News 09.13.17

New York Man Acquitted of Double Murder and Released After 16 Years

By Innocence Staff

A White Plains man was acquitted of a 1996 double murder on Tuesday and released after 16 years in prison.

Selwyn Days was convicted in 2001 of the murder of 79-year-old Archie Harris and his home health aide, Betty Ramcharan, after he falsely confessed to the crime during a lengthy interrogation by police, four years after the murders occurred.

Days was tried five times for the murders. The first and third trials ended in hung juries and the second and fourth trials resulted in convictions that were later overturned.

No physical evidence tied Days to the crime and detectives only recorded the final hour and fifteen minutes of his hours-long interrogation. Alibi witnesses said they saw Days in North Carolina within the time frame during which prosecutors said the murders occurred. Days’ original defense team did not pursue the alibi witnesses during his first two trials, and for the last two trials, prosecutors expanded the time frame in which they claimed the murders occurred.

Days has been represented for the past nine years by Glenn Garber, founder and director of the Exoneration Initiative, and Roberto Finzi of Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison.

“He has suffered immensely and he’s got a lot of work to do to get his life back on track, but we are obviously ecstatic about the result,” Garber told The Journal News. “Finally there’s been justice for him and we just hope that he can put that terrible chapter behind him and move on and have a normal life moving forward.”

Read The Journal News here.

Learn more about false confessions

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  1. Felicia M Johnson says:

    My husband is incarcerated now and was wrongfully convicted in 2002 on a conspiracy to commit murder charge after he broke up with his paramour who had been convicted of murder and attempted murder. She decided to implicate him in her murderous rampage after he broke things off with her and decided to not have anything to do with her. This woman testimony landed her a deal from death row to 17 years in exchange for her testimony to make him the co-conspirator in a contract murder scheme. There was no eye witnesses, no evidence, no DNA, and he had alibi’s. However, he was convicted based on her testimony that he forced her to kill and wound her ex lover’s out of a jealous rage. We have to witnesses who recanted their testimony as they admitted the detectives threatened them and we have a statement from the cell mate of the paramour that she did this alone and it was never introduced in his case. This is clearly a case of tunnel vision and misconduct and he deserves a new fair trial. Once you are convicted it is nearly impossible to prove your innocence, but we will never give up on the fight for justice. It is him today fighting for his freedom it can be you tomorrow.

  2. AnInvestigator says:

    Martha, I looked up your son’s case. http://publicdocs.courts.mi.gov:81/opinions/final/coa/19980717_C196255(0046)_196255.OPN.PDF

    In his appeal, he argued for self-defense, meaning he pulled the trigger. Are you now saying your son did not shoot the victims? I couldn’t locate your gofundme page to learn more about your case. Your son was drunk and testified that he shot one of the victims in the stomach because he feared for his life but did not recall firing any other shots. Under what theory is your son innocent?

Thanks for your comment

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