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Suspect In 1977 Deaths Granted Bond While Awaiting New Trial

(Credit: KDKA)

(Credit: KDKA)

Andy Sheehan Andy Sheehan
KDKA-TV Investigator Andy Sheehan began his broadcast journalism...
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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — A man serving a life sentence for a double murder has been released on bond while he awaits a new trial.

A federal judge gave 59-year-old David Munchinski approval to live with his daughter near Tampa, Fla.

Andy Sheehan: “How do you feel to be free after 25 years?”

Munchinski: “Well, tell you the truth. When I walked out that door, it was the first feeling I had.”

Munchinski, who suffers from Parkinson’s Disease, was convicted in 1977 of the murder of two men.

His attorneys have long argued he was framed, convicted on the testimony of a convicted criminal who changed and recanted his testimony several times.

“I knew that they lied, I knew that I had the evidence on them and all I had to do was get a good judge,” Munchinski told reporters after he was released from SCI Pittsburgh.

His freedom comes in large part from the efforts of students at Point Park University’s Innocence Institute, headed by Professor Bill Moushey.

“We have proved that throughout the entire process, lies, obfuscation, hidden facts, illegal activities and a variety of other things have caused his convictions,” he said.

But Munchinski says he’s not bitter and is looking forward to a shrimp and lobster dinner.

The judge has ordered a new trial, but it’s not clear whether that trial will ever take place. The witness is dead and his testimony has been discredited and it may be that prosecutors will let this rest.

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Innocence Institute of Point Park University

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