When my friend Hans Reiser was charged with the murder of his wife, I based my belief in his innocence on three factors: his character, his long-standing inability to carry out even simple plans, and the astonishing series of prejudicial leaks that somehow kept coming out in the months before the trial. The fact that the kids (key witnesses) were taken out of the country and not returned in time for initial testimony also smelled peculiar.
Lacking a body or any strong evidence, they tried to build a case where he both killed her in the heat of passion and also planned it meticulously in advance. The former is possible for anyone, the latter was obviously absurd to anyone who ever spent an hour in a room with Hans.
My argument against the former was simply that the person I’ve known since 1993 might kill in the heat of the moment, but had the character to own up to it after. Obviously I was wrong.