Louisville, Kentucky – Three innocent men have been released from prison after serving a combined total of more than 50 years for crimes they did not commit, and they all have one thing in common—a homicide detective who they blame for their wrongful convictions.

Edwin Chandler spent nine years in prison after he was convicted of shooting and killing store clerk Brenda Whitfield during a robbery in 1993. However, he was exonerated in 2010 after it was determined that another man, who was already serving 20 years on an unrelated assault charge, was responsible for the robbery and the murder.

Chandler sued the city of Louisville and the police department and received $8.5 million in damages. However, the officer who he blames for forcing him to give a false confession faced no repercussions.

Standing before the Metro City Council, Chandler shared his story and called for a new investigation into the actions of former Louisville Police Detective Mark Handy, according to a report from WDRB News.

“I was interrogated by a police officer, Mark Handy,” Chandler said. “And in that interrogation, I gave a false confession, and the reason I gave that false confession, primarily, is because I was threatened by Mr. Handy that he would take my sister’s children away … that he would have her locked up.”

Chandler said despite the fact that he spent nearly a decade in prison for a crime he did not commit, he has nothing against police, and he simply wants to raise awareness about one individual who needs to be held accountable for his actions.”

Mr. Handy has not been brought to justice for any of the wrongdoing that he’s done,” Chandler said.

Retired LMPD detective Denny Butler testified on Chandler’s behalf and accused Handy of threatening Chandler because he knew Chandler was innocent. “So to sum it up, Mark Handy tried to execute Edwin Chandler using our criminal justice system, knowing he was an innocent man,” Butler said.

The former detective also said that Chandler was not the only victim, and there were multiple other cases where Handy was responsible for innocent men being wrongfully convicted. “If you remove Mark Handy from those cases, these guys don’t even get charged,” he said.

Jeffrey Clark was also present at the meeting, and he said Detective Handy was the one who interrogated him and Keith Hardin when they were accused of murdering Rhona Sue Wardord in 1992.

Both Clark and Hardin spent 22 years in prison after they were convicted of murdering Wardord during a satanic ritual. However, they were set free last month after “new DNA evidence and accusations that investigators framed the pair led the Kentucky Supreme Court to vacate the convictions.”

“I would like to see him in the general population of a prison so he can understand what it’s like,” Clark told WDRB at the council meeting.

In another case from 1992, Keith West was convicted of murder in the shooting deaths of Kevin Harraway and Gerald White. He admitted to killing both men but claimed that he opened fire in self-defense because the men attempted to kidnap him with plans to sodomize him. Despite the fact that there was evidence to support his story, the evidence was never considered, and he faced the death penalty.

Handy was the main homicide detective in the case, and after West’s conviction was overturned, the Supreme Court of Kentucky admitted in court documents that Handy intentionally lied under oath in the case.

While involved in another investigation in 1992, it is undisputed that Handy erased an eyewitness’ initial taped statement and recorded over it with a second statement,” the document stated. “When testifying under oath in that case, however, Handy stated that he did not erase or copy over any case.”

In addition to playing a central role in four murder convictions that have since been overturned, Handy’s record includes accusations of other abuses of power—yet he never faced consequences for any of his actions.

While Handy was allowed to quietly retire from the Jefferson County Sheriff’s office, the testimonies from men who spent decades of their lives in prison because of his manipulation and abuse have persuaded the Metro Council Public Safety Committee to pass a resolution that will request a new investigation into the actions of former Detective Mark Handy.

WDRB 41 Louisville News

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  1. The prosecutors are the ones responsible for allowing this very common practice. They are the next up in the command chain and the ones most directly responsible. They should also be charged as accomplices.

  2. As it stands now, prosecutors have ABSOLUTE immunity and cannot be sued for any reason. It is long overdue to strip this immunity from ALL public officials. This prosecutor should be behind bars. I wonder how many other innocent people are behind bars because of this POS…

    • That’s not entirely true. Prosecutors can be sued and charged criminally… if (and ONLY if) it can be established that they acted “in bad faith,” which is very hard to prove.

      However, if it can be proven that (for example) a DA prosecuted a man just to get a “shot” at his girlfriend, then they are ABSOLUTELY not “immune” from that kind of thing.

      • Don’t forget that judges and prosecutors are “tied at the hip” and, in general, “watch each others backs”. It takes a “special master” judge appointed by the courts to go after a prosecutor which rarely ever happens. There may be a procedure for getting rid of a bad prosecutor, but it is almost never used.

  3. For Fuck sake. How much more can we allow this to go on?! If public officials are provided w/Absolute immunity, well it’s to be expected that abuse will run rampant. With this level of power, you can frame just about anyone, ex-spouses, settle old scores w/foe, the list goes on and on.

  4. Handy is already retired & receiving his hefty pension. No police union in America would ever let that be taken away from him.

  5. There’s a lot of great jobs in both the private and public sectors for psychopaths who enjoy destroying human lives. But the easiest to get, by far, is that of cop.

  6. The blue mob has less training than almost any profession in America with power of life & DEATH in an instant to anyone. Until changes are made and qualified immunity is lifted and they start holding these scumbags accountable it will never change. No police unions, make them carry insurance and too many points and they revoke their policy and their LEO certificate lifted. The way the cop shops are setup, it is the perfect storm for corruption, OIS, paid vacations and all the other perks, it will always be the same. The D.A.’s and Judges are the same in the line of corruption and graft.

    • I don’t know about the training, but I guarantee you that if they start making 1/10 of the errors Customer Service does in my own company every day, the present time would appear as the kingdom of justice and order. Assuming that they are the same incompetent brain-dead morons as 90% of the US workforce, there’s no reason to treat them differently from everybody else, and everybody else is not held personally accountable for the mistakes made from 8 to 5.

  7. Is it not Kentucky which recently changed it’s recruiting policy for police to allow them to hire people with only a high school education? There’s going to be some fun.


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