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Richard Paul Dziubak

Other Minnesota Exonerations
In February 1987, Richard Dziubak found his mother dead in her bed in St. Paul, Minnesota. Prior to her death, the two had fought, and Dziubak’s mother had fallen down the stairs. She left a note stating that Dziubak had pushed her down the stairs. Although elevated levels of antidepressants were found in her blood, her death was ruled a homicide, and Dziubak was charged. After a defense expert told Dziubak’s attorneys that the antidepressants were not the cause of her death, Dziubak pled guilty to manslaughter in April 1987 and received a 7-year sentence. A year later, it was discovered that the defense expert had misread the medical examiner’s report and the level of antidepressants in the victim’s blood was fatal – 100 times greater than the prescribed levels. Dziubak’s motion to withdraw his guilty plea was granted, and he was retried for the crime. In July 1989, a jury acquitted him of all charges.

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Posting Date:  Before June 2012
Most Serious Crime:Manslaughter
Additional Convictions:
Reported Crime Date:1987
Sentence:6 years and 9 months
Age at the date of crime:34
Contributing Factors:False or Misleading Forensic Evidence, Perjury or False Accusation
Did DNA evidence contribute to the exoneration?:No