(DailyVantage.com) – When authorities arrest and sentence someone to jail for a crime, there’s a reasonable expectation investigators and prosecutors did their job, carefully weighing all evidence to ensure they got the right suspect. However, mistakes do happen, and sometimes, they put the wrong person behind bars despite the best intentions. Other times, they miss critical evidence and hone in on the wrong subject. Unfortunately, it seems like this may be the case for one Missouri man.
In 1998, someone murdered Rita Politte in her home by hitting her in the head with a blunt object then burning down her trailer with her inside. Police officers quickly zeroed in on her 14-year-old son, Michael Politte, because they said he was “acting normal” and showed “no visible signs of remorse.” The only evidence they had, other than his alleged behavior, was the presence of gasoline on his shoe, which they believed was the method of arson.
However, in 2016, labs determined it wasn’t gasoline on his shoe, but a common chemical used to create the footwear’s rubber sole. Now, legal experts are using this information to free Politte, claiming his case was flawed from the start, and he had inadequate legal representation. Even law enforcement officials agree the case against him was flimsy.
A juror has come forward, saying other jurors pressured her into voting guilty, despite her doubt. Another says he was wrongly convicted.
"If I had known then what I know now, I would not have convicted," said a juror who voted to convict Michael Politte. Michael has maintained his innocence and is a client of @The_MIP. https://t.co/v9C2MYrX4L
— The Innocence Project (@innocence) October 25, 2021
Since the beginning, Politte, now 37, has never wavered on his innocence, insisting he did not murder his mother. Legal experts want the courts to overturn his conviction. They petitioned the Missouri Court of Appeals, which turned down the request to hear the case. Now, they’re hoping to take it before the Missouri State Supreme Court to ensure Politte receives justice.
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