Lee Long

In June 1994, a woman was attacked and raped in Jackson Heights, New York.  Lee Long, who matched the description of the attacker given by the victim, was picked up by police later that evening as he was walking home from the train station.  Long was identified by the victim, based primarily on his clothing.  Long claimed that he was at his girlfriend’s place having dinner at the time of the rape.  The police confirmed this alibi with his girlfriend immediately after his arrest, but the prosecution failed to reveal this to the defense.  In April 1995, a jury convicted Long of rape and robbery, and he was sentenced to 8-to-24 years in prison.  After Long’s conviction, his attorney discovered that the police had failed to turn over the report confirming Long’s alibi.  Long’s attorney filed a motion to vacate the conviction and dismiss the indictment based on the newly discovered evidence.  The motion was granted in June 2000 and Long was released without objection from the victim.

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Posting Date:  Before June 2012
State:New York
Most Serious Crime:Sexual Assault
Additional Convictions:Robbery
Reported Crime Date:1994
Sentence:8 to 24 years
Contributing Factors:Mistaken Witness ID, Official Misconduct
Did DNA evidence contribute to the exoneration?:No