2 men who say they were wrongfully convicted fight for freedom
CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - The message was clear outside the Cleveland Justice Center Friday: we are innocent.
Michael Sutton and Kenny Phillips recently had their attempted murder convictions overturned and were released on bond in May.
After 14 years, a state appeals court ruled they did not receive a fair trial, citing the state failed to disclose evidence.
In 2006, Memorial Day weekend, a shooting occurred on East 55th Street and Woodland Avenue in Cleveland.
Sutton told police he witnessed someone in front of him inside a gold car firing a gun. This was after police pulled him over and he and Phillips became prime suspects.
Two people were seriously injured in the drive-by shooting.
According to testimony, two Cleveland police officers pinpointed the two and claimed Phillips ran and shot at them after a brief pursuit.
At sentencing, Phillips received 92 1/2 years while Sutton got 46 1/2 years.
Two other Cleveland police officers, one current and one former emerged with details that conflict with the state’s witnesses during the appeals process.
The defense argued the state knew about the other officers and failed to disclose.
The men, 17 and 18 at the time of the shooting, have maintained their innocence. Prosecutors are appealing the decision.
No new trial date has been set.
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