Prosecutor’s Check Frees WI Man After 24 Years in Prison

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Daryl Holloway, a 48-year-old Milwaukee man exonerated by DNA evidence in a sexual assault case,  was released from prison yesterday after serving 24 years for a crime he did not commit, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports. The Milwaukee County district attorney’s office agreed that DNA results showed Holloway’s conviction in the 1992 case should be reversed. “It’s another example of the way in which the criminal justice system, as a human system, can produce errors,” said Keith Findley of the Wisconsin Innocence Project. The Innocence Project credited the district attorney’s office for reviving the case. Now-retired prosecutor Norm Gahn reviewed the case last year and found conflicting DNA reports from separate labs, meaning at least one lab made an error in its analysis.

A new DNA report conclusively excluded Holloway as the perpetrator of the crime and identified the presence of male DNA from an unknown third party. “It fits a typical pattern in which eyewitness evidence was used to obtain the conviction and as it turns out the eye witness evidence was pretty unreliable,” said Findley, who also is a University of Wisconsin-Madison law professor. He praised the prosecutors for taking on the case and serving as “ministers of justice, not just advocate for convictions.”

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