Court orders $826,301 restitution for wrongfully convicted Kansas man posthumously


A judge’s gavel is shown in a file photo. (Credit: iStock / Getty Images Plus)

TOPEKA, Kan. (KSNT) — Olin L. “Pete” Coones was arrested for first-degree murder on April 7, 2008, and was convicted of that crime on December 17, 2009, in Wyandotte County District Court.

After Coones served 12 years and 213 days behind bars, his conviction was vacated and the charges against him were dismissed on November 5, 2020. He was released from prison.

Coones filed a lawsuit under the state’s mistaken-conviction statute on November 13. When he died in February, his estate continued his claim.

Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt says the lawsuit has been resolved.

The court determined that Coones did not commit the crime, was not an accessory to the crime, did not commit perjury or fabricate evidence.

The court ordered the following restitution for Coones:

  • A Certificate of Innocence
  • Expungement of the arrest and conviction records
  • Compensation of $826,301.81 for Coones’ estate

From December 2018 through the present, 11 individuals have filed lawsuits against the State of Kansas under authority of the K.S.A. 60-5004, the mistaken-conviction statute. 

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