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House Approves $2.15 Million for Clifford Williams

March 10th, 2020 by Jake Stofan

After serving 43 years in prison for a crime the state now says he didn’t commit, the Florida House has unanimously approved $2.15 million to compensate Clifford Williams for the time he served Tuesday.

Clifford Williams has been all smiles as his claims bill has moved through the Legislature.

It also received unanimous approval in the Senate.

Williams served 43 years behind bars, convicted of a murder the state now says he did not commit.

William’s family suffered alongside him.

“I was that little girl that had a father that I never though would ever come home,” said William’s daughter Tracy Williams-Magwood.

Lawmakers hope the $2.15 million will help right the wrong.

“Sir, hold your hands up. You’re hands are clean today,” said Rep. Kimberly Daniels.

Lawmakers closely involved with William’s bill said this is only the first step as they push for criminal justice reform to prevent others from having to go through what Williams went through.

Because Williams was previously convicted of a felony he’s had to ask the Legislature for compensation, but a bill moving through the process would allow future wrongfully incarcerated felons go to the courts for compensation.

“We know that God has all things in his power. So the 43 years that you served, let them not be in vain, but to help somebody else,” said Rep. Dianne Hart.

As for what Williams plans to do with the money, he said it will go to help his family.
“My grandchildren going to college and they need help,” said Williams.

He also intends to write a book about the time he served on death row.

But before any of that, the Governor will have to sign off on his compensation.

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