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Long-held Idaho prisoner resurrects case from riot

By The Associated Press
Published On: Nov 03 2013 08:43:22 AM MST
jail bars 2
BOISE, Idaho -

Ronald Lee Macik is inmate 12680, the lowest number among 8,700 felons in Idaho's prison system.
    
It's a lonely distinction: Nobody who was in prison when the then-21-year-old Macik was escorted through the State Penitentiary's sally port in 1969 remains behind bars.
    
Now 65, Macik's case resurfaced in the Idaho Court of Appeals as he seeks to undo his guilty plea to first-degree murder, the slaying of another inmate during a 1971 riot.
    
Prosecutors, however, say Macik has long missed his chance to appeal.
    
The 1971 riot - and Macik's role in William Henry Butler's slaying - belongs to a dark part of Idaho's prison history and was a turning point in convincing state officials to close the Idaho Territory-era penitentiary in east Boise.