Thomas Haynesworth exonerated - NBC12 - WWBT - Richmond, VA News On Your Side

Thomas Haynesworth exonerated

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) -The Richmond man who spent nearly three decades in prison for a string of rapes has been fully exonerated.

On Tuesday, a panel of judges declared Thomas Haynesworth innocent of all charges.

During a press conference there was a standing ovation as Haynesworth took the podium.

He told the audience he's finally free.

"I'm happy.   I can go where I want to go -- no more curfew," said Haynesworth.

He spent 27 years in prison for a string of rapes in Richmond and Henrico that stem back to 1984, when Hayneswoth was a teenager.

" I never gave up hope.  I kept pushing, kept going to law library,  and pushing my case," he added. 

Haynesworth was paroled and released in March of this year after  DNA evidence implicated,  Leon Davis, who's currently serving several life sentences  for another series of rapes.

The exoneration of Haynesworth was supported by commonwealth's attorneys in Richmond and Henrico, as well as, the attorney general.

 " Thank god for this outcome.  The attorney general's  job is not to convict it's to seek justice," said Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli.

He says the system is not perfect,  then he apologized.

"I'm sorry. No one did anything intentionally wrong in this case," he added. 

This latest development means Haynesworth no longer has to register as a sex offender or report to a parole officer. His record has been expunged.

 " I got an early Christmas present.  It's a blessing," said Haynesworth.

Copyright 2011 WWBT NBC12.  All rights reserved.

  • Latest news from NBC12.comNEWSMore>>

  • Angry teens swarm into Florida Capitol; demand new gun laws

    Angry teens swarm into Florida Capitol; demand new gun laws

    Wednesday, February 21 2018 1:43 AM EST2018-02-21 06:43:29 GMT
    Thursday, February 22 2018 1:19 AM EST2018-02-22 06:19:21 GMT

    Students who survived the Florida school shooting are preparing to flood the Capitol pushing to ban the assault-style rifle used to kill 17 people, vowing to make changes in the November election if they can't...

    More >>

    Students who survived the Florida school shooting are preparing to flood the Capitol pushing to ban the assault-style rifle used to kill 17 people, vowing to make changes in the November election if they can't persuade lawmakers to change law now.

    More >>
  • Virginia locks up top seed in ACC Tournament with win over Georgia Tech

    Virginia locks up top seed in ACC Tournament with win over Georgia Tech

    Thursday, February 22 2018 12:23 AM EST2018-02-22 05:23:04 GMT

    Ty Jerome scored 18 points and Virginia pulled away from Georgia Tech in the second half, as the top-ranked Cavaliers downed the Yellow Jackets, 65-54. With the victory, the Wahoos clinch the top seed in the ACC Tournament next month. 

    More >>

    Ty Jerome scored 18 points and Virginia pulled away from Georgia Tech in the second half, as the top-ranked Cavaliers downed the Yellow Jackets, 65-54. With the victory, the Wahoos clinch the top seed in the ACC Tournament next month. 

    More >>
  • Blind victim forgives childhood friend for accidental shooting

    Blind victim forgives childhood friend for accidental shooting

    Thursday, February 22 2018 12:19 AM EST2018-02-22 05:19:46 GMT
    Mike Lee was left blind after an accidental shooting in 1989. (Source: NBC12)Mike Lee was left blind after an accidental shooting in 1989. (Source: NBC12)

    Mike Lee has never harbored hatred towards his friend Todd Bell, but until now, the two men have never truly expressed how the accident changed both their lives.

    More >>

    Mike Lee has never harbored hatred towards his friend Todd Bell, but until now, the two men have never truly expressed how the accident changed both their lives.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly