Man freed from prison after serving 30 years for murder now ordered to return to jail
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A man who claims to have been falsely convicted of murder has been ordered to return to prison just two years after his life sentence was overturned.
Crosley Green left prison as a free man in 2021 after having spent thirty years behind bars over the death of 21-year-old Charles Flynn.
Flynn was shot dead in 1989, and while Green, who is Black, insisted he was innocent, he was sentenced to death by an all-white jury.
In 2009, Green was resentenced to life in prison due to a technicality relating to the sentencing phase of his original trial.
Green maintained his innocence over the years, and in 2018, when Green had spent 28 years in prison, US District Judge Roy Dalton ruled that prosecutors had improperly withheld evidence which revealed another suspect in the case.
The conviction was overturned, but it wasn't until 2021 that Green was allowed to leave prison on conditional release.
When he was finally freed, Green got a job at a machine grafting facility and spent time going to church and enjoying moments with his grandchildren.
His attorney, Jeane Thomas, noted that he has worn an ankle monitor for the entirety of his release, and has been a 'model citizen'.
However, just one year after he left prison, the state of Florida appealed the decision to overturn Green's conviction and won, with the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals claiming the withheld evidence was not material to the case.
As a result, Green’s conviction was reinstated.
He was allowed to remain free while he exhausted his legal options, but this week Dalton ruled Green must turn himself in to the authorities by 17 April, and continue serving his life sentence.
If he wants to remain out of prison, Green's only two options are clemency or parole, according to his legal team.
Thomas told CNN: "We are in strategy mode right now, with respect to parole and clemency. There is a commission within the state of Florida that considers both options. In the case of parole, they make a decision. In the case of clemency, they make a recommendation to the governor.”
Being granted clemency wouldn't exonerate Green, but it would show that the state believes he's spend enough time behind bars to be released.
"For 15 years now, we have believed wholeheartedly, 100 percent in the innocence of our client,” Thomas said. “As lawyers, we have to believe that the justice system will get it right. We’re going to keep fighting. This is a grave injustice. And we just believe that eventually we will get it right.”
Green now remains hopeful that he will clear his name once and for all, describing the latest moves in his case as 'just another part of what I’m going through now to get my freedom'.