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Clarence Moses-EL spent 28 years in prison for a sexual assault he didn't commit. Another man confessed to the crime. DNA evidence that could have exonerated him was destroyed after being neglected by the Denver District Attorney's office.
Clarence was released last December, because he is clearly innocent, but Denver District Attorney Mitch Morrissey is dragging him back in to court anyway. The retrial is set to begin on November 7th, one day before the election, at a time when hardly anyone will be paying attention. Denver District Attorney Mitch Morrissey is determined to find Clarence guilty despite all the facts saying otherwise.
Inconsistencies existed throughout the case and afterwards. From the Colorado Independent:
Denver officials’ missteps include:
- Destroying all DNA evidence. After a judge granted Moses-EL an order to test the rape kit, the victim’s clothes and other key evidence for genetic fingerprinting, authorities in 1995 put the evidence in a box marked “DO NOT DESTROY.” Then, they threw it in a dumpster. Destroying the evidence prevented Moses-EL from proving his innocence for more than two decades.
- Refusing to re-open the case in 2006, when Morrissey’s office started prosecuting L.C. Jackson for a similar rape of a mother and her daughter. Jackson was the first man the victim in the Moses-EL case named in her outcry, but police and prosecutors never investigated him. Even though Morrissey knew of Jackson’s criminal past, the DA asserted — incorrectly — that Jackson was never named by the victim in Moses-EL’s case.
- Ignoring a statement by the lead police investigator that he always had doubts about the case
- Trying to suppress new blood evidence showing it’s highly likely that someone with L.C. Jackson’s blood type was the attacker, and highly unlikely that it was someone with Moses-EL’s blood type
Sign the petition, ask your friends and family to sign the petition, and speak up about this injustice.
The Denver Post called for the DA to drop the case in a 2015 editorial.
The Colorado Independent has noted that "'DO NOT DESTROY' is a warning about more than just boxes of criminal evidence. It also applies to the people over whom prosecutors hold enormous power. It’s a caution about the lives they can wreck when they take that power and stubbornly, persistently misuse it."
This unprecedented retrial is not receiving the attention it deserves or needs. It reopens wounds. It ignores the errors and omissions of the investigation. It may be for political points.
Clarence Moses-EL deserves better. This is not justice.
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