Constitutional Law

Freed After 12 Years, Aided by Mom's Paralegal Work, Va. Man Wants Real Murderer ID'd

More than a decade after being wrongly convicted of an elderly woman’s murder, Michael Wayne Hash left the Culpeper County, Va., courthouse Monday a free man, with the case against him finally dismissed.

Now 31, Hash has something in common–in addition to a belief that the case against him wasn’t proven–with the visiting district attorney who requested the dismissal of the case, the Associated Press reports. Both he and Fairfax County Commonwealth’s Attorney Ray Morrogh would like to see the guilty party held accountable in the 1996 murder of Thelma B. Scroggins, 74.

Freed under constraints by a federal judge earlier this year, Hash stayed with his parents while awaiting a final resolution of the case. His mother, who worked as a law firm paralegal to help win her son’s release on appeal, had collected documents in his case and meticulously organized them. Hash would spend time reading them in the garage, where they are now stored, and wondering what the future held, both for himself and the actual culprit in Scroggins’ murder.

“I would love to see these gone,” Hash said earlier in the summer. But he and his mother, Pamela Hash, say they hope to see justice done and are glad that Morrogh—who could still conceivably bring future charges against Mike Hash—is continuing to pursue the case.

“All my family feels the same way,” said Pam Hash.

Additional coverage: “Mom Takes Job with Lawyer to Help Son Win Reversal of Capital Murder Conviction” “Prosecutor Resigns in Wake of Federal Judge’s Reversal of Capital Murder Case Conviction”

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