Nation's Longest-Serving DNA Exoneree Gets Pardon

Wednesday, Sep 30, 2009  |  Updated 4:30 PM CDT
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Nation's Longest-Serving DNA Exoneree Gets Pardon

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The official declaration of James Woodard's innocence clears the way for the Dallas man to collect millions of dollars in state-funded compensation.

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The nation's longest-serving DNA exoneree has received a pardon from the Texas governor.

The official declaration of James Woodard's innocence clears the way for the Dallas man to collect millions of dollars in state-funded compensation.

Gov. Rick Perry issued the pardon Wednesday, 18 months after Woodard was released after spending more than 27 years in prison for a 1980 murder he didn't commit.

Woodard was the boyfriend of the victim, who was found sexually assaulted and strangled. One of two eyewitnesses recanted her testimony, and subsequent DNA testing excluded Woodard from the sexual assault.

Woodard is one of 21 wrongly convicted Dallas County men whose convictions were set aside after DNA testing. Prosecutors plan to retry one of those cases.
 

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