A resident of Tennessee received a $1 million — because he served 31 years, being innocent

In March 2018 former inmate Lawrence McKinney has received from the state of Tennessee $1 million. The reason for such generous compensation is undeserved imprisonment, which lasted 31 years.

In 1978, when he was only 22 years old, a man was sentenced to 115 years in prison on charges of rape and burglary. In 2008, 30 years later, all charges were dropped, and in 2009, McKinney was released from prison. Then the amount allocated to it by the Department of corrections in Tennessee to start a new life, was only $75. Because Lawrence was not valid documents proving his identity, to get even this amount, he had to wait 3 months.

After his release from prison, McKinney was engaged in restoring its reputation. As noted by his lawyer, Jack Lowry, it was a hard journey for 52-year-old man. To get the maximum allowed by law, tn the payment of $1 million, McKinney was required to obtain an official pardon from the Governor of the state.

In 2016, the Council of parole unanimously rejected McKinney in the pardon. But in December 2017, five days before Christmas, a miracle happened, which was not expected neither Lawrence nor his lawyers. Governor bill Haslam opposed the Council’s decision on early conditional release and rehabilitated man.

The amount of $1 million will be divided. The initial payment will be $353 million and will be used to pay court costs and the purchase of a car for McKinney. The remaining $647 thousand will be paid $3.3 thousand every month for 10 years. In the case of death the right to receive monthly payments is transferred to the wife of Lawrence, with whom they corresponded during his imprisonment.

McKinney is happy that he managed to get compensation.

«In prison I had to work hard — says the man. Now this amount is very helpful, because at my age a lot of hard work.»

According to Lawrence, he does not hold a grudge because of the unjust sentence. «If people looked at the situation from the other side, they would understand that everything that happened to me God’s blessing.»