Meet the Exonerees

James Bain

State: Florida
Date of Birth:
Incident Date: 03/04/1974
Age at Arrest: 19
Conviction Date: 1974
Age When Exonerated: 54
Exonerated Date: 12/17/2009
Time Served: 35
Conviction: Kidnapping, Rape
False Confession: No
Implicated by Another Youth: Yes


Case Details

James Bain was nineteen-years-old when was wrongfully convicted and sentenced to life in prison for the kidnapping and rape of a nine-year-old boy in 1974. Based off a description the victim had given police about the assailant, the victim’s uncle told police that the description sounded like James Bain, a student at the high school where the victim’s uncle worked. A photo line-up was presented to the victim and he asserted that Bain was the perpetrator. The victim would later reveal in a deposition that he had been told to “pick out Jimmie Bain.” Bain’s conviction was achieved solely on the eyewitness testimony of this nine-year-old boy, who had just been through a tragic and confusing experience. In 2001, 2003, and 2006, Bain sought DNA testing on appeal, but was denied each time. Finally, with help from the Innocence Project of Florida, Bain was granted DNA testing, which confirmed that he was not the victim’s assailant. Of the 245 people that have used DNA testing to achieve exoneration, no one has spent more time in prison for a crime they did not commit than Bain.