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Norfolk to Pay $4.9 Million to Four Men Wrongly Convicted of Rape, Murder

The city of Norfolk, Virginia has agreed to pay $4.9 million to four former sailors wrongly convicted of rape and murder in 1999 after they said they were coerced into giving false confessions, the Associated Press reports. The state also reportedly agreed to pay $3.5 million to Eric Wilson, Danial Williams, Joseph Dick and Derek Tice—all of whom have long maintained they were intimidated into falsely confessing to the 1997 rape and murder of Michelle Moore-Bosko. The “Norfolk 4” have said they confessed after being threatened with the death penalty, repeatedly called liars by investigators, and shown graphic images of the murder scene during interrogations. The four men were pardoned by then-Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe last year but served lengthy prison sentences and spent years as registered sex offenders. Omar Ballard pleaded guilty to the murder in 2000, acknowledging that he was the sole offender in the crime after a DNA match was made. Ballard is currently serving a life sentence.