A Florida circuit court judge has dismissed a family’s latest attempt to seek compensation for the wrongful imprisonment of their son, reports Floriday Today. Wilton Dedge, of Port St. John, Fla., spent 22 years behind bars on a rape conviction until DNA evidence proved his innocence and overturned his conviction in 2004. In May, Dedge and his parents filed suit against the state seeking compensation.
Circuit Judge William Gary wrote that current state laws don’t allow for wrongly convicted people to claim compensation, and that Dedge hasn’t taken the necessary steps to erase his criminal record. “While everyone is in agreement that what happened to Plaintiff, Wilton Dedge, is tragic,” Gary wrote, “only the Legislature can address the issue of compensation under existing law.” A bill introduced in the state Legislature that would have allowed those wrongly imprisoned to seek up to $5 million in compensation from the state died during the state’s last session.