Glenn Davis, Larry Delmore and Terrence Meyers were arrested in 1992, convicted in 1993 and sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole for the second-degree murder of Samuel George in Westwego, Louisiana. Their conviction was based exclusively on one eyewitness with a history of drug abuse and incarceration who claimed to have been a witness to the crime and identified Mr. Davis, Mr. Delmore and Mr. Meyers as three men who drove by in a car and shot the victim.
Innocence Project New Orleans (IPNO) signed on to Mr. Davis's case in 2002 and discovered that the State had hidden evidence that, among other things (1) police had significant information that another man, a violent drug dealer, was the person who committed the crime for which these three young men had been convicted - witnesses at the scene implicated him, the crime had been committed in that man's car and he had been in a fight with someone associated with the victim weeks before and vowed revenge; and (2) other witnesses to the crime said that the alleged eyewitness was not even outside when Mr. George was shot, so couldn't have seen anything. IPNO also discovered that the trio's trial lawyer was simultaneously representing the other suspect, who had consulted him for advice about whether he could be arrested for the crime. In spite of significant evidence in the possession of the State and the knowledge of defense counsel, the real perpetrator's name was never raised at trial.
After years of litigation based on significant new evidence, including testimony from the real perpetrator's former girlfriend about his involvement, Mr. Davis' conviction was reversed on February 16, 2007 and he was released two months later. The conviction was reversed because the combined failures of the State and the defense resulted in a trial that was fundamentally unfair for all three men and was not a test of the truth. IPNO then shepherded Mr. Delmore and Mr. Meyers's cases through to their releases. Their convictions were reversed on August 19, 2008 and one month later, on September 24 and 29, Mr. Delmore and Mr. Meyers respectively walked out of prison, nearly 16 years after they were convicted for a second degree murder they did not commit.
On September 24, 2010, the State announced that, based on the evidence brought to its attention by Innocence Project New Orleans, it would not retry Mr. Davis, Mr. Meyers or Mr. Delmore. Eighteen years after they were wrongly charged with second degree murder, all three were finally exonerated.
Sadly, Terrence Meyers passed away in his sleep on April 17, 2012.
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