Mark Carver released from prison 8 years after murder conviction

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A Gaston County man convicted in the 2008 murder of a UNC Charlotte student was released from prison on Tuesday. 

FOX 46's cameras were there when Mark Carver stepped out of jail for the first time in nearly a decade. Family and Carver's attorney Chris Mumma were with him as he spoke to reporters.

"I've been waiting," Carver said. 

Mumma works with the North Carolina Center on Actual Innoncence. Carver was bonded out by a man who was exonerated of a crime. 

Carver was convicted in 2011 for the murder of Ira Yarmolenko. He was serving a life sentence for the killing after 20-year-old was found strangled to death on the banks of the Catawba River in 2008. 

Last week a judge set aside Carver's conviction granting him a new trial. The judge said his defense attorney did not properly investigate touch DNA, Carver's only connection to the crime scene.

"We saw problems with the case in the beginning," Mumma said. "The more we looked at it, the more we saw. I mean, it was just one problem with the evidence after another." 

Carver will have to wear an electronic monitoring device while he is out of prison awaiting his re-trial, but he is not under house arrest. 

Carver says the first thing he wants to do now is go see his grandchild. He and his attorney say they plan to keep fighting and plan to take the case all the way to the governor's office. 

"We will seek a pardon from the governor for his innocence," Mumma said. "He needs to be proven innocent. We're going to fight it all the way up."

The district attorney plans to appeal the granting of a new trial but for now...carver wears an ankle monitor...no longer incarcerated and hoping it stays that way.

"Yeah, I ain't got nothing to hide," said Carver.