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Texas Man Freed After DNA Clears Him Of 1988 Rape
CBS Local (DFW) ^ | August 24, 2012 | CBS Dallas

Posted on 08/27/2012 7:33:28 PM PDT by Altariel

FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) – After serving 24 years in prison for a crime he didn’t commit, today a North Texas man received an apology from a judge and a standing ovation in the courtroom.

David Lee Wiggins was freed from jail Friday after DNA tests proved he wasn’t the person who raped a 14-year-old girl back in 1988.

Wiggins was convicted of Aggravated Sexual Assault in 1989 after the teen victim identified him. The person who assaulted the young girl had covered her face for during most of the attack. Police showed the girl a photo lineup, then a live lineup and the girl said Wiggins looked familiar.

“He [Wiggins] was the only person who was both in the photo array and in the lineup, so of course she recognized him,” said Nina Morrison, an attorney with the Innocence Project of New York.

As he left the courtroom today he said he had no animosity toward the victim who mistakenly identified him.

“It was never he fault. She didn’t do nothing… I know that,” he said. “She was a victim. I’m sorry about what happened to her and I want her to know it.”

The Innocence Project nonprofit group successfully obtained the DNA test that proved Wiggins definitely wasn’t the girl’s attacker.

Recalling the day he got word about the test results Wiggins said, “They [the Innocence Project] called me again and said that the results are in and I’m innocent. It was kind of like ya know when I first got the life sentence. I was numb. I couldn’t really believe it.”

(Excerpt) Read more at dfw.cbslocal.com ...


TOPICS: Miscellaneous
KEYWORDS: davidwiggins; dna; innocent; texas
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1 posted on 08/27/2012 7:33:31 PM PDT by Altariel
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To: Altariel

And Texas says “Our bad - have a nice day”


2 posted on 08/27/2012 7:38:33 PM PDT by SkyDancer ("OF COURSE I TALK TO MYSELF - Sometimes I need an expert opinion")
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To: Altariel

That’s why I oppose the death penalty in so many cases.


3 posted on 08/27/2012 7:39:49 PM PDT by Paradox (I want Obama defeated. Period.)
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To: Altariel

Now, is anyone going to get that falsifying “victim” in jail? That “victim” destroyed an innocent man’s life. The entire prosecution should be in jail for this.


4 posted on 08/27/2012 7:44:24 PM PDT by sagar
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To: Paradox
That’s why I oppose the death penalty in so many cases.

Now that DNA testing is availible, all death penalty cases - and waiting death row cases - should be confirmed, wherever possible, by DNA testing, on the government (taxpayer) dime. It should be a mandatory part of the conviction process in the case of capital crimes.

5 posted on 08/27/2012 7:48:02 PM PDT by Talisker (One who commands, must obey.)
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To: sagar
"The entire prosecution should be in jail for this."

According to the article...

"Wiggins is the second person in Tarrant County to have a conviction overturned by DNA, since 2001..."

It would be interesting to see if any of the same persons were involved in both cases.

6 posted on 08/27/2012 7:48:24 PM PDT by Joe 6-pack (Que me amat, amet et canem meum)
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To: Altariel
Just curious . . . what was DNA’d? Why was it conclusive that this Defendant was actually innocent? Was their fluid that eliminated this suspect and that was erroneously typed? What forensic evidence was used for, and then ultimately against, conviction?

Did this suspect have the opportunity to commit the crime? Was it his first offense with a “clean sheet” prior to this?

These are just questions of interest, none of which are asked in support of, or against this particular decision.

The Innocence Project, however, has a definite agenda and the full truth is seldom in their releases or information. I'm neither an advocate nor a foe of their project. Just somewhat skeptical at times.

Oldplayer

7 posted on 08/27/2012 7:48:31 PM PDT by oldplayer
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To: Altariel

$80 K/yr X 22 years = $1.76 million. Not as much as it should be but not bad.


8 posted on 08/27/2012 7:48:42 PM PDT by spel_grammer_an_punct_polise (I wanna start a Seniors' Motor Scooter Gang. Wanna join?)
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To: oldplayer

“Was their fluid that eliminated this suspect and that was erroneously typed?”

