A man who spent 25-years in jail, after being wrongfully convicted of a 1989 NYC murder, is set to be released of the crime that happened when he was away on a Disney World vacation, his lawyer said.
Attorneys for Jonathan Fleming expect prosecutors to join them in asking a Brooklyn judge to dismiss the 1990 conviction.
A key eyewitness withdrew testimony, new eyewitnesses implicated a different suspect, and more importantly, a hotel receipt admitted into evidence places Fleming at a Florida hotel at the time of the NYC murder in 1989, according to defense attorneys Anthony Mayol and Taylor Koss.
Fleming, who is 51-years-old, has spent almost half of his life in jail for a crime he didn’t commit and could walk a free man on Tuesday if all goes according to plan the lawyers said.
“He is elated and stunned, while tempered by the fact that he realizes that this is just the first step in getting his life back,” Koss commented.
The Brooklyn District Attorney’s office has declined making a statement about the mistaken conviction in the 1989 NYC murder, before the hearing.
At the time of the crime, in 1989, Fleming insisted that he was in Orlando, Florida, on vacation when his friend Darryl “Black” Rush was shot an killed on August 15 and authorities suggested the murder had to do with a dispute over money.
Although Fleming provided authorities with postcards, videos, and plane tickets that up his story, investigators of the 1989 NYC murder still believed that he could have been present when the crime happened and a female witness said she had seen the 51-year-old kill Rush.
Even though the witness later recanted her testimony in 1990, saying she had lied to police to get out of another possible arrest, Fleming did not succeed in his appeals. His defense team asked the DA to review the case last year.
In their efforts to clear their client from the 1989 murder in NYC lawyers found new witnesses, who implicated another unnamed gunman in the 25-year-old murder case. No further information was provided.
Fleming’s case follows deeper examination into Brooklyn prosecutors’ reviewing of questionable convictions, which is a result of the election of new DA, Keneth Thompson, who unseated long-time DA Charles “Joe” Hynes with a campaign that focused on wrongful convictions under Hynes’ tenure.
The 1989 NYC wrongful murder conviction review comes after two other cases of men who spent more than 20-years in jail for crimes they didn’t commit. Thompson’s office has dismissed those convictions.
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