Ohio inmates to be set free as witness recants testimony nearly 40 years later


The Cuyahoga county prosecutor’s office in Cleveland yesterday filed a motion dismissing aggravated murder cases against three men convicted of killing Herman Franks in 1975.

Fifty-seven-year-old Ricky Jackson, 60-year-old Wiley Bridgeman and his brother, 57-year-old Ronnie Bridgeman, initially were sentenced to death during separate trials in 1975 for the slaying of Herman Franks. Their convictions were based solely on the testimony of a 13-year-old boy who recanted last year and said he was coerced and threatened by Cleveland detectives.

Wiley Bridgeman’s attorneys say their client was three weeks from being executed before his death sentence was stayed. He and Jackson are expected to be freed as soon as Friday. Ronnie Bridgeman, now known as Kwame Ajamu, was released in January 2003.


this is one of the reasons my attitude towards the death penalty has modified over the years.




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