DNA test could exonerate executed man

Jan. 5, 2006 at 10:55 PM   |   Comments

RICHMOND, Va., Jan. 5 (UPI) -- Virginia Gov. Mark Warner has ordered DNA testing that could prove the innocence of a man executed in 1992, The Washington Post reports.

The move marks the first time a governor has asked for genetic testing of someone already put to death.

The testing comes in the case of Roger Keith Coleman, a convicted killer whose proclamations of innocence sparked concern nationwide over whether the wrong man died in Virginia's electric chair.

"We have found that the latest DNA technology -- in certain instances where the other facts of a case support it -- has provided a definitive result not available at the time of trial or post-conviction testing," Warner said in a statement.

Coleman was convicted and sentenced to death for the 1981 brutal rape and stabbing of his sister-in-law, 19-year-old Wanda McCoy.

The tests, on vials of evidence that have been preserved for years at a California laboratory, are being conducted at the Center of Forensic Sciences lab in Toronto, Ontario. Results could be announced before Warner leaves office next week.

Topics: Mark Warner
© 2006 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
Recommended UPI Stories
Most Popular
New York Post defies #ISISMediablackout with graphic James Foley cover
Russia, Ukraine give ICRC necessary security guarantees for aid convoy
New York Times reporter ordered to leave Afghanistan
Chris Christie flips at town hall attendee over Bruce Springsteen
NATO soldier stabbed, killed near Kabul airport
Trending News