Happy 12 year exoneration anniversary, Orlando Boquete!
In June of 1982, Orlando Boquete was convicted for attempted sexual battery and burglary. Orlando was misidentified by a witness, leading to his wrongful conviction.
Two men broke into the victim’s apartment in Stock Island, Florida. The victim awoke to one of the men sexually assaulting her, leaving semen on her clothes. The victim described one of the men as Latino with no shirt and no hair, but did not identify the other intruder.
The police officer began stopping Cuban-American men nearby, and Orlando was the only one with no shirt and no hair. The victim identified him as the perpetrator from inside a police car. Orlando testified that he was at home with his family until he left to go to the convenience store where he was stopped by the officer. The police officer collected biological evidence from the victim’s clothing, but no DNA testing was done. Orlando Boquete was sentenced 50 years in prison.
In 2003, Orlando filed a motion to seek DNA testing from the semen on the clothing collected from the crime. The test, conducted by Orchid Cellmark, concluded that the semen stains did not in fact belong to Orlando. His conviction was overturned on May 23rd 2006. The Innocence Project and the Innocence Project of Florida have been helping Orlando Boquete ever since his release.
Happy 12 years of freedom, Orlando!