Freed inmate tells students to listen to claims of injustice

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) — A man who spent more than 25 years in prison for an Iowa murder that he didn’t commit is urging college students to help inmates who may be innocent.

Terry Harrington spoke to Coe College students Tuesday, recounting how he was wrongly convicted in the 1977 shooting death of a Council Bluffs security guard when he was a teenager.

Harrington had exhausted his appeals and was serving a life sentence at the Iowa State Penitentiary when he met a prison barber who believed in his innocence.

The barber obtained Council Bluffs police records that revealed authorities had withheld evidence showing that another man had been a strong suspect but was ignored. Witnesses who had implicated Harrington recanted, saying they’d been coerced. The Iowa Supreme Court overturned Harrington’s conviction in 2003.