FOX45 EXCLUSIVE | Wrongfully convicted of murder, man's case comes to a close
BALTIMORE (WBFF) - After spending 31 years in jail for a murder he didn’t commit, Gary Washington walks out of a Baltimore courthouse a free man.
In 1986, a teenager was murdered outside of Washington’s home. A twelve-year-old witness identified Washington as the killer.
“I was there. I was home with my brother, so I know he was innocent,” Washington’s sister, Tangela Alexander said.
However, a jury did convict Washington of first degree murder. In the 1990’s, the witness recanted his testimony, saying he was coerced by police to label Washington the killer. It would take about twenty years until a judge agreed that Washington was innocent.
“I think the legal system definitely needs to be reformed, and that there’s a lot of fault within the system,” Washington said after prosecutors dismissed his case.
A spokeswoman for Baltimore City’s State’s Attorney released the following statement on Washington’s case:
“Typical of cases this old, we faced various challenges that made it difficult for us to uphold this conviction and while we exhausted resources to re-investigate the homicide, factors such as the non-existence of physical evidence, and the unavailability of witnesses, left us with no other alternative than to nolle prosequi this defendant’s case.”