Rodney Reed‘s life was saved after a state parole board halted the execution of the 54-year-old convicted rapist who has maintained his innocence. Many celebrities have rallied behind him but there are regrets from at least one in particular: actress and comedian Amanda Seales. It was because of that she got a severe clap back from activist Shaun King on Monday.
In a nine-minute video, Seales made several comments and said she regretted supporting Reed.
“It’s very duplicitous, not just his family, but persons who fancy themselves activists, were doing so with the knowledge that his person, Rodney Reed, is not just accused of but has been linked to previous rapes via his DNA being discovered within the victim,” Seales said in part.
King, who is working with Reed’s family fact-checked Seales.
“On behalf of the family of Rodney Reed, I have to respond here directly to @AmandaSeales,” King said on his social media channels. “We’ve counted over 20 egregious factual errors in her viral video, but NONE were more inflammatory and damaging than this one.”
King continued by saying Seales was just not telling the truth.
“Here, she says that Rodney Reed, who she fails to say was a high school student at the time, in Wichita Falls, Texas, raped and killed a woman there. LIES. ALL LIES. I am proud to report that only Amanda, in her rush to get a video out, killed that woman. She is thankfully still alive and well today. She was not murdered by Rodney or anyone else. And a jury voted quickly and unanimously to acquit Rodney on all charges in that case,” he said. “Sooooooo many lies in this video. Rodney did not commit the crime, was acquitted, and the woman was never murdered. People. Be careful what you listen to out here. Amanda called herself Google searching the case for a few hours and said a lot of factually incorrect stuff that does real harm.”
In tweeting about Seales, King also questioned her intelligence.
“Do you really think Rodney Reed duped The Innocence Project for the 18 years they’ve been on this case? Do you think he duped the conservative Board of Pardons and Paroles and the Texas Criminal Court of Appeals? BE SMART, people,” he tweeted. “They saw the actual evidence. WAKE UP!!”
Seales respond on IG Live, not directly addressing King saying she got many of the facts wrong. She said she isn’t the “only one” who isn’t “confident” that Reed is innocent.
In case you missed it, in 1996, 19-year-old Stacey Stites was murdered. By 1998, Rodney Reed, who was 28 at the time, was convicted of murder. Her body was found in Bastrop, Texas on the side of the road.
Reed was tied to the murder because his DNA was found in Stites’s vaginal cavity. However, Reed was having an affair with Stites, who was engaged to police officer Jimmy Fennel. A former co-worker of Stites confirmed the affair.
There are many discrepancies in the case. According to the Innocence Project a team of renowned forensic DNA experts have concluded that it is “medically and scientifically impossible for Reed to be guilty.”
The advocacy group reports, “The prosecution’s only forensic evidence linking Reed to the crime was semen taken from Stites’s body, which was attributed to the consensual relationship between them. The prosecution used this to connect him to the murder and refute this consensual romantic relationship, but supporting testimony has since been recanted and completely discredits the state’s case.”
In addition, for months, Jimmy Fennel was considered the main suspect and would later go to prison for 10 years for kidnap and sexual assault. The police stopped investigating him when they found Reed’s DNA in Stites vaginal activity — again, his DNA wasn’t found anywhere else that would indicate a murder. Fennel also gave conflicting accounts of where he was the night of Stites’s murder.
In addition, the murder weapon, which was a belt, was never tested for DNA evidence. Requests for DNA testing of crime scene evidence “has been repeatedly denied by the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals. In 2018, the United States Supreme Court declined to directly review the Texas courts’ denial of DNA testing.”
The state parole board recommended that Texas Gov. Greg Abbott delay the execution for 120 days.