Convicting the Innocent
DNA Exonerations Database

Michael Morton

First Name Michael
Last NameMorton
Year of Conviction1987
Year of Exoneration2011
Testing inculpated culpritCold Hit
State of ConvictionTexas
Trial, Bench Trial, or Guilty PleaTrial
Type of CrimeMurder
Death SentenceNo
Life / LWOP sentenceLife
Gender of ExonereeMale
Race of exonereeWhite
Did the defendant testify at trial?Yes
Types of evidence at trial
  • Forensic Evidence
  • Other
Type of Forensic Evidence
  • Hair
  • Serology
Types of Flawed Forensics
  • Valid
Brief Quote / Description of Testimony

Serological analysis detected blood group substances consistent with both the victim and the defendant. Over a dozen fingerprintsidentified on the glass sliding door and elsewhere excluded Morton and other family members. First examiner found hair found "consistent" with both victim and husband. Second examiner found hairs "to exhibit the same microscopic characteristics as known public hair" from the defendant. Wood chips were also found to have had the same microscopic characteristics.

Highest level reachedState Post­ Conviction
Claims Raised During All Appeals and Postconviction
  • Brady
  • Fourth Amendment
  • Jackson Claim
  • State Law Evidence Claim
Harmless Error Rulings
  • NP
Citations to judicial opinions

Morton v. State, 761 S.W.2d 876 (Tex.App.–Austin 1988)
Morton v. State, 2011 WL 3828419 (Tex.App.-Austin 2011)
In re Morton, 326 S.W.3d 634 (Tex.App.–Austin 2010)

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