A court ruled Tuesday that a Massachusetts man who spent over 26 years in prison was wrongly convicted of murder and robbery in 1995.
James Lucien, now 48, was 22 years old when he was convicted of first-degree murder for allegedly shooting Ryan Edwards in 1994, the Boston Globe reported. Prior to Tuesday's ruling, he was serving a life sentence in prison.
"I feel good because I'm with my family now," Lucien said after the ruling, according to WCVB-TV. "I've been waiting a whole 27 years for this, and now I have the opportunity to be free."
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Lucien's defense argued he didn't get a fair trial and that a fair police investigation of the incident did not take place, according to the Associated Press.
The Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office said Detective John Brazil, who investigated Lucien in the mid-1990s, was subsequently found to be involved with a major corruption scheme, the report said. The officer was known to submit false warrant applications to steal from drug dealers, the district attorney's office added.
Brazil was reportedly given immunity after he testified against two other officers engaged in the scheme.
Following his ruling, Judge Robert Ullman suggested the corrupt detective lied and tampered with evidence in Lucien's case, the reports said.
"It's clear to me that justice may not have been done as to the murder and armed robbery charges," the judge said.
Some members of Edwards's family expressed frustrations over Lucien's release. Dionne Richards, Edwards's sister, called it "horrible."
"Now he's free and there’s nobody to help our family, and my brother’s murder goes as another unsolved murder," she said.
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Brazil is currently collecting a pension.