Once upon a time Information

In November 1989 a young woman told prosecutors in San Mateo County, California, that she had suddenly recalled a memory of her father murdering her best friend twenty years earlier. Within days, the prosecutors charged Eileen Franklin's father with first degree murder, even though most of her facts were public knowledge and her story was uncorroborated by any independent evidence. One year later, George Franklin stood trial for the murder of Susan Nason. Did Eileen Franklin really witness her father murder eight-year-old Susan Nason or was this memory created in Eileen's mind, unwittingly or not, as an explanation of her troubled childhood? Psychologists and psychiatrists agree that it is possible for the mind to repress and later retrieve a memory of a traumatic event; they also agree that it is possible for the mind to create a false memory that is believed and told by the person with the same conviction as if it were true. In Once Upon a Time, Harry MacLean chronicles this bizarre murder case from its very beginning to the present day, exploring in detail the history and psychopathology of a family traumatized by a brutal and cruel father. MacLean provides a gripping day-to-day account of the remarkable and precedent-setting trial from the perspectives of the lawyers who tried the case, the judge who presided over it, the detectives who put it together, and the jurors who rendered the verdict. Once Upon a Time presents many facts not known to the jury or the general public and details the contradictory but fascinating expert testimony on the nature of memory and the protective processes of the mind. In this thorough yet compelling account, MacLean challenges the reader with theultimate question: Is Eileen's story true or false?

What our member says...