How good is your memory? On the night in 1984 when she was assaulted and raped in her apartment, Jennifer Thompson-Cannino thought her memory was excellent. During those agonizing 45 minutes, she concentrated on remembering her attacker’s face, body and clothing. Based entirely on her identification, Ronald Cotton was mistakenly convicted of the crime and sentenced to over fifty years in prison, not once, but twice. At the second trial, the defense even brought the true perpetrator to court, but the judge would not allow the jury to consider his testimony. Cotton does look remarkably similar to the man who assaulted Thopmson-Cannino, but he was innocent. Jennifer was so certain of her identification, she did not even recognize Bobby Poole as her actual attacker when she saw him in court at the second trial.
Mrs Smith Reads Picking Cotton by Jennifer Thompson-Cannino, Ronald Cotton, and Erin Torneo, CBR-3 #17