Friday, June 20, 2008

Texas: Pardon

The Houston Chronicle reports Gov. Rick Perry has granted to a pardon to Ronald Gene Taylor following DNA evidence which suggests Taylor was wrongfully convicted of rape 13 years ago. The Chronicle reports prosecutors built their case "on the victim's identification of Taylor and the testimony of a Houston crime lab analyst." The judge handed down a sentence of 60 years, but the The Innocence Project (of New York) accepted the case when Taylor's stepfather asked for help. The result was a major "forensics scandal" at the Houston Police Department crime lab and "skepticism" with respect to "thousands of convictions." The Chronicle also notes that the governor's pardon "clears the way for Taylor to collect about $700,000 from the state, if he agrees not to sue over his case." See story here.

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