In a shocking turn of events, a Latina woman who has spent twelve years in prison for allegedly sexually assaulting her two nieces in 1994 may be released after one of the girls is recanting her statement.

Elizabeth Ramirez and her three friends were first convicted after her two nieces, ages 7 and 9, told police that the women forced them into a sexual encounter. Though all were imprisoned, Ramirez, who was thought to be the ringleader behind the incident, was given the longest sentence of 37 and a half years. Now more than a decade later, the younger girl has recanted her accusation, saying the assault never happened.

"I want my aunt and her friends out of prison," said Stephanie, who is now 25 and asked to be identified only by her first name.

Read more ¿Qué más?: 13-year-old Latino teen charged with the murder & sexual abuse of young brothers (VIDEO)

Wow, what a crazy case. Why would two girls make such a story up? And if they did, why did it take so long for them to come forward? And why would the four women be jailed in the first place if there was no real evidence to the incident? I can't even imagine what Ramirez and her friends must be thinking, knowing that they could be possibly be set free after a decade of incarceration for a crime that they have always said they didn't commit.

Still, even with the withdrawal of the niece's accusation, the process of being released won't be easy. For Ramirez and her friends to be exonerated, they will have to file for a new trial, which could take years.

Image via Bexar County Sheriff's Department

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About the author

Michelle Regalado is a Staff Writer at MamásLatinas. She loves reading, travel, pop culture, and writing about anything and everything.

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