At a subsequent trial, a New Yorker who had already served 18 years in jail for a murder he claimed not to have committed was declared not guilty.
According to Newsday, Paul Scrimo, 66, was found not guilty on Thursday in Nassau County Court of strangling Ruth Williams to death in 2000.
Despite being found guilty of murder in 2002, Scrimo’s conviction was overturned in 2019 by an appeals court on the grounds that he hadn’t received a fair trial.
According to the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals’ decision, Scrimo’s DNA was not found under the victim’s fingernails.
After a trial that began on September 18, Scrimo said that his acquittal would offer him the opportunity to make up for lost time with his family.
“I missed all of the graduations, all of the weddings,” Scrimo, a married father of three, said. “The kids always loved me. They never said, ‘Dad, you weren’t here.’ With my wife … she’s been hurt by this. But she’s a good girl, and I’m gonna make it up to her forever.”
On April 12, 2000, Scrimo is alleged to have choked Williams inside her Long Island flat. Newsday reports that the prosecution in both trials claimed that Williams was killed by Scrimo after she disparaged his wife.
When Williams passed away, Scrimo claimed that a friend who was also there was the murderer. In this case, the friend was never put on trial.
In a statement, Brendan Brosh, a spokesman for Nassau County District Attorney Anne Donnelly, stated, “We respect the verdict.”