hands resting on prison cell doors
Mayukh Saha
Mayukh Saha
November 8, 2022 ·  2 min read

Man Who Was Wrongly Jailed For 30 Years Dies Just Months After Being Released

An individual, who had been wrongly imprisoned for around 30 years, died just a few months after being released. Claude Francis Garrett was released from the Riverbend Maximum Security Institution in Tennessee, USA where he was imprisoned on murder charges.

In 1993, Garrett had been convicted wrongfully of killing his then-girlfriend Lorie Lance, in what was considered to be an arson attack. Even though he was then sentenced to life imprisonment, Garrett never lost touch with the truth. But, it still took the Davidson County District Attorney’s Office three decades to reinvestigate the case. In the May of 2022, the evidence used to convict Garrett in 1992 was finally dismissed. This led to the charges being dropped- and he was finally exonerated. 

His release from prison after being was supposed to be a taste of paradise- but he died soon after he was released. This was announced by Liliana Segura, a journalist of the US criminal justice system, as well as his friend. She spoke about this in a Twitter thread- “There is no easy way to share this news. Claude Garrett died yesterday, less than 6 months after he was exonerated and released from prison. He appears to have died in his sleep. He was just short of his 66th birthday.” She also retweeted one of her old posts where she had met with him after he was released. [1]

Claude Garrett- Who Was Wrongly Imprisoned for 30 Years- Died A Few Months After He Was Exonerated

She added, “This is the last time I saw him. I don’t have words yet; it’s heartbreaking and deeply unfair. Claude spent 30 years behind bars for a crime he didn’t commit. He fought so hard. He was patient, focused, and when the day finally came, careful not to exhale prematurely. Not until he knew the state wouldn’t appeal. Claude had plans. He wanted the state to be held accountable for his wrongful conviction. He wanted compensation. It is unfathomable to me that the people most responsible for stealing so much of his life will never have to confront what they did, that they will outlive him.

The journalist further stated that she would be sharing more information about the death of Claude Garrett- the man who was wrongly imprisoned. “Thanks to everyone who helped Claude win his freedom. Thanks to everyone who followed and shared his story. Rest in power, Claude Francis Garrett. I will miss you.

Segura’s post led to several individuals posting in the comments section where they expressed their condolences and their anger at the injustice of the entire situation. “The unfairness of this world is hard to comprehend. It is enraging.” Another user commented, “I’m so sorry. This is heartbreaking. I followed Claude’s story for many years. Thank you for the work you did to help us remember him.” Finally, a third user mentioned, “This is one of those moments where I feel life is so unfair I can barely stand it. May he be at peace and finding joy in the next phase of being.

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