California man cleared of crime after serving time

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A federal appeals court has overturned the drug conviction of a San Francisco man after he served out a prison sentence of nearly six years.

The San Francisco Chronicle reports (http://bit.ly/1h1Xhfs ) that the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals found the DNA linking Gale Joseph Young wasn't reliable.

It began in June 2008 when Young was questioned and searched by police in an unrelated case. He was released and officers later found a plastic bag on the floor containing 14 grams of crack cocaine. DNA tests linked the bag to unknown women, and a small fraction matched a male.

At trial, prosecutors used an expert witness who said Young couldn't be excluded as the DNA donor. The appellate court found the evidence was not enough to uphold the conviction.

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Information from: San Francisco Chronicle, http://www.sfgate.com