Monday, March 17, 2008

Colorado: Request

Gov. Bill Ritter (D) will be asked to commute the 48-year prison sentence of Clarence Moses-El, or grant a pardon. Moses-El was convicted of rape in 1987 although there was no physical evidence. The victim is said to have named three other suspects before telling prosecutors that her attacker's identity came to her in a dream. In 1995, Moses-El gathered donations from fellow inmates for a DNA test only to learn that the Denver police had thrown what evidence they had away! The "DO NOT DESTROY" labels were ignored. Sen. Ken Gordon, D-Denver now asks, "Who bears the consequences of the destruction of a lot of crucial evidence by law enforcement?" and has introduced Senate Bill 205, which would require courts to grant a new trial if material evidence subject to court ordered preservation is destroyed, lost or otherwise disposed of by law enforcement. Gordon will also be asking Gov. Ritter to either commute Moses-El's sentence or pardon him. See story here. Additional background on the case can be found in the Denver Post, here and here.

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