Kevin Strickland, who has maintained his innocence via 43 years in jail for a triple homicide, bought a possibility to testify at a three-day listening to that would result in his launch.
Strickland, 62, was convicted on one rely of capital homicide and two counts of second-degree homicide when 4 folks have been shot in Kansas Metropolis in 1978. The one one who survived, Cynthia Douglas, who died in 2015, testified Strickland was on the scene.
Strickland has been an inmate on the Western Missouri Correctional Heart in Cameron, Missouri, however by no means modified his story of innocence. Jackson County Prosecutor Jean Peters Baker agrees.
On Monday, the primary day of an evidentiary listening to, Strickland took the stand and once more maintained his innocence.
“I wasn’t about to plead responsible to a criminal offense I had completely nothing to do with,” Strickland stated throughout Monday’s listening to, in keeping with CNN. “Wasn’t going to do it…at 18 years previous, and I knew the system labored, so I knew that I’d be vindicated, I wouldn’t be discovered responsible of a criminal offense I didn’t commit. I’d not take a plea deal and admit to one thing I didn’t do.”
The three-day listening to concluded Wednesday, and the decide is anticipated to decide quickly.
Douglas, who sustained a shotgun damage within the incident, informed police that two different folks have been the perpetrators and didn’t establish Douglas till the following day, saying she was beneath the affect of marijuana and cognac when the incident occurred.
Over the past three a long time, Douglas stated she made a mistake in figuring out Strickland and made efforts to get him launched with the assistance of the Midwest Innocence Undertaking. In line with Strickland’s lawyer, Robert Hoffman, the 2 different folks Douglas recognized, Vincent Bell and Kiln Adkins, each pleaded responsible to second-degree homicide and served 10 years.
In August, Peters Baker filed a movement to free Strickland, saying, “most of us have heard the well-known citation that ‘‘injustice anyplace is a menace to justice in every single place.’’Kevin Strickland stands as our personal instance of what occurs when a system set to be simply, will get it terribly unsuitable. ”The Missouri Normal Meeting and Gov. Parson deserve credit score for creating a brand new authorized avenue for a neighborhood prosecutor to hunt reduction. Making it doable for an officer of the courtroom to face earlier than a decide and argue to appropriate a grave unsuitable is a system of justice we are able to all stand behind. ”In line with an annual report by the Nationwide Registry of Exonerations, within the final 12 months alone, there have been greater than 129 exonerations nationwide, costing a median of 13.4 years per individual. The bulk, 87, have been the results of official misconduct.