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Archive for Thursday, February 11, 2010

Manhattan attorney — and KU grad — spends a decade to get his client exonerated

February 11, 2010

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Eddie Lowery discusses rebuilding his life

Eddie Lowery discusses his wrongful conviction, his 10 years in prison, and his efforts to rebuild his life. Enlarge video

Manhattan attorney Barry Clark has spent a decade working to clear the name of Eddie Lowery.

For Clark, a Kansas University School of Law graduate, it was a cherished opportunity for a defense lawyer.

“It’s a rare thing,” said Clark, who calls the moment in 2003 when Lowery was officially exonerated the “high water mark” of his career. “It’s the most significant case I’ll ever see.”

With the assistance of the New York-based Innocence Project, a nonprofit organization that helps to exonerate the wrongfully convicted through DNA testing, Clark helped Lowery obtain the testing that proved he didn’t commit the 1981 rape of an elderly Ogden woman. Lowery was the 125th person in the United States to be exonerated through DNA testing. That number is now more than 240.

Lowery was referred to Clark in 2000, and said he knew from the beginning that Clark would help him.

“He believed me; he trusted me,” Lowery said.

And Clark knew Lowery was innocent the first time they spoke.

“I just knew he didn’t do it,” Clark said. “It wasn’t possible.”

Clark said his work with Lowery shows that mistakes do happen in the American criminal justice system.

“It works well, but like any system, it’s not perfect,” said Clark, who advocates for standard videotaping of suspect interviews.

The interrogation of Lowery by Manhattan, Kan., police was not taped, something that may have helped Lowery’s initial defense.

In cases of false confessions, the recording can give more insight into the circumstances of the interview, Clark said. For instance, Lowery was denied an attorney and continually threatened by police during his confession. Clark said he hopes that Lowery’s story can help spur changes in the system.

With the emotional ups and downs during the past 10 years working on Lowery’s case, Clark said the two have formed a close bond that transcends professional obligations.

“He’s one of my best buds,” Clark said. “He’s not a client; he’s a friend.”

Comments

JusticeProject 2 years, 7 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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Bob Kraxner 4 years, 2 months ago

You know damn well that the two detectives who forced a confession out of him, had to have "detected" that he was lying in regards to the so-called facts they got from him... that is if they were any good at their job. Certainly they would've "detected" the relief that overcame him when he finally let the weight of his "secret" off of his shoulders. 7.5 million will make him feel better, but will never hide the scars to his psyche, it will never erase the memories, and it will never stop the nightmares, and it can never ever replace the time he missed watching his child grow. May God have mercy on the souls of those who are responsible for this atrocity, and all others like it.

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smitty 4 years, 2 months ago

....Clark said his work with Lowery shows that mistakes do happen in the American criminal justice system.

“It works well, but like any system, it’s not perfect,” said Clark ......Lowery was denied an attorney and continually threatened by police during his confession. Clark said he hopes that Lowery’s story can help spur changes in the system.........

Systemic corruption from law enforcement...naaaah, no way. Our LE public servants don't systemically frame innocent citizens , nnaaaahhh, no way.

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