Misconvicted prisoners in Missouri often earn nothing but freedom | Investigate

KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) – Kevin Strickland has served more than 40 years in prison for the Kansas City three murders he says he committed not.

Strickland will return to court on Monday in the latest chapter to win his freedom. But even if the court ruled in his favor – freedom was all he could possibly get.

It would have been very different if Strickland had been wrongly convicted in Kansas. If that’s the case, he would get about $2.7 million – $65,000 for each year of incarceration. However, Strickland still hopes that the court has finally settled the matter and he is released.

“I’ve always believed that God wouldn’t let me die in prison,” Strickland said in a recent CBS interview. “But I’m losing faith in that.”

Strickland was 18 years old when he was arrested for the deaths of three people during a home invasion. At the time, he was described as a “tempered teenager” and made “smug and sarcastic comments that raised suspicions from police.”

The case against Strickland was largely based on the testimony of a witness who survived that night. She then doubted and retracted her claim before her death in 2015. Also new information on fingerprints ruled out Strickland.

But no DNA evidence – so no compensation.

“There is a misconception that when someone is vindicated, they will get a lot of money or there will be compensation,” says Tricia Rojo Bushnell with the Midwest Innocence Project. She is part of Strickland’s legal team.

“Missouri does not compensate individuals who are wrongly convicted, unless they are exonerated through a very specific procedure in which the person requests a DNA test and the DNA test leads to evidence,” said Roja Bushnell. prove their innocence.

Rojo Bushnell points out that Kevin Strickland went to prison as a teenager and could be released when he is 60. He won’t have Social Security or any safety net if he is released. .

“Imagine you are going out without resources,” says Rojo Bushnell. “You are also stepping out into a completely different world when you enter.”

He will rely on the kindness of strangers.

“We set up a GoFundMe for them to help provide a safety net when they return home,” said Rojo Bushnell. “So that they can have bangs on their heads, even if it’s only for a short time.”

Strickland’s GoFundMe, which you can find here, has raised about $40,000 to date. But for now, Strickland is focused on only one thing – freedom. now is with you on the go! Get the latest news and video updates, StormTrack5 weather forecasts, weather radar, special investigative reports, sports headlines and more from KCTV5 News.

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