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--> Real Killer
There is no doubt about the identity of the murderer. DNA evidence overwhelmingly and conclusively proves that Omar Ballard committed this crime, and that he committed it alone. Ballard has a history of violent attacks against women, and he knew the victim. Ballard confessed that he committed this crime alone, and he continues to say that he acted alone.
- For 18 Months, Police Ignore Their Most Obvious Suspect – Omar Ballard
- Police Only Question Ballard After He Revealed Himself as Michelle’s Sole Killer
- Ballard Continues to Insist He Acted Alone
- DNA Confirms Ballard’s Guilt and the Truthfulness of His Confession
There were several clues that would have led investigators to Ballard if they had not been so unquestioning in their belief in the truthfulness of the confession Detective Ford managed to extract from Danial Williams. Because the police had fixated on Danial Williams, they ignored all of these promising leads and did not even question Ballard until March of 1999, and only then after they received a copy of the chilling letter Ballard wrote confessing to Ms. Bosko’s murder and threatening to kill again. Evidence that should have lead police directly to Ballard:
- Ballard knew Ms. Bosko, and he often stopped by her apartment in the early morning hours.
- Two weeks before committing this crime, Ballard assaulted a woman in Ms. Bosko’s apartment complex.
- Only ten days after this crime, Ballard committed a strikingly similar rape of a teenage girl just over a mile from Ms. Bosko’s apartment.
- On July 25, 1997, less than three weeks after Ballard killed Ms. Bosko, police arrested him for raping the teenager, but they failed to question him about Ms. Bosko.
- A friend of Ms. Bosko’s told police early in the investigation to consider Ballard as a suspect. For no good reason, police ignored that crucial lead and did not target Ballard until 18 months after the crime when Ballard surfaced because he threatened to kill another woman.
Police only stumbled across the real killer, Omar Ballard, when he brazenly wrote a letter threatening another woman and claiming that he killed Michelle.
From his initial interrogation to the present day, Omar Ballard has maintained that he acted alone in his rape and murder of Michelle Bosko. Although the detectives attempted to persuade Ballard to implicate the sailor suspects, who had already been indicted by the time detectives stumbled across Ballard, Ballard maintained that he acted alone, and when asked specifically whether anyone else participated in the crime, Ballard said, “No . . . them four people that opened their mouths is [sic] stupid.”
DNA testing conducted by the Commonwealth revealed that the DNA recovered from the crime scene conclusively tied Omar Ballard – and only Omar Ballard – to the crime.
- DNA Comparison
- February 18, 1999 Division of Forensic Science Certificate of Analysis (Exonerating the sailors)
- May 6, 1999 Division of Forensic Science Certificate of Analysis (Confirming Ballard’s Guilt)