43 years in solitary, now freedom
The last of the “Angola Three” inmates, whose four decades in solitary confinement drew international condemnation and became the subject of two documentaries, was ordered released.
U.S. District Judge James Brady of Baton Rouge ordered Albert Woodfox freed and took the extraordinary step of barring Louisiana prosecutors from trying him a third time in connection with the slaying of a prison guard. His two previous convictions have been reversed.
A spokesman for the Louisiana attorney general said the state would appeal to the U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals “to make sure this murderer stays in prison and remains fully accountable for his actions.”
Woodfox, now 68, was placed in solitary confinement in 1972 after being charged in the guard’s death.
Robert King and Herman Wallace were the other members of the Angola Three. Wallace died last fall, days after a judge freed him and granted him a new trial in the guard’s killing. King was released in 2001 after his conviction in the death of a fellow inmate in 1973 was reversed.