Convicting the Innocent
DNA Exonerations Database

Donald Wayne Good

First NameDonald Wayne
Last NameGood
Year of Conviction1984
Year of Exoneration2004
State of ConvictionTexas
Trial, Bench Trial, or Guilty PleaTrial
Type of CrimeRape
Death SentenceNo
Life / LWOP sentenceLife
Gender of ExonereeMale
Race of exonereeWhite
Type of Innocence Defense
  • Alibi
Description / Quotes from Testimony Concerning Defense

● The only witness in support of the alibi was the defendant.

Did the defendant testify at trial?Yes
Quotes from Exoneree Testimony

No transcript obtained of second trial at which he testified.

Types of evidence at trial
  • Eyewitness
  • Forensic Evidence
Type of Forensic Evidence
  • Serology
Types of Flawed Forensics
  • Invalid
Reason why invalid(1) Masking; failure to provide percentage
Brief Quote / Description of Testimony

Good was an O secretor. A blanket exhibited H substances consistent with an O type while the swab tested exhibited blood groups A and H. As to the swab, the analyst stated, “you cannot put the percentage on that because it can easily be a mixture of the vaginal secretions plus the seminal fluid.” However, as to the blanket, which could also be a mixture, the analyst included Good and stated that “one-third of the Caucasian male population” are O secretors. See Part II.A.1 for a description of the problem of masking and non-quantification and discussion of similar cases.

Identity of eyewitness
  • Cross Racial Identification
  • Victim
Multiple eyewitnesses2
Lineup Procedures
  • Lineup
  • Photo array
Suggestive Procedures

Yes ● Suggestive line-up – As Fifth Circuit found in summary judgment ruling, Good had shown that the line-up was “fabricated,” where the officer “stated he planned to frame Good for failing to cooperate” and to “fix” the photo array by underexposing his photo to darken it and make it better match the composite, as well as hide a tattoo and scar on his face.

Quotes from testimony #1

As the Fifth Circuit described, the plaintiff argued that the detective “proceeded to take several pictures of Good. He repeatedly altered the light settings on the camera with each picture in an effort to make Good’s photograph better match the “dark tan” skin tone of the suspect in the police sketch”

Unreliable Identification?

Yes ● Discrepancies in description, skin tone, facial scar and tattoo ● Initial nonidentification (by second eyewitness)

Highest level reachedAppeal
Claims Raised During All Appeals and Postconviction
  • Prosecutorial Misconduct
Claims granted, resulting in preexon. reversal
  • Prosecutorial Misconduct
Citations to judicial opinions

Good v. State, 723 S.W.2d 734 (Tx. Cr. App. 1986)

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