He was set to pay for his crimes in prison for at least 316 years. But on Tuesday, 46-year-old Michael McFadden walked out of Colorado’s Arkansas Valley Correctional Facility a free man, released under circumstances that have left Mesa County’s district attorney “appalled,” per the Daily Sentinel.
McFadden, who was convicted in 2015 of sexual assault against six children, appealed his conviction by claiming that his right to a speedy trial had been violated due to delays, and in June of last year, the Colorado Court of Appeals overturned his conviction, KKCO reports.
The state’s Supreme Court declined to hear the case last month, keeping the appeals court’s decision in place and resulting in McFadden’s release. “We are without remedy,” DA Dan Rubenstein lamented. “If you’ve heard the phrase, ‘he got off on a technicality,’ this is exactly that situation,” he added, per KKCO.
Rubenstein took to Facebook to explain McFadden’s release at length so the community “can take action at the next election of [the] court of appeals judges” involved.
It initially appeared McFadden wouldn’t have to add his name to any sex offender registry, since his crimes were officially vacated. He’d been convicted once before for sexually assaulting a child, but that conviction happened before it was required by law for sex offenders to add their names to a public register. However, Rubenstein said Thursday that McFadden will have to register based on that 1990 case.
Word as of Thursday was that McFadden was holed up in homeless shelters in Colorado Springs and was trying to get enough cash to take a bus to Florida.