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Long Island Man’s Hopes For a New Trial Suddenly Dimmed


— July 26, 2004

RIVERHEAD, N.Y. � There have always been questions surrounding a Long Island teenager’s 1990 conviction for the murders of his wealthy parents. Many believe the killings were ordered by a shady business partner and that the couple’s adopted son, Martin Tankleff, was tricked into implicating himself in a brutal crime he did not commit.

But on Monday, the question marks associated with the Tankleff case were overshadowed, if only for an instant, by an exclamation point. A witness who was expected to implicate violent felons associated with the business partner instead invoked his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination.

“I refuse to answer,” Glenn Harris, a 35-year-old career burglar and drug addict, said each time defense lawyer Bruce Barket asked him a question.

Harris’ change of heart was a devastating blow to efforts by Tankleff’s many supporters �including all of the living siblings of the murder victims � to win his freedom.

Details here from John Springer of Court TV.


RIVERHEAD, N.Y. � There have always been questions surrounding a Long Island teenager’s 1990 conviction for the murders of his wealthy parents. Many believe the killings were ordered by a shady business partner and that the couple’s adopted son, Martin Tankleff, was tricked into implicating himself in a brutal crime he did not commit.

But on Monday, the question marks associated with the Tankleff case were overshadowed, if only for an instant, by an exclamation point. A witness who was expected to implicate violent felons associated with the business partner instead invoked his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination.

“I refuse to answer,” Glenn Harris, a 35-year-old career burglar and drug addict, said each time defense lawyer Bruce Barket asked him a question.

Harris’ change of heart was a devastating blow to efforts by Tankleff’s many supporters �including all of the living siblings of the murder victims � to win his freedom.

Details here from John Springer of Court TV.

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