Missouri Supreme Court orders man released from prison

CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. (AP) _ The Missouri Supreme Court has ordered the release of a man who spent nearly two decades in prison for the killing of a woman in his southeast Missouri hometown.

The court on Tuesday ruled that David Robinson should be released, saying in a one-page ruling that constitutional violations had occurred during his trial in the August 2000 shooting death of Sheila Box. She was killed in her SUV after leaving the Sikeston bar she and her fiancee owned. Robinson was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

The ruling comes about three months after an independent expert, Judge Darrell Massey, cited “clear and convincing evidence” that Robinson was innocent of the crime.

The court ordered Robinson released within 30 days unless the state decides to retry him.