Desmond Ricks Awarded $7.5 Million By The City Of Detroit After Being Wrongfully Convicted Of Murder


A man had claimed that police switched bullets in order to blame him for a murder in 1992.

Now, the city of Detroit will pay that man $7.5 million to settle a lawsuit.

In 2017, after 25 years, Desmond Ricks was freed from prison. This was with the assistance of gun experts and law students at the University of Michigan.

“I’m not greedy. I’m thankful,” Ricks, 56, stated after the settlement was approved on Tuesday.

He was found guilty of shooting a friend, close to a restaurant in 1992. Police confiscated a gun that was owned by Ricks’ mother and stated that it was used in the murder.

Pictures of two bullets taken from the victim, Gerry Bennett, didn’t look like the bullets that were analyzed by a defense expert. This was examined prior to the trial that had happened decades before.

Thus in 2016, the Innocence Clinic at University of Michigan Law School requested that a judge open the case back up.

The real bullets shockingly were still in police possession in a storage. A further review found that they didn’t match the .38-caliber gun said to be the weapon.

Ricks was granted a new trial, and prosecutors, then, dismissed the charges.

Subsequent to being exonerated, Ricks and his relatives filed a $125 million civil lawsuit. They cited that violations of his constitutional rights caused Ricks to be wrongfully convicted. Police Officers David Pauch and Donald Stawiasz were identified in the lawsuit. They were accused of fabricating and withholding evidence while investigating Bennett’s murder.

As the trial was in progress, even the city’s expert noted that the bullet examination done by the police lab years ago was inaccurate.

Ricks was awarded over $1 million from the state for his wrongful conviction. That was $50,000 for each year he served in prison. Now that the city of Detroit has settled the lawsuit, he will probably have to give it back.


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