Floyd Bledsoe, 46, of Kansas, will receive $7.5 million in compensation from Jefferson County, where he was wrongfully imprisoned for 15 years. The American was convicted in 2000 of raping and murdering 14-year-old Camilla Arfmann, but in 2015 DNA testing revealed that his brother, Tom Bledsoe, was the perpetrator.
Floyd Bledsoe will receive an initial payment of $1.5 million, with the remainder to be paid over the next ten years. The compensation is a major expense for the district, whose total budget hovers around $20 million.
A retracted confession
Arfmann lived with her older sister Heidi, who was married to Floyd. Tom Bledsoe confessed to the murder a day after it took place in 1999, leading authorities to where he had left the body. After he was arrested, he changed his story and pointed to his brother Floyd as the culprit.
Floyd Bledsoe filed a lawsuit in 2016 accusing authorities of convincing his brother to recant his confession and pointing himself as guilty. They would also have hidden evidence of Tom’s guilt.
Tom Bledsoe committed suicide in 2015 after a month of DNA evidence showed his tracks had been found. He left a note on which he again confessed to killing Arfmann. He wrote that he had been ordered to remain silent. By whom is unknown.
Miscarriages of justice
Last year saw a record number of miscarriages of justice in the United States. More than 200 prisoners were acquitted.
Million dollar settlements are also more common. For example, two men who were unjustly imprisoned for years for the murder of civil rights leader Malcolm X were jointly awarded $ 36 million in damages for that miscarriage of justice.
- Record number of miscarriages of justice uncovered in US this year
- Million-dollar settlement for wrongly convicted murder of Malcolm X
- American released after wrongly imprisonment of 38 years