"A quarter century later, woman is exonerated in NYC killing"

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"A quarter century later, woman is exonerated in NYC killing"

Post by Melissa, manager on Tue Feb 23, 2016 10:36 pm

NEW YORK (AP) — Five years after Vanessa Gathers told police she had nothing to do with a deadly robbery, a detective questioned her again and got a confession that would put Gathers in prison for 10 years.

Nearly two decades later, Gathers was cleared Tuesday after prosecutors concluded her since-recanted confession was false, peppered with facts that didn't add up. It was made to a detective whose tactics have come under question.

"I feel great," Gathers, 58, said as she left court, smiling and wiping tears. As for what she would do next: "Go on with my life."

Gathers had already been freed on parole in 2007, but prosecutors' successful bid to get her manslaughter conviction dismissed frees her of a felony record and association with the death of 71-year-old Michael Shaw. He was beaten in his Brooklyn apartment on Nov. 18, 1991, and died of his injuries five months later.

"With this exoneration, Vanessa Gathers gets her good name back," Brooklyn District Attorney Kenneth Thompson said.

Gathers is the first woman to have her conviction disavowed as Brooklyn prosecutors revisit about 100 cases in one of the most ambitious reviews of its kind in the country. About 70 cases are tied to the same now-retired detective, Louis Scarcella, who denies any wrongdoing.

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Should detective Scarcella face charges?



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