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John Edward Smith, former Calif. gang member, expects to be exonerated of murder today

John Edward Smith is to seek dismissal of the murder and attempted murder charges against him
AP Photo/Deirdre O'Connor

(CBS/AP) LOS ANGELES - John Edward Smith, the former Los Angeles gang member who was kept behind bars for 19 years, is due in court today to be cleared of his murder conviction.

Smith's lawyers are expected to ask a judge on Monday afternoon to vacate his murder and attempted murder convictions for a 1993 drive-by shooting. Prosecutors plan to support the motion.

Smith was 18- years-old when he went to prison. His lawyers said he wasn't at the shooting scene. The only eyewitness, a victim who was shot and survived, recently recanted and said police pressured him to identify Smith as the shooter.

Smith, now 38, had a hearing scheduled for last Friday, but it was postponed when the judge fell ill. He spent the weekend in jail.

More on Crimesider
Sept. 21, 2012 - John Edward Smith, former Calif. gang member, likely to be cleared of murder charges in 1993 shooting, report says

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