The case of the Central Park 5 rose to fame as a shining example of police manhandling a case and evidence, and going out of their way to pin a conviction on innocent individuals. Since then, there have been quite a large number of high-profile wrongful conviction cases, but this is considered by most to be the big one.
In this particular case, 5 individuals were arrested and found guilty in relation to the rape of a Central Park jogger in 1989. At the time, the case was used by enterprising politicians and news outlets as a way to inflame race and gang issues. Many believed that race was the primary factor that lead to the Central Park 5’s initial arrests.
The 5 arrested young men (all aged between 14 and 16 at the time) always stood by their assertion that their initial statements were more-or-less fed to them by police officers, but they were found to stand up in the 1990 trial case. In 2002, DNA evidence showed that the rape was actually done by a known rapist and murderer, who confessed to the crime alone.
According to sources, the city of New York has agreed to an initial amount of $40 million in damages for the 5 men, which equals roughly $1 million for each year of wrongful imprisonment.