Article from The Hill by Rebecca Klar.


A judge formally cleared a New York man of rape charges on Tuesday after DNA tests showed he wasn’t a match for the rape that put him in prison.

New York state Supreme Court Judge Stephen Antiginia exonerated Rafael Ruiz, who had long denied the crime and refused a plea deal to serve 1 1/2 to three years, the Innocence Project announced.

“I am thankful to the Innocence Project for all their work to make today a reality,” Ruiz, who left prison years ago, said in a statement. “I lost 25 years of my life because I insisted upon my innocence and rejected plea bargains. Today feels like a huge burden off my shoulders and I look forward to living a good life moving forward.”

While incarcerated, Ruiz obtained assistance from attorney William Tendy, who further investigated the situation and discovered an alternate suspect who fit the description, even by name, that the rape victim gave.

Read the entire article at The Hill.

Image Credit: By St. Louis Circuit Attorney’s Office (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons