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Wrongful Conviction in New York Ends After Man Spends 25 Years in Prison

| Jan 5, 2021 | False Imprisonment

A Queens man was exonerated of criminal charges after spending 25 years in prison for a crime he didn’t commit. The wrongful conviction case in New York City stems from an arrest and murder trial in 1995. With help from The Innocence Project, Mr. Jaythan Kendrick was able to prove his innocence with the help of new eyewitness testimony and DNA evidence.

In 1994, Mr. Kendrick, a veteran and disabled Postal Worker, was arrested for the murder of a 70-year-old woman based solely on the testimony of a 10-year-old boy—who allegedly saw the crime from a third-floor window over 100 feet away from the attack. The boy was also coached by detectives during a police lineup and told that the real murderer would definitely be in the room even as they had no way to know that.

There was no other evidence connecting Mr. Kendrick to the crime; however, he was still found guilty and sentenced to 25 years to life for the murder with an additional 8 to 25 years tacked on for robbery.

A recent study found that misidentifications contributed to roughly 69% of the 375 convictions that have been overturned in recent years due to irrefutable DNA evidence. Many such overturned convictions relied on identifications that were coached, as the young 10-year-old was alleged to have been.

Mr. Kendrick is now a free man and his record has been expunged. But 25 years in prison is a lifetime and nothing can recapture the life that was taken away from him.

Such wrongful convictions in New York City often end with civil lawsuits against the City of New York, the NYPD, and/or the district attorney’s office. These lawsuits often rely on evidence to show coaching of witnesses, false testimony, or simply ignoring evidence that would have proven a victim’s innocence.

If you or a loved one has been falsely arrested or imprisoned, you need legal help now. Contact the expert New York City false arrest attorneys at the Law Offices of Nussin S. Fogel today. Call 800-734-9338 or 212-3385-1122 for your free consultation.

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