Rodney Reed Advocates Are Rescinding Their Support After Reports Of Old Accusations Surface
Some have expressed regret about supporting Reed's case.
The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals decided to stop Rodney Reed's execution on Friday after a campaign assisted in the efforts.
However, the jubilation around his case has tempered in recent days as more people have looked into Reed's past and uncovered six separate sexual assault cases identifying him as a suspect.
His supporters, many of whom are on both sides of the political aisle, say biased police may have embellished the charges against him in order to make the case more of a slam dunk. Others have said Reed was well known in Bastrop, Texas, for accosting and assaulting multiple women.
Reed's lawyer, Bryce Benjet told TIME that Reed was charged and acquitted in only one of the sexual assault cases he was accused of.
Court records and local news reports show that the mother of Reed's children filed charges against him in 1991 saying he attacked her and raped her. She dropped the charges weeks later according to local news outlet KXAN.
In another case, Linda Schlueter picked Reed out in a lineup accusing him of kidnapping and trying to rape her before she broke free.
After he was arrested, police ran his DNA through a system and got matches on four other cases. Two were rapes where the victims were unable to identify the perpetrator, one that happened under a bridge and another involving a 12-year-old girl.
Ultimately, the 51-year-old was convicted in 1996 of the abduction, rape and murder of 19-year-old Stacey Stites. Reed has consistently denied killing Stites, claiming they were having an affair that her fiancé, former Bastrop, Texas, police officer Jimmy Fennell, disapproved of.
For 18 years, Benjet has argued that there was an avalanche of evidence implicating Fennell as the 19-year-old's killer. Benjet has secured dozens of new statements and pieces of evidence making it clear Fennell not only killed Stites but had help from other Bastrop officers in covering up her death.
His case made national news as his execution date, November 20, approached and stars like Rihanna, Meek Mill and Kim Kardashian tweeted their support.
Today, I had the honor of meeting #RodneyReed in person and the privilege of sitting with him when he got the news that the highest court in Texas had issued a stay of execution and remanded the case back to the trial court for further consideration.— Kim Kardashian West (@KimKardashian) November 16, 2019
Millions of people signed petitions in his name and now his case will head back to trial. However, some stars are rescinding their support based on what they've learned about Reed's past.
View this post on Instagram
In this era of add water activism it is very easy to fall for mass movements in directions of both cancelation and/or exoneration. I apologize for my error in rushing to the aid of this cause without knowledge of the full scope. I will be more mindful in the future. Be wary, be watchful, be wise. These are unseemly times. (Links to everything I reference are in my IG story and available online)
"In this era of add water activism, it is very easy to fall for mass movements in directions of both cancelation and/or exoneration. I apologize for my error in rushing to the aid of this cause without knowledge of the full scope," Amanda Seales wrote on Instagram.
"I will be more mindful in the future. Be wary, be watchful, be wise. These are unseemly times," she added.
Since Seales apologized for her support of the case, people on Twitter have started to debate Reed's past.
i think it’s interestingly odd that there is anger towards ppl who want to get an entire scope of who rodney reed is... like yall are literally saying forget other possible crimes bc he wasnt tried & rally behind this particular crime where he could be executed.— get off my lawn (@Bee_Gorgeous) November 18, 2019
I’m not going to lie Iam very upset and pray that this new information about #RodneyReed is just hear say.— SecureMy💰OwnBag🦋 (@NoRoom_4Hate) November 18, 2019
So nobody felt it was important to mention that Rodney Reed was linked to 7 other rape/assault charges on women and they found his semen in 3 and one of them was a 12 year old girl?— Omoruoti 🇰🇪 (@Ziggy_theALPHA) November 18, 2019
Did y’all know that #RodneyReed dna was/has been linked (not just accused, actually linked) to other rape victims?? I say this all the time. STOP jumping on bandwagons. Do your own research, then join a cause, that you’re well versed in. pic.twitter.com/0QWF26enDP— ShaeTheWriter📝 (@Sh3SoS3XI) November 18, 2019
To all of you out there that keeps bringing up the rape of the 12 yr old and trying to link it to #RodneyReedIsInnocent here is the proof it was linked to another man. That 12 yr old was my friend and she told me the same thing that she told David Board pic.twitter.com/HyrGBHMFHZ— Joie Monfort (@jj_lotta1973) November 18, 2019
Reed's case will now go back to the trial court in Bastrop for more hearings about the new evidence submitted by his lawyers.
My opinion about Rodney Reed is they pushed a narrative that they know is extremely sensitive and triggering to black people. I don’t understand why the information presented to us was skewed to get our emotions going while leaving out all of the other rapes he was connected to.— Big Eva (@auntieeva7) November 18, 2019