Charges dropped against Wyoming man who served 23 yrs in prison

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) _ Prosecutors have dismissed charges against a Cheyenne man who served 23 years in prison on a rape conviction before recent DNA testing prompted a judge to order him released.

The testing showed that Andrew J. Johnson's DNA wasn't present in evidence taken from the victim in the 1989 rape case. Johnson is in his early 60s.

A district judge this spring released Johnson from prison and ordered him to face a new trial.

District Attorney Scott Homar announced Friday that he's dropping all criminal charges against Johnson.

Homar said his office was ethically obligated to drop the charges because it couldn't meet its burden of proof at trial.

Lawyers with the Utah-based Rocky Mountain Innocence Center worked to change
Wyoming law in 2008 to allow Johnson to challenge his conviction.

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