City apologizes to man wrongfully convicted - FOX 26 News | MyFoxHouston

City apologizes to man wrongfully convicted

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HOUSTON (FOX 26) -

The City of Houston has settled a lawsuit with a man who served 17 years for a kidnapping and rape he did not commit.

George Rodriguez will get $3 million.  He was convicted thanks to false DNA evidence and the testimony of an HPD crime lab employee.

Friday at City Hall, Mayor Annise Parker officially apologized to Rodriguez.

"I'd like to thank you for coming down here and letting me apologize to you in person," Parker said.

Rodriguez accepted the apology and struggled to maintain his composure.

"I've been through a lot," he said.

A jury awarded him $5 million for having his civil rights violated, but the cash-strapped city appealed.

The city is in the process of establishing a new independent crime lab to make sure there are no more "George Rodriguez-es".

Rep. Scott Hochberg is the chairman of the new forensic science center.

"It's important to know the crime lab we have in operation now is not the crime lab that brought us here."

Rodriguez can still file a compensation claim with Texas.

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