GOI: A "prisoner" freed after new evidence emerged giving yet another reason to abolish the death penalty. There are simply too many examples of wrongfully accused people serving decades in prisons to keep the death penalty. There are many reasons to end captial punishment but wrongful imprisonment is one of the most logical reasons to halt the practice:
A judge signed an order Thursday freeing a man from prison where he had spent 22 years after being wrongfully convicted of the brutal rape of a 25-year-old woman.
The nonprofit Innocence Project and prosecutors from the Bronx district attorney's office had asked for Newton's 1985 conviction to be vacated based on recent testing on a rape kit used for the woman after the incident.
Newton, now 44, was convicted of raping the woman in an abandoned Bronx building in June 1984. He was sentenced in 1985 to up to 40 years in prison.
In 1994 he filed a motion asking that new DNA testing be conducted, but the request was denied because the evidence was unavailable, the Innocence Project and prosecutors wrote in papers filed to the court.
A similar request was granted four years later, but testing of the victim's clothing "failed to yield the presence of male DNA," the papers said.
Despite what Innocence Project lawyers and prosecutors said were earlier claims that it was lost or had been destroyed, officials found the kit, which was tested for DNA by two labs earlier this year.
The result "conclusively excludes" Newton as the assailant, according to the papers.
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