Stella Dimoko Man Walks Free After 24 Years Wrongful Conviction


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Friday, May 26, 2017

Man Walks Free After 24 Years Wrongful Conviction

A Philadelphia man walked free this week after spending 24 years in prison for a crime he didn't commit.

Provided by CBS Interactive Inc. Shaun Thomas, 43, used a cell phone for the first time this week.

Shaun Thomas' conviction was overturned Tuesday and he walked out of prison that same day.

The 43-year-old was just 16 when he was accused of participating in the murder of a businessman who was shot in 1990.

Thanks in part to the dogged efforts of the Pennsylvania Innocence Project, the Conviction Review Unit from the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office discovered a believed-to-be-lost file at the Philadelphia Police Department.

In that file were 36 pages of witness statements taken days after the murder for which Thomas would be arrested years later.

Those statements point to viable alternative perpetrators, according to a release from the Pennsylvania Innocence Project.

They also backed up Thomas' insistence all along he was at another court hearing when the crime was committed. However, alibi-proving logs disappeared from the juvenile correctional center and a jury didn't buy testimony from Thomas' mother and sister claiming they were with him at the time of the murder.

Had that information been available at trial — and had the story of Shaun’s presence in court at the moment the murder was committed been told correctly — prosecutors agreed the trial would likely have ended differently, the statement reads.

The Pennsylvania Innocence Project, along with attorney and former Philadelphia police Sgt. James Figorski, represented Thomas for eight years prior to his release.

"I feel wonderful," Thomas said as he left the prison in Frackville on his way back to his fiancee, mother, siblings, children and friends in Philadelphia. "Life's too short for that. I just move on forward."

Thomas got to use a cell phone for the first time and planned to eat the "Ultimate Feast" at Red Lobster as his first meal, according to CBS News.

The district attorney's office will decide at a hearing next month whether they intend to retry Thomas.
from inside edition


  1. hmmmmm wasted years. Just love the way he sees life. Life is short, enjoy it

  2. Too many wrongfully convicted black men in jail. Glad he is out. He will get paid for his years in jail, although doesn't bring back his lost years, it will sure make life easier for him. That red lobster ultimate feast is the ish!

  3. I hate reading stories like this.
    Poor man!
    He must have suffered!😢
    And yet he says all he want to do is move on with his life.
    And just Look at his smile😢

    Makes me wonder how many peeps are wrongfully sent to Death Row.

    1. And it's mostly black.
      Oh no for the torture, and oh yes for his freedom

      Many innocent people o my sister

  4. Fiancée from where? Abi he de go on dating site from prison? Hope he was compensated sha

    1. Children from where?? Lool... maybe he had kids by 15

    2. They give them conjugal Vist permit here so it's possible that he too got it

  5. Nice....Urmmm did i see "children" and "fiancee"? How was he able to have children and fiancee in prison?? Correct me if i'm wrong pls.

    1. He can still have a relationship in jail.

  6. 24 years!!!
    Hope he get a hefty compensation

  7. omg what a wasted years, they need to compensate him.

  8. Black people has really suffered

  9. I hate reading about things like this. I suspect his melanin contributed to why the jury said he was guilty. I don't understand the part about fiancée and children though. What are they possibly going to try him for again? Hmmmm

  10. People get married while in prison and they give them private time with their spouses. So it's possible he has kids

  11. I know a man whom a judge in Britain set free because the police and court officials could not make his file available when it was needed. Imagine if another judge had insisted on keeping him in prison indefinitely until his file was found if it ever would have been found.

  12. Reading and comprehension is clearly not everyone's forte! *side eye*
    The man is 43. He spent 24 years in prison. Meaning he went to prison at 19. He was convicted at 16, so there was a 3 year period to have kids and a girlfriend who later became a fiancé.

  13. Wasted years, too many wrong convictions i


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