Victims of the State

Richmond, VA

Michael McAlister

Feb 23, 1986

Michael McAlister was convicted of attempted rape. The victim said a masked man wearing a red and white plaid shirt attacked her, and McAlister voluntarily put on a red plaid shirt when police asked him to before taking his photo. The victim was later shown a photo spread and identified McAlister, the only man in the photo spread wearing a red shirt. The chief investigator and the trial prosecutor went to McAlister's parole hearing in 1993 and said, “We just felt that McAlister was not the person and that there was a high probability [someone else] could have committed the offense.” Parole was denied in 1993 and in later years, and as of 2002, McAlister was waiting for his mandatory 2004 release.  (Times-Dispatch)  [11/05]

 Alberta, Canada

Richard McArthur

Jan 24, 1986

Richard McArthur was convicted of the stabbing murder of a fellow inmate at the Drumheller Penitentiary. Following McArthur's conviction he met four witnesses in regard to the stabbing while serving time at the Edmonton Institution. They informed him of what they knew about the stabbing, explaining their earlier denial of knowledge to Drumheller investigators was because they did not want to get involved. These witnesses supported McArthur's contention that he killed the deceased in self-defence. Three of these witnesses saw the deceased, armed with a knife, go to McArthur's cell shortly before the stabbing incident. Based on this new evidence, the Alberta Court of Appeal overturned his conviction. Since McArthur had already served the minimum time for his conviction and the crown did not wish to retry him, the Court also ordered his acquittal.  (R. v. McArthur)  [8/09]

New York County, NY

William McCaffrey

Sept 11, 2005

William McCaffrey was convicted of raping Biurny Peguero. The rape supposedly occurred at knifepoint while McCaffrey was taking Peguero to an after hours party in Upper Manhattan. Judge Richard Carruthers called the alleged assault “horrific” and “disgusting” when he sentenced McCaffrey to 20 years in prison. DNA tests in 2008 showed that bite marks on Peguero's arm and shoulder which McCaffrey reportedly inflicted contained no Y chromosomes, indicating they were not caused by a man. In 2009 Peguero, who had since married and adopted the last name Gonzalez, confessed to perjury. She said McCaffrey did not rape her and she was riven with remorse for sending an innocent man to prison. She said her injuries stemmed from a drunken brawl with a female friend. According to a psychiatrist who examined her, Peguero came to believe her lie because she had been too drunk to remember much of the night in question. McCaffrey was subsequently exonerated and Peguero was convicted of perjury.  (NY Times) (HPost)  [4/10]

Herschel McCarn - See Berry Innocents

Oklahoma County, OK

Curtis McCarty

Dec 10, 1982

Curtis McCarty was convicted in 1986 for the 1982 stabbing and strangling of teenager Pamela Kaye Willis. He was sentenced to death. The conviction was overturned because an appeals court ruled that DA Robert H. Macy Sr. had acted deplorably during the trial and that police chemist Joyce Gilchrist had omitted key information from her forensic reports. McCarty was retried in 1989, convicted, and again sentenced to death. The death sentence was reversed on appeal, but after a new penalty trial in 1996, McCarty was sentenced to death for a third time.

Gilchrist was fired in Sept. 2001 for performing shoddy work and giving false or misleading testimony in other cases. She was involved in more than 1100 cases. She helped to send 23 men to death row, 11 of whom have been executed. In May 2007, a judge hearing McCarty's appeal ruled that Gilchrist had acted in “bad faith” and “most likely did destroy or intentionally lose” hair evidence that was crucial at McCarty's trial. Because potentially exculpatory evidence had been destroyed, McCarty could never get a fair trial. Citing the 1988 U.S. Supreme Court decision in Arizona v. Youngblood, the judge released McCarty and dismissed charges against him.  (L.A. Times)  [6/07]

