An inmate on death row for 30 years for a crime he did not commit has been released by the state of Louisiana, which said that Glenn Ford should never have faced charges in the first place.
The inmate spent the last three decades on Louisiana’s death row for the 1983 murder of Isadore Rozeman, a jewelry store owner. But evidence that had never before been disclosed proved that Ford wasn’t even at the store when the murder took place.
Last week prosecutors filed a motion to vacate the conviction, which was given out to the black Ford by an all-white jury.
The filings showed that even though the inmate was on death row for 30 years, evidence showed that he shouldn’t have even gone to trial.
The filing read: “the state now believes whatever the involvement of Glenn Ford in the robbery or murder of Isadore Rozeman, the new information, if known at the time of the trial, would reasonably have resulted in a different outcome. … Indeed, if the information had been within the knowledge of the state, Glenn Ford might not even have been arrested or indicted for this offense.”
Ford had a relationship with Rozeman in the past, doing odd jobs and yard work for the jeweler. Ford also had what was termed a “peripheral involvement” with the robbery after the fact, when a man asked him to pawn jewelry that bore a resemblance to some stolen from the shop.
Andrew Cohen, who has analyzed the trial for The Atlantic, wrote that Ford’s trial was “constitutionally flawed in almost every way.” He said that Ford’s lawyers were unprepared, and his lead attorney was an oil and gas lawyer who never tried a case before a jury. The second attorney was two years out of law school and worked at an insurance firm.
But on Tuesday the state admitted the wrongdoing, and Glenn Ford was released from prison after being on death row for 30 years.