Judge Rules Two Men Wrongfully Convicted Of Murder Receive 900K Payout From State

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  • Source: Wayne Dupree
  • 04/21/2023
A California court on Thursday exonerated two men who were wrongfully convicted of attempted murder after a gunshot in 2004 and sentenced to almost 17 years in prison. A new legislation requires the state to compensate each of them $140 for each day they were imprisoned, or nearly $900,000. 

Dupree Glass and Juan Rayford's judgments came to an end during a fresh trial that started in October when a state appeals court panel overturned their convictions and they were released in 2020, according to the AP. The defense team claimed that the real gunman, Chad Brandon McZeal, a gang member serving a life sentence for murder in a separate case, made a stunning confession during the hearings.

Following the judge's decision, Glass and Rayford hugged each other and their legal representatives. The guys were applauded by relatives and admirers outside the courtroom. Holding his little daughter close, Rayford described it as a "amazing" sensation to finally have their records cleared and their reputations repaired. "I gave this day a lot of thinking. During the 17 years I was inside, I gave it some consideration. Throughout my final two years of freedom, I gave it some consideration. I awaited this day because, well, I knew I wasn't guilty of any of the crimes they said I did, he stated. 

Defense lawyers claimed that the case was the first to be launched under a provision that provides compensation for defendants whose convictions are overturned and permits them to provide proof of their innocence.

When they were detained after a gunshot during an incident involving a group of teenagers in Lancaster, north of Los Angeles, Glass and Rayford were, respectively, 17 and 18. According to court documents, two persons were wounded by gunshot, although they weren't seriously hurt. Both offenders received 11 consecutive life sentences after being found guilty on 11 charges of attempted murder. Only two witnesses who subsequently changed their accounts were largely relied upon in the convictions of Glass and Rayford. 

The teenagers, who had no prior criminal record, insisted from the start that they were not responsible for the shooting. Both Glass, 36, and Rayford, 37, are now employed by Walmart as drivers. Rayford is with the woman who he fell in love with in high school and who waited for him in jail. Both guys are brand-new dads to little daughters.

Just to give you a little clarity on the story, this video was made 3 years ago:

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