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Federal Court Bars Re-Prosecution of Man Who Spent 21 Years on Death Row

On Monday, a federal appeals court barred the re-prosecution of Joe D’Ambrosio, who spent more than twenty-one years in prison and on death row for the 1988 murder of Tony Klann.

D’Ambrosio was released after a federal judge ruled that Cuyahoga County prosecutors failed to give evidence that could have exonerated him.

In 2010, U.S. District Judge Kate O’Malley barred D’Ambrosio’s retrial, and Common Pleas Judge Joan Synenberg dismissed all charges against him.

The Sixth Circuit Court of appeals, in a 2-1 decision, just decided that Judge O’Malley was authorized to make her ruling. Judge Danny Boggs dissented, arguing that O’Malley exceeded her jurisdiction, but he also criticized county prosecutors for withholding exculpatory evidence at D’Ambrosio’s original trial.

D’Ambrosio’s lawyers said they hoped the ruling was the last chapter in D’Ambrosio’s quest for freedom.

Meanwhile, another defendant in the case, Michael Keenan, remains on death row.

Via Cleveland.com.

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