DNA was in its infancy in 1988 and probably not even used in this case.


9 posted on 08/27/2012 7:51:44 PM PDT by spel_grammer_an_punct_polise (I wanna start a Seniors' Motor Scooter Gang. Wanna join?)
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To: SkyDancer

And, pay him $80,000 a year.


10 posted on 08/27/2012 7:53:14 PM PDT by Jrabbit
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To: sagar

You want to put a rape victim ( that was 14 years old at the time she was raped) in jail?


11 posted on 08/27/2012 7:53:44 PM PDT by JohnBrowdie (http://forum.stink-eye.net)
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To: sagar

It may not be a case of a falsifying “victim” but of police officers who “encouraged” him to confess.

It is possible to have two legitimate victims, here—the victim of rape and the victim of false accusation.


12 posted on 08/27/2012 7:53:57 PM PDT by Altariel ("Curse your sudden but inevitable betrayal!")
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To: sagar

Quoting from the article:

Wiggins was convicted of Aggravated Sexual Assault in 1989 after the teen victim identified him. The person who assaulted the young girl had covered her face for during most of the attack. Police showed the girl a photo lineup, then a live lineup and the girl said Wiggins looked familiar.

“He [Wiggins] was the only person who was both in the photo array and in the lineup, so of course she recognized him,” said Nina Morrison, an attorney with the Innocence Project of New York.

As he left the courtroom today he said he had no animosity toward the victim who mistakenly identified him.

“It was never he fault. She didn’t do nothing… I know that,” he said. “She was a victim. I’m sorry about what happened to her and I want her to know it.”

*****
Ironic, that the falsely accused man has more compassion for his fellow victim than you have shown here.


13 posted on 08/27/2012 7:56:23 PM PDT by Altariel ("Curse your sudden but inevitable betrayal!")
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To: JohnBrowdie

“You want to put a rape victim ( that was 14 years old at the time she was raped) in jail?”

Falsely accuse a man of rape (like in this case), then, absofreakinlutely. I don’t want to get in Akin like fiasco here, but, can I ask if there was evidence she was raped? Regardless, having being raped does not warrant falsely accusing others and destroying their lives. Actions have consequences. This feminist women victumhood by default is destructive.


14 posted on 08/27/2012 8:01:03 PM PDT by sagar
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To: Altariel

I can’t believe the jury convicted on “looks familiar.”


15 posted on 08/27/2012 8:03:53 PM PDT by KansasGirl ("If you have a business, you didn't build that. Somebody else made that happen."--B. Hussein Obama)
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To: sagar

The one person you haven’t advocated jailing is the actual rapist.

Doubly fascinating.


16 posted on 08/27/2012 8:04:39 PM PDT by Altariel ("Curse your sudden but inevitable betrayal!")
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To: Altariel

They did a DNA sweep in Kansas of incarcerated convicted felons in the late 90’s; it resulted in some new convictions for old unsolved cases. Very few exonerations.

Still, the accused deserve our very best prosecutorial effort. That is what separates us from the kangaroos.

I’m with you.


17 posted on 08/27/2012 8:05:06 PM PDT by One Name
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To: Altariel

“Ironic, that the falsely accused man has more compassion for his fellow victim than you have shown here.”

She lost any compassion from me the moment she falsely accused him of rape. That man has been through a lot in his wasted 24 years. May be he just does not see it black-white. But I do.


18 posted on 08/27/2012 8:05:47 PM PDT by sagar
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To: Altariel

“It is possible to have two victims...”

That is the sad crux of the matter.


19 posted on 08/27/2012 8:07:04 PM PDT by berdie
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To: Altariel

“The one person you haven’t advocated jailing is the actual rapist.

Doubly fascinating.”

Doubly fascinating was the entire prosecution, cops, and the victims NOT pointing at the true rapist, instead an innocent man was framed. May be there was no real rapist? Hmm. Possible?


