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Man sues Denver Police after DNA mix-up leads to jail time

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Posted at 7:30 PM, Dec 07, 2016
and last updated 2016-12-07 21:30:10-05

DENVER (AP) -- A man is suing Denver Police after he was wrongly jailed for two months in a sexual assault case because of a DNA mistake.

Twenty-six-year-old Shawnnon Hale said in a federal lawsuit filed Monday that crime lab technicians violated his rights when they improperly identified his DNA as being tied to a July 2014 rape. Prosecutors dismissed charges against Hale after a later test found his DNA was at the scene but not linked the crime.

The lawsuit says Hale was jailed for 61 days as a result of the faulty evidence. Denver Police did not immediately return requests for comment.

Hale claims at least one of the lab technicians switched DNA taken from a cigarette Hale had smoked with that taken from a man who had sex with the victim. He seeks damages and a written apology.

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