The novelist quickly figured out a much more likely suspect: a local man with previous arrests for violence and a vocal lover of knives (yup, that'll do). Then, as fearlessly as his greatest creation, Doyle started hammering the police chief to reopen the case. However, unlike with his fiction, he couldn't simply write "and justice prevailed" and be done with it. He soon started receiving letters from an anonymous source (it was the police chief) warning him to back off the case, lest he "run the risk of losing kidneys and liver." Fortunately, the government eventually took notice of Edalji's case and, after reviewing the evidence, pardoned him of all crimes.
Having caught the snooping bug, Doyle took another mystery several years later: The Case of the Gilchrist Brooch. Marion Gilchrist was a wealthy, healthy, 82-year-old woman living in Glasgow ... until she was found bludgeoned and robbed of at least half of those descriptors. Among the most notable stolen items was an exquisite diamond brooch, and as luck would have it, a local thief named Oscar Slater was right at that moment trying to sell off a diamond brooch. Coincidence? Yup, it was his girlfriend's. Nevertheless, the police quickly arrested Slater, who was then so hastily sentenced to death that the judge might as well have hung a noose from the courtroom chandelier.
After public outcry managed to reduce Slater's fsentence to life imprisonment doing hard labor, Doyle decided to work tirelessly to find the truth about the Gilchrist murder. He spent months interviewing witnesses, examining evidence, and establishing legal breaches until he had an airtight case proving Slater's innocence ... and then got utterly ignored by the courts.
Then, despite Doyle's conclusive sleuthing being totally swept under the rug, the case got solved anyway when a policeman with a guilty conscience leaked documents showing evidence for Slater's innocence which had been conveniently left out of the trial. With proof of a major conspiracy within the highest court of the land, Doyle rallied the press and politicians, and in 1927, 18 years after he was locked away, Slater was freed. That's the kind of twist even the creator of Sherlock Holmes could appreciate.