innocence blog

A Web log for the Innocence Institute of Point Park University

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Bennett Wins Appeal

Christopher Lee Bennett who pled guilty to manslaughter in the death of his friend, Ronald Young, has won an appeal based largely on the work of the Ohio Innocence Project.

Bennett and Young had been driving back from a Robertson area bar, when the driver lost control of the vehicle. Young perished in the accident, while Bennett sustained severe injuries that he says caused amnesia.

Bennett said he could not remember the events of the accident and he felt pressured by his lawyer to accept a plea. Rather than face a 15 year prison sentence, he pled guilty in February 2003 and accepted a 9 year sentence.

The Innocence Institute of Ohio became involved, and had DNA tested from the accident vehicle. The tests revealed Bennett’s blood and hair were on the passenger side. They also found a witness who attested that Bennett was passed out in the passenger side and that Young had been in the driver’s seat.

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