Spending 40 years in a high-security prison is no walk in the park, especially when you’re trying to prove your innocence. Gladly, after spending 40 years in prison, this man finally proved he was innocent and was released alongside the dog he raised ever since he was a tiny pup.
Malcolm Alexander was wrongly convicted of rape in 1980 and spent every waking hour ever since trying to prove his innocence. Thankfully, the man didn’t do it on his own. He had a loyal companion with him almost every step of the way.
In the summer of 1979, a woman opened a small antique store in Gretna, Louisiana. The woman had her back facing the entrance when a black man entered the store. The man grabbed her and forced her into the bathroom, where he raped her at gunpoint. Not too long before that, a woman accused Malcolm of raping her. An accusation that was proven wrong since.
Police showed the terrified rape victim pictures of various black males when she “tentatively” pointed at Malcolm’s photo as a “possible” match. When she went to trial a couple of months later, the woman was already “98% certain” it was him.
From the very first moment Malcolm set foot in prison, he stuck to his version and insisted he was innocent. When one of his friend’s dogs gave birth to a large litter, the friend suggested that Malcolm would adopt one of the pups. He knew exactly which one to pick. The runt of the litter that needed him the most. “I named her Inn because I was innocent and she was innocent,” Malcolm told TODAY. “One day we’ll be out of here. Just be patient,” he told his pooch almost every day.
Happily, with the help of the kind people of The Innocence Project, Malcolm finally saw that day on January 30th, 2018. The project’s goal is to free inmates who were wrongfully convicted after receiving inadequate legal representation. Malcolm sadly fitted that definition perfectly.
Despite having full access to a rape kit blood-type testing, that would have proven Malcolm innocent, his lawyer chose not to perform the test. The lawyer also failed to show up on the court on several occasions and didn’t even give an opening statement for the trail. “The stakes in this case couldn’t have been higher for Mr. Alexander who faced a mandatory sentence of life without parole, yet the attorney that he entrusted with his life did next to nothing to defend him,” Vanessa Potkin wrote on the Innocence Project’s website.
In 2013, The Innocence Project found new evidence in Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office Crime Lab, that could change everything for Malcolm. It was hair that was found on the woman the day the crime took place. After testing the DNA, workers at The Innocence Project found it was neither Malcolm’s or the victim’s, pointing to the fact that someone else committed the horrid crime. It took 17 years from when they first contacted Malcolm, but the kind-hearted people finally proved he was indeed innocent.
BREAKING: Our client, along with @InnocenceProjNO, Malcolm Alexander was just exonerated after 38 years in Angola prison for a rape he didn’t commit. Follow for updates of his first day of freedom: https://t.co/OJjdaqhXXS pic.twitter.com/RADlKMffKs— The Innocence Project (@innocence) January 30, 2018
Malcolm currently lives with his 40-year-old son Malcolm II. He was recently reunited with Inn, who was released from prison several days after him. “To have a dog is a privilege. It makes the world different,” The man said. If you want to help Malcolm piece his life together, feel free to leave a donation for him here. After learning carpentry and jewelry-making in prison, Malcolm wants to open his own business and sell his crafts and any amount could help him.
Watch the tear-jerking moment the man reunites with the dog he raised in prison here:
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