Johnny O’Neal (pictured), a man imprisoned for 14 years over a rape he didn’t commit, plans to sue for lost time, according to the NY Daily News.

In 1984, O’Neal was convicted of raping a woman at knifepoint atop the Fredrick Douglass Houses in Manhattan’s Upper West Side neighborhood.

Though he served his sentence and was released in 1998, it was only last month that Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Marcy Khan threw out O’Neal’s charges due to a joint re-investigation by private attorneys, the Manhattan District Attorney’s office, and the Legal Aid Society, a non-profit legal services organization.

That re-opening of the case uncovered evidence that a man named Gregory Smith was the actual culprit, with Smith admitting to a mutual friend of O’Neal’s that he’d committed the crime — he’d also committed two other rapes.

Watch Johnny O’Neal’s case here:

Smith — who died 14 years ago — also used the same knife and jacket the victims described as belonging to O’Neal.

Understandably, O’Neal was elated at the news.

“It made me so happy. I just cried and cried and cried,” O’Neal said Thursday. However, the happiness was short-lived.

O’Neal plans to file a lawsuit against “the people responsible” for his jail time.


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5 thoughts on “Man Wrongfully Charged In Rape Plans To Sue For 14 Years Of Imprisonment

  1. emeraldeyes on said:

    Any idea why it took 15 years after his release to exonerate him fully? That is a very long time for someone to wait to clear his name! A travesty.

  2. I bet if we pass a law that will sentence the prosecutor and the lead detectives to 5 years of jail time for prosecuting a wrongful case….this crap will stop.

  3. This is why people need to stop jumping to reactions when people make claims. We live in a dirty world and people will lie about being rape, child molestations, etc to destroy people; and what is sad is that REAL victims pay a price. This is why I do not get upset when people have the money to fight these kind of cases in court. No, it is not buying justices, it is making sure that any kind of justice is thrown at you even an unjust guilty verdict when you are innocent.

  4. I would love to see a re-enactment of this whole trial, with all the key players, and their names, to understand how this man was sent to jail for 14 years. This seems to be very common, sending many up the road, falsely. There has to be a law implemented, that says for each person wrongly imprisoned, those person’s responsible will suffer the consequences, from the prosecutors, to the judges.

  5. Margaret E. Khan on said:

    I’m making over $7k a month working part time. I kept hearing other people tell me how much money they can make online so I decided to look into it. Well, it was all true and has totally changed my life. This is what I do…

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