Two men win new trial in 1994 FBI shooting
PHILADELPHIA (AP) _ Two men convicted of wounding two FBI agents in a 1994 shootout have won a new trial because prosecutors failed to disclose that one of the agents was under investigation for alleged misconduct.
The convictions of Melvin Williams and Tremaine Jackson were thrown out Tuesday by U.S. District Judge Clifford Scott Green. Both men had been sentenced to lengthy prison terms without parole _ 27 years for Williams and 23 years for Jackson.
The FBI’s failure to disclose that agent Timothy Turck was suspected of misconduct deprived defense lawyers of information they could have used to challenge Turck’s credibility, the judge wrote.
``There is a reasonable probability of a different result″ if the information had been disclosed, the judge wrote.
Williams, 21, and Jackson, 22, both of Philadelphia, were convicted in October 1994 of trying to kill Turck, who was wounded in the wrist, and agent Richard Macko, who was shot in the chin and collarbone on March 16, 1994. A drug suspect was killed.
Federal prosecutors said in July that before and during the 1994 trial, the FBI was investigating charges that Turck had used a bureau credit card for personal purchases, had stolen $25,000 from an FBI safe and had concealed his epilepsy from superiors. Turck, who testified at the trial, resigned last year. He repaid the money for the credit card purchases and was never charged in the theft.
FBI officials in Philadelphia withheld word of the investigation from both prosecutors and defense lawyers, prosecutors said.