After a judge threw out his rape conviction, a man has been released from prison.
When Sullivan Walter was 17, he was apprehended and charged with rape in New Orleans. The matter involved the rapist going into the victim’s residence, holding a knife to her neck, and threatening to hurt her 8-year-old son.
Defense and prosecutors noted that there may have been incorrect victim identification and several failures by Walter’s defense lawyer. Thus, they filed a motion for Walter’s exoneration.
Walter was not the rapist based on blood and bodily fluids, stated the Innocence Project New Orleans, which assisted in representing him. However, that evidence was never given to the jury, and a police officer wasn’t truthful about the outcome of testing.
Walter had been found guilty of forcible rape, aggravated burglary, and other charges. His trial was just one day, and he was sentenced to 36 years in prison.
“To say this was unconscionable is an understatement,” stated Judge Darryl Derbigny.
“I’m just ready to live. I just want to live an honest, free life,” Walter said after he was freed on Thursday.
The victim in the case is no longer alive. Officials did speak with her son. He stated his regret on behalf of his mother for what the innocent man has gone through.
Walter reported that he is looking forward to what is to come. Additionally, he would like to assist others who have been wrongly imprisoned.