A man cleared of rape after 19 years in prison has sued city police, claiming they used a suggestive photo lineup and fabricated evidence to wrongly convict him.
Thomas A. Doswell claims in the lawsuit that a detective investigating the 1986 rape wanted to “get” him because he had been acquitted of an earlier rape the same detective investigated.
Doswell contends the photo lineup was tainted because his mug shot was the only one marked with an “R” — which was how Pittsburgh police at that time marked rape suspects’ photos. The mug shot of Doswell was made for the 1984 case.
Doswell was freed in August 2005 after he petitioned the court for a DNA test, which did not match the victim’s attacker.
Police and the city law department did not immediately return calls for comment Thursday.
The lawsuit filed Tuesday also names as a plaintiff Doswell’s son, Raymond Thomas Lowry, who was 5 years old when his father was incarcerated “and spent the next 19 years without the presence, support or assistance of his father.”
The two men seek unspecified damages for the stigma of the rape conviction, their loss of relationship and Thomas Doswell’s loss of employment and income.