A Louisiana man walked free free after spending nearly three decades behind bars for a rape the victim herself has long insisted he did not commit, authorities said.
Patrick Brown had been convicted of aggravated rape in 1994 in a case involving his 6-year-old stepdaughter, Orleans Parish prosecutors said.
But the girl never testified, and Brown’s conviction was based on adults testifying “to what they believed she had said,” according to a statement from the Orleans Parish District Attorney.
The now-adult woman “has remained steadfast for over 20 years” that Brown is innocent “and the evidence corroborated the victim’s account,” the district attorney said.
“Listening and engaging victims and survivors of sexual assault is a top priority in this office,” District Attorney Jason Williams said in a statement. “It is incredibly disheartening to know that this woman was dismissed and ignored, no matter how inconvenient her truth, when all she wanted was the real offender to be held responsible.”
Criminal District Court Judge Calvin Johnson released Brown on Monday.
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