Uniquely Dispositive Power: How Postconviction DNA Testing Impeached Accomplice Testimony, Implicated a Lone Killer, and Exonerated the Beatrice Six, A
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Burke, Jeanne A.
INTRODUCTION|On January 26, 2009, the Nebraska Board of Pardons granted full pardons to five individuals after the State of Nebraska ("State") declared those five individuals absolutely innocent of any involvement in the 1985 rape and murder of Helen Wilson. Three months earlier, the District Court of Jefferson County exonerated a sixth individual by vacating his criminal conviction, granting him a new trial, and subsequently granting the State's motion to dismiss the first degree murder charge against him. By the time they were exonerated, these six individuals, commonly referred to as "The Beatrice Six" because the grisly murder occurred in Beatrice, Nebraska, had collectively served nearly seventy years in prison. DNA testing performed in 2008 on preserved biological material recovered from the crime scene proved, beyond all doubt, that none of the Beatrice Six had been involved in...
42 Creighton L. Rev. 549 (2008-2009)
Creighton University School of Law