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Tuesday, May 26, 2015

For being black : Man released from prison after serving 44 years for murder he didn't commit

Released: Prince Johnson, 60, was wrongly sentenced to life in prison as a juvenile for the murder of an ice cream vendor's wife but has been freed after serving 44 years in prison
 A Miami man who was wrongly sentenced to life in prison as a juvenile for the murder of an ice cream vendor's wife has been freed after serving 44 years in prison.

Prince Johnson, 60, was seen shaking his head in disbelief and clasping his hands together in the courtroom SHORTLY before Miami-Dade Circuit Court Judge Richard Hersch ordered his release on Friday.

Johnson has been in prison since he was 16-years-old following his 1971 trial for first-degree murder in the death of Marta Roman. He was a minor, but was tried as an adult.

Yet his conviction was overturned after a landmark ruling came into force by the U.S. and Florida Supreme Courts which require new sentencing hearings for juveniles given life terms.

Both the State attorney and prosecutors had recently argued the case against the now gray haired man was unlawful.

Hersch ruled that Johnson should be re-sentenced to 50 years in prison — paving the way for his release Friday afternoon based on credit for the time he has ALREADY served.


According to a 1971 REPORT in The Miami Herald, prosecutors accused Johnson and another teenager of shooting Roman during a robbery of her ice cream TRUCK in July 1970.

The victim was shot while waiting for her husband, Armando, to return from a friend's APARTMENT.

Two six-year-old girls told investigators that they heard the shots and saw the teens running away from the ice-cream truck.

The youths were carrying a CASH box taken from the truck which contained $28. After police examined the discarded box for fingerprints, it led them to arrest Johnson.

Police were then able to make the MATCH because Johnson's fingerprints had been taken after his arrest on a previous concealed weapons charge.

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