City of Tampa awarded $14 million wrongful conviction settlement to Robert DuBoise

After nearly four decades behind bars, DuBoise received a $14 million settlement for wrongful conviction based on flawed forensic science and informant testimony. 

Wrongfully convicted and sentenced to death in 1985 by a jury in Tampa, Florida, Robert DuBoise has maintained his innocence from the day of his arrest. “Junk science”—thoroughly discredited pseudoscience that was, and continues to be, relied upon by police to secure convictions—helped to put Mr. DuBoise behind bars for 37 years. In addition, Tampa police officers coerced and fabricated a jailhouse informant’s testimony in order to put Mr. DuBoise behind bars.

DuBoise sought post-conviction DNA testing in 2006, but was told that all evidence had been destroyed. In 2018, his case was taken up by attorneys at The Innocence Project, who uncovered critical DNA evidence that proved his innocence. DuBoise was released from prison in 2020 and was officially exonerated of all charges.

Following his release, DuBoise filed a lawsuit against the City of Tampa, police officers, and a forensic odontologist involved in his case. The Tampa City Council approved the $14 million settlement for DuBoise in February 2024. 

Mr. DuBoise looks forward to moving on from this 40+ year quest for justice, but he emphasized that these reparations can never make up for the time he lost in prison. “I am grateful that with this settlement that this case is done and I can move on with my life,” he shared. “Money, a house, nothing can make up for the time that I lost in prison.”

Gayle Horn, one of DuBoise’s attorneys at Loevy + Loevy, shared, “We are glad that Tampa brought a bit of justice and closure to Robert. This settlement acknowledges the immeasurable harm Robert endured, and will allow him to move forward with his life.” 

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