RICHMOND, VA. Independent DNA testing has found two men to have been wrongly convicted of sexual assault, raising to five the number of people exonerated because of forensic evidence saved by a meticulous scientist, Gov. Mark R. Warner said Wednesday in Richmond.
The two men, who have requested that their names not be released, had already completed their prison sentences, Warner said in a news release.
Three other men who were convicted of rape were freed thanks to samples saved by the late state forensic scientist Mary Jane Burton.
As a result of those exonerations, Warner ordered an independent lab to review a random sampling of cases she handled to see if others had been wrongly convicted. Now all samples saved by Burton will be reviewed, the governor said.
Burton, who died in 1999, worked in the Virginia state crime lab from 1974 to 1988.