Case Update: On October 31, 2016, Judge John Gibney of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia vacated the convictions of two members of the Norfolk Four, Joseph Dick and Danial Williams, after finding them innocent of the rape and murder of Michelle Moore-Bosko in a September 26, 2016 Opinion, which stated: “By any measure, the evidence shows the defendants’ innocence – by a preponderance of the evidence, by clear and convincing evidence, by evidence beyond a reasonable doubt, or even by conclusive evidence.” The September 26th Opinion can be accessed here; the October 31st Order can be accessed here; and the October 31st statement from the attorneys for Mr. Dick and Mr. Williams can be accessed here.
News Update: On October 27, 2010, Detective Robert Glenn Ford, the detective responsible for the wrongful conviction of the Norfolk Four, was convicted of multiple counts of extortion and lying to federal law enforcement officials. Read a press release issued by the legal team here
Proof of Innocence--> Crime Scene
Aside from the exonerating DNA evidence, other physical evidence recovered from the crime scene exonerates Joe, Derek, Danial, and Eric, and establishes that one person – Omar Ballard – committed this crime. Of the fourteen latent finger, foot, and palm prints recovered from the Boskos’ apartment, none matched Danial, Joe, Derek, or Eric.
- The Crime Scene Shows that One Person Committed this Crime
- The Autopsy Report Shows that One Person Committed this Crime
The Commonwealth’s theory was that the four sailors, three other veterans (against whom charges were later dropped) and Ballard forced themselves into Ms. Bosko’s apartment, struggled with her from the living room down a narrow hallway to a back bedroom where they each raped and stabbed her. None of the physical evidence fits that theory. The condition of the crime scene shows that one person, Omar Ballard, committed this crime. For instance,
- There were no signs of forced entry on the exterior apartment door.
- The apartment was tidy, showing no evidence of a multi-assailant struggle.
- The four chairs around the dining room table had not been overturned, and only two that appeared to have been sat in.
- Letters and papers stacked neatly on the hallway display shelf that protruded into the narrow hallway where prosecutors claimed that the four sailors and other men struggled with the victim were undisturbed.
- The framed pictures lining the narrow hallway were still neatly hung.
- A full-length mirror balanced on the floor within inches of Ms. Bosko’s body was undisturbed.
- Evidence that would be expected in a multi-assailant crime was non-existent.
Larry McCann, a 26-year veteran of the Virginia State Police who often works on behalf of law enforcement, conducted a thorough review of the evidence in this case and concluded that Ms. Bosko was raped and murdered by a single offender, Omar Ballard, and that Danial, Joe, and Derek “remain in prison for a crime they did not commit.”
The autopsy report provides additional evidence that one person, Omar Ballard, raped and murdered Michelle Bosko.
- There were four stab wounds, three of which penetrated. Each of the three penetrating stab wounds entered the victim’s body at the same angle, within inches of each other, and all had the same 5-inch depth.
- Ms. Bosko’s injuries are consistent with a single rapist.
- DNA analysis of sperm and blood found on Ms. Bosko match only Omar Ballard and excluded Joe, Derek, Danial, and Eric.
- Joe, Derek, Danial, and Eric’s “confessions” contradict the physical evidence and autopsy report.
- Omar Ballard’s confession was totally consistent with the physical evidence and autopsy report.
Dr. Werner U. Spitz, one of the country’s most experienced and well-respected forensic pathologists, has reviewed the autopsy report, police reports, photographs of Ms. Bosko, and statements made by Danial, Joe, Derek, and Omar Ballard, and has concluded that Ms. Bosko’s injuries were inflicted by a single perpetrator.