is someone blackmailing them? Maybe. Whatsoever their reasons may be, it is not reason enough to avoid bringing you out of your unwarranted pain.

I recognize Bastrop County District Attorney Bryan Goertz did not put this knife in me. He’s not the one who stabbed this knife into my family. However, Bryan Goertz does have the power in his hands to have this knife be removed. If Bryan Goertz does not do everything he can to remove this knife, eventually this wound is going to kill us. It’s going to kill Rodney. It’s already been slowly killing us. It’s killing my brothers. It’s killing me. It’s killing my mother who is up in age. It. Is. Going. To. Kill. Us. That’s how real this is.

This is why I’m asking everyone- everyone who is my family, everyone who is my friend, everyone who believes in truth and justice, everyone who believes in right- to come together. Let us band together and ignite a fire under the person who can actually do something to remove this knife- Bastrop County District Attorney Bryan Goertz. Let’s make this fire burn and shine so bright that the right people step in at the right time and help us make our fire shine even brighter- so much so that Goertz is in a position where he has no other choice but to remove this knife that Jimmy Fennell- and possible accomplices of Fennell’s- has embedded in my family.

We are all children of God. We all deserve a fair chance at justice. That’s all we’re asking. Please. Help Rodney. Help my mother. Help my brothers. Help my family. Help me. Help us do what it takes to have Bryan Goertz do everything in his power to remove this knife that’s so deeply embedded within the Reed family.

This is why we started the postcard campaign. Please fill out a postcard today. Refer your friends, family members, anyone who believes in justice to this link:
https://www.reedjusticeinitiative.com/to-bastrop-county-district-attorney-bryan-goertz/ and have them fill out a postcard. Let’s make sure that these postcards are forever embedded in the hearts and minds of Bryan Goertz and the staff at the Bastrop County District Attorney’s office.

** This specific sentence was updated on 6/25/2019. It originally read: “His case being on A&E, CNN, the Discovery Channel (ID), MSNBC, award-winning documentaries, etc. “
*In the A&E program, the name Dustin Bailey is used in place of Jimmy Fennell- Stacey’s fiance- who all the evidence points to as Stacey’s true murderer.

This link goes to part 2 of the A&E special listed in the first paragraph.
This link goes to all of the episodes of season 3 of CNN/ HLN’s Death Row Stories series. The episode titled “Love Kills” is the one on Rodney’s case. It is listed as #2.

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How Can We Ensure Mr. Goertz Reads My Entire 04/09/2019 Email and Acts On It?

Good morning family,

I sent Bastrop County District Attorney Bryan Goertz an email and need your help making sure he was able to receive and read my entire message. My email is in response to the comments he made in the following article on April 2nd: https://www.statesman.com/news/20190402/letter-writing-campaign-seeks-new-trial-for-death-row-inmate-rodney-reed

To give a summary, my message to Mr. Goertz is that he needs to do everything in his power to see to it that Rodney gets a new and fair trial where all the evidence can be seen and heard because Mr. Goertz has an ethical duty to do so.

This is the exact message I sent to him on April 9, 2019:

“Good Morning Mr. Goertz,

You are not telling the whole truth here. The truth of the matter is you do have the power to ensure Rodney is granted a new trial. You need to step up. As district attorney, you can concede in court that a convicted person is 1.) innocent or 2.) that their conviction is unconstitutional. Because Rodney’s conviction was the result of a series of constitutional violations- including prosecutorial misconduct, trial by a jury of folks who were not his peers, failure to include all evidence and witness testimonies, inadequate representation, and so much more- you can do something about it. In fact, as district attorney, if you think there is a constitutional violation in a person’s case, you have an ethical duty to concede error.

In the article, you say, “I don’t think there’s an innocent man on death row,” referring to my brother. Now this is coming from a man who graduated from Baylor Law School- one of the top 50 law schools in the country! I don’t understand it. And it’s concerning to say the least! How do you not see that my brother is innocent of the murder of Ms. Stacey Stites with all the evidence that is out there?

You have the testimonies- sworn affidavits- of 4 medical examiners, including even the one who put Rodney on death row, Dr. Roberto Bayardo. In Bayardo’s recanted statement from 2012, he stated that his finding “very few” sperm indicated that my brother and Ms. Stites had sex “not less than 24 hours before Ms. Stites’s death.” So, you have Dr. Bayardo and three other independent medical examiners- those three being experts in their field- testifying that there’s no way possible Rodney could have killed Ms. Stites based on the time of death and the lividity of her body. When you consider this information and also Jimmy Fennell’s testimony that he and Ms. Stites spent a quiet evening at home around this time, based on this information alone, there’s no way in the world Rodney could have committed this murder. And then with all the other evidence that has come out pointing at the DNA of known associates of Fennell’s- cops David Hall and Ed Salmela– how can you not see that Rodney is not guilty of the murder of Ms. Stacey Stites? This makes me seriously question the caliber of law school graduates that Baylor Law School is sending out into our communities.

And if comprehension of facts is not one of your strong suits, one thing that does not require a strong command of comprehension is the fact that Rodney’s conviction was and still is unconstitutional. Rodney’s right to due process was violated! Rodney never did get a fair trial in the first place. He did not get a chance to call his witnesses. There was evidence that was not tested and still has not been tested. The most important piece of evidence in this case- the belt, the murder weapon itself, that was used to strangle Ms. Stites to death- has never been tested! How are you not going to DNA test the murder weapon and then consistently defend Rodney’s conviction, oppose DNA testing, and advocate for his execution?

All we’re asking of you is to do everything in your power to see that Rodney is granted a new and fair trial. Every major district attorney’s office has a conviction integrity unit or something to that effect which includes a process for reviewing cases of claimed innocence, so what we’re asking you for is normal. Most importantly, that is the just thing to do period, and especially when the stakes are as high as they are when you consider that the death penalty is permanent!

You can make recommendations. Your word is very powerful. You can bring a quick end to this abuse. You do have the power to ensure that Rodney is granted a new trial. Seek truth and justice! Most importantly, stand up and do the right thing!

Respectfully,

Rodrick Reed”

Maybe y’all can get through to Mr. Goertz. If you can, ask Mr. Goertz to do everything he can do- everything in his power- to ensure that my brother Rodney is granted a new and fair trial where all the evidence can be seen and heard. Ask Mr. Goertz to make time to sit down with my mom and me. I have reached out to Mr. Goertz multiple times by phone and by email and I still have not received a response from him directly. I will continue trying to do so. I do need some help in my efforts. Maybe y’all can support me along the way. Call him. Email him. Fill out a postcard. If something in my letter resonates with you, tell Mr. Goertz that. Maybe you could even read the entire thing back to Mr. Goertz. Tell Mr. Goertz to reach out to me by phone at 512- two seven zero-1596. Or tell him to email me. He has my personal email and he can reach me there 24/7/365. I will respond.

Whatever you can do to support the efforts of my immediate family and me would be greatly appreciated. The number to Bryan Goertz’s office is 512-five eight one-7125. His work email is bryan dot goertz at co.bastrop.tx.us. Of course, always be respectful when you reach out to his office.

Family, I ask you, what are your thoughts on how we can ensure Mr. Goertz reads my entire 04/09/2019 email and acts on it?

Thank you, family, with much love from my family.