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Courts should not allow recovered memories

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Posted: Thursday, August 23, 2012 12:00 am

Last month the Minnesota Supreme Court tossed out a lawsuit by a man whose case rested on a repressed memory claim, siding with a lower court's ruling that repressed memory is an unproved theory. We had our own experience on how unreliable repressed memory is with the Father Michael Kelly versus Travis Trotter lawsuit.

No student or staff member ever saw anything or heard Trotter say anything that suggested any wrongdoing by Father Kelly. Even Trotter's father, who's a doctor of psychology, didn't catch on.

I don't have a problem paying Trotter a settlement if the memories are real, but if they are false he should not have been paid $3.75 million.

Historically, false recovered memories are also known to ruin innocent people's lives. So why do California's courts think recovered memory should be allowed as evidence? It's sort of like the polygraph test which wasn't allowed. Hopefully someday California will figure it out, too.

Erica Robinson


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