On July 3, 1987, a woman was raped on a footbridge in Southeast Washington, D.C.
On August 5, 1987, a second victim managed to escape a similar rape attempt in the same area and alerted the police. Police arrested Edward Green near the scene of the crimes and he was charged with rape and assault with intent to rape.
At trial in 1990, the prosecution’s case hinged upon the testimony of the two victims, both of whom positively identified Green in court. One of the victims had also selected Greene out of a photo array and lineup, while the other identified him in a “show-up” conducted on the street.
Green’s blood type also matched that of the assailant.
After three hours of deliberation, a jury convicted Greene of rape for the first incident and acquitted him on charges of assault with intent to rape for the second incident.
Green steadfastly maintained his innocence. Prior to sentencing, the defense conducted DNA testing on fluids found on the rape victim’s clothes, comparing them with blood samples provided by Green and the victim. Despite several objections by the prosecution, the trial judge postponed sentencing proceedings, pending the results of the DNA testing.
In February of 1990, world renowned laboratory, Cellmark Diagnostics, issued a report excluding Edward Green as the source of the semen found on the victim’s clothes.
Based upon this conclusive evidence, the District of Columbia Superior Court granted a defense motion for a new trial on March 19, 1990. Subsequently, the U.S. Attorney dropped all charges against him and Green was released.
– Maurice Possley