A man who spent more than 25 years on death row in the US state of?Louisiana?has walked free from prison after his?murder conviction?for the 1983 killing of a jeweller was overturned.

US-300x168Glenn Ford, 64, had been on death row since August 1988.

He had been found guilty of killing 56-year-old Isadore Rozeman, a jeweller for whom Mr Ford occasionally worked.

US?media reports?say that he is one of the longest-serving?death row inmates?in modern US history to be exonerated.

Mr Ford had always?denied?killing Mr Rozeman.

?Very?pleased?

Asked by a reporter how he was feeling as he left the high?security?prison in Angola, Louisiana, Mr Ford said: ?My mind is going in all kinds of directions but it feels good.?

He said that he did harbour some resentment because he had been locked up for almost 30 years ?for something I didn?t do? and had lost years of his life.

?Thirty years, 30 years of my life if not all of it. I can?t go back and do anything that I should?ve been doing when I was 35, 38 and 40 ? stuff like that. My son when I left was a baby, now they?re grown men withbabies.?

State?District Judge?Ramona Emanuel on Monday overturned Mr Ford?s conviction and sentence because of new information that supported his claim that he was not present or involved in Mr Rozeman?s death, Mr Ford?s lawyers said.

He was tried and?convicted?of first-degree?murder for the 1983 killing and sentenced to death.

?We are very pleased to?see?Glenn Ford finally exonerated, and we are particularly grateful that the prosecution and the?court?moved ahead so decisively to set Mr Ford free,? a statement by the freed man?slawyers?said.

They said that his trial had been ?profoundly compromised by inexperienced?counsel?and by the unconstitutional suppression of evidence, including information from an informant?.

They also drew attention to what they said was a suppressed?police report?related to the time of the crime and evidence involving the murder weapon.

The family of the murder?victim?have also welcomed his release, US media has reported.

The many flaws in the case against Mr Ford have been extensively listed by the US press:

No murder weapon was ever found and there were no eyewitnesses to the?crime

Mr Ford was initially implicated in the killing by a woman who later testified she had lied

Mr Ford?s original court-appointed?lawyers had never tried a murder case

Mr Ford, a?black man, was convicted by an all-white jury who recommended the death sentence

Officials say that there are 83 men and two women serving death sentences in Louisiana.

State law in Louisiana entitles those who have served time but are later exonerated to receivecompensation.

It sets out?payments?of $25,000 (?15,000) per year of?wrongful?incarceration up to a maximum of $250,000 (?150,000), plus up to $80,000 (?48,000) for loss of ?life opportunities?.

 

Source: BBC

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