Juniata County, PA

Emerson McCauley

June 26, 1977

Emerson McCauley was convicted in 1989 of the 1977 murder of 21-year-old Devera Frink. Frink had left her waitressing job at the Nittany Mall at 10 p.m. on June 25, 1977. She was then seen hitchhiking, a few miles away, in State College at 11 p.m. She was last seen alive about 15 minutes later in Boalsburg, a short distance from her apartment. Some time later, at 1:30 a.m., a motorist found her body more than 50 miles away under the twin-span bridges of U.S. Route 322 at the Thompsontown exit. She had been beaten, raped, and choked, but had been alive when she was thrown off one the bridges. The bridge she was thrown off was 44 feet above where her body was found.
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Franklin County, OH 

Robert McClendon

Apr 25, 1990 (Columbus)

Robert McClendon was convicted of raping his 10-year-old daughter, Rahshea Knaff. Knaff reported that she was abducted from her backyard by a man who tied a sock over her eyes. The man then took her to a abandoned house nearby and raped her. Afterwards the man took her to a convenience store and went inside, leaving her alone in the car. While he was inside, Knaff jumped from the car and ran home.

Knaff did not tell her mother about the assault until the next day, when her mother noticed she was acting and walking strangely. According to her mother's testimony, Knaff identified her assailant as her biological father, Robert McClendon. Knaff was taken to a hospital which confirmed she had been assaulted. When asked who assaulted her, she said, “I think it was my dad but I may be wrong because my eyes were covered.” Testimony indicated that Knaff had only seen her father once in her life before the assault.

McClendon was convicted due to his daughter's testimony and due to the state's allegation that he had failed a polygraph test. Years later in 2008, DNA tests were performed which showed that another man committed the assault. McClendon was subsequently exonerated.  (IP) (Columbus Dispatch)  [6/09]

Ingham County, MI 

Claude McCollum

Jan 23, 2005

Claude McCollum was convicted of the rape and murder of 60-year-old Lansing Community College Professor Carolyn Kronenberg. The crime occurred in her classroom. Police had McCollum speculate on whether he could have committed the crime while sleepwalking. They then termed his speculation a “confession.” DNA tests of material found under Kronenberg's fingernails excluded McCollum and matched the profile of an unknown male.

New evidence points to serial rapist/killer Matthew Macon as the man who attacked Kronenberg. The state has been urged to compare the DNA evidence to that of Macon. Also a videotape has surfaced which apparently shows McCollum to be elsewhere on the college campus at the time of Kronenberg's murder. On Sept. 24, 2007, a court has overturned McCollum's conviction and charges against him were subsequently dismissed.  (Lansing State Journal) (Case Documents)  [09/07]

Antron McCray - See Central Park Five

Alvin & Debbie McCuan - See Kniffens & McCuans

Chris McCrimmon - See El Grande Innocents

Kodiak Island, AK

Donald McDonald

Mar 28, 1986

After 28-year-old Laura Henderson Ibach disappeared, Donald “Mac” McDonald and James Kerwin were charged with her kidnapping and later with her murder. Laura was last seen with McDonald and Kerwin in McDonald's van on the night of her disappearance.  According to the two she had only been with them for a short period and they gave a plausible explanation as to why.
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U.S. Federal Case (AR) 

Susan McDougal


Susan McDougal was the former wife of Jim McDougal, a man involved in the Whitewater affair. This affair involved associates of the then President Clinton. Susan talked freely at first to investigators working for Special Prosecutor Kenneth Starr. But then she realized she was being put in a perjury trap for her testimony contradicted that of her ex-husband and that of former judge David Hale, both of whom had been given special deals for their testimony. Rather than be coerced into lying, or face perjury charges for telling the truth, she refused to testify. Her refusal resulted in her being imprisoned 21 months for civil contempt. Susan has written a book about her experience entitled The Woman Who Wouldn't Talk.  (TruthInJustice)  [11/05]

