The Central Park Five, a group of teens who were falsely accused in 1989 of raping a Central Park jogger and wrongfully imprisoned, recently won a $41 million settlement with New York City. Now, the Central Park Five are seeking an additional $52 million in a lawsuit against the state of New York.
The New York Daily News broke the report of the Central Park Five’s latest legal moves, which comes on the heels of Mayor Bill de Blasio approving the $41 million settlement despite advice from city attorneys to not sign off on the deal and instead seek a $15 million payout cap. With the settlement approved in September, it reactivated the Central Park Five’s – Raymond Santana, Antron McCray, Kevin Richardson, Yusef Salaam and Korey Wise – earlier claims.
From the New York Daily News:
Defendant Raymond Santana, who spent nearly seven years in prison, said the second round of suits was warranted.
“When you have a person who has been exonerated of a crime, the city provides no services to transition him back to society,” Santana told The News. “The only thing left is something like this — so you can receive some type of money so you can survive.”
Criminal charges against Santana, Antron McCray, Kevin Richardson, Yusef Salaam and Korey Wise were dropped in 2002 after career criminal Matias Reyes confessed to the crime — and insisted that he acted alone.
Reyes’ DNA was recovered from the savagely-beaten jogger but never identified until he confessed. The CP5 spent between six and 13 years in prison, with Wise serving the longest.
All were just teenagers when convicted.
Although each of the men pocketed varying amounts in their city settlements, with Wise getting the most at $12.2 million, attorney Myron Beldock, who represents four of the five men, claims that greed is not the motivating factor for the latest lawsuit.
The state law in place allows for the wrongfully convicted to sue in both city and state courts because the lawsuit would be for different reasons. In federal court, the suit can be for civil rights violations and on the state level it can be for the economic and emotional devastation caused by the imprisonment.
State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman stated that Mayor de Blasio would like to settle the case swiftly.
Photo: Facebook/Central Park Five