Anthony Ray Hinton spent 30 years in prison for a crime he didn’t commit, stripped of his right to vote as he sat on death row in an Alabama prison. Convicted in Jefferson County in 1985 more than one District Attorney refused to review the weak evidence that sent him to Alabama’s death row even after top firearms examiners who testified in 2002 that the revolver alleged to have been used in his crime could not be matched to the murders and an uncharged crime.
After the U.S. Supreme Court reversed lower courts and a new trial was granted a judge finally dismissed the charges after prosecutors said that scientists at the Alabama Department of Forensic Sciences tested the evidence and confirmed that the crime bullets could not be matched to the alleged weapon used in the murders for which Hinton was convicted.
On Tuesday, he voted for the first time in a midterm election since being released in 2015.
The Equal Justice Initiative, a non-profit that works on issues of mass incarceration, human rights and racial justice, shared Hinton’s story on social media with a picture of the man smiling with his voting sticker on his forehead.
“I realize that people have struggled and even lost their lives fighting for the right to vote. If I don’t vote, it’s like spitting on all those who came and sacrificed before me,” Hinton said in a statement to USA TODAY from the Equal Justice Initiative.
For more information and opinion on the Death Penalty and the Equal Justice Initiative look to The Bibb Voice article that appears at this link.