Austin Sigg Confesses to Jessica Ridgeway Murder, But We Still Have to Find Him Guilty (VIDEO)

Jessica RidgewayThe past couple weeks have been nothing but horrific crime after horrific crime, and the murder of 10-year-old Colorado girl Jessica Ridgeway on her way to school was one of the worst. Now, alleged murderer 17-year old Austin Reed Sigg has confessed to the crime, according to prosecutors. He also acknowledged a separate attack in May on a female runner.

The case haunted so many of us with young kids because her parents did nothing wrong. Her mother just let her daughter walk to school when she was allegedly abducted and killed. It's haunting and scary. But we still can't say Sigg is guilty. Because even though he "confessed," he still must have a trial.

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As an Internet writer, I often run into this issue where a person confesses to a crime, but I am not allowed to say he did it. It's maddening, but also the way our justice system works, right? Innocent until proven guilty?

Confessions are retracted all the time. People say they admitted guilt under duress. They claim they were lying and on and on. We still have to give alleged criminals their due process and wait before leaping to conclusions over their presumed guilt.

It can be maddening. Not just as someone who writes, but also as someone who observes. I want to be able to recognize real guilt and see when someone is evil and pretend I could have seen it coming.

But even with "overwhelming" evidence against Sigg, we must refrain from saying he is guilty. He gets a trial and all the evidence against him. If he is found guilty, then we can start to say it.

It's easy to say that no one would confess to a murder they didn't commit, but actually it's not that outlandish. Let's recall the JonBenet Ramsey confession that John Mark Karr (now Alexis Reich) once gave. He wasn't guilty. Just crazy.

Sigg may very well be guilty. But he may not. We just have to wait and see. In the meantime, our hearts break for Ridgeway's family. There is no pain imaginable like losing a child.

Do you think only guilty people confess?


Image via srqpix/Flickr

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