Man jailed for almost 40 years regains freedom after witness says she lied

Man jailed for almost 40 years regains freedom after witness says she lied

- Walter Forbes has regained his freedom after spending decades behind bars for a crime that happened in 1982

- A key witness, Annice Kennebrew, said that she was threatened almost 40 years ago to lie against Forbes

- With his freedom, the man said he would continue the push for prison reforms he was involved in when he was in jail

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A man, Walter Forbes, who was jailed for almost 40 years has been freed after a witness withdrew her statement.

Life turned gloomy for Forbes as a college student in 1982 when he intervened between two groups of people fighting in front of a Michigan bar, CNN reports.

In a grave reaction, one of the fighters Dennis Hall, shot at Forbes the next day. Later, Hall was reported dead in an arson fire. With that, Forbes was sentenced to a life jail time.

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The arson happened while Hall was on bail for the shooting crime he committed. During the fire incident, his fiancée escaped with his child.

According to court documents sighted by CNN, investigation spotted fuel containers and other pieces of evidence showing that the fire was not just an accident. Forbes said after the incident he knew he may be wrongly charged for something he never did.

Months after the fire, a mother, Annice Kennebrew, lied against Forbes, saying she saw him and other men carrying gasoline canisters near the building.

Man who who was wrongly jailed for almost 40 years regains freedom after witness withdraws statement

Forbes had an inkling he could be wrongfully charged in 1982. Photo source: CNN
Source: UGC

Her testimony, however, contradicted the investigation found on site. While she said that gasoline was poured on the building, authorities found out otherwise.

After Forbes was convicted, a tip that was later dismissed, pegged the incident on the building owner.

When CNN reached out to Kenneebrew, asking if she was forced to withdraw her statement, she said no. She said 'they' threatened her to lie decades ago.

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Forbes gained his freedom on Friday, November 20.

Meanwhile, earlier reported that Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula has warned that road safety campaigns are set to intensify.

Motorists travelling to holiday destinations can expect permanent roadblocks, with Mbalula commenting that:

"We are going to intensify the campaign. There will be permanent roadblocks in the hotspots."

The Minister recently joined Mpumalanga operations on the N4 just outside of Belfast in a bid to check motorist compliance.

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