A judge is ordering a hearing on whether a Brooklyn man was wrongly convicted in the killing a Fairfield University student more than a decade ago. Michael Scotto filed the following report for NY1.
John Giuca looked relieved after a judge on Thursday agreed to hear new evidence that could overturn his 2005 conviction for the shooting death of a college football player on a Brooklyn street.
Giuca's mother, Doreen Giuliano, had been working toward this day for years.
"I went through hell," Giuliano said. "And all's I ask is for a fair trial. Give my son a fair trial. He's an innocent man. He deserves that much."
It was 10 years ago that a jury determined that Giuca killed Fairfield University student Mark Fisher after a night of partying on the Upper East Side that ended in Brooklyn.
Giuca's family and lawyers have long argued prosecutorial misconduct, claiming that former Brooklyn DA Charles Hynes knowingly used false testimony from a jailhouse informant on Rikers Island who claimed that Giuca confessed to murder. That witness later recanted his trial testimony.
"We're confident that the judge will see that John's due process laws were violated in many ways and that he'll vacate the conviction and that John will come home where he belongs," said Mark Bederow, Giuca's lawyer.
Giuca's family has gone to extreme lengths to prove Giuca's innocence. His mother even went undercover to rope a juror into admitting misconduct in the jury room.
However, last January, the DA's office, after reviewing the case, affirmed the conviction. In a statement, a spokesperson said, "We consented to the hearing. We are standing by the conviction and we are confident that after a fair and thorough proceeding it will be upheld."
That hearing is set for November 16. Giuca's family and lawyers are hoping it ends with Giuca walking free from prison.