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Once-exonerated Conn. man ordered back to prison

•  National News     updated  2011/08/08 09:14


A month after the Connecticut Supreme Court reinstated murder convictions against two men who had been exonerated, a judge on Monday ordered one of them back to prison but allowed the other to remain free while fighting cancer.

George Gould was sent back to prison while Ronald Taylor, whose lawyer says he has terminal colon cancer, was allowed to remain out on bail. Both men await a new appeal trial connected to their murder convictions in the 1993 fatal shooting of New Haven grocery shop owner Eugenio Deleon Vega.

Gould and Taylor were both sentenced to 80 years in prison for the killing. They filed habeas corpus appeals, challenges to imprisonment that typically come after other appeals fail.

They were freed in April 2010 after 16 years behind bars when Superior Court Judge Stanley Fuger ruled they were victims of "manifest injustice" and declared them "actually innocent." Fuger's ruling came after a key prosecution witness recanted her trial testimony. He ordered both men released.

Prosecutors appealed to the state Supreme Court, which issued a unanimous decision last month saying that Fuger was wrong to overturn the convictions because Gould and Taylor hadn't proven their innocence. The high court ordered a new habeas corpus trial for the two men.



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