Archive for the ‘Richard “Speaks”’ Category

The Richard Wanke prosecution clock ticks on for his April 2014 demand for a speedy trial.  Yet his case has been delayed and continued due to “inclement weather”, the illness of his assigned Public Defender, and now again, for personal reasons by the judge who has set the next court date for Friday, February 6, 2015, at 1:30 pm in courtroom 478 of the Winnebago County Courthouse, located at 400 West State Street, in Rockford, IL.

This rescheduled hearing on the disqualification of the Winnebago County Public Defenders office has languished for more than 60 days as Richard’s conflicted counsel walks the fine line between advocating for his offices’s removal from Richard’s representation to protecting it from having to air dirty laundry in public (such as the details of its own involvement in it’s client’s arrest). This divided loyalty lies at the crux of this Friday’s hearing.

Karen Sorensen, the head Public Defender of Winnebago County, withdrew from the case in 2008 citing conflicts-of- interest, and other experienced public defenders who knew the murder victim have also stepped back from the case. Attorney Gregory Clark, was highly respected and well-connected locally. Inadvertent coincidence or not, the wisdom of  scheduling this hearing, critical to decide the very constitutional direction of the defendant’s case, on the exact day of attorney Clark’s death, seven years ago is questionable; at least it is to this defendant.

As Richard Wanke states, “I have been held responsible and without bail in some sense since 2008 in this case and my charging in April 2014, was just the formality of my on-going ordeal. And, so far, while I have also filed a speedy trial demand and repeatedly requested conflict-free counsel, I have yet to receive either. And, somehow, I feel that I am not the only Winnebago County defendant exposed to an unusual degree of jeopardy in the county legal process.”



Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito were convicted in an Italian court yesterday of complicity in the murder of Meredith Kercher (Amanda’s roommate). Amanda was sentenced to 26 years in prison and Raffaele to 25 years.

Are they guilty? Who knows? In our opinion, if they had been tried in a US court, we believe that there would have been sufficient basis to find “reasonable doubt” regarding their guilt. They may not be the most “likable” individuals, and they may have acted unwisely at many times, but that is far from being two “cold-blooded, brutal” murderers.

The immediate response of many in the US is to view the this case as the Italian prosecution’s attempt to convict Amanda and Raffaele for the “inappropriate behavior” and amoral lifestyle of two young Americans living abroad. Timothy Egan’s December 2, 2009, Opinionator, online commentary article in the New York Times at is typical of the degree and nature of the US public outrage being expressed regarding the judgmental attitudes shown by Italian society towards what we Americans perceive as the mostly average and innocent behavior of college aged students. The 400 plus reader comments following his opinion show many in agreement with Mr. Egan’s sentiments.

Most American commentors on the conviction and sentencing of Knox and Sollecito reach the conclusion that their convictions were factually unfounded and their punishment harsh. Many commentors also maintain that American society and the US justice system would never have proceeded to similarly judge and prosecute either based upon so little and so circumstantial evidence to support any assumption of their guilt. Unfortunately, many of us fail to recognize the realities of our own system.

The general American assumption and belief expressed in the impartiality and wise conduct of our judicial system is obviously inaccurate. If that were the case, then our own Rockford authorities would have publicly announced that Richard Wanke is no longer a “person of interest” in the murder of attorney Greg Clark, nearly two years ago, and they would also have dismissed by now the obstruction of justice charge still pending against his landlord, Diane Chavez.

After all, where is the direct evidence linking either of our two friends to the Greg Clark shooting? There may have been some DNA, some fingerprints, some blood, some footprints in the Knox and Sollecito cases to muddle the investigatory waters. But, what explanation exists for the continued bull-headedness of our local authorities?

None, that we at can see. The Rockford police would have found any similar evidence by now linking our friends to the murder, if it existed, considering the exhaustive investigation the Rockford police have conducted and the dissection they have done of two individual lives. Despite whatever improbable witness “sightings” early claimed in the media; our own knowledge of our friends tells us that our authorities must by now have amassed much more concrete evidence to show them that their assumptions connecting either of them to the murder is implausible and wrong. And we are not discussing the typical scenario of the amoral actions of two “irresponsible” teenagers or college students, but a significant variance authorities claim manifested in the normal, very quiet and respectable community life led by at least one of these older, settled individuals.

Our American system is as faulty in many respects as the Italian judicial system that many are now criticizing. Our judicial system has, after all, higher standards than any other judicial system. We hold that people are “innocent until proven guilty”, and it is supposed to be more than lip service to an ideal. As Americans, we profess that the liberty of each individual of our society is the most valuable of our ideals and thus most deserving of the protection by the law. We hold ourselves morally above other societies whenever we perceive individual existence in those societies being subject to the exploitation of the law to serve other purposes.

We, at wish that innocent individuals could rely upon the judicial system to correct mistakes that are made; and rely upon the authorities to recognize in the course of their extensive investigations the difference between innocence and implausible scenarios, and thus act accordingly, and free the innocent. But, that doesn’t happen in our American judicial system, no matter how hard we pretend that it does.

Protected: A note from Richard Wanke:

Posted: March 28, 2009 by scaryhouse in Richard "Speaks", Uncategorized

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got a letter from richard

Posted: February 3, 2009 by scornn in Richard "Speaks", Uncategorized

richard sent along a article to post

After four years, young man gets a shot at justice

“Circuit Judge Ric Howard, known for his tough punishments, instead slapped Thornton with the maximum sentence of 30 years in prison. The judge at one point mentioned Thornton’s father, whom he had sentenced to 30 years in a theft case.”

I found updated articles on this case

I think it is a sad story that this kids was punished for his fathers previous cases with the judge

witch reminded me of a story on This american life this week about jewish belief that a father is punished for a boys sins “Oedipus Hex.”



Change of Address…

Posted: December 19, 2008 by scaryhouse in Richard "Speaks", Uncategorized

Richard’s inmate number and address has changed.

His new mailing address is:

Richard Wanke #K-77902
Western IL CC
2500 Route 99 S
Mount Sterling IL 62353-1462

His new email address is:


It will always be easily available by clicking the link in the right margin. ->

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