Tulsa County, OK

Arvin McGee

Oct 29, 1987

Arvin Carsell McGee, Jr. was convicted of raping a 21-year-old woman and sentenced to 365 years imprisonment. The victim picked McGee out of a photo lineup although she initially had picked another man. McGee's first trial resulted in a mistrial, and his second trial resulted in a hung jury. DNA tests exonerated him in 2002 and implicated another man, Edward Alberty, then imprisoned in an Oklahoma facility.  (IP)  [10/05]

Curtis W. McGhee, Jr. - See Harrington & McGhee

 Dallas County, TX

Thomas McGowan

May 7, 1985 (Richardson)

Thomas Clifford McGowan Jr. was convicted of rape. The 19-year-old victim picked his photo from a group of seven, some in color, others black-and-white photocopies. When she tentatively picked McGowan's picture, she said Detective Mike Corley, now the assistant chief, told her, “I had to make a positive ID. I had to say yes or no.” McGowan was given two life sentences, one for rape, and the other for burglary of the woman's apartment. In April 2008, after serving 23 years of imprisonment, DNA tests exonerated McGowan and implicated another man, Kenneth Woodson. Woodson, who admitted to the crime, could not be charged because the five-year statute of limitations for the crime had expired.  (IP) (FJDB)  [5/08]

Forsyth County, GA 

Anthony McKenzie

June, July 2003

Anthony McKenzie was convicted of violating an obscenity statute by engaging in sexually suggestive telephone conversations with a 14-year-old girl he had met over the Internet. McKenzie, 17, was in the Forsyth County jail and had called his girlfriend collect. In 2005, the Georgia Supreme Court reversed the conviction. It found the statute an overly broad restriction of the First Amendment right to freedom of speech, because it applied to speech that was welcomed by the listener.  (JD)  [2/07]

John McKenzie - See Trenton Six

Shirley McKie - See Asbury & McKie

Dade County, FL 

Richard McKinley

Jan 1983 (Homestead)

Richard McKinley was convicted of raping an eleven-year-old girl. Prosecutors told the jury that recovered semen matched his blood type. A police officer testified that he saw McKinley on top of the victim with his pants down. DNA tests later showed that semen and hair evidence could not have come from McKinley. McKinley was reportedly being released after serving more than 20 years of imprisonment.  (PC)  [10/05]

Clinton County, OH 

Clarence McKinney

Feb 14, 1922 (Wilmington)

Late in the evening, Wilmington police officers Henry Adams and Emory McCreight were patrolling an alley skirting the post office on Main Street when they heard a racket at the back of the Murphy and Benham hardware store. After approaching the area, the officers saw two shadowy figures against the building. Unbeknownst to the officers, the two were cutting their way through the rear door of the hardware store.
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 Orange County, CA

Dwayne McKinney

Dec 11, 1980

Dwayne McKinney was convicted of murdering a Burger King manager, Walter Horace Bell, 19, during an armed robbery. He was identified in a police lineup after police lied to witnesses that McKinney had been caught with the proceeds. In 1999, Willie Walker, a man who said he was the getaway driver, identified Raymond Jackett III as the murderer and said McKinney was not involved. Two restaurant employees, Brian March and Donald Bulla, who had identified McKinney as the murderer, agreed with Walker after viewing pictures of Jackett. The DA requested the conviction be vacated and McKinney was released. McKinney served 19 years of a life without parole sentence.  (AP News) (InjusticeBusters) (JD)  [10/05]

Michael McMahon - See Luton Three

 Suffolk County, MA

John McManus

Feb 8, 1911

Boston police officer, Joseph Balk, observed a man, John Shorey, chasing and shooting at another man, John McManus. Shorey, a sheriff's deputy from Conway, NH, claimed that McManus, an unemployed immigrant, had stolen his watch. McManus said Shorey was upset over an argument with a woman, and giving vent to his anger, had attacked him. Police and a jury chose to believe Shorey and McManus was sentenced to three years imprisonment for robbery.

