WATCH – Missoula County Attorney Moves To Dismiss Case Against Cody Marble
When Cody Marble was 17 years old, he was charged with raping a 13 year-old boy in the juvenile wing of the Missoula County Jail. He was convicted of sexual intercourse without consent in 2002, and sent to prison, all the while proclaiming his innocence.
On Tuesday, April 19, 2016, Marble, now 32, is getting the news that Missoula County Attorney Kirsten Pabst has concluded that the case against Marble ‘lacks integrity, and in the interest of justice, must be dismissed.”
At a press conference in her office on Tuesday, Pabst, along with Larry Mansch of the Montana Innocence Project, said after 14 years, Marble would soon be released from the Crossroads Correctional Center in Shelby, and be reunited with his family.
A news release from Pabst’s office states:
“This morning, I filed a Motion to Dismiss the Judgment in case of State v. Cody Marble. The Montana Supreme Court recently reversed this case, mandating that we take a more critical look at the foundation of Marble’s conviction.
This determination was made after an extensive review of thousands of pages of documents, spanning 14 years, including initial investigative reports and depositions, trial transcripts, appeal records, post-conviction litigation documents and recent witness interviews.
Since Marble’s conviction, at least three witnesses—including the victim— have recanted their statements. Of the original pod-mates, three are dead. Of those alive, two initially said they witnessed oral (vs. anal) sex until they were corrected by an investigator. The first juvenile to disclose the crime lied about everything. It was determined that he could not have seen anything because he was locked inside a cell away from the pod at the time of the alleged assault.
A host of law enforcement officers testified that the crime could not have happened stating there was no adequate window of opportunity; that the other inmates concocted a “set-up”; and/or that Marble was railroaded.
After weighty consideration, I have concluded that Marble’s judgment lacks integrity and in the interests of doing justice, it must be dismissed.”
Pabst borrowed a phrase from the President of the National District Attorney's Association, William Fitzpatrick, who said, "It's never too late to do the right thing," Pabst said.
"It's really important to examine prosecution ethics, and the Constitution as well. As sworn prosecutors, we will always search for the truth. The duty of a prosecutor is to seek justice, not merely to convict. In conducting the search for justice in this case, we have come to the conclusion that the underlying judgement must be dismissed. We take this position after a weighty consideration of our ethical obligation to do justice."