source: Equal Justice Initiative
published: March 2015
Marty” Stroud III, the lead prosecutor responsible for sending Glenn Ford to death row for a murder he didn’t commit, apologized and called for abolition of the death penalty in an open letter published in the Shreveport Times.
Mr. Stroud wrote in response to the paper’s coverage of Mr. Ford’s struggle to obtain compensation for the nearly 30 years he wrongfully spent on death row.
Mr. Ford was released on March 11, 2014, after the Caddo Parish District Attorney’s office filed a motion to vacate his conviction and death sentence based on new evidence that someone else committed the crime. Louisiana law allows compensation of $25,000 a year capped at $250,000 for the wrongfully convicted, but prosecutors are opposing Mr. Ford’s request.
“Glenn Ford should be compensated to every extent possible,” Mr. Stroud wrote. “The audacity of the state’s effort to deny Mr. Ford any compensation for the horrors he suffered in the name of Louisiana justice is appalling.”
In his letter, Mr. Stroud recounts the 1984 trial and how he and his colleagues went out and celebrated the death verdict with a few rounds of drinks. “I was arrogant, judgmental, narcissistic and very full of myself,” Stroud reflected. “I was not as interested in justice as I was in winning.”