PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER – SAMANTHA MELAMED/PHOTO CREDIT: EMMA LEE
Gerald Dugan tried to remain calm as the elevator doors opened and the man at the center of a case that’s haunted him for 40 years stepped into his 14th-floor law office.
Kevin Brinkley — who came home on parole last week after four decades in prison — was there at Dugan’s invitation. Brinkley was just 15 in 1977 when he was charged with the murder of Charles Haag, an egg deliveryman, in North Philadelphia. Years ago, when Dugan was an assistant district attorney, the Brinkley family had come forward insisting that Kevin’s brother Ronald was the one who committed the crime.
Dugan has come to believe they’re likely telling the truth. He wanted to ask Kevin in person for his forgiveness.
Kevin arrived with a half-dozen relatives, but Dugan instantly recognized the wiry, soft-spoken 55-year-old man from the skinny kid at the trial.