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Bunch freed after 16 years in prison

August 23, 2012

Kristine Bunch, the woman who claimed she was wrongfully convicted of killing her son in a fire in 1995, was released from prison following a bond hearing Wednesday in Decatur County. The Indiana Court of Appeals reversed her convictions and ordered a new trial on the murder charge.

The prosecution believed Bunch set the fire that killed her 3-year-old son and claimed evidence showed accelerating material present in samples taking from the home. She was convicted of murder and arson, but the Indiana Supreme court vacated the arson conviction and sentence on double jeopardy grounds in 1998. In 2006, 10 years after she was convicted, she sought post-conviction relief, arguing that advances in fire science could prove she didn’t set the fire. She also argued the state failed to disclose certain evidence. The post-conviction court denied relief.

This March, a split Court of Appeals ordered she receive a new trial. The Indiana Supreme Court denied transfer this month.

 

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