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Hearing set for Chicago man denied pardon by Pence

December 9, 2016

A Chicago man denied a pardon by Gov. Mike Pence for a robbery he said he did not commit will get a hearing in March for his request for a new trial.

The Elkhart Truth reports the hearing for Keith Cooper is scheduled for March 23. In a petition for post-conviction relief, Cooper's attorney cited newly discovered evidence, including DNA that pointed to another suspect, and recanted witness statements as reasons for a new trial.

Cooper was sentenced to 40 years in prison for a 1996 robbery in Elkhart in which a teenager was shot. The Indiana Court of Appeals overturned his co-defendant's conviction in 2005, and Cooper was given the choice of being released with a felony record or facing a new trial. He chose to be released.

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