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Milestone for innocent on death row

April 19, 2002 | Page 2

"HE DESERVES an apology from us, that's for sure," said Rick Romley, the district attorney for Maricopa County, Ariz. "What do you say to him? An injustice was done, and we will try to do better."

Romley was talking about Ray Krone. Last week, Krone became the 100th innocent person in the country to be exonerated and released from death row since the reinstatement of the death penalty in 1976.

Krone spent more than 10 years behind bars for the 1991 murder of bartender Kim Ancona. The main evidence against him was a bite mark found on the victim that prosecutors "matched" with a dental impression Krone agreed to give police by biting down on a foam cup.

In 1995, Krone's conviction was overturned, and he was retried, but yet another jury found him guilty and sentenced him to life in prison. Finally, Krone's new attorney asked for DNA testing--which proved that Krone could not have been the killer and instead linked the murder to another man.

"As I sat and talked to Ray, I began to realize that there are 100 guys just like Ray," said Krone's attorney. "This is the face of the wrongfully accused."

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