Dave Keaton (1952-2015)

Dave KeatonState of Conviction: Florida

Race: African American

Wrongful Conviction: Murder

Exonerated Date: 1973

Years Served: 2

Dave Keaton was the first man to be exonerated from death row in the United States. He was one of five (also known as the Quincy Five) arrested in 1971 for the murder of an off-duty police officer at a Florida convenience store. After three days of relentless interrogation – with threats, lies, and beatings – investigators coerced a confession from him. Although details of the number of participants in the crime, the weapons used, and the location of the “getaway car” differed sharply from the state’s evidence, an all-white jury convicted and sentenced Dave to death. He was just 18 years old. He passed away in 2015.

Source: Witness to Innocence

Read more about Dave’s story here.