Sentence officially vacated for Tampa man who wrongly served 37 years for murder

Hillsborough County

HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, Fla (WFLA) – Robert DuBoise was released from prison on Aug. 27 after newly-discovered DNA evidence proved he was wrongly convicted of the rape and murder of Barbara Grams in 1983.

DuBoise was wrongly convicted largely due to bite mark evidence. Although new evidence revealed his innocence, the convictions of attempted rape and murder remain on his record.

Today, attorneys from the Hillsborough County State Attorney’s Office and the Innocence Project will appear before a judge, requesting DuBoise be fully exonerated after spending 37 years behind bars for a crime he did not commit. State Attorney Andrew Warren is announcing a partnership with the Innocence Project to review past convictions that relied heavily on bite mark evidence.

The Conviction Review Unit of the State Attorney’s Office, working alongside the Innocence Project, will begin searching through past convictions in Hillsborough County to find any that used bite mark evidence as a key factor in identifying a defendant at trial.

“This won’t be easy, but it will be worth it. Wrongful convictions deprive victims and their families of justice; they deserve the truth—not false closure based on a false story. Beyond that, wrongful convictions threaten public safety, putting an innocent person behind bars while the actual person who committed the crime goes free,” Warren said. “A prosecutor’s job is to seek justice, and that obligation to seek justice never ends.”

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