PASSAIC, N.J. (AP) — A New Jersey appellate court has temporarily halted a ruling that lowered bail from $1 million to $20,000 for two long-imprisoned men.
The men already had been granted new trials in a deadly video store robbery after DNA tests linked evidence to someone else. A judge last month overturned the murder convictions of Eric Kelley and Ralph Lee.
The men had remained held on $1 million bail. Their bails were lowered to $450,000, then lowered Tuesday to $20,000.
An appellate panel issued a stay of the bail ruling Wednesday at the request of Passaic County prosecutors.
Lee and Kelley confessed to killing store clerk Tito Merino in Paterson but recanted.
In 2014, DNA testing on a hat found at the crime scene matched a man convicted of a 1989 knifepoint holdup at another shop. That man hasn't been charged.