Jury: DC Police Liable for Framing ’81 Rape Suspect


A federal jury on Wednesday found that Washington, D.C., police framed an innocent man for a 1981 rape and murder, making the District liable for millions of dollars in damages after he was imprisoned for 27 years, says the Washington Post. Jurors found that two D.C. homicide detectives, Ronald S. Taylor and Norman Brooks, fabricated all or part of a confession purportedly made by the wrongly accused Donald E. Gates to a police informant. The detectives also withheld other evidence from Gates before he was convicted in the fatal attack on a 21-year-old Georgetown University student, jurors found.

Gates, now 64, was exonerated in the June 1981 killing and released from prison in 2009 after DNA testing. Gates's attorneys said the conduct of the detectives, now retired, warrants and investigation into their handling of other cases. The verdict opens a new round of accountability for Gates's wrongful conviction, which earlier triggered reviews by the U.S. attorney's office, the Justice Department and the FBI.

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