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After spending 23 years behind bars for a double homicide murder he did not commit, Lamonte McIntyre’s heart remains open and hopeful. Now, the formerly