KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A Kansas City man who spent 23 years in prison for a crime he didn’t commit has now filed a civil rights lawsuit over the matter.
Ricky Kidd is suing the Kansas City, Missouri, Board of Police Commissioners, the city of Kansas City and individual members of the Kansas City Police Department. Kidd filed the lawsuit Thursday in federal court in the Western District of Missouri.
The suit alleges that Kidd was denied his right to a fair trial and that his civil liberties were violated.
Kidd was just 21 years old when he was convicted of a 1996 double murder and sentenced to life in prison. He spent 23 years behind bars before he was released in 2019.
An anonymous tip led investigators to Kidd, who had a solid alibi, and there was no physical evidence connecting Kidd to the murders. His attorneys said evidence pointing to other suspects was not turned over by the prosecution.
A judge found the original court proceedings involving Kidd were “deeply flawed.” Jackson County prosecutors dropped the murder charges in 2019, adding they would not proceed toward another trial.
The lawsuit alleges that Kidd “had no involvement in the murders of George Bryant and Oscar Bridges.”
Instead the suit says that Kidd was with his then-girlfriend at the time of the crime, running errands, babysitting his infant nephew and and walking into a police station to fill out a handgun permit. According to the lawsuit, Kidd had five witnesses who testified as to his alibi.
The lawsuit goes on to state that other suspects were responsible for the murders and that Kansas City police purposefully failed to collect evidence that would have eliminated Ricky Kidd as a suspect.
Kidd sent this statement to FOX4:
“Today’s filing is important because it shows individuals responsible for a wrong, must be held accountable. We have a situation where a wrong was done 25 years ago. They must be held accountable. I think it’s an important step in the right direction.”
FOX4 has reached out to the Kansas City Police Department, the Kansas City Board of Police Commissioners and the City of Kansas City, Missouri for a statement.
This is a developing story. FOX4 will update this report as we learn more.