Detroit man freed after 41yrs in prison for crimes he didn’t commit

View the original article:

A Michigan man who spent four decades in prison for the 1975 killing of a woman in Detroit has been released because prosecutors are no longer confident in the single-hair evidence used to convict him.

Ledura Watkins, 61, was released Thursday after a court hearing. He was 20 when he was sentenced in 1976 to life without parole for first-degree murder.

Western Michigan University (WMU) Cooley Law School filed a motion seeking to overturn his murder and robbery conviction on January 19, arguing the evidence against him didn’t meet today’s legal standards.

Detroit lab analysts trained by the FBI had tied Watkins to the crime based on a single hair. In 2013, the FBI rejected testimony by the analysts, saying they often overstated their conclusions.

“Hair comparison is not based on science,” said Marla Mitchell-Cichon, director of the WMU-Cooley Innocence Project told WDIV. “It is simply a lab analyst’s subjective opinion and has no place in our criminal justice system. This is why a statewide review of hair comparison cases is critical.”

The Wayne County prosecutor’s office agreed with the motion’s findings, and said conclusions made in the 1970s didn’t match current scientific standards.

Watkins never stopped fighting for his freedom during his prison time, Mitchell-Cichon said.

His family told WDIV they got their wish that Watkins will attend the annual family reunion in August.

Watkins will be the longest-serving wrongly convicted person in Michigan, according to the National Registry of Exonerations.

In the same category are

Fireball caught on camera blazing across night sky over Russia & Finland (VIDEOS) Published time: 17 Nov, 2017 15:05 A massive fireball has briefly brightened up the dark skies over the north of Russia, as well as in Finland’s Lapla...
‘They call me Putin’s bodyguard’ – Russian Kung Fu champ set for UFC debut Russian Wushu Sanda world champion Muslim Salikhov is making his UFC debut on November 25. The Dagestan native, who is coming off a run of nine first-...
5 notorious African rulers and why we remember them With a military coup in Zimbabwe under way, the country’s longtime ruler Robert Mugabe may be set to lose his lengthy grip on power. Mugabe, a venerab...
World’s first human head transplant ‘imminent’ – Italian surgeon Published time: 17 Nov, 2017 15:23 Controversial Italian doctor Sergio Canavero claims he’s carried out the world’s first successful human head transp...
‘It’s not loaded’: 80 year old churchgoer shoots himself & wife in bizarre blunder Published time: 17 Nov, 2017 15:27 An elderly man accidentally shot both himself and his wife while showing off his handgun to fellow parishioners at ...
Russia is stronger than Europe, US State Dept says in new ‘Russian aggression’ pitch Russia’s military clout eclipses Europe’s, making it a “real” threat from “the Baltic to the Black Sea,” a senior US State Department official claimed...

Dont forget to “Like” us on Facebook

Need something to share, visit our sister site for the

‘News in the last 30 days”

in a clear concise package ….


If you are an artist or interested in art, visit our art website and read about todays artscene and browse some of our artist profiles


Comment on this story