An exonerated Michigan man who spent 45 years in prison for a murder he didn’t commit has been awarded $1.5 million in compensation.
The compensation, for 73-year-old Richard Phillips, was announced Friday by Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel as part of $2.3 million total awarded to three wrongfully convicted men.
Before they receive the money, state legislators must first approve the payout.
Phillips was freed in 2017, thanks to the investigative efforts of several University of Michigan law students working in conjunction with the Wayne County prosecutor’s office.
Phillips, who received a life sentence after his murder conviction in 1971, has served more prison time than any other exonerated inmate in American history.
According to state law, Phillips was entitled to more than $2 million in compensation — $50,000 for every year he spent wrongfully imprisoned.