After serving 20 years in Angola for a murder he didn’t commit, my friend is home.

 

me and jerome morgan

Bayou Creole and Jerome Morgan

Jerome Morgan went to Angola State Penitentiary at the age of 17 for a murder he did not commit.

I remember that day all too vividly.

It was a horrible day for our entire neighborhood.

Jerome is a very good friend of one of my brothers, but you know  how it is when your brother has friends that are always around…pretty soon they become extended family.

And that’s what he is to me…one more brother added to the branch. We all grew up in the same neighborhood and Jerome was always such a sweet kid.

Which is why we knew from day one that they had the wrong person when they carted him off to prison.

And sentenced him to life without parole for murder.

Thanks to the Innocence Project of New Orleans, he is now a free man. If you want to read the story, you can find it here.

He was let out of prison in 2014, but the D.A. had plans to appeal and retry him. However in 2016, the D.A. decided to drop the appeal.

Thank goodness.

The nightmare is over for him. He can  now go and live the rest of his life out in peace and love.

When he hugs me, I cry.  It’s a hug that says “I never thought I’d hug you again, I’m so happy to be hugging you right now.” He never wants to let me go, I always have to break the hug.

I think he’s still amazed by the fact that he’s a free man now.

20 years is a long time to be locked down for something you didn’t do. And to be at “the Poderosa” at 17 years old…I can’t even imagine.

It didn’t break his spirit though. He’s just as sweet as he was before his entire life was turned upside down. He now has his own barber shop  and he mentors young kids.

I’m so proud of that dude.

Welcome home Rome…we love you.

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6 thoughts on “After serving 20 years in Angola for a murder he didn’t commit, my friend is home.

  1. The fact that Jerome has such a beautiful smile after all he’s been through is a testament to his character. His story is way too common and I’m so glad he’s home for good.

  2. There was a time in my life when I firmly believed in the death penalty. I used to say that rather than curtail it, we should put an express lane in every state in the nation. The simple truth is that our justice system is flawed. It’s flawed because humans are involved and human act on their own prejudices and preconceived notions. If it weren’t for that and people would judge people the way I do, based on what they’ve done, then our system might work. But therein lies the problem, we are a flawed people and ours is a flawed system.

    I think it was Richard Pryor who said, “you go down to the courthouse expecting to see justice and that’s all you see just us”.

    • Reg, I feel the exact same way as you do. I used to believe in the death penalty too…not anymore though. Our system is way too flawed and too many people of color are getting caught in the net.

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