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Man convicted in mom's murder freed

August 13, 2009 7:53:21 AM PDT
A Sherman Oaks man who spent 26 years behind bars for his mother's murder has been released from prison on Thursday.A judge overturned Bruce Lisker's murder conviction last week, citing false evidence.

Lisker, 44, was released on $200,000 bail from Mule Creek State Prison near Sacramento, but he won't have total freedom. He is restricted from traveling outside the Southern California area.

Lisker said his first stop before heading back to the Southland is an IHOP restaurant.

"It's finally come, and it's just a joyous day. I'm absolutely overjoyed. This is the best day of my life," he said.

The long, often frustrating road, to the seemingly impossible day ended with a flood of emotion.

"I've been trying to get a voice, trying to get heard, trying to tell people what it's like to sit inside a prison cell for something that you didn't do," Lister said.

"There's a lot of people who will take your money and not really do a whole lot for you. Then there are just the angels who come along."

Lisker was imprisoned for the death of his 66-year-old mother Dorka, who was found beaten and stabbed to death at her Sherman Oaks home in March 1983.

Lisker, who was 17 at the time, had a history of drug abuse and fighting with his mother. He didn't live with his mother, but said he had seen her lying on the floor through a window and broke into her locked home to help her.

He was convicted of murder and sentenced to life in prison.

In 2005, the L.A. Times published an investigation that concluded the original investigation was sloppy and incomplete, and earlier this year.

A federal magistrate found that false evidence was used in the case, and also said Lisker's attorney performed poorly during the trial.

Private investigator Paul Ingels was instrumental in securing Lisker's release.

"The justice system worked, kind of slow, but we're all thrilled that he's getting out," he said.

Lisker's ex-wife, whom he was married to for two years while he was incarcerated, greeted him upon his release.

"This is a wonderful glorious day," said Jenny Lisker, adding that she knew from day one that he was innocent.

When asked what he would do first when he got back to L.A., Lisker replied, "Take a swim."

Lisker must live in a court-approved residence upon his release and find employment or enroll in school.

His attorney said Lisker has trained in prison as a paralegal and may try to find a job in that field.

He has been ordered to appear for a status hearing in Riverside next week.

Lisker's attorney said it looks like prosecutors plan to re-file the murder charges.

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