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Man Pardoned 86 Years After He Is Executed

From the Associated Press. Remember this the next time you are scheduled for jury service. Just because the Defendant is seated at the defense table it does not mean he is guilty!
Pardon for Australian hanged 86 years ago
May 27, 2008 07:08 AM THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
SYDNEY, Australia – An Australian man who was executed 86 years ago for the rape and murder of a young girl has received a posthumous pardon.
Colin Campbell Ross, who was hanged in 1922 at the age of 28, was pardoned Tuesday by Victoria state Gov. David de Kretser after new research discredited the evidence used for his conviction.
Descendants of Ross and the 12-year-old victim, Alma Tirtschke, petitioned for the pardon.
Prosecutors alleged that Ross, who ran a saloon in Melbourne, gave Tirtschke alcohol before raping and strangling her on New Year's Eve 1921. The only physical evidence connecting him to the crime were hairs on a blanket which prosecutors claimed were Tirtschke's.
While witnesses gave alibis for Ross, he was convicted and later hanged, protesting his innocence.
The pardon petition built on recent forensic tests that finally proved the original hair samples did not come from Tirtschke.
Victoria Attorney-General Rob Hulls said in a statement Tuesday that he referred the petition to the Supreme Court of Victoria and received an opinion "that there had been a miscarriage of justice in Mr. Ross' case."
"A pardon is not the same thing as a declaration of innocence," Hulls said. "In the circumstances of the case a retrial is not possible. A pardon is recorded against the conviction in recognition that the State forgives the legal consequences of the crime."
Tirtschke's niece, Bettye Arthur, was pleased with the pardon.
"It is a tragedy for everybody that the actual perpetrator was not caught and an innocent man lost his life," she was quoted as saying Tuesday.
Victoria state abolished the death penalty in 1975.

1 Comment

WOW!! To little to late? Or better late then never?! It is tragic that a man had to lose his life for a crime he did not commit! If I ever get jury duty, I will remember this for sure!

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