Five Famous Cases of the Wrongfully Accused

The consequences of wrongful convictions are devastating, and false accusations often dog victims for the rest of their lives. False criminal charges can negatively impact one’s employment and general reputation; it is imperative to contact a lawyer to defend your case as quickly as possible. Consider these five cases of wrongful persecution:


When Anne Boleyn, the second wife of Henry the VIII, failed to produce a male heir, the king and his advisors accused her of adultery and treason in an effort to negate their marriage. Members of the king’s court were interrogated and even tortured into admitting to affairs with the queen. Anne and four other men were executed for their alleged crimes. 


While it’s true that lawman Tom Horn was a former outlaw and a known assassin, he was hanged in 1903 for a murder he likely did not commit. 14-year-old Willie Nickel was gunned down in 1901. Tom Horn was arrested after a questionable, alcohol-induced confession and with no more than circumstantial evidence that he was ever in the vicinity. Regardless, his violent reputation proceeded him and he paid for the crime with his life.


The shocking trial of Dr. Sam Sheppard captivated the nation in 1954. Dr. Sheppard was accused–and convicted–of sexually assaulting and murdering his wife, although he was retried in 1966 and found not guilty. He maintained his innocence until his death, and recent DNA evidence suggests someone else did commit the murder.


Richard Jewell became a prime suspect in the bombing at the 1996 Atlanta Olympic games. He had discovered a backpack containing pipe bombs and prevented a greater tragedy by helping evacuate the park before the package detonated. But the media found out that the hero was also a suspect and the story spun out of control. Jewell was exonerated when the real perpetrator plead guilty, but the accusation followed him to the end of his days.


In 1985, Hunt was tried and convicted of the rape and murder of Deborah Sykes and sentenced to life in prison. In 1994, DNA test results excluded him as a suspect, but the conviction was upheld despite the new evidence. DNA tests were rerun in 2004; this time, they matched that of the true murderer. Exonerated in 2005, Hunt had served nearly twenty years in prison for the crime.

In extreme cases, wrongful convictions can mean the difference between life and death, but in any situation, false criminal accusations are detrimental to everyone involved. Seek out legal representation, such as Attorney Bradley Corbett, and protect yourself and your legacy.

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