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Zackary Lee Stewart
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The man who was wrongfully convicted of the November 2006 murder of a Hurley man has filed a civil suit seeking monetary damages.

In the complaint, attorney's for Zachary Lee Stewart allege Detective Karl Wagner, Captain Tim Gideon, Detective Orville Choate and the Stone County Sheriff's Office violated his constitutional rights, were inadequately trained and abuse of police and arrest power on the citizens of Missouri.

Seven counts, including malicious prosecution, false arrest, and wrongful incarceration were included in the July 27th filing in United States District Court.

In March of 2007, shortly after graduating from high school, Zack Stewart was arrested for the murder of 53-year-old Dulin while he was serving a two week sentence for a DUI. He was tried and convicted of Dulin's murder in Greene County, where the case was moved on a change of venue, and sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Several witnesses state they told Wagner, Gideon and Choate that Tim Seaman and John Mills had been "partying down" at Godfrey Bottoms in Crane the day Dulin was murdered....before Stewart was tried for murder.  Jean Taylor says she told the investigators several times that Seaman and Mills left and returned in bloody clothes, which they burned in a barrel, the night of Dulin's death.


David Dulin (family photo)

In a unanimous decision in May 2010, the Missouri Supreme Court ruled Stewart deserved a new trial because a DNA found on a hat at the crime scene linked Seaman to Dulin's murder. Prosecutor Matt Selby refiled murder charges against Stewart and he was returned to jail in Greene County to await trial.

Tim Seaman

Selby dropped those charges in December and quickly charged Seaman with first-degree murder after John Mills, who was offered immunity for his part in Dulin's murder, turned state's evidence and admitted to authorities that he and Seaman were responsible for Dulin's murder.

John Mills was offered immunity for his testimony

Seaman, pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and was sentenced to 21 and a half years in prison this past May for his role in Dulin's death.  Mills, pleaded guilty to various weapons charges unrelated to Dulin's murder and was sentenced to seven years in prison last April.

Stewart has requested a jury hear the case.

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