Syracuse (WSYR-TV) -- There are new questions about a local murder case that dates back to 1987. Hector Rivas has been in prison for 20 years for killing his ex-girlfriend – pediatric nurse Valarie Hill.
On Monday, an appeals court said that Rivas should get a chance to challenge the conviction. They say that’s because new evidence shows that the killing happened at a time when Rivas had an uncontested alibi.
“Dr. Mitchell testified at the trial that he changed time of death, the possible or probably time of death from Sunday to the previous Friday. And that was essential to the prosecution’s case,” said Rivas’ attorney, Richard Langone. “At the end of the day Hector Revis never received a fair trial. That's the bottom line.
That’s no easy swallow for District Attorney Bill Fitzpatrick who prosecuted the case.
"Revis had an alibi for Sunday night. That doesn't mean he couldn't have killed her Saturday afternoon...that doesn't mean he could not have killed her Saturday evening. We felt that the circumstantial evidence pointed inextricably to her being killed Friday night,” Fitzpatrick said.
Rivas has spent the last 20 years in prison. His next court date has not yet been set.