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In 1984, James Ealy was convicted in the 1982 brutal murders of 33-year-old Christine Parker, her two children and one grandchild. Two years later, the Illinois Appellate Court overturned the conviction - even as justices acknowledged Ealy almost certainly was guilty. They said police had arrested him without probable cause and conducted an illegal search, and they threw out virtually all of the evidence against him. Ealy was eventually released from prison after his parole from another offense in 1999.

Two decades after his first murder conviction was overturned, Ealy was arrested in December 2006 for the murder of Mary Hutchinson, the manager at the Burger King where Ealy worked. He is currently in jail without bail awaiting trial for that murder.

Just last month, Robert Lee Stinson was released after spending 23 years in prison for the 1985 first-degree murder of a 63-year-old woman. But new analysis of DNA and bite-mark evidence revealed that none of that evidence could tie Stinson to the crime of which he was convicted.

(From a sermon by Pat Damiani, "More Than Meets the Eye" 2/23/2009)

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