We report lots of stories here on TBL (The Black Loop), but this is just incredible. We couldn’t make this stuff up if we tried. Richard Anthony Jones from Kansas City, Kansas, was set free on Thursday because a judge declared there was no longer sufficient evidence to convict him.
A man who spent 17 years in prison for a crime he didn’t commit has been released after police found his lookalike.
How It All Started
According to DailyMail, Jones had been jailed for armed robbery in 1999 based on an eyewitness account. During a new hearing into his case, witnesses who testified against him said they couldn’t tell Jones from ‘Ricky’, whose resemblance to the freed man is uncanny and who eerily shares his first name.
The judge ordered Jones’s release because there was no physical, DNA or fingerprint evidence that tied him to the crime.
“The court finds that when reviewing the statute, the court has to make a determination that actual innocence requires the defendant to show that it is more likely than not that no reasonable juror would have convicted the prisoner in light of the new evidence . . . This court has no doubt — although that isn’t the standard — has no doubt that a jury would not be able to reach a determination that this defendant was guilty . . .”
What’s more, Jones lived on the other side of Kansas while his lookalike lived in the same area the incident occurred.
‘I don’t believe in luck, I believe I was blessed,’ Jones told the Kansas City Star.
Jones appealed his case several times to no avail while he served his 19-year jail sentence. Two years ago however, he heard about a man in prison who looked just like him and even shared his first name.
Realizing that this could be the key to his exoneration, he contacted the Midwest Innocent Project – a non-profit organization that provides legal services to the wrongly-convicted – to help argue his case.
‘We were floored by how much they looked alike,’ said an attorney working on Jones’ case.
Richard’s conviction was finally overturned and, after spending 17 long years in prison, he was released from custody on June 8, 2017.
Jones is now assimilating to life after jail and says he’s happy to be back with his children.
‘When it comes to my kids, it’s been a rough ride, but they are now at an age where they can understand,’ he said.
‘Everybody has a doppelgänger,’ said an attorney on the case. ‘Luckily we found his.’
A GoFundMe has been setup for Richard Jones by his family. The funds will go directly to Richard to help ease the injustice that took place. This money will help him assimilate back into society and allow him to spend time reconnecting with his family and friends after 17 long years.