PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — A Philadelphia man who spent more than two decades behind bars for a murder he did not commit is out of prison and with his family Wednesday night. John Miller spoke to Eyewitness News just hours after he was released from prison about his fight for freedom.
When asked if he was angry about losing 21 years of his life, Miller said no, he’s blessed and everything happens for a reason.
The inside of a state correctional institution was Miller’s home for the last 21 years after he was sentenced to life in prison for a murder he did not commit.
“I feel good. I feel amazing, it’s surreal. I’m just very happy,” Miller said.
Back in 1998, a jury found Miller guilty of second-degree murder in the shooting death of Anthony Mullen — a parking lot attendant — even though there was no physical evidence of Miller’s involvement.
Years later, the same man who testified against Miller confessed that he was in fact the shooter and not Miller.
Miller says he is on cloud nine right now.
“Soon as I stepped out the doors I was just — looked up and was just thankful and blessed for what God has done for me,” Miller said.
But it was an uphill battle getting to that justice. Miller filed more than 10 appeals — all were denied.
But justice was on the horizon for Miller in 2009 after he contacted the Pennsylvania Innocence Project.
“Sometimes people in the system get numb to a really valid claim and we worked very hard — Pepper Hamilton and the Pennsylvania Innocence Project working together, just trying to give John Miller a chance to be heard,” attorney Tom Gallagher said.
Miller was heard, and now as a free man, he’s focusing his attention on fine dining. Miller said he’s looking forward to eating steak.
There is no word just yet on whether there will be a civil suit filed by Miller’s attorneys.