Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility


Criminal procedure — Writ of actual innocence — Comparative bullet-lead analysis

Appellant Gregory Leon Wiley was convicted of the murder of Cornell Antonio Yarbour in 1997. The prosecution’s theory was that Mr. Yarbour was killed because he had stolen from Thomas James Anderson, a local drug dealer, and that appellant was ordered by Mr. Anderson to kill Mr. Yarbour. At trial, the prosecution used comparative bullet-lead analysis (CBLA), a forensic investigation technique which has since been discredited, to establish a connection between Mr. Anderson and Mr. Yarbour’s murder. 1 Without that connection, appellant contends that he would not have been convicted. He filed a Petition for a Writ of Actual Innocence on February 28, 2017, which the Circuit Court for Baltimore County denied. On appeal, he asks: Did the trial court abuse its discretion in denying appellant’s petition for a writ of actual innocence on the ground that newly discovered evidence discrediting CBLA did not create a substantial or significant possibility that the result at trial may have been different? For the following reasons, we answer that question …

Read the opinion.