$1 million compensation for each year spent wrongfully behind bars

(Credit: Dennis Clark)

(Credit: Dennis Clark)








Two men recently received $18 million each – the money was compensation for being victims of a wrongful conviction.

In 1984, John Restivo and Dennis Halstead were convicted for the rape and murder of a sixteen year old girl.

In 2003, Restivo and Halstead were released from prison. The defence team found an intact vaginal swab that had never been tested. When tested, the swab implicated an unknown man and excluded Restivo and Halstead. The jury also found that detectives on the case had fabricated hair evidence – the forensic evidence responsible for convicting Restivo and Halstead – and that key evidence had been hidden from prosecutors.

The men spent 18 years behind bars so, essentially, they have been compensated $1 million for every year spent incarcerated.

For more information on the case:

Jury awards $36 million two NY men wrongfully convicted of murder

National Registry of Exonerations

Theresa Fusco case: Jury weighs damages for overturned murder, rape convictions

DNA Evidence Frees 3 Men In 1984 Murder of L.I. Girl


About witsjusticeproject
The Wits Justice Project combines journalism, advocacy, law and education to make the criminal justice system work better for all.

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