Paramount man wrongfully convicted of murder exonerated after more than 20 years

"He always maintained his innocence and I want to apologize to you," said L.A. District Attorney George Gascón.

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BySid Garcia via KABC logo
Thursday, June 2, 2022
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According to the district attorney's office and the California Innocence Project, there was enough evidence gathered by a private investigator pointing to two other men responsible for the murder.

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Los Angeles District Attorney District Attorney George Gascón started his press conference on Wednesday by apologizing to Alex Torres.

"He always maintained his innocence and I want to apologize to you," he said.

Torres served nearly 20 years in prison for a murder he didn't commit. He was convicted in 2001 for the murder of Martin Guitron.

The killing happened in December 2000. There was an apparent "beef" between Torres and the victim, but according to Torres' family, who believed in his innocence, they told investigators he was home with his family in Paramount at the time of the murder.

During his time in prison, Torres wrote to the California Innocence Project, informing them what a private investigator found out about the murder of Guitron.

Evidence pointed to two other men.

Last October, Torres walked out of state prison and into his family's welcoming arms.

"I'm happy I'm with my family today and I'm very grateful for anybody that helped me out because all I wanted was to be heard," Torres told a room full of reporters at the time.

Torres' brother, Pedro, hired the private investigator to help out the family.

According to the district attorney's office and the California Innocence Project, there was enough evidence gathered by the investigator pointing to two other men responsible for the murder of Guitron.

"I've been waiting for 21 years. I haven't seen my brother at all or touched him for 21 years," said Pedro Torres when he recalled the moment he saw his brother again. "Me and him grew up really close with each other. I'm just glad that's he's home now."

Torres' conviction was not only overturned, but a judge said he's factually innocent, which means his record is clean.

He has a legal team looking into a possible civil lawsuit. As far as the murder case is concerned, that's now under investigation.