The father of Green Bay Packers defensive tackle Kenny Clark, in prison the past 12 years for murder, lost his latest and perhaps best chance to overturn the conviction that sent him away for 55 years to life without the possibility of parole.
A federal district judge issued a ruling that rejected Kenny Clark Sr.'s latest arguments. Among the reasons cited were that the eyewitnesses "waited 11 years to come forward, offered testimonies that were inconsistent ... and accused an individual who had no apparent motive to assault the victim."
The judge also pointed to the fact that the four witnesses had connections to Clark Sr., who is expected to appeal.
The story of Kenny Clark Sr. and his son -- a former UCLA standout and first-round pick by the Packers last spring -- was detailed in an Outside the Lines story a year ago.
In 2005, Clark Sr. had been convicted in the second-degree murder of Misael Rosales in San Bernardino, California. The shooting of Rosales had taken place outside a convenience store and a motorcycle club where dozens of people were milling around.
A witness told authorities and, ultimately, a jury that he had not seen the shooting but that he had seen Clark Sr. waving around a pistol not long before Rosales was shot. Clark Sr. maintained his innocence, and a year later, the witness would recant some of his testimony, setting Clark Sr. and his family off on a series of appeals over the past decade.
In January 2016, Clark Jr. and his family attended a court hearing in Santa Ana, California, where lawyers for his father presented evidence from four new witnesses. The witnesses said essentially the same thing: Clark Sr. wasn't the shooter, but rather it was a known drug dealer who himself had been killed four months after Rosales' murder.
The Clarks had high hopes at the time. Clark Jr., who would be drafted by the Packers months later, told Outside the Lines he hoped his dad would be free in time for the draft and around to enjoy his NFL career.
In his first season with the Packers, Clark Jr. recorded 21 tackles, including four in a 34-31 playoff victory over the Cowboys.