MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — All charges against a Minnesota man have been dropped after he served the last five years in prison for a shooting that happened outside of Target Field in April 2014.
The Innocence Project of Minnesota helped free 32-year-old Javon Davis. He was convicted in 2015 in connection to a shooting that injured two men in the middle of the night on April 12, 2014, leaving one with critical injuries.
According to the Innocence Project of Minnesota, the prosecutor in the case presented Davis’ history of conflict with one of the victims as his motive for the shooting.
A news release says Davis was sent to prison even though one of the victims testified at trial that he was certain Davis was not at the scene of the crime, and “he did not want to send an innocent man to prison.”
Davis also had an alibi, and at the time of the shooting he was reportedly seven miles away, talking on the phone with his girlfriend, an alibi that was later corroborated by phone data and cell phone tower records. The Innocence Project of Minnesota says much of this information was not properly presented to the jury by Davis’ attorney — and a district court judge eventually vacated the conviction because of it.
Davis’s exoneration was made possible through years of work by staff at the Innocence Project of Minnesota, students from the University of Minnesota Law School, and pro bono attorney Jon Hopeman.
“We appreciate the professionalism and courtesy shown to us by members of the Hennepin County Attorney’s Office during this case,” Jon Hopeman told the media. “Being wrongfully accused of a crime is a horrific experience. We at the Innocence Project of Minnesota were able to make sure the justice system got it right. We are thrilled that Mr. Davis is home with his family. He wants to resume coaching youth basketball, get a job, and take care of his children – enjoying the daily freedoms that ordinary citizens often take for granted.”
The Innocence Project of Minnesota works to free the innocent and prevent future wrongful convictions from occurring in Minnesota, North Dakota, and South Dakota. For more information about the organization, click here.