ANNAPOLIS, Md. — The Maryland Board of Public Works led by Governor Larry Hogan, agreed Wednesday to pay more than $9 million to five men who were wrongfully imprisoned.
Jerome Johnson, Lamar Johnson, Walter Lomax, Clarence Shipley and Hubert James Williams will each receive around $78,000 for every year they spent incarcerated.
Between the five of men, they spent a combined 120 years behind bars.
“I’m very pleased that today, the Board of Public Works is finally moving forward with approving compensation to five Marylanders who spent years behind bars for crimes that they did not commit … Years that they spent incarcerated, separated from their families, friends and loved ones … Years they could have spent pursuing their hopes and dreams while living their lives freely," said board member and Maryland Comptroller Peter Franchot.
According to Franchot, the $78,000 was specifically chosen because it equates to the state’s annual median household income.
"We chose the median household income intentionally because through their erroneous conviction and incarceration, these five men were deprived of the opportunity to earn an income and contribute to their communities and to our state," Franchot said.
Attorneys for the men had initially requested the state compensate their clients $100,000 for each year of incarceration, a total of $12 million.