WASHINGTON - A judge has refused to overturn the convictions of seven men convicted of a 1984 murder in the District of Columbia.
Lawyers for the men, who were teenagers at the time they were convicted in Catherine Fuller's death, argued in court earlier this year that there was new information pointing to their clients' innocence. They said evidence showed she was murdered by one or two people instead of the mass beating described at trial. They also said prosecutors had withheld evidence that could have been favorable.
But prosecutors said they were confident in the original verdict, and Superior Court Judge Frederick Weisberg said in an opinion released Monday that the men had failed to present any DNA or scientific evidence that could exonerate them.
The men were convicted of beating and killing Fuller in an alley off of H Street NE in D.C. They asked for a retrial because they say prosecutors forced some witnesses to lie and coerced confessions from others.
The court reaffirmed that the evidence for the men's guilt in the case is overwhelming, according to a statement from the U.S. Attorney's office for the District of Columbia:
"We are satisfied that justice has been done and hope that today's ruling settles this matter and brings some measure of peace to Ms. Fuller's family."
The document below describes the judge's decision, particularly on pages 4, 22, 23, 27 and 34.
- New evidence could reopen 27-year-old murder case
- 7 men will be retried for 1984 murder of young mom
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