Another Arson Case Revisited


Days after we blogged about a Pennsylvania arson conviction that is poised to be overturned based on unreliable evidence, a similar case is unraveling in Texas. KTVT-CBS Dallas Fort Worth and the Associated Press report that a hearing was held on Tuesday to review the murder conviction of a 66-year-old woman found guilty of setting her uncle on fire in 1993. A decision on whether the conviction should be overturned was not yet made.


Contrary to expert testimony provided at the trial more than 20 years ago, Sonia Cacy’s

Innocence Project of Texas

attorneys — along with a state panel that reviewed the case — say that there was no evidence of arson in the fire that claimed the life of Bill Richardson and no proof of gasoline on his clothing.


Innocence Project of Texas President Gary Udashen said the evidence proves his client’s innocence. “Without the science, there is no case. . . . If there’s no gasoline poured on Bill Richardson’s clothes, there is no murder. There is no case. They’re focused on things that make no difference at all,” said Udashen, according to KTVT-CBS.


Cacy was sentenced to 99 years in prison but was released on parole after serving five years. The judge said he won’t make a ruling for a few months. The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals would have the final say on overturning Cacy’s conviction.


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