FAIRWAY, KS (KCTV) -- Ricky Kidd was wrongfully convicted in a 1996 double murder that took place inside a home near Swope Park. He was just released August 15 and is now opening up about his new freedom and the challenges he faces starting over.
KCTV5 News Investigative Reporter Angie Ricono sat down with Kidd Wednesday and asked him what he wants people to know about his wrongful conviction.
“That wrongful convictions in the United States in a silent crisis,” Kidd said. “There is a belief from different studies at universities that 2-5 % of the U.S. prison population is wrongfully convicted 120,000 individual that’s 2,000 each state. Those are alarming numbers.”
Kidd has only been free for less than a week. It’s clear what he will do next is fight for others who remain in prison, like his friend Lamar Johnson.
Johnson’s lawyers and even the prosecutor all agree he’s innocent. But Johnson remains in jail.
“How defensive the state of Missouri has become toward truth. The prosecutor says he’s innocent and laid out a strong case of what made him innocent, a strong case of corruption. I mean what reality are we living in that the state of Missouri wakes up and rejects that. Or pushes back against that. That’s scary to me. That’s scary to me and that should be scary to all of us. Because it could be anybody. That means that they are not interested in the truth no more,” Kidd said.
In Missouri, Kidd will not receive compensation, and neither will Johnson because their cases do not hinge on DNA.
“I think they are ducking. They’re clearly ducking the reality. They are ducking their responsibility that when you send a man to prison for 23 years, you say we make mistakes sometimes, but be willing to stand up. That’s what we teach our children. That when you make a mistake, you say, ‘I am sorry,’ everybody does it in their household typically. But somehow, they become grownups and they go work for the attorney general’s office or these other offices and they forget that a mistake has been made, it’s clear that a mistake has been made. You own the man an apology and some form of compensation. I don’t’ see anything hard about that, I don’t see why we shouldn’t be trying to work on policy changes to change that in the foreseeable futures,” Kidd said.