Skip to comments.Wrongly convicted man is set free [after serving 23 years]
Posted on 07/20/2006 10:33:03 AM PDT by newgeezer
Johnny Briscoe is a free man today, after serving 23 years for crimes the state now says he didn't commit.
Briscoe walked out of a state prison in Charleston, Mo., on Wednesday after serving part of a 45-year sentence for convictions involving a 1982 sexual attack on a woman ...
Thanks to DNA testing, authorities confirmed ... that Briscoe was innocent and that the real rapist was already in another Missouri prison.
St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney Robert P. McCulloch called him ... and "apologized to him on behalf of the county, particularly for the past six years."
There was no DNA testing in 1983 when Briscoe was convicted. In 2000 and again in 2001, McCulloch ... asked the crime lab to look for evidence in the Briscoe case and other cases where DNA could now be applied to existing evidence.
McCulloch said his office was told the evidence had been destroyed.
... The laboratory reported that the freezer where the evidence might have been kept was searched and that the evidence - cigarette butts - had presumably been destroyed.
In 2004, the crime lab "was inventorying and cataloging everything in the lab" and found the cigarette butts in the freezer, McCulloch said, but his office didn't learn about their existence until July 6.
Testing of the three cigarette butts confirmed that the victim's DNA was found on all three but that the third contained DNA that matched a different man than Briscoe - one who is also in the Missouri prison system ...
(Excerpt) Read more at stltoday.com ...
In the early morning of Oct. 21, 1982, a man broke into an apartment in Maryland Heights, raped and sodomized the victim, she said, but then stayed in the apartment and smoked cigarettes with her.
The assailant asked her what her name was and then told her his name was "Johnny Briscoe," she told police.
Police traced the calls to a pay phone near Briscoe's home on Adelaide Avenue near Interstate 70.
The woman completed a composite with police that resembled Briscoe, McCulloch said. She also identified him at the trial in May 1983 as her assailant.
Briscoe, who had prior convictions for burglary, offered an alibi defense but didn't testify.
Briscoe's 16-year-old nephew told the jury that Briscoe had been home the night of Oct. 20 and was there when he awakened the next morning. They had watched the seventh game of the World Series between the St. Louis Cardinals and the Milwaukee Brewers.
"Who won?" asked prosecutor Joe Larrew in cross-examination.
"The Milwaukee Brewers," the nephew replied.
The Cardinals had won the game and the series. The jury took less than two hours in convicting Briscoe of rape, sodomy, robbery, burglary, stealing and three counts of armed criminal action.
McCulloch said that the man who matches the DNA knew Briscoe from the same neighborhood but that Briscoe had no idea that the man had been involved in the assault.
Prosecutors have also talked to the victim, "who is very upset."
"She has been very traumatized by this," McCulloch said.
The Missouri Legislature recently passed a measure providing up to $36,000 a year for individuals falsely accused and imprisoned. Prior DNA exonerations in the city include the cases of Anthony Woods, who served 18 years in prison; Lonnie Erby, 17 years; and Larry Johnson, 18 years. Steve Toney served 14 years in a St. Louis County case.
In each case, the victim had identified the later-exonerated defendant.
McCulloch said he didn't know if there was enough money in the program yet to pay Briscoe.
Because of snafus in the St. Louis County Crime Laboratory since 2000, Briscoe didn't get out six years sooner
Outrageous. You'd think a crime lab freezer would have better inventory controls than the the one in my basement (i.e. none at all). One might wonder if anything will change at the crime lab because of this.
Too bad about that alibi. His nephew must feel awful, too. I wonder why Briscoe didn't testify on his own behalf.
Just think if we'd shot him, like lots of freepers want to do?
So, does he get 'time served' if by chance he happens to get convicted of a new crime?
45 years for rape? What do you get for second degree murder in that state? Talk about lack of proportionality.
Don't worry, they'll be more than willing to declare him guilty anyway.
He'll be labeled an IINO.
I would guess that "sexual attack" and "rape" are two different crimes.
"The jury took less than two hours in convicting Briscoe of rape, sodomy, robbery, burglary, stealing and three counts of armed criminal action."
I've never had it adequately explained to me why a person can commit one crime, but be charged with breaking several laws. For example, one might be charged with murder, conspiracy to commit murder, assault, kidnapping and possibly more. It seems to me that the crime is just murder.
"The Cardinals had won the game and the series".
This is just indicative of the poor performance the Cardinals have had over the last three decades, on average, so lighten up.
Seriously, I'm sure the guy is guilty of something. Why let him out? Besides, the system probably already made him somebody's beeotch. What is he going to do on the outside? Temp labor? Is he ivy league material? jk.
Supposedly eyewitnesses are highly unreliable. I never believed it until I saw this optical illusion.
Now I absolutely believe that you cannot always trust what you see.
Lessee - 23 years, 36,000 per year...hmmm, does the city have $828,000.00?
Maybe Hizzoner could give up a couple months of kickbacks and pay this off pretty quick.
Wonder if that's gonna be tax-free?
I'll bet the nephew won't get any of it.
Probably following the advise of his lawyer.
You don't see where there could be many crimes within one??
Read the whole article I have linked to.
Bill Clinton: 2 terms as US President, multi-million dollar book deal, $100`s of thousands of bucks for speeches, praise from the left as the "greatest President of all time", co-conspirator wife seriously being considered for President in 2008, for not only rape, but multiple sexual assaults.
Here we go again? Oh you mean this happened before and nothing was done about it? How suprising.
Obviously. Allow me to rephrase that, ...