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Murder Charges Dismissed Against Kwame Ajamu

An Ohio man walked out of a courthouse relieved today after spending nearly 40 years of his life as a convicted felon for a murder that he, his brother and a friend did not commit. 

A judge dismissed aggravated murder and robbery charges against Kwame Ajamu. For Ohio Public Radio, WCPN's Brian Bull has more.

Ajamu served 28 years for his alleged role in the death of a business owner, a case that banked on the testimony of a young boy…who eventually recanted his account last year. 

With the case against Ajamu and the others unraveled, it’s been a matter of courts formally dismissing charges so that the men can finally go free…or in Ajamu’s case, having the stigma of a murder conviction struck from his past.  He was released in 2003.

Cleveland Attorney Terry Gilbert represents the men.  He says their recent mood is “ecstatic.”

TGilbert “Because they have been vindicated.  It has been acknowledged that these three men were innocent and did not commit the crime.  And now they could hold their head up high, and know that the system has recognized that they were victims of a terrible injustice.” 

Now Gilbert is working on compensation for his clients.  Prosecutors say they won’t contest the men’s wrongful conviction claims, helping facilitate efforts to gain compensation for Ajamu, his brother Wiley Bridgeman, and Ricky Jackson after decades behind bars.