20 posted on 08/27/2012 8:08:50 PM PDT by sagar
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To: Talisker

i have reservations also about the death penalty.

however, some cases are so obvious like that wonderful muslim who killed American soldiers, that there is no doubt.

shave his beard, cover him in pig fat and hang him.

do the same to that red haired freek that killed all those people in the movie theater.

hardly worth a trial, in a lot of cases.

Blessings, bobo


21 posted on 08/27/2012 8:09:04 PM PDT by bobo1
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To: sagar

And you know all of this . . . How?


22 posted on 08/27/2012 8:10:41 PM PDT by JohnBrowdie (http://forum.stink-eye.net)
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To: sagar

The victim was a 14 year old girl who had just been horrifically raped. I’m with Mr. Wiggins: she isn’t to blame.

As for thethe scumbag prosecutors who manipulated a 14 year old rape victim to get a “win,” they should have to serve 24 years of hard time.


23 posted on 08/27/2012 8:13:34 PM PDT by piytar (The predator-class is furious that their prey are shooting back.)
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To: sagar

You read more about the case here. The victim was raped at knife point.

http://www.thenewstribune.com/2012/08/23/v-lite/2266092/dna-evidence-expected-to-clear.html


24 posted on 08/27/2012 8:13:34 PM PDT by KansasGirl ("If you have a business, you didn't build that. Somebody else made that happen."--B. Hussein Obama)
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To: JohnBrowdie

“And you know all of this . . . How?”

Let me tell you how... the “rapist” had been in jail for 24 years and everybody had taken a sigh of relief. Now, the so-called rapist was proven innocent of the framed crime and the remaining chatter is about a screwup... oopsie, now move along and have some bucks to make up for two and a half decade inside the hole.


25 posted on 08/27/2012 8:16:00 PM PDT by sagar
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To: Altariel
I'm more curious to know about the prosecutor at the time. How much evidence was suppressed or overlooked/ignored? How many and what shortcuts were taken to get a conviction instead of the truth??

Prosecutorial misconduct has become commonplace, today. For too many prosecutors, obtaining any conviction (which looks REALLY good to the voters) is far more important than obtaining justice. Although it was a scripted TV show, Hamilton Burger from the Perry Mason show was more concerned about truth and justice. That's how the system is supposed to work.

But, prosecutors have the leeway to take whatever steps they choose to get a conviction. They know that, if a convict is later prover's innocent, there is no penalty for them; after all, they got a conviction and, at the next election, can show that they cleared up X% of their criminal case load. Numbers count; NOT innocent people!!

26 posted on 08/27/2012 8:19:49 PM PDT by DustyMoment (Congress - another name for white collar criminals!!)
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To: sagar

It’s not like she made up the story of being raped or else there would not have been DNA on file to exonerate Mr. Wiggins. This is not a Duke/Magnum type case. She was a kid who was actually raped and then manipulated by scumbag cops and prosecutors. And you blame her? Can I get me some kitties here?!


27 posted on 08/27/2012 8:20:36 PM PDT by piytar (The predator-class is furious that their prey are shooting back.)
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To: sagar

Perhaps he understands more about forgiveness and compassion than you do.

Perhaps he understands that the person deserving of punishment is the actual criminal, not the victim of a crime.

Fascinating that you are demanding the victim, a teenager at the time, be jailed and not the rapist.

Fascinating that you are not criticizing the police for setting up a situation in which it would be natural for the victim to recognize him (he being the only individual in both lineups) or not demanding the jailing of the prosecutor.

Your desire to jail the victim of rape is the very desire you claim to condemn—the desire to put a person innocent of a crime in jail.

His desire is one of grace and class and forgiveness.

Yours is one of anger, bitterness and revenge.

The real criminal is the actual rapist. Locate and jail him. (Assuming he is still alive; attempting to rape an armed victim is hazardous to one’s health and longevity in Texas).


28 posted on 08/27/2012 8:22:19 PM PDT by Altariel ("Curse your sudden but inevitable betrayal!")
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To: sagar

At least you have changed your angle. You were flirting with, “there is no rape. They all have it coming to them”.

