Man convicted of murder when he was 15-years-old released after new testimony

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

WILMINGTON, N.C.  – For the first time in nearly 30 years, Johnny Small is out of prison.

In 1988, Small was convicted of murdering Pam Dreher when he was just 15-years-old. Throughout the years, he always maintained his innocence

On Thursday, a judge released Small from prison and put him on house arrest after receiving new testimony in the case.

David Bollinger, a teenage friend of Small, testified that Small killed Dreher during his original trial.

Now, he is recanting his story, saying that a homicide investigator made up the story and pressured him to follow it.

The judge said Small’s conviction should be vacated and the charges against him should revert to pending status.