Months later, Shorey returned to Boston, got drunk, and was arrested for engaging in similar behavior as McManus had claimed. Balk happened to hear of the arrest and brought his suspicions to the DA. After an investigation, the DA concluded that McManus was innocent. On the DA's recommendation, McManus was pardoned on Feb. 28, 1912.  (CIPM) (CTI)  [10/05]

 Harris County, TX

Vernon McManus

July 24, 1976 (Baytown)

Vernon McManus, a Lamar University football coach, was sentenced to death for the murder of his in-laws. His estranged wife, who was implicated in the murders, implicated McManus in order to avoid a death sentence. In addition, McManus's trial counsel was romantically involved with his estranged wife during the course of his trial. After McManus's conviction was overturned, his wife refused to testify against him, and charges against him were dropped in 1988.  (CWC)  [3/06]

 Los Angeles County, CA

McMartin Preschool

1983 (Manhattan Beach)

In 1983, a mentally unbalanced woman named Judy Johnson enrolled her two-year-old son, Matthew, in the McMartin Preschool. She became obsessed with Matthew's rectal problems and began thinking they were a result of sexual abuse. Soon Judy was making accusations against Ray Buckey, 28, the only male who worked at the school and who was the grandson of Virginia McMartin, 79, the school's founder. Matthew denied abuse at first, but soon Judy was making more accusations against Ray based on what Matthew allegedly said.
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Shelby County, TN

Clark McMillan

Oct 26, 1979 (Memphis)

Clark Jerome McMillan, a black man, was convicted of the rape of a white girl and the knife-wielding robbery of her boyfriend. McMillan wore a leg brace but neither victim initially mentioned that the perpetrator had an obvious limp. The boyfriend identified a filler in a photo spread and in a lineup, but both victims identified McMillan in a lineup at trial. McMillan had his sister and his girlfriend as alibi witnesses. DNA tests exonerated McMillan in 2002 after he served 22 years of his 119-year sentence. In 2004, he was awarded $832,950.  (IP)  [7/05]

Monroe County, AL

Walter McMillian

Nov 1, 1986

Walter McMillian, a black man, was convicted and sentenced to death for the murder of Ronda Morrison, a white clerk at a dry cleaners store. The crime happened in Monroeville, which, renamed as Maycomb, was the setting for Harper Lee's novel To Kill A Mockingbird, a story about a falsely accused black man. The three witnesses who had testified against McMillian admitted that they had lied. In addition, it became clear that the prosecution had hidden exculpatory evidence, including the existence of a witness who had seen the victim alive after the time at which the prosecution contended her murder had occurred. The case was profiled on 60 Minutes on Nov. 22, 1992. Afterwards the State agreed to investigate its earlier handling of the case and then admitted that a grave mistake had been made. McMillian was freed on Mar. 3, 1993. A book was written about the case entitled Circumstantial Evidence by Pete Earley (1995).  (CWC)  [5/05]

 Los Angeles County, CA

Leonard McSherry

Mar 1988 (Long Beach)

Leonard McSherry was convicted of the kidnapping and rape of a 6-year-old girl. McSherry was a previously convicted sex offender with several arrests for loitering. Police kept McSherry under tight scrutiny and were predisposed to believe he was the assailant even though he did not match descriptions of the assailant. Witnesses identified him anyway. DNA testing identified the real assailant as an inmate serving a life sentence for a 1997 assault. McSherry served 13 years of a 48 years to life sentence. He was awarded $481,200 for his wrongful incarceration.  (IP)  [6/05]

 Ontario, Canada

Michael McTaggart

Convicted 1987

Michael McTaggert was convicted in 1987 of armed bank robbery. In 1990, his conviction was reversed after it was discovered that while he was jailed, robberies continued by the same robber that McTaggert was alleged to have been. In 2000, evidence was revealed that two bank tellers had identified another man as the robber, and the prosecution had concealed this information from McTaggert's defence. In 2001, McTaggert was awarded $380,000 in compensation for his 20 months of imprisonment.  (IB)  [1/07]