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Prosecutors Back Overturning 31-Year-Old Rape Case

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DALLAS (AP) – A top prosecutor says a man who has spent 31 years in prison for sexual assault didn’t receive a fair trial and that the conviction should be vacated.

Dallas County District Attorney Craig Watkins said Tuesday that prosecutors failed to reveal information in 1981 that could have helped acquit Rickey Dale Wyatt.

Watkins says his office supports setting aside the conviction but remains undecided on whether to re-prosecute the 56-year-old convict, who has been serving a 99-year prison term.

State District Judge John Creuzot is scheduled to hear arguments Wednesday on a motion to set aside the conviction.

Attorney Jason Kreag of the New York-based Innocence Project says prosecutors withheld evidence that clearly disputed the victim’s testimony at trial about Wyatt’s physical appearance.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

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