Missouri Court Staffer Fired for Aiding Wrongfully Convicted


Sharon Snyder, a veteran court staffer, was fired for giving

Robert Nelson

a public document to help him seek DNA testing. The document, which helped him file a successful motion, also won his release from prison in June based on DNA testing that pointed toward his innocence and identified the two true perpetrators, who are now in custody. The Associated Press reports:

“She gave me a lot of hope,” Nelson said of Snyder. “She and my sister gave me strength to go on and keep trying. I call her my angel. She says she’s not, but she truly is.”

Sharon Snyder, a court employee for 34 years, was fired for insubordination nine months before she was scheduled to retire because she offered legal advice to Nelson.

“I don’t regret what I did,” she told AOL Jobs in an interview. “I am glad because it was doing right by a person.” She also said she has no immediate plans to find full-time work again, but would be interested in work part-time as an advisor for battered women. (She said she is a survivor of domestic violence.)

Nelson was convicted of a 1983 home invasion and rape and sentenced to 70 years. After two unsuccessful attempts to file for DNA testing, Snyder gave Nelson’s sister a copy of a motion filed in a different case that could help his appeal.


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