Black Man in Louisiana to be Freed From Prison After Judge Overturns 1974 Conviction, Still Has to Pay $2000 Bail

Wilbert Jones in 1999 (Deborah Luster/The Innocence Project via AP Images)

Wilbert Jones was 19 years old when police arrested him in 1971 on suspicion of kidnapping and raping a nurse in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Now, 43 years after he was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole, a judge has overturned his conviction. Jones will be released and walk out of prison a free man — after he pays $2,000 bail.

State District Court Judge Richard Anderson ruled that the decades old case against Jones was “weak, at best” and determined that authorities at the time withheld evidence that could have exonerated Jones decades ago. NBC News reports that Jones showed no visible reaction in the courtroom when the judge announced his freedom and $2,000 bail.



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