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Exonerated Man May Sue Lab Tech Over Testing

NEW ORLEANS (CN) - The 5th Circuit refused to dismiss a lawsuit against a lab technician who allegedly botched the blood testing that put Dennis Patrick Brown behind bars for 20 years for a crime he did not commit.

In 1984 Brown was convicted of rape and sentenced to life in prison, but he was later exonerated by DNA tests. He sued the city of Covington, La., and several officials, alleging false imprisonment and violations of due process.

Lab technician Nace Miller moved to dismiss the action on qualified immunity grounds. The court ruled that Miller is not entitled to qualified immunity because the deliberate or knowing creation of a misleading and scientifically inaccurate serology report amounts to a due-process violation.

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