Innocent Florida inmate wins new trial
Innocence Project client Chad Heins, who has spent more than a decade in Florida prison for a murder that DNA now shows he didn’t commit, will be have another day in court. Prosecutors announced yesterday that they dropped an appeal of a judge’s 2006 decision vacating the conviction against Heins and that they would retry him for the 1994 murder of his pregnant sister-in-law. DNA testing conducted in 2004 and 2005 shows that several pieces of biological evidence from the crime scene came from a single unknown male.
Meanwhile, Heins remains incarcerated in Florida. He will be arraigned on the first-degree murder charge next week and his attorneys will seek to have him released on bond.
"We believe Chad should have been out of prison years ago," said Nina Morrison, staff attorney for the New York-based legal group that uses DNA to free the wrongly convicted. "Three years after the new DNA evidence was discovered, this conviction is finally history. But unfortunately, Chad will have to continue to battle to prove his innocence."
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. (Florida Times-Union, 7/16/2007)
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