SPECIAL ASSIGNMENT: Clearing Camm - WDRB 41 Louisville News

SPECIAL ASSIGNMENT: Clearing Camm

Posted: Updated:

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Two juries convicted him, but there's a new effort to free David Camm. Now the former state trooper's future could depend on a group of college students.

Jordan Hochgesang is a senior criminal justice major at Indiana University, and he is on a mission -- not with a class assignment or preparing for graduation. Instead, he's passing out flyers he hopes will clear Camm's name and maybe even save his life. "This guy has been wrongfully convicted for the past 12 years," he says, "and we're just trying to get the word out."

The case: former Indiana State Trooper David Camm.  Hochgesang says, "I took a wrongful convictions class and the David Camm case came about." That's when the case piqued his interest. "I don't think David Camm is guilty," he says.

Since then, he and some of his classmates have been working with licensed private investigator Bill Clutter and a non-profit organization called Investigating Innocence. It's an extension of the Innocence Project, which has played a part in overturning more than 300 wrongful convictions.

Hochgesang says, "A lot of people became interested because they realize how this guy is in jail and he is innocent."

Clutter, a Certified Criminal Defense says he's been involved with investigating criminal cases since 1985. He has helped free several wrongly convicted inmates in the last 20 years, and he wants to do the same for Camm.

"I started delving into the (Camm) case about a year ago," Clutter said.

Camm has twice been convicted of killing his wife, Kim, and their two children, Brad and Jill, in the garage of their home in Georgetown, Indiana in September of 2000.

"He is the ultimate victim," Clutter says. "I mean, he lost his wife and two children and then he lost his liberty. I mean, it doesn't get any worse than that."

Clutter refutes the evidence that helped convict Camm. A bloodstain analysis expert determined Camm was near his daughter when she was shot. 

"It was actually in my training to be a bloodstain expert," Clutter says.

The bloodstain evidence has been strongly disputed by defense expert witnesses. Ironically, it's that argument that got Clutter's attention. 

"And the discussion was that this had given, really, a black eye to the profession because of the controversy of some of the opinions that it helped convict David Camm," Clutter said.

Both of Camm's convictions have been overturned by higher courts, and from the beginning, he has maintained his innocence. 

"David Camm has 11 alibis from playing basketball," Hochgesang says.

All 11 of those men swore in court that Camm was playing basketball with them at the time his family was murdered.

"It was persuasive that he was playing basketball," Clutter says. "He had an absolute alibi for the time of death that occurred."

But that's not the only thing that convinced Clutter and his students. After looking at all the evidence, they visited Camm in person. 

"We met for about two and a half hours, and he is a real humble guy," Hochgesang says.

So if Camm didn't kill his family, who did? 

"Let me just say this about Charles Boney: he is a notorious liar," Clutter says.

During Camm's second trial, DNA evidence on a sweatshirt connected career criminal Charles Boney to the case. Hochgesang points out, "His (Boney's) sweatshirt was left at the crime scene. Along with it, the name tag Backbone -- that was his moniker when he was in jail."

Boney's arrest doesn't clear Camm; it just makes the case more complicated. Boney tells authorities he met the former trooper playing basketball and that both were at the crime scene.

Hochgesang says, "All the things left at the crime scene is what makes me believe that Charles Boney is guilty."  Clutter adds, "You know, combined with, you know, Charles Boney's M.O., it's pretty compelling evidence. And then you look at the physical evidence."

That includes the sweatshirt, as well as Boney's palm print on the family Bronco, and Kim's shoes on top of the car inside the garage where the family was killed.  Clutter says, "When you look at the physical evidence tying him to this crime, it's very compelling."

So far, two prosecutors and perhaps dozens of police have looked at the same evidence and see it differently. 

'Based upon the evidence that I know, I feel he is guilty," says Stan Faith, Camm's first prosecutor.

Faith got the first guilty verdict against David Camm and says not much has changed since. He even explains the testimony of the 11 witnesses who swear Camm never left the gym.

Faith says, "I don't think eyewitnesses lie. They just have a misperception. They think they see more or they have a viewpoint that creates their testimony."

Clutter says, "When you have police and prosecutors who get it wrong, they're very reluctant to admit it, and they're resistant to any evidence that tends to prove them wrong."

Copyright 2013 WDRB News.  All Rights Reserved.

Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and WDRB. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.