June 17th, 2009
Thomas Doswell was released from prison in 2005 after serving 19 years in prison for a rape he did not commit. DNA evidence exonerated Doswell, but in a civil suit against the city of Pittsburgh, Doswell alleges that police misconduct was also a factor in his wrongful conviction. Doswell alleged that police had no probable cause to include him in a photo array shown to the victim just hours after the rape occurred. Doswell’s photo was the only one stamped with “R”, for rapist. U.S. District Judge Donetta Ambrose threw out that claim on Tuesday, saying that although exonerated by DNA evidence, the police may have had cause to suspect Doswell. The judge also dismissed the claim of deprivation of familial and associational rights filed by Doswell’s son. Doswell is seeking millions in remuneration for his remaining claims of violation of his right to due process and against cruel and unusual punishment.