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Midwest Innocence Project takes Columbia case

The Midwest Innocence Project has taken the case of Charles Erickson, who's serving a 25-year sentence for second-degree murder in the 2001 death of Tribune Sports Editor Kent Heitholt. File photo.

A nonprofit legal group has taken the case of a man convicted in the death of a Columbia sports editor.

The Columbia Daily Tribune reports the Midwest Innocence Project has taken the case of Charles Erickson, who's serving a 25-year sentence for second-degree murder in the 2001 death of Tribune Sports Editor Kent Heitholt.

Erickson's testimony in the case, which he has since claimed was a lie, implicated Ryan Ferguson, who served nearly 10 years behind bars before he was released in 2013.

The Kansas City-based organization works to exonerate wrongfully convicted people in Missouri, Kansas, Arkansas, Iowa and Nebraska.

Justin Scott, a spokesman for the Midwest Innocence Project, says the organization's legal director, Tricia Bushnell, is representing Erickson. Bushnell declined to speak about the case.

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