Douglas Prade- Ohio- Convicted in 1998 Feb 2, 2016 13:24:07 GMT -5
Post by Scumhunter on Feb 2, 2016 13:24:07 GMT -5
(Above photo credit: Cleveland.com)
A former police captain in was accused and later convicted of betraying the badge and murdering his ex-wife. Now despite being cleared of murder and freed from prison, and there being new DNA evidence that he couldn't have committed the offense, Prade is back in jail fighting for his freedom once more. Below is somewhat of a summary of the case. You can always read more in the links I'll provide.
Anyway here is an excerpt from one Innocence Project article:
"Prade was a former Akron police captain when he was convicted in 1998 of the murder of his ex-wife, Dr. Margo Prade, and sentenced to life in prison. The victim’s body was discovered slumped behind the wheel of her car in her office parking lot. She was shot six times and had a bite mark on her arm. When DNA testing results proved inconclusive at trial, prosecutors’ used unscientific bite mark analysis to match Prade to the bite mark, reported WYKYC (NBC- Cleveland).
Prade’s attorneys at the Ohio Innocence Project and the law firm of Jones Day sought post-conviction DNA testing for nearly a decade. New, more sophisticated DNA testing conducted in 2010 revealed male DNA that did not belong to Prade. At a hearing in October, a judge heard expert testimony about the new evidence.
Summit County Judge Judy Hunter’s 26-page decision threw out the murder conviction and ordered Prade’s release from prison."
For thirteen months, Prade was a free man, until March of 2014 when Judge Hunter's decision was reversed this by Akron’s 9th District Court of Appeals. Prade was ordered back to prison, released, and then ordered back to prison again. Even Judge Hunter's successor (Christine Croce) called the case a virtual pingpong game.
Prade's Ohio Innocence Project lawyers are still fighting to clear him. It's been pointed out that in August 2012, DNA analysis of the crime scene trace evidence revealed that none of the associative evidence came from Douglas Prade. They claim Judge Hunter's decision was based on the results of new DNA tests which showed that DNA found on a bite mark left of the victim when she was murdered did not belong to Prade.
Summit County Prosecutor Sherri Bevan Walsh says Prade's lawyers need to show "clear and convincing evidence"- not just create doubt. Other circumstantial evidence such as Prade secretly tape recording his wife when he thought she was going to apply for divorce have been brought up- although that can be argued that it still doesn't prove he killed Margo Prade.
Thoughts? I actually remember this case from when I was a teenager and I have to admit, I thought he was guilty. Mainly because I saw it on one of those forensic shows, believing, hey they have the bite mark evidence, case closed. Can't beat science. Now as an older adult, I realize science, while still advanced, is not always foolproof and apparently, whether you think Prade is innocent or not, the bite mark evidence is now no longer solid. And that bite mark evidence is what convicted him in the first place.
This case is unique because it's a police captain convicted of murder. It's not something you see every day. The Steven Avery case makes accusations that a Sheriff's Department is corrupt. Here, it's actually someone from a Police Department claiming they have been falsely accused of murder.
While of course it doesn't prove guilt or innocence, for what it's worth, I found a Free Douglas Prade Facebook which is very active. So there are obviously a lot of people who believe he didn't kill his ex-wife.