New Orleans man wrongfully convicted of murder clears his name after 20 years

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NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) - A man who was wrongly convicted of murder in 1993 had his slate wiped clean today.

Jerome Morgan was 17 years old when he was arrested for murdering a man during a sweet sixteen party at the Howard Johnson Hotel on Old Gentilly Boulevard.

Morgan was wrongly identified as the gunman in the case, despite evidence brought by the Innocence Project that showed Morgan was confined to the hotel room where the shooting happened because police sealed the room.

The person who shot and killed Clarence Landry III fled on foot after the shooting and jumped a fence across the street from the hotel.

Morgan was released from prison in 2014 after a judge ordered a retrial. It took two years of court appeals for the Orleans Parish District Attorney’s Office to confirm today that it will not retry the case.

The Innocence Project started in 2001 and represents innocent people who are serving life sentences. As of 2015, IPNO has freed or exonerated 27 prisoners in Louisiana and Mississippi.