Milke has emotional reunion with ailing mother

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Video and images courtesy: Michael Kimerer, Kimerer & Derrick PC; Lori Voepel, Jones, Skelton & Hochuli, PC

Posted on September 11, 2013 at 11:53 AM

Updated Monday, Sep 16 at 2:48 PM

PHOENIX (AP) -- A woman who spent more than two decades on Arizona's death row before being released pending her retrial has had an emotional reunion with her cancer-stricken mother.

Debra Milke's lawyers released a picture Tuesday of her hugging Renate Janka for the first time in nearly 25 years. Death row prisoners aren't permitted to have physical contact with visitors.

Janka flew from Germany to Phoenix on Sunday evening to be with Milke, who was released Friday after supporters posted her $250,000 bond.

A judge ruled there's no direct evidence linking Milke to the 1989 death of her 4-year-old son, other than a purported confession to a detective whose honesty has been questioned.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals overturned Milke's conviction in March. Her next court date is Sept. 23.

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