Judge sets free KCK man convicted of double murder, after deciding trial evidence was bad
KANSAS CITY, Kan. — A judge set aside the conviction of a Kansas City, Kan., man convicted of double murder and who has already served 23 years behind bars. LaMonte McIntyre is now a free man. He will not face a new trial.
“On the inside I’m bubblin’ over. I feel alive. I feel emotional because it’s been a long time coming. I seen ’em cry and hurt over this one experience so to see it come to fruition is pretty amazing,” McIntyre told FOX 4’s Robert Townsend.
“This is different. I’m looking forward to carrying on the rest of my life and keep going,” he said.
He said he wanted to take a bath and just chill, relax and try to eat something. With humor, he said it has been 23 years since he had a good meal.
When asked what he was going to do with his life he also joked that he’d become a Youtube star or something.
“God is good. I always kept faith. I knew God would take me and surround me with good people and he did that,” he said.
He said the handcuffs weren’t coming off fast enough on Friday, though.
The judge began hearing evidence Thursday in McIntyre’s case. He was 17-years-old when he was arrested in 1994 and spent the last 23 years behind bars for a double murder he says he didn’t commit.
The unusual hearing for LaMonte McIntyre took place at the Wyandotte County Courthouse. A retired chief judge from Hays, Kan., heard the evidence.
Attorneys for the Midwest Innocence Project say they have spent seven years investigating McIntyre’s case.
A court convicted McIntyre, 41, of killing Donald Ewing, 34, and Doniel Quinn, 21, in April of 1994. Both men were shot to death as they sat inside a car.
The Metro Organization for Racial and Economic Equity rallied in support of McIntyre’s release Thursday morning, claiming that the case against him is built on false testimony, the product of police coercion.
“Just looking through the documents and things like that, there’s definitely seems like there was some foul play in the investigation that led up to the incarceration of Lamonte McIntyre,” said Tarence Maddox, a former Unified Government commissioner. “It’s only right that the community comes out and supports or stands with the family at a time like this, if there’s been injustices that have been dealt through the courts.”
During this hearing, witnesses recanted their testimony against McIntyre, claiming that they lied under pressure from KCK police to falsely identify him as the murderer.
On Thursday morning a relative of the victims’ testified that she notified the prosecutor that a witness told her she was lying, but nothing was done about it.
This hearing also raised questions about the actions of a KCK police detective, who’s now retired, and the prosecutor of the case.
“I feel like I wasn’t going crazy after all,” he said. “I feel this is due.”
He says he wants justice for anyone who acted improperly during his investigation, trial and conviction.
“Justice. Same thing they wanted for me. Just justice, you know? Whatever needs to happen to make sure that he’s held accountable for the things he did. That’s what we need,” McIntyre said.