Robert Dewey from Grand Junction, Colorado, was sentenced to life in prison for the 1994 rape and murder of Jacie Taylor of Palisade, Colorado, over sixteen years ago. Dewey was arrested and charged with Sexual Assault and murder. The main piece of evidence was a bloody shirt of Dewey's that experts thought contained some of Jacie's blood. Even though the crime was committed in Mesa County, the story was reported all over Colorado in Denver County, Jefferson, Arapahoe, Adams, Douglas, Larimer, and Weld.
Advancements in technology have disproven the accusations against Dewey. Since the trial in 1996, investigators discovered that much of the evidence was contaminated. Newer and more accurate tests were done on the DNA preserved from the case, and the results showed that Dewey's DNA did not match what was found in Jacie's apartment. Also, they discovered that the blood on the shirt belonged to Dewey himself. Correct DNA evidence is very important in sex crime cases like Incest (CRS 18-6-302), Sexual Assault on a Child (CRS 18-3-405), and Unlawful Sexual Contact (CRS 18-3-404). Particularly when you consider that many sex crimes are subject to indeterminate sentencing in Colorado.
Many times, police in cities like Denver, Littleton, Englewood, Aurora, Boulder, and Highlands Ranch can be so intent on arresting someone for a sex crime that they will force the evidence to fit their theory. Dewey's conviction is an example of that. Police were desperate to accuse someone, and Dewey was a convicted felon living in the area. Police have their own agenda that sometimes involves innocent people being charged because of someone else's mistake.
Dewey served almost eighteen years of a lifetime sentence before he was finally able to prove his innocence. A good lawyer who was persistent in the district attorney's office and demanded that the old evidence be re-tested with new technology was Dewey's best ally.
If you find yourself being falsely accused of sexual assault charges, or think the police might want to press charges because of circumstantial evidence, be smart, exercise your right to remain silent, and call the experienced criminal defense attorneys at the O'Malley Law Office at 303-830-0880. Together, we can protect your future.
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