David Milgaard had no comment as he left police custody Wednesday night, after he was arrested in Calgary earlier that day. (CBC)

David Milgaard, who spent 23 years in prison for a murder he didn't commit, was charged Wednesday night with assault, assault with a weapon and uttering threats.  

Calgary police were called to a domestic dispute between a man and a woman in the 6300 block of Simcoe Road S.W. just after 8 a.m. MT Wednesday, said Calgary police Duty Insp. Chris Butler.

No one was injured, said Butler, adding that police will not release the nature of the weapon.

Following the investigation, police took Milgaard, 59, into custody.

Milgaard, who lives in Calgary with his wife and two young children, was released Wednesday night on his own recognizance, said Butler.


David Milgaard, shown here with his mother Joyce Milgaard in January 1999, and his family received a $10-million compensation package from the federal government later that year. (CP Photo/Fred Chartrand)

Milgaard left the downtown arrest processing unit alone just after 10 p.m. Wednesday.

He declined comment.

"Gentleman, please. I said no, gentleman — that's enough, okay?" said Milgaard, pleading with reporters. 

Hersh Wolch, Milgaard's longtime lawyer, spoke with his client earlier Wednesday.

"He called me and I'm looking into it," Wolch said, adding if charges were laid, "then we'll deal with them."

Wrongful conviction

In 1970, when he was 17 years old, Milgaard was sentenced to life imprisonment for the 1969 murder of 20-year-old Saskatoon nursing aide Gail Miller.

Milgaard spent 23 years in prison before the Supreme Court of Canada set aside his conviction. He was released from jail in 1992.

David Milgaard was relased from prison in 1992, after spending 23 years in prison for a crime he was later cleared of. (CBC Archives)

Five years later, in 1997, he was cleared by DNA evidence and two years later he received $10 million from the federal government.

Larry Fisher was found guilty of the rape and stabbing death of Miller in 1999.

By the time he was cleared, Milgaard had become one of the most famous examples of wrongful conviction in Canada.

A province of Saskatchewan judicial inquiry, which released a comprehensive 815-page report in September 2008, concluded that "the criminal justice system failed David Milgaard." The inquiry also found that Milgaard might have been released from jail years sooner if police had followed up on a lead they received in 1980.

Until now, Milgaard has largely stayed out of the public spotlight, although last year he spoke to a group of church volunteers who visit prisoners, praising them for their work.

He said he had been recently baptized and believed that a "higher power" was looking after him and helped him through his long prison ordeal.

Milgaard will appear in court Nov. 3.

With files from The Canadian Press