Kansas man who claims he was set up to be released on parole soon

Brian Betts says two Kansas City detectives coerced his uncle into identifying him as a shooter in a 1997 murder

KANSAS CITY, Kan. (AP) — A Kansas man who claimed a disgraced police detective helped convict him of a 1997 murder he didn’t commit will be released on parole in four months.

KCUR reports that Brian Betts learned the news Friday and called his sister, Violet Martin, and their mother, Ellen Betts, to share. Martin said they screamed and thanked God.

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“I know my brother. He was smiling,” Martin said. “He was like, ‘June 1! June 1 I’m coming home!’”

Betts, 46, and his cousin, Celester McKinney, 52, alleged that former Kansas City, Kansas, detective Roger Golubski and another detective coerced their uncle into identifying them as the shooters in the death of 17-year-old Gregory Miller.

They sought a new trial but Judge Gunnar Sundby ruled in December that the men did not prove their case, despite a “cloud of doubt” over Golubski.

Golubski, 70, now faces federal charges of kidnapping, sexual assault and sex trafficking.

McKinney had a parole hearing on February 16 and was told he’ll learn if he’s paroled within a month of that day, Martin said.

McKinney’s attorney, Sarah Swain, said she hopes Betts winning parole means that McKinney could be next.

“Either way, this is great news for Brian Betts,” she said.

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