Robert Dewey will finally be compensated for his nearly 18 years of wrongful imprisonment thanks to a bill that was signed by Colorado’s Governor John Hickenlooper on Wednesday, reported the
Los Angeles Times
. Senator Lucia Guzman helped sponsor the bill.
“It’s quite an accomplishment getting the bill passed, not only for me and my family, but for guys coming up behind me,” Dewey told the Los Angeles Times. “It’s a good day, a new chapter in my life, not dwelling on the past — moving forward.”
The Compensation for Persons Wrongly Convicted law will compensate exonerees $70,000 for each year spent in prison. Dewey’s attorney said it could take weeks for him to be approved and months for the money to reach him.
“I’m not going to go away. Now we’ve just got to go through the formalities so I can start my life,” he said.
Over half of the states now have compensation statutes for the wrongfully convicted. Colorado joins a wave of states introducing legislation this year including Washington State and New Jersey. Read the
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a video of Dewey at the bill signing