The manslaughter conviction of a Brooklyn woman was overturned Tuesday after the borough’s district attorney’s office investigating the crooked ex-NYPD cop behind her arrest saw issues with the case. Vanessa Gathers has been free from prison since 2007 but the conviction that once marred her record has been removed, according to CBS New York.
Gathers, 58, was questioned in 1992 by Detective Louis Scarcella in the robbery and death of 71-year-old Michael Shaw but wasn’t charged. Five years later, Scarcella questioned Gathers once more and wrangled a false confession out of her, writes the New York Daily News.
Brooklyn District Attorney Kenneth Thompson asked Brooklyn Supreme Court judge Matthew D’Emic to overturn Gathers’ conviction based on inaccuracies and other problems with Scarcella’s filing. Flanked by her legal team Tuesday, Gathers was all smiles as she left the State Supreme Court in Brooklyn.
Along with the 10 years served in prison, Gathers was placed on parole which expired in 2012. However, the conviction remained a stain on her criminal record, which Thompson removed, he said in a news release.
Gathers is the first woman to have her case overturn due to the research efforts of the Conviction Review Unit. Her case was one of 72 investigated by the unit involving Scarcella.