The first step to freedom. It was the first night I left prison after 26 years in prison for a crime that Chad Breland did not commit.
“I never gave up. You know because I know my innocence,” Breland said. “I couldn’t sit there and rest at night.”
He was convicted in 1997 for committing two robbers in Queens’ Far Rockaway in November 1995.
He stayed in the prison library studying law. His work was rewarded with the discovery of evidence leading to his immunity.
“We found that there was a fingerprint on the scene that actually eliminated Chad and pointed to someone else,” said Chad Bonus, a lawyer.
Bonus began investigating the case in 2016 and found inconsistent witnesses, unreliable informants, and fingerprints.
However, when the Queens district attorney charged the case and Breland was sentenced to 30 years in prison, the evidence was withheld.
“Every time I fought and turned a corner, I sometimes felt like there were black clouds because I couldn’t get to where I needed to be,” Breland said.
Thanks to the Queens Criminal Integrity Unit, the case has another chance to reveal new facts leading to Breland’s release, but nothing makes up for the lost 26 years. At the age of 52 he started over.
“I know it takes time to absorb 26 years, not a walk in the park,” he said. “I have to take the time to heal, deal with the many medical problems I have with my family, and rebuild.”
Relatives died while sitting in prison, but now want to fight for innocent people sitting behind the bar and work to eliminate the authority’s immunity to withhold or forge evidence. I am thinking.
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False conviction overturned: man was exonerated after spending 26 years in prison for armed robbery
Source link False conviction overturned: man was exonerated after spending 26 years in prison for armed robbery