Angel Hernandez

13 years

Exonerated on August 15, 2001


Angel Hernandez (AKA Eduardo Velasquez) spent thirteen years in prison for a crime he did not commit. On November 23, 1988, a woman was assaulted as she entered her car. Her attacker shoved her into the car and assaulted her while holding a knife against her back. Hernandez was picked up by police almost an hour after the assault, despite not matching the description given by the victim. She then identified him from over 12 feet away, rather than a procedural lineup. A jury convicted Hernandez of assault and battery by means of a dangerous weapon, indecent assault, battery on an adult, aggravated rape, and assault and battery.

Blood typing was the only biological evidence presented at the trial in 1991. This test indicated that Hernandez had the same blood type as the assailant, but it was also stated that approximately eleven percent of the Hispanic population shared this blood type. Angel had worn a goatee since he was 15 years old, but the victim told police the perpetrator did not have any facial hair. A motion was filed to gain access to the evidence for DNA testing.

In 2001 DNA testing was performed on sperm that had been collected as evidence. The results excluded Hernandez, who was exonerated and released on August 15, 2001.