Convicting the Innocent
DNA Exonerations Database

Kenneth Kagonyera

First NameKenneth
Last NameKagonyera
Year of Conviction2001
Year of Exoneration2011
Testing inculpated culpritCold Hit
State of ConvictionNorth Carolina
Trial, Bench Trial, or Guilty PleaGuilty Plea
Type of CrimeMurder
Death SentenceNo
Gender of ExonereeMale
Race of exonereeBlack
Types of evidence at trial
  • Confession
  • DNA excluded
  • Eyewitness
  • Forensic Evidence
  • Informant
Were non-public facts alleged?Yes
Type of Forensic Evidence
  • DNA
Types of Flawed Forensics
  • Concealed
  • Valid (Excluded)
Brief Quote / Description of Testimony

DNA test results that excluded all of the co-defendants was not turned over

Examples of Non-Public or Corroborated Facts and Inconsistencies

● Drove car and van to victim’s house, in group armed with two guns ● Four people were inside, including an two men, a girl and an old man ● Shotgun was fired BUT DNA did not match any of the defendants.

Quotes from law enforcement testimony

Guilty plea – no trial

Quotes from prosecution arguments

Guilty plea – no trial

Interrogation RecordedWritten and signed confession statement
Jailhouse informant, Co-defendant, Incentivized WitnessCD
Highest level reachedAppeal
Claims Raised During All Appeals and Postconviction
  • Sentencing — Noncapital
Harmless Error Rulings
  • G
Citations to judicial opinions

State v. Kagonyera, 588 S.E.2d 584 (N.C.App. 2003)
State v. Kagonyera, 599 S.E.2d 908 (N.C. 2004).

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