83- year old Joe Ligon is finally a free man after serving 68 long and hard years behind bars.
In 1953, Ligon was arrested on charges of being involved in a series of robberies and stabbings in Philadelphia that tragically left two people dead and six injured. A Washington Post report stated that the then-teenage Ligon was intoxicated along with a group of other boys who then went on a robbing spree.
Ligon admitted that that was his first taste of alcohol and also confessed to some robberies but claimed that he never killed anybody. Despite this, the court pronounced him guilty on two-counts of first-degree murder and he was sentenced to life in prison. Ligon went down in U.S history as the oldest juvenile lifer in the prison system.
Bradley Bridge, Ligon’s lawyer stated that Ligon had done more than enough o give back to society having been imprisoned since Eisenhower was President. While being interviewed by CNN, Bridge had this to say.
“The child that committed those crimes back in 1953 no longer exists. The person that came out of prison in 2021 is 83 years old, has grown, changed, and is no longer a threat. He has amply repaid society for the damage and harm that he did. And now, it’s appropriate that he spends the last years of his life in freedom.”
Bridge added that the state parole board would have probably granted conditional freedom to Ligon on the grounds that he would be under constant supervision for the remainder of his life. Ligon did not accept “parole under those terms.”
Ligon told the Post how he never gave up hope after almost seven decades of imprisonment.
“I feel real good. One reason for that is because I’m out. I’m home. “When you get life, you have no hope, especially if you give up. You don’t make plans like I made plans.”
We sincerely hope Ligon gets to enjoy his life and fulfill all that he has planned ahead.