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State of Ohio v. Clarence Elkins
Case No. CR 98-06041

State of Ohio v. Clarence Elkins
Case No. CR 98-06041


Media Reports:

Note: While Summit County Common Pleas Judge John Adams denied Elkins' request  for a new trial in December of 2002, he paradoxically suggested that DNA testing of alternative suspects should be done -- if a legal means of obtaining the samples could be found. This is not exactly a confirmation of the conviction of Clarence Elkins. If alternate suspects are still viable and can be tested using DNA evidence which excludes Elkins, then a conviction of Elkins is premature. 

This was all noted in my 2002 report provided below.

In December of 2005, while lecturing Directors of the Municipal Police Bureau in Xi'an, China, I received news that Clarence Elkins had been exonerated and released. 

Some in the press, in its desire to craft a story somewhat after the fact, and without all of the facts, has focused on four separate heroic figures or influences. Some report that Clarence saved himself by collecting a cigarette butt in jail that lead to his exoneration; some report that is was the tireless years of work by his wife; some report that it was the work of students with an innocence project; some report that it was a result of the media attention from its airing on "American Justice". I'm not convinced that it could have occurred without all of these things working together, including the support of the Attorney General's Office.

For my part, this case, while an example of what can be accomplished when many people work hard to educate the justice system, is also a reminder of how important it is that we have a free press. Without the pressure of a free press, it is doubtful that this exoneration could have occurred. So it is also a reminder of how important it is that we get things right before trial, avoid preconceived theories, and actually understand the evidence before there is a arrest. Because the press is a fickle thing, and will not always be there to tell the story and apply pressure.


Expert Reports:

Brent E. Turvey, MS


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Updated December 30, 2005