KSDK -- The St. Louis Police Department issued a statement Tuesday in response to some startling news in the Reginald Clemons case.
Evidence in the case against the death row inmate has been found in the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department evidence room. The evidence was never produced at trial.
Clemons and three other men were convicted or pleaded guilty to raping and murdering sisters Julie and Robin Kerry in April 1991. The women had taken the men, and their cousin, to the closed Chain of Rocks Bridge in north St. Louis, to show them some poetry they had written.
The women were pushed off the bridge to their deaths. The body of 19-year-old Robin Kerry was never found; the body of 21-year-old Julie was found in the river several days later.
The police department sent us this statement this morning:
"In recent months, as the litigation in this case continued, the department reviewed laboratory files regarding evidence in the case. Documents relative to this evidence were turned over to the Circuit Attorney's Office and the Circuit Attorney's Office, subsequently contacted the Attorney General's Office. The department is committed to cooperating fully with authorities reviewing this case to ensure that a just verdict was returned. As this matter remains in litigation, it would be inappropriate to make any further statements at this time."
Erica S. Van Ross
Director of Public Information
Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster says the newly discovered evidence is a so-called rape kit, which is a swab of material that could hold DNA. Also included are several laboratory reports.
For some reason, the evidence was never revealed during requests for evidence during four separate trials.
On May 10, the special judge appointed to oversee the murder case of Reginald Clemons will have a hearing on the evidence.
Nine months ago, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit stayed Clemons' execution. The court based the decision on a pending challenge to Missouri's lethal injection.
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