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Wrongfully Imprisoned Ohio Man Settles With State for $260,000

On April 10, 2007, the State of Ohio paid $260,000 to a man who was wrongfully imprisoned for four years.

Plaintiff Dartangnan Hill, a former gang leader, was convicted in May 2001 on charges of home invasion. Hill was accused of dressing as a mail man, robbing the homeowner of $900, and killing the homeowner's dog. Hill was convicted largely on the testimony of the homeowner and her daughters.

Hill was sentenced to 24 years in prison. He served 4 years before another prisoner provided evidence that led to a different suspect. In 2005 the State of Ohio admitted that Hill had been wrongfully imprisoned and dismissed the charges against him.

The State also avoided a costly wrongful imprisonment lawsuit by agreeing to pay Hill the statutory payment of $41,419 per year. The statute also allows damages for lost wages, but because Hill had a spotty pre-imprisonment work record he did not seek lost income.

Hill's total settlement amounted to $192,000 plus $68,000 in attorney fees for a total of $260,000.

Hill was represented by attorneys Carol A. Wright and James E. Phillips, both of Columbus, Ohio. See: Hill v. State of Ohio, Franklin County Court of Common Pleas, Case No. Unknown.

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Related legal case

Hill v. State of Ohio