Franky Carrillo, who spent 20 years behind bars for a crime he did not commit, joined Politics Nation Tuesday to share his experience and to lobby against the death penalty.
Carrillo’s conviction was based on witness identification testimony from six people – five of the witnesses later admitted that they were influenced to point the finger at Carrillo. Carrillo was released just last year.
Carrillo is one of 2,000 people identified as falsely convicted over the past 23 years, according to ExonerationRegistry.org, the largest database of its kind ever assembled, according to its creators from the University of Michigan Law School and the Center on Wrongful Convictions at Northwestern University School of Law.
Rev. Sharpton, during the interview, commented that Carrillo didn't seem cynical or angry about spending 20 years of his life in prison.
“I’m grateful that I’m able to look beyond the hatred,”he told Rev. Al Sharpton.
Carrillo says he has recently been accepted into Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, and is trying to get to know his son better. He's focusing on getting acclimated back into society.
He called on Californians to take the opportunity in November to do away with the death penalty. A ballot measure, if passed, would replace capital punishment in the state with life term without possibility of parole. It would make California the 18th state without the death penalty. About 700 people are currently on death row.
“There has to be someone on death row who is innocent and I would prefer that person be able to live out their lives and to be able to prove they are innocent,” he said.