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News & Press: Montana News

Judge dismisses 2001 murder charge over lack of evidence

Thursday, January 4, 2018  
Posted by: Joe Menden
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A Montana judge has dismissed a deliberate homicide charge against a man who spent 15 years in prison for a killing he said he didn’t commit.

The charge against Richard Burkhart, 38, was dismissed last week after Cascade County prosecutors said they did not have enough evidence to convict Burkhart of killing William Ledeau with a hammer in November 2001, the Great Falls Tribune reported Wednesday.

“I have been waiting for this moment for many, many years,” Burkhart, now 38, said in a statement released Wednesday by the Montana Innocence Project. “I am looking forward to spending the rest of my life as a free man.”

Larry Mansch, Montana Innocence Project legal director, said Burkhart will soon have a parole hearing on a separate criminal mischief conviction stemming from the time he has been in prison.