Lamar Johnson

The hearing will decide if the conviction should be overturned of a Lamar Johnson who has spent nearly three decades in prison for a murder that two other people later confessed to committing. Lamar Johnson has long maintained his innocence, and St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner is backing his request to vacate his conviction. However, the Missouri attorney general's office maintains Johnson was rightfully convicted in the 1994 slaying of 25-year-old Marcus Boyd and should remain in prison. Johnson was convicted in 1995 of fatally shooting Boyd over a $40 drug debt and received a life sentence. Another suspect, Phil Campbell, pleaded guilty to a reduced charge in exchange for a seven-year prison term. Johnson claimed he was with his girlfriend miles away when Boyd was killed. Years later, the state's only witness recanted his identification of Johnson and Campbell as the shooters. Two other men have since confessed and said Johnson was not involved.