The rest of your argument isn’t worth engaging in. I find you too distasteful to deal with.


29 posted on 08/27/2012 8:22:30 PM PDT by JohnBrowdie (http://forum.stink-eye.net)
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To: piytar

This. Thank you.

Those who blame the victims of rape when it is clear that a rape occurred enable the criminal rapists.

Criminals LOVE it when people blame the victim of a crime.


30 posted on 08/27/2012 8:24:05 PM PDT by Altariel ("Curse your sudden but inevitable betrayal!")
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To: sagar

Oh and to be clear, the cops and prosecutors who ran this railroad job should do 24 years hard time. And then be put to death.


31 posted on 08/27/2012 8:24:05 PM PDT by piytar (The predator-class is furious that their prey are shooting back.)
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To: JohnBrowdie

“At least you have changed your angle. You were flirting with, “there is no rape. They all have it coming to them”.

Only in your sick mind that I was wanting rape on anyone.

“The rest of your argument isn’t worth engaging in. I find you too distasteful to deal with.”

You were the one pinging me, so all you have to do is stop doing it.


32 posted on 08/27/2012 8:26:11 PM PDT by sagar
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To: Altariel

Maybe I’m not as forgiving - to the scum cops and prosecutors involved. See my comments up thread.


33 posted on 08/27/2012 8:26:18 PM PDT by piytar (The predator-class is furious that their prey are shooting back.)
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To: DustyMoment

You said that far better than I could have. Thank you.

It’s a sad fact of life that prosecutors get caught up with making a “name” for themselves and thinking how good multiple convictions will look at election time.


34 posted on 08/27/2012 8:27:20 PM PDT by berdie
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To: sagar

“Now, is anyone going to get that falsifying “victim” in jail? That “victim” destroyed an innocent man’s life. The entire prosecution should be in jail for this.”

If Wiggins conviction is formally reversed he will be eligible for $80,000 a year in compensation that Texas pays to wrongfully convicted ex-inmates. This amounts to $1,920,000...The state of Texas should have to pay him 100 times that, and the girl should have to do 24 years in prison for falsely identifying him. The prosecutors should be put away for life.


35 posted on 08/27/2012 8:28:52 PM PDT by GGpaX4DumpedTea (I am a Tea Party descendant...steeped in the Constitutional Republic given to us by the Founders.)
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To: Altariel

What’s more revolting is the cops and prosecutors who care more for a “win” than justice, and in the process wreck one life while leaving the actual rapist free to ruin more.

They’re almost as evil as the actual child rapist and should be treated accordingly.


36 posted on 08/27/2012 8:29:15 PM PDT by piytar (The predator-class is furious that their prey are shooting back.)
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To: KansasGirl

KansasGirl,

Thanks for the link to the article. It explains that there was seminal fluids of some sort found at the time. In those days, much larger amounts were needed than today. I would call this an exoneration for Innocence Project.

Answers some questions.

To others: I don’t think we have to demonize the police or the prosecutors to imagine how this happened.

Oldplayer


37 posted on 08/27/2012 8:30:32 PM PDT by oldplayer
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To: oldplayer

“Just curious . . . what was DNA’d? Why was it conclusive that this Defendant was actually innocent? Was their fluid that eliminated this suspect and that was erroneously typed? What forensic evidence was used for, and then ultimately against, conviction?
Did this suspect have the opportunity to commit the crime? Was it his first offense with a “clean sheet” prior to this?

These are just questions of interest, none of which are asked in support of, or against this particular decision.

The Innocence Project, however, has a definite agenda and the full truth is seldom in their releases or information. I’m neither an advocate nor a foe of their project. Just somewhat skeptical at times.”

Like you,I need to know a hell of a lot more about the case facts. In and of itself DNA is NOT proof of guilt or innocence. Just take a quick look at Law and Order Episode “Patsy” season 10 Episode 7 as an example.


38 posted on 08/27/2012 8:31:41 PM PDT by Cyman
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To: GGpaX4DumpedTea

Yeah, punish someone who was manipulated by authorities after being raped at the age of 14 for not being stronger. Revolting.


39 posted on 08/27/2012 8:33:09 PM PDT by piytar (The predator-class is furious that their prey are shooting back.)
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To: oldplayer
To others: I don’t think we have to demonize the police or the prosecutors to imagine how this happened.
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

DNA testing has been around for some time now. Can I demonize the police, courts, and prosecutors for taking so long?

It helps to be Christian to know that as evil, horrifically calloused, and careless people ( who are supposed to be smart) stand before God, there will be justice.

40 posted on 08/27/2012 8:36:03 PM PDT by wintertime (:-))
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To: SkyDancer
And Texas says “Our bad - have a nice day”

He will be financially compensated by the state. It won't give him those lost years back, nothing can do that, but this isn't some liberal state (yet) where the guy might get a written apology and that's about it. He was wronged, the state tries to right some of it.
41 posted on 08/27/2012 8:38:28 PM PDT by af_vet_rr
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To: oldplayer

Yes, we should. The double line up (photo and then physical with only their choosen “perp” in both) is classics manipulation. They knew what they were doing, and they (wrongly) decided guilt and then ensured a verdict. To be blunt, it was a complete subversion of our judicial system and Constitution.

They’re scum. May God have mercy on their souls, because I certainly wouldn’t.


42 posted on 08/27/2012 8:39:12 PM PDT by piytar (The predator-class is furious that their prey are shooting back.)
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To: spel_grammer_an_punct_polise

24 years, my friend, and $80,000 a year does NOT compensate him for his unjust incarceration. It is not ‘not bad’ as you put it...are you willing to spend 24 years in HELL for a measley $1.9 million?


43 posted on 08/27/2012 8:39:20 PM PDT by GGpaX4DumpedTea (I am a Tea Party descendant...steeped in the Constitutional Republic given to us by the Founders.)
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To: sagar
Now, is anyone going to get that falsifying “victim” in jail? That “victim” destroyed an innocent man’s life. The entire prosecution should be in jail for this.

That innocent showed his Christianity by basically forgiving her. I agree with you on the prosecution team - this happens far too often in Texas, but don't blame the girl.
44 posted on 08/27/2012 8:39:20 PM PDT by af_vet_rr
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To: Cyman

More information here.

http://www.thenewstribune.com/2012/08/23/v-lite/2266092/dna-evidence-expected-to-clear.html

The DNA came from semon from the rape kit.


45 posted on 08/27/2012 8:41:20 PM PDT by KansasGirl ("If you have a business, you didn't build that. Somebody else made that happen."--B. Hussein Obama)
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To: oldplayer

You’re welcome. It really sheds some light on how this happened.


46 posted on 08/27/2012 8:44:33 PM PDT by KansasGirl ("If you have a business, you didn't build that. Somebody else made that happen."--B. Hussein Obama)
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To: Paradox

That’s why I like the biblical standard of two or more witnesses for a death penalty. One witness will not suffice. DNA and other evidence can be counted as a witness, in my opinion.

This man was convicted by the testimony of ONE witness, not sufficient for conviction in my book. One witness can certainly be right, but it is not enough for a just society.


47 posted on 08/27/2012 8:46:27 PM PDT by Persevero (Homeschooling for Excellence since 1992)
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To: KansasGirl

Hmm, KansasGirl, between the two of us, we appear to have killed this thread. Given some of the posts here, I feel just fine with that.


48 posted on 08/27/2012 8:46:27 PM PDT by piytar (The predator-class is furious that their prey are shooting back.)
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To: Altariel

One type of hell on earth is being a innocent man in prison. I can’t even imagine it. That man has more compassion and ideals than I could ever muster.


49 posted on 08/27/2012 8:51:42 PM PDT by Theoria (Rush Limbaugh: Ron Paul sounds like an Islamic terrorist)
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To: Persevero

Similar to treason. The Constitution requires at least two witnesses for that. Unless a confession in open court. Seems reasonable and just.


50 posted on 08/27/2012 8:56:40 PM PDT by Theoria (Rush Limbaugh: Ron Paul sounds like an Islamic terrorist)
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