Connecticut Man Freed After Two Decades in Prison


Kenneth Ireland walked out of a Connecticut courthouse today a free man for the first time in 21 years. A state judge overturned Ireland’s conviction today, based on DNA evidence that he didn’t commit the murder of which he was convicted in 1988. The

Connecticut Innocence Project

, a member of the

Innocence Network

, represents Ireland.

Charges are pending against Ireland case, but it is unclear whether prosecutors will pursue a new trial. Ireland’s next court date is August 19.

"This is yet another Connecticut example of an innocent person having spent two decades in prison for a very serious crime while an actual rapist and murderer has been roaming free since 1986," said Judiciary Committee Co-Chairman Mike Lawlor, D-New Haven. "This is not acceptable."

Read the full story

. (WFSB, 08/05/09)

In another case in Virginia this week, a former Navy SEAL trainee

was cleared of murder and abduction charges in a 1995 case

. Dustin A. Turner is the first person cleared under a 2004 law that allows prisoners to present non-DNA evidence of their innocence. The Virginia Court of Appeals yesterday granted Turner a “writ of actual innocence.” He remains in prison pending action by a local court.

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