The forensic DNA age dawned in Illinois with little fanfare on August 14, 1989, when the emerging technology exonerated a hapless high school dropout from a working-class suburb of Chicago of a rape that in fact had not occurred.
Gary Dotson had been convicted a decade earlier, when he was 22 years old, based on a story fabricated by his presumed victim, Cathleen Crowell.
On the night of July 9, 1977, a police patrol officer happened upon Crowell, then 16, standing beside a road not far from a shopping mall in Homewood, a suburb of Chicago, where she worked as a fry cook and cashier in a Long John Silver's seafood restaurant. Her clothing was dirt-stained and in disarray. Read more