ITX Client Ed Ates Released on Parole

Wednesday, September 05 2018

The Innocence Project of Texas (IPTX) is thrilled that Ed Ates, who we believe was wrongly convicted of murder in 1998, is finally out of prison. Ed was released from the Huntsville Unit into the arms of his wife, Kim and their children, Kyra and Zach at 12:40 p.m.

Ed, born and raised in Chapel Hill, east of Tyler, was 30 years old when he was sent to prison for life. At that time, he was taken from his wife and their 2-year-old daughter. His wife was 5 months pregnant with their son as well. Ed is now 50-years old. He missed his children’s childhood as his faithful wife raised them on her own.

In 2016, Ed’s case was brought to the attention of the IPTX by Bob Ruff of the Truth and Justice Podcast. The Innocence Clinic at Texas Tech School of Law, lead by IPTX’s Allison Clayton, has been working on Ed’s case ever since. Students in this year’s clinic, as well as from previous clinics, were present to see Ed walk out of prison.

Since IPTX took on Ed’s case, it has discovered several indicators in the crime scene that it believes are incongruent with the State’s theory of the case. Items have been submitted for DNA testing, and our investigation is ongoing. In the meantime, Ed’s release on parole is a significant life event both for Ed and his family.

“There are many ways we believe our justice system failed Ed and his family,” says Mrs. Clayton. “We are coming in decades later, trying to go through and prove how these failings put an innocent man in prison while the real murderer went unpunished. We want justice not only for Ed and his family but for the victim and her family as well.”

For now, Ed will enjoy time with his family, wife Kim, daughter Kyra, and son Zach in Dallas as they begin rebuilding their life together. IPTX will continue working on Ed’s case and hopes to eventually obtain a complete exoneration.