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Wrongly convicted? Innocence clinic wants new trial for Zeeland mom convicted of murdering daughter

Scales of Justice photo
Tim Evanson via Wikimedia | CC BY 3.0



Nearly 20 years after the conviction of a West Michigan woman for killing her daughter in a house fire, the University of Michigan law school is seeking a new trial. 


The University of Michigan’s Innocence Clinic, which has a long record of digging up new evidence and freeing people who were wrongly convicted, filed a motion last week to reopen the case in Ottawa County.


Karen Boes, is 65-years-old and is serving a life sentence for the 2002 death of her 14-year-old daughter, Robin Boes, at the family’s home in Zeeland.


The Innocence Clinic claims, science cited by fire investigators nearly 20 years ago is outdated, while David Moran, the clinic’s director told media outlets that “No reasonable jury today would convict Karen Boes if they saw all the evidence. ”


Experts testified that gasoline was sprinkled in a bedroom and hallway before the fire.


Boes also confessed to the murder, but Moran said it was an “internalized false confession,” after police lied to her and told her that her fingerprints were on the gasoline can, among other things.


Boes has maintained her innocence.

Jon Hulsing, the trial prosecutor who is now a judge, said-- he stands behind the conviction.