Cleveland Hts: No justice for family of murder victim

6:56 PM, Sep 7, 2012   |    comments
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CLEVELAND HEIGHTS -- The father of a man whose killers' convictions were overturned is still looking for justice. 

"He was innocent. He didn't do anything except be in the wrong place at that time," lamented Richard Klann on Friday, 24 hours after a man convicted of killing his son Tony in 1988 was freed.

"Tony was 19, OK? That was 25 years ago," Klann told WKYC. "So I've been going through this crap for 25 years."

Tony Klann was murdered in September, 1988, his nearly bloodless body found in Doan Creek in Rockefeller Park on Cleveland's east side. He had been repeatedly stabbed and beaten.

On Thursday, the second of two men convicted of the murder, Michael Keenan, was freed when the murder charges were dismissed. He spent more than 20 years on death row.

Related story: Freed Ohio inmate savors pizza, reunion

In 2009, Joe D'Ambrosio, who was also convicted and sentenced to death, was freed for the same reason -- Cuyahoga County prosecutors at the time of the trials withheld key evidence that could have exonerated them.

"Now they're out. Now they're going to sue for millions. Now they're going to get millions for wrongful imprisonment," Klann predicted. "And it's not true. They're guilty. Nobody's proved them innocent. They were found guilty and in my mind they're still guilty."

Klann bases his beliefs on the testimony of original witnesses who testified.

"When you see six people say they were all together that night and there's a knife and there's a bat, and Tony's under stress and these guys are going to call him dead meat, well, where do you go from there? Who killed him?"

Although prosecutors intend to appeal the dismissal of the murder charges, the elder Klann is not confident there will be another trial, much less justice for his son Tony.

"The reason he's getting off is some of the detectives are dead, some of the witnesses are dead or can't be found. They can't retry him. They can't retry him. It's not a matter of they won't.  They want to." 

"So these two guys are free, and they're going to get money, and I don't have my son.  And I don't have anything that says I have justice for my family."


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