POSTED: Wednesday, March 2, 2011 - 5:45pm
UPDATED: Wednesday, March 2, 2011 - 5:46pm
Houston - DNA tests on hairs found at the scene of a 1987 rape have proven a Texas man who spent 17 years in prison did not commit the crime, the Harris County District Attorney's office said Wednesday.
Prosecutors plan Thursday to officially request that 50-year-old George Rodriguez's conviction be dismissed. Rodriguez has been free since a court ruled in 2004 that faulty evidence was presented at his original trial. The case was later dismissed amid concerns the rape victim would have to testify at another trial.
Harris County prosecutors were not obligated to go ahead with DNA testing after the case was dismissed, but District Attorney Patricia Lykos said in a statement that her office "acted on the most important obligation of all — to see that truth emerges, and that justice is done."
"Today, we can state that an innocent man has been vindicated," Lykos said.