Wednesday, October 24, 2007

He hasn't been screwed enough?

Okay, I'm all in favor of a divorced father paying his due support. I pay mine without bellyaching (at least not too much), and I don't have a lot of sympathy for guys who dodge it. But this poor schlub has been in prison for 18 years for a crime he didn't commit. Is it really necessary to nail him this hard as soon as he walks out the prison door?
Dwayne Allen Dail, 39, was cleared in August of the 1987 rape of a 12-year-old Goldsboro girl. The girl identified him as her attacker, and hair found at the scene was similar to his. DNA evidence found on a fragment of the girl's nightgown years after the trial proved Dail wasn't involved in the attack, however.

Gov. Mike Easley pardoned Dail two weeks ago, making him eligible to receive $360,000 from the state – $20,000 for each year he spent in prison.

Dail, who now lives in Florida, was served Tuesday with a lawsuit by Lorraine Michaels, the mother of his son, who is seeking back child support. The suit does not specify how much money she wants, as is normal in North Carolina, but asks a "reasonable sum for the care and maintenance of the minor child" for the years Dail was in prison.

"Since his release, Mr. Dail has not indicated any intention to provide support to Ms. Michaels," Michaels' attorney, Sarah Heekin, said in a statement. "In order to fully protect my client’s statutory rights, it was necessary to file an action for child support prior to the minor’s eighteenth birthday."

Dail said he was devastated by the suit. He said his son recently moved to Florida to live with him.

That last sentence makes me wonder if there's an alienation thread in all this as well: Mama's irritated because the boy wants to live with his father. Beats me; I don't know these people. But it seems to me that even an angry ex could cut this guy a little slack.

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