Trial and Error

The Outcry for Justice in the Dennis Dechaine Case

Maine Voices: Dechaine story converts a skeptic

Jul 28, 2010

Maine Voices:
Dechaine story converts a skeptic

A close look at the claims of his defenders carries considerable weight for an online editor.


GRAY – As a news editor myself, I’m always reading for the “editorial slant.” I found the Dennis Dechaine series quite balanced, yet intriguing. In Maine for only three years, and hailing from New Jersey where Megan’s Law originated after an equally heinous murder of an innocent child, I’ve been a proponent of the death penalty for certain crimes. I bear no sympathy for perpetrators of such unthinkable crimes.

James Moore’s account of the case for Dennis Dechaine’s innocence was impressive to this Maine writer.


Tracy Scheckel is editor and half-owner of Maine Hometown News LLC, publisher of the Gray and New Gloucester Gazette, an online journal (

Reading Trevor Maxwell’s stories, I pondered, “If Maine had the death penalty, we wouldn’t have been supporting this guy for the last 22 years.”

I reflected on the horror that both Sarah Cherry’s parents and Megan Kanka’s family in New Jersey continue to endure. I became intrigued at the Trial and Error group, so convinced of Dechaine’s innocence. They couldn’t be right and not have prevailed after 22 years.


I really wanted to read James Moore’s book, “Human Sacrifice,” mentioned in Maxwell’s stories. Aware that the proceeds from the sale went to the Dechaine defense fund, I was reluctant to “contribute.”
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