DA drops case against Sean Ellis in murder of Boston detective

BOSTON — The Suffolk County District Attorney's Office will drop its prosecution of a man who was convicted of murdering a Boston Police Detective in 1993, DA John Pappas announced Monday afternoon.

Sean Ellis was convicted in the death of Detective John J. Mulligan at a trial in 1995, but the verdict was overturned by Superior Court Judge Carol Ball in 2015.

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Judge Ball vacated the original murder conviction after she ruled evidence was withheld from Ellis' defense attorneys.

"Three corrupt police officers" were partly to blame for the mishandling of evidence in a number of cases, Pappas said, but he claims their misconduct played no part in Ellis's prosecution.

Pappas said his office simply does not have the evidence to prove Ellis's guilt and won't bring the charges to a new trial.

"(Time) has compromised our ability to put the best possible case before a jury," Pappas said.  "The Suffolk County District Attorney's Office has not shied away from exonerating innocent men, but let me be clear, that is not the case here."

Ellis, 41, has been out of prison since 2015 while waiting for the new trial.

Boston Police Commissioner William Gross joined Pappas for the announcement.

This is a developing story, we'll have updates online and on Boston 25 News at 4.

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