UNITED STATES NEWS

Man released from prison after judge throws out conviction in 1976 slaying after key witness recants

Mar 5, 2024, 4:18 PM

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — A Philadelphia man has been released from prison after his conviction in a poolroom slaying almost a half-century ago was overturned following recantation by a key witness of his testimony several years ago.

William Franklin, 77, released Tuesday, was convicted in the 1976 slaying of Joseph Hollis in a poolroom in the Brewerytown neighborhood based largely on the testimony of a jailhouse informant defense attorneys said was facing numerous criminal cases.

According to an affidavit and a video statement before his 2020 death, the informant said detectives not only threatened him with a life term but also offered him lenient treatment and the chance of liaisons with several girlfriends at police headquarters or hotel rooms, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported earlier.

Common Pleas Court Judge Tracy Brandeis-Roman last week threw out Franklin’s first-degree murder conviction, saying her court “is not fond of the notion” that Philadelphia authorities have closed cases using coercion and such secret incentives, the newspaper reported.

Franklin walked out of Curran-Fromhold Correctional Facility Tuesday after 44 years in prison to cheers from supporters and hugged his loved ones outside the prison. He told WCAU-TV that he felt “fine, lovely, glad to be here” but said there was “more work to be done because we got a lot of brothers and sisters behind them walls.”

The family had a celebratory lunch at the north Philadelphia home of Franklin’s grandson, decorated with balloons and a “welcome home” sign. The Inquirer reported that his daughter, Gina Gibson said, that when he spotted the king-size bed, the 77-year-old jumped on it like a kid, saying, “You mean I get to roll over — twice?”

Franklin, denied bail by the judge, is now on house arrest pending a decision by the Philadelphia district attorney’s office on appealing the ruling or retrying him. Prosecutors had opposed Franklin’s petition, arguing that the recantation by the witness wasn’t credible.

United States News

Associated Press

‘Catch-and-kill’ to be described to jurors as testimony resumes in hush money trial of Donald Trump

NEW YORK (AP) — A longtime tabloid publisher was expected Tuesday to tell jurors about his efforts to help Donald Trump stifle unflattering stories during the 2016 campaign as testimony resumes in the historic hush money trial of the former president. David Pecker, the former National Enquirer publisher who prosecutors say worked with Trump and […]

3 minutes ago

Associated Press

America’s child care crisis is holding back moms without college degrees

AUBURN, Wash. (AP) — After a series of lower-paying jobs, Nicole Slemp finally landed one she loved. She was a secretary for Washington’s child services department, a job that came with her own cubicle, and she had a knack for working with families in difficult situations. Slemp expected to return to work after having her […]

5 minutes ago

Several hundred students and pro-Palestinian supporters rally at the intersection of Grove and Coll...

Associated Press

Pro-Palestinian protests sweep US college campuses following mass arrests at Columbia

NEW YORK (AP) — Columbia canceled in-person classes, dozens of protesters were arrested at Yale and the gates to Harvard Yard were closed to the public on Monday as some of the most prestigious U.S. universities sought to diffuse campus tensions over Israel’s war with Hamas. The various actions followed the arrest last week of […]

2 hours ago

Ban on sleeping outdoors under consideration in Supreme Court...

Associated Press

With homelessness on the rise, the Supreme Court weighs bans on sleeping outdoors

The Supreme Court is wrestling with major questions about the growing issue of homelessness as it considers a ban on sleeping outdoors.

3 hours ago

Arizona judge declares mistrial in case of rancher who shot migrant...

Associated Press

Arizona judge declares mistrial in the case of a rancher accused of fatally shooting a migrant

An Arizona judge declared a mistrial in the case of rancher accused of killing a Mexican man on his property near the U.S.-Mexico border.

4 hours ago

Associated Press

Trial opens for former Virginia hospital medical director accused of sexual abuse of ex-patients

NEW KENT, Va. (AP) — The former longtime medical director of a Virginia hospital that serves vulnerable children used physical examinations as a “ruse” to sexually abuse two teenage patients, a prosecutor said Monday, while the physician’s attorney “adamantly” denied any inappropriate conduct. The trial of Daniel N. Davidow of Richmond, who for decades served […]

4 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...

Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Day & Night is looking for the oldest AC in the Valley

Does your air conditioner make weird noises or a burning smell when it starts? If so, you may be due for an AC unit replacement.

...

Collins Comfort Masters

Avoid a potential emergency and get your home’s heating and furnace safety checked

With the weather getting colder throughout the Valley, the best time to make sure your heating is all up to date is now. 

(KTAR News Graphic)...

Boys & Girls Clubs

KTAR launches online holiday auction benefitting Boys & Girls Clubs of the Valley

KTAR is teaming up with The Boys & Girls Clubs of the Valley for a holiday auction benefitting thousands of Valley kids.

Man released from prison after judge throws out conviction in 1976 slaying after key witness recants