More than 30 years after his two young sons died in a house fire, and nearly 17 years after he was sentenced to death for setting it, Daniel Dougherty will get a new chance to prove what he has always insisted: He didn't murder his children, he loved them and tried to save them the night their Oxford Circle house burned in 1985.

Dougherty, 56, has been granted a new trial in Philadelphia Common Pleas Court after an appellate court found that his original lawyer's failures so skewed the original proceeding that "no reliable adjudication of guilt or innocence took place." Dougherty will be represented by David Fryman, a partner at Ballard Spahr.

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