Derrick Deacon, a Brooklyn man who spent more than 24 years in prison for a murder conviction that was later thrown out by an appeals court, has accepted the city’s offer of $6 million to settle his federal lawsuit, the New York Daily News reports. Deacon was re-tried for the murder in 2013 by the office of then-Brooklyn District Attorney Charles Hynes, and the jury acquitted him after deliberating nine minutes. “Based upon newly discovered evidence which implicated another man as the actual killer, the court vacated Mr. Deacon’s conviction and granted him a new trial,” said city Law Department spokesman Nicholas Paolucci. “We have determined that a settlement of this civil suit is fair and in the best interests of the city.”
Deacon, 61, was convicted of robbing and killing Anthony Wynn in 1989. A key eyewitness who pocketed a $1,000 Crimestoppers reward from the police department fingered him as the murderer. The case began to unravel in 2001 when a federal informant who had been a member of a violent gang called the Patio Crew gave the feds the name of the real killer. An appeals court reversed Deacon’s conviction in 2013, but the D.A.’s office refused to drop the case against him. The city’s payout for a malicious prosecution suit is in addition to a $3.9 million settlement Deacon received from the state for his decades of incarceration.