Friday, June 27, 2014

Bulletin: Paul Hildwin: 54; New York Daily News reports that this death row inmate's conviction has been overturned after 28 years behind bars thanks to DNA evidence. The State of Florida fought against DNA matching for 7 years. Florida is reported to have exonerated 24 inmates on death row, the highest reversal rate in the USA.

REMINDER: Sign on for  annual "Wrongful Convictions Day" launched by The Association in Defence of the Wrongly Convicted (AIDWYC) -  effective October 2, 2014.  (For background - and link - see  previous post):

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STORY: "Florida death row inmate's conviction is overturned after 28 years behind bars," by reporter Deborah Hastings,  published by the New York Daily News  on June 27, 2014.

SUB-HEADING: "Paul Hildwin will remain imprisoned  until prosecutors decide whether to retry him for murder DNA evidence shows that key evidence points to victim Vronzetti Cox's boyfriend.

PHOTO-CAPTION: "The murder conviction of death row inmate Paul Hildwin, seen here, was thrown out by the Florida Supreme Court on Thursday after DNA test results ‘collapsed the state’s case,’ the justices said."

GIST: "The Florida Supreme Court has reversed the murder conviction of a death row inmate who has spent the last 28 years in prison for allegedly killing a woman whose naked body was found in the trunk of her car. Paul Hildwin, 54, will remain on death row until prosecutors decide whether to retry him. The state's high court ruled 5 to 2 to vacate his conviction, saying DNA testing heavily influenced its decision. "We cannot turn a blind eye to the fact a significant pillar of the state's case, as presented to the jury, has collapsed," the high court announced Thursday.........According to the Innocence Project, which championed Hildwin's case, DNA testing done in 2003 excluded him as the source of semen and saliva found at the murder scene, which trial prosecutors wrongly claimed belonged to Hildwin. Lawyers for the project then argued for seven years to get the DNA results fed into a federal database to see if it matched any specimens on file. The samples matched the DNA of Haverty, who is currently incarcerated for the sexual assault of two minors. Hildwin's is the fourth case in little more than a year of a death sentence being reversed by the Florida Supreme Court because of new evidence. According to the Death Penalty Information Center, Florida has exonerated 24 inmates on death row, the highest reversal rate in the country."

The entire story can be found at:


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