A series of defendants who had been pushing for their convictions in connection to the robbery and murder of a woman in 1984 to be overturned had their requests denied Monday.
Clifton Yarborough was one of seven men convicted of robbing, raping and killing Catherine Fuller in an alley near 8th and H streets NE.
A judge Monday ruled that Yarborough and the other defendants won’t have their convictions overturned. Yarborough claimed that police physically abused him and that witnesses recanted testimony.
The judge, however, stated that the witnesses who recanted their testimony aren’t credible and that Yarborough and others had effective counsel.
"Having heard the ‘new’ evidence, the court is convinced that the totality of evidence pointing to the guilt of these seven petitioners, and others. remains … overwhelming,” the court wrote.
Yarborough says that while he was being questioned about the crime, police pushed his head in toilet and threw him against a file cabinet. He says he was so scared that he would do whatever the cops wanted him to do.
The U.S. Attorneys office stated that it was satisfied with the outcome. Here's the full release.
Nearly thirty years after the brutal murder of Catherine Fuller shocked our community, seven men found guilty of her killing sought to overturn their convictions on a number of grounds, including unfounded allegations of misconduct by police and prosecutors. Today the court rejected those claims and reaffirmed that the evidence of these murderers’ guilt is overwhelming. We are satisfied that justice has been done and hope that today’s ruling settles this matter and brings some measure of peace to Ms. Fuller’s family.