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USA. 28 years on death row. A man convicted of murdering a four-year-old boy has been released

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It feels amazing to be with my family again,” Barry Jones said in a statement quoted by the American media. A man in 1995 was sentenced to death for the murder of his partner’s four-year-old daughter and spent the next 28 years on death row. Years later, the authorities analyzed the collected data and concluded that Jones was not responsible for the fatal injuries suffered by the child.

Arizona native Barry Jones, now 64, was convicted in 1995 of the sexual assault and murder of his girlfriend’s four-year-old daughter the year before. A court in 1995 found Jones responsible for the fatal injury to the small intestine suffered by his partner’s daughter. He sentenced him to death.

After 28 years on death row, the man left prison in mid-June. This became possible after authorities in Pina County, where the 64-year-old lived, analyzed documentation compiled in 2017 after questioning medical experts and investigators in federal court. And they decided that he did not cause fatal injuries to the child. The hearings were held in connection with Jones’s appeal against a conviction that he had had “inadequate representation” at the trial. They became the basis for the annulment of the judgment. Jones was released “just in time” to celebrate Father’s Day with his adult children, KNXV-TV reported.

Jones, in a statement quoted by CNN, thanked his defense attorneys who “never gave up on revealing the truth” and the family who “supported him” in a “hard trial”.

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SEE ALSO: The 32-year-old shot three young sons. “Incomprehensible Horror”

Convicted of murder left the death row

As it reminds USA Today, 4-year-old Rachel Gray died on May 2, 1994, after being hospitalized with internal injuries. An autopsy at the time revealed that the cause of death was internal bleeding caused by a blow to the abdomen. Later that day, police arrested Jones, who was living with the girl and her mother at the time. The charges against him were based on the fact that Rachel was in the man’s care that day, and he was the only person who could have caused the injury, the portal writes. In April 1995, Jones was recognized as found guilty of first degree murder and sentenced to death. An appeal to the Arizona Court of Appeals was unsuccessful. However, as USA Today reports, a new investigation found that it was the neighborhood boys who hit Rachel in the stomach with a metal bar a day or two before her death, and this may have caused it. her internal bleeding.

The Arizona Attorney General’s office and the Pima County Attorney’s office agreed that the first-degree murder conviction should be overturned. As emphasized by the Death Penalty Information Center, an organization that investigates cases of the death penalty in the US, evidence was available at the time of the trial that the injuries from which the girl died were not caused while she was in the care of the convict. Retired investigator Andrew Sowards, who worked on the Jones case for 11 years, was quoted by KTVT as saying the 64-year-old “should have thought she needed care and taken her to hospital” which is “far away”. from the position that he “caused injury” and physically abused the child.

Barry Jones was sentenced in 1995.Arizona Department of Corrections, Rehabilitation and Reentry

Jones admitted that he did not ask for help for the girl and was therefore sentenced to 25 years in prison, which he had already served, the “New York Times” pointed out.

“This is just one of countless cases that show the weaknesses and flaws of the death penalty,” said Pima County Prosecutor Laura Conover. “Being accused and convicted of injuries for which he is clearly not responsible has cost him a lot,” she said. She added that the death of a four-year-old is “one of the heartbreaking cases we see when a four-year-old is abused and neglected.”

SEE ALSO: The Lady of the Trunk found on Halloween. The mystery was solved after more than half a century

On death row for almost 30 years. “His abilities will be limited”

“We are deeply grateful to the Arizona Attorney General and the Pima County Prosecutor for taking a fresh look at Mr. Jones’s case and admitting that he never received a fair trial,” Cary Sandman, a public defender whose office has represented Jones for more than 20 years, said in a statement quoted by CNN. years. “We hope Barry can enjoy the rest of his life in peace, surrounded by family and friends,” he added.

Investigator Andrew Sowards has set up a GoFundMe fundraiser to help Jones cope after his release. “Barry is starting from scratch and will leave prison with nothing. (…) ​​He will need funds to start over. He is almost 65 years old and although he is looking forward to returning to work, his options will be limited,” he pointed out in description posted on the website on June 15.

Within 11 days, almost 600 donors donated over PLN 42.1 thousand to the 64-year-old. dollars.

Capital punishment in the US (2020).PAP

SEE ALSO: He spent almost 40 years on death row

CNN, The New York Times, GoFundMe

Main photo source: Arizona Department of Corrections, Rehabilitation and Reentry

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