The Truth About The Career Girl Murders
For several decades, I have been an avid reader and subscriber to the New York Post. Naturally, I expect that its reportage is vetted for accuracy and authenticity to ensure trustworthiness and journalistic professionalism.
Regrettably, the Sunday, August 18, 2013 account of the brutal rape murders of Janice Wylie and Emily Hoffert which you entitle The Career Girl Murders failed miserably to meet, even remotely, basic journalistic standards of factual accuracy and historic essence. Permit me to be candid and explain:
On August 28, 1963, at approximately, 10:30 a.m., the fiend junkie killer, Richard Robles, climbed into apartment 3C at 55 E. 88th Street in Manhattan and brutally raped and murdered Janice Wylie and then slaughtered her roommate Emily Hoffert. Thereafter, Robles got his heroin fix inside the apartment of Nathan “Jimmy” Delaney and Margie Delaney. He confessed his crimes to both of them at that time and thereafter at separate times in the following months.
Eight months later in Brooklyn, on Friday, April 24, 1964, George Whitmore, a nineteen year-old impoverished young man with an IQ somewhere south of 70 (according to the Bellevue doctors who observed and examined him for over a six month period) was arrested for an attempted rape that occurred just two days before. During the course of the custodial interrogation conducted by Brooklyn detectives that spanned a seventeen hour period, Whitmore confessed to committing two serious substantive crimes that occurred in Brooklyn (Kings County): an attempted rape and murder.
During the course of the questioning, the Brooklyn detectives found in George Whitmore’s wallet a photo prominently depicting a blonde woman in the foreground seated on the back seat of a top-down convertible and a brunette seated in the passenger seat. The Brooklyn detectives, Joe DiPrima and Edward Bulger, believed that the blonde in the photo was Janice Wylie. They proceeded to question Whitmore about the Wylie/Hoffert murders. After hours of propounding leading questions, Whitmore finally confessed.
Two months after Whitmore was indicted in Manhattan (New York County) for the Wylie/Hoffert murders, Assistant District Attorney (ADA) Mel Glass informed legendary District Attorney Frank Hogan that serious questions existed with respect to the guilt of George Whitmore. With Hogan’s blessing, Mel Glass found incontrovertible evidence that exonerated George Whitmore and incriminated the killer, Richard Robles.
With ADA Mel Glass and ADA John Keenan (now Federal District Court Judge sitting in the Southern District at Foley Square in Manhattan) as the lead prosecutors, the defendant, Richard Robles, was tried in New York State Supreme Court, New York County and convicted before a jury on December 1, 1965. Supreme Court Justice, Irwin Davidson presided.
Significant to note that during the course of the trial, the Brooklyn detectives, Joseph DiPrima and Edward Bulger, who obtained the false confession from George Whitmore, refused to admit their mistake and testified in support and on behalf of the defendant Robles. ADA Keenan conducted a devastating cross-examination of the Brooklyn detectives which revealed their misconduct and unprofessional engagement with George Whitmore which resulted in a flawed and unreliable confession.
Yet nowhere in “The Career Girl Murders” article is there any mention or slight reference to the significant heroic roles played by Mel Glass, John Keenan and D.A. Frank Hogan who were solely responsible for exonerating an unjustly accused George Whitmore and bringing to justice the murderer Robles. Instead, the article mistakenly stigmatizes all of law enforcement as dismally corrupt, perverse, uncaring and unprofessional.
In addition, the article also misrepresents factually how and why the Delaneys, to whom Robles confessed immediately after the murders and at many more times thereafter, came forward to Mel Glass who then through investigative techniques, corroborated the truthfulness of their subsequent in court testimony.
On May 28, 2013 Kensington published my book on this subject, Echoes of My Soul. It is my 27th book and was selected as Publishers Weekly pick of the week. Mel Glass asked me to write it so that the truth about the case would be objectively revealed. My research, with the active participation of Mel Glass, delved into original source materials including, but not limited to, the trial transcripts, and law enforcement investigative materials.
It seems only fair that before the Post would publish any article about the Wylie/Hoffert case, it would at the very least interview John Keenan and review original court documents. If indeed those minimal efforts were done, then investigative journalism and reporting would have resulted in informing the public in the article that the professionalism and skill of DA Frank Hogan, ADA Mel Glass (who subsequently served as a Criminal Court Judge and acting Supreme Court Judge for over two decades) and ADA John Keenan averted a terrible injustice, exonerated an unjustly accused young man and brought to justice a vicious killer.
Moreover, their efforts forever reformed law enforcement practices and procedures. Instead, a misleading rendition of a faux narrative was taken out of mothballs, slapped into the article and portrayed as fact. Your readers deserve better.