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After 11 Years In Jail, Innocent Man Wins $7.5 Million Settlement From Louisville

Kerry Porter, Wrongful Murder Settlement
Kerry Porter, Wrongful Murder Settlement

Kerry Porter, the man who was wrongfully convicted for the 1996 murder of Tyrone Camp and spent 11 years in jail for the crime, has now settled his case against the city. Porter won $7.5 million from Louisville Metro government. And while the hunt for Camp’s murderer is ongoing, Porter said in a news conference that Louisville police should not be the ones to investigate.

Porter discussed the settlement – which his attorneys say is Kentucky’s largest per-year wrongful conviction settlement ever – outside the U.S. Courthouse on West Broadway Monday afternoon. In the building's shadow, he alleged Louisville Metro Police Department detectives conspired to convict him and hid evidence of their wrongdoing.

“To the Louisville Police: Shame on y’all. Y’all beyond hurt me and my family,” Porter said. “I hope that they do the right thing: To recuse their self and pass it to somebody that will seek justice in this case.”

LMPD suspected Porter after Camp, a truck driver, was shot to death in his vehicle in 1996. Porter defended himself in his court document, alleging police detectives and officials used hearsay and questionable evidence to convict him, regardless of evidence suggesting another murderer.

Porter was eventually released in 2011, after 11 years in jail.

Though the settlement is large, Porter said the city got off easy. According to his attorney, Elliot Slosar, the city does not admit misconduct in the settlement and some officers involved in the case are still employed with LMPD.

In a news release, LMPD spokesperson Dwight Mitchell said the department initiated a policy review after Porter’s case to ensure they could end wrongful convictions.

“That policy review was a part of the process undertaken by Chief Conrad to confirm that LMPD is providing Louisville with the most progressive and impartial police services possible,” the statement said. “LMPD is committed to utilizing all available resources at our disposal to ensure we provide superior police services to all.”

Mitchell said there are no plans for LMPD to recuse itself from Camp’s murder case.

As for Porter, he’s likely to leave Louisville.

He said potential threats to his life convinced him to leave, and he may spend the settlement money vacationing in Hawaii. But after spending 11 years in jail for a crime he didn’t commit, Porter said the money is an insult.

“From $1 to $10 trillion, y’all cannot give back what you stole from me, period,” Porter said.

This story has been updated.

Kyeland Jackson is an Associate Producer for WFPL News.