Audio Expert Witness Testifies Re: 1970 Black Panther Murder Case

Ed Poindexter, former head of Omaha’s Black Panther chapter, is appealing his conviction for the 1970 bombing murder of Omaha Policeman Larry Minard. The Neraska Supreme Court will examine two key points that emerged from testimony in May 2007 in Douglas County District Court. Michael Richardson of writes:

Poindexter and his co-defendant, Mondo we Langa (formerly David Rice), who both maintain their innocence, were convicted largely on the brokered testimony of 15 year-old Duane Peak, the confessed bomber, and dynamite allegedly found in Langa’s basement. Peak implicated Poindexter and Langa in exchange for a lenient sentence as a juvenile instead of facing the electric chair. Contradictory police testimony about the dynamite and expert witness testimony that Peak did not make the emergency call that lured Minard to his death have opened a huge breach in the prosecution case against the Panther leader.

Langa raised the issue of the voice on the tape in a 1983 appeal to the Nebraska Supreme Court. At that time, the Court noted there had been no “expert in voice analysis” examination of the tape and thus, “there is insufficient evidence to support the claim that Duane Peak did not make the call.” However, in May 2007 Judge Bowie did hear expert witness testimony about the voice on the tape. Voice analyst Tom Owen testified that in his opinion the voice was not that of Peak thus undermining the credibility of the state’s chief witness.