Innocent man finally free after 17 years behind bars for murder he did not commit

After 17 long years in jail for a crime he did not commit, a man is finally enjoying his freedom. 

In 2004, when David Morris was just 18, he was arrested following the murder of Mustafa Carter. The next year, Morris was found guilty and sentenced to life.

It has been nearly two decades since Morris was convicted for murder despite being innocent. Thankfully, his days in prison are finally over.

On Wednesday, November 3, Baltimore Circuit Judge Charles Peters dropped the charges following a request from prosecutors to review the evidence, Unilad reports.

The Baltimore City State’s Aattorney’s Conviction Integrity Unit (CIU) launched an investigation into Morris’ case in 2018.

The key witness was the arresting officer at the murder scene.

He identified Morris as being present at the location, the Director of Communications for the State’s Attorney for Baltimore City, Zy Richardson said. However, as per CNN, the officer had a previous misconduct finding.

Richardson stated:

“That police officer was much later convicted of various crimes relating to fraud and placed on our ‘Do Not Call’ list, a list that we published last week, where we believe the officer is no longer credible to call as a witness in any case.”

What’s more, the key witness claims were proven to be inconsistent. Additionally, the CIU investigation found that the DNA on the victim’s pants did not match Morris’. A crime scene analysis, additional witnesses, and attendant circumstances also pointed to Morris’ innocence.

Michele Nethercott, of Counsel at MAIP and former director of UBIPC, said the original trial, in which Morris was held responsible for Carter’s killing, was “incredibly weak.” 

She commented:

“Our post-conviction investigation unearthed even more evidence supporting his longstanding claim of innocence. We’re grateful to Mr. Carter’s family for assisting in the investigation despite the pain it must have caused, and we want to thank all former staff, students, and colleagues for their hard work. I look forward to seeing Mr. Morris as a free man later today.”

Until now, the CIU has justified 11 people for crimes they did not commit. State Attorney Marilyn Mosby explained:

“This case exemplifies the deeply damaging nature of the historical failures of the criminal justice system and our duty as prosecutors to address the wrongs of the past.

On behalf of the state, let me extend my sincerest apologies to Mr. Morris and his family for the unspeakable trauma inflicted upon him as a result of this wrongful conviction.”

The investigators are currently working on identifying the real killer of Mustafa Carter.

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