Man freed after decades on La.’s death row

Glenn Ford
Image: AP

A man who spent nearly 30 years on Louisiana’s death row was freed Tuesday after a court vacated his conviction in the murder of a Shreveport businessman.

Glenn Ford walked out of Louisiana State Penitentiary in Angola at 5:40 p.m. Tuesday. The time spent behind bars for the Nov. 5, 1983 murder of Isadore Rozeman gave Ford the distinction of being the longest serving death row inmate.

Asked as he walked away from the prison gates after his release, Ford told WAFB-TV, “It feels good; my mind is going in all kind of directions. It feels good.”

Ford said he does harbor some resentment at being wrongly jailed: “Yeah, cause, I’ve been locked up almost 30 years for something I didn’t do.”

Gary Clements and Aaron Novod, attorneys with the Capital Post Conviction Project of Louisiana, have been representing Ford.

“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,” the said in a statement after Ford’s departure from prison.

Undisclosed new evidence in the crime obtained last year set the wheels in motion for Ford’s release. A court order vacating Ford’s first-degree murder conviction and death sentence was filed Tuesday.

The attorneys say that new information corroborates what their client claimed all along: “That he was not present at nor involved in the crime for which he had been convicted and sentenced to death.”

According to Ford’s attorneys, his trial was “profoundly compromised by inexperienced counsel and by the unconstitutional suppression of evidence at his trial, including information from an informant, a suppressed police report related to the time of the crime and evidence of the murder weapon, which implicated the true perpetrator.”

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