Derrick Jamison spent 20 years to the day on death row for a crime he did not commit. The homicide detectives and the prosecutor withheld 35 pieces of evidence. Derrick had six stays of execution and once came within 90 minutes of being killed.
“The worst day of my life on death row was December the 9th, 1997, so that’s around Christmas time. I was sitting on my bed on death row listening to Christmas music singing and making the best out of a bad situation. And I look up and I see all these guards. And the guards in the back, they know me, and they are crying. That morning they came and told me that my mom had passed away. I’m sitting on the bed waiting on my mom to come visit. They are taking my mom to the morgue. That still hurts to this day man, you know. The death penalty didn’t kill me, but it killed my mom and my dad.”
To learn more about Derrick or to help abolish the death penalty go to @witnesstoinnocence. Thank you @natgeo for featuring this story in your March issue. If you are in New York please check out my Death Row Exonerees video installation at Fotografiska New York. It will be up until March 28.