Tennessee man exonerated after serving 15 years for a murder he didn’t commit

The Davidson County District Attorney’s Office announced that after a four-year effort by Joseph Webster’s legal professional to exonerate him, it “no longer has confidence in the conviction against Mr. Webster” and really useful the fees towards him be dismissed. His exoneration would be the first in Nashville history for the reason that Davidson County Conviction Review Unit was established in 2016, in response to a assertion from Webster’s legal professional Daniel Horwitz.

He was transferred from Tennessee Department of Corrections custody to the downtown Nashville detention middle Tuesday night time, the place he was launched, in response to his legal professional.

Webster was convicted of first-degree murder within the dying of Leroy Owens in 1998, in response to court docket paperwork. Owens was at a pal’s home when two males in a white station wagon arrived on the dwelling and commenced beating Owens over what witnesses believed to be a drug debt, the paperwork stated.

Owens was in a position to escape, lacking a shoe, and run to a different dwelling. The resident requested Owens — who was matted, bruised and scared — to depart. When he tried to run once more, the boys caught up with Owens, and he was fatally assaulted with a cinder block, in response to court docket paperwork.

Joseph Webster, left.

Witnesses on the time recognized the man who killed Owens as Webster.

However, a number of of Owens’ relations later advised authorities that certainly one of his kin had admitted to the murder, court docket paperwork stated. The automotive was then discovered to be owned by that relative.

When one of many witnesses who had initially recognized Webster noticed a {photograph} of his relative, she recognized him because the precise perpetrator she had seen commit the killing, not Webster.

“The State and defense counsel submit that evidence not previously presented to the jury or to the Court indicates another individual committed the murder of Leroy Owens,” in response to court docket paperwork.

A listening to passed off on Tuesday to allow Webster’s launch from jail.

“After a decade and a half in prison for a murder that he did not commit, I am overjoyed that Joseph Webster’s wrongful conviction will finally be overturned,” stated Horwitz. “Mr. Webster is also thinking of the entire Owens family at this time, which has to process the painful news of learning that the wrong person was convicted of committing this brutal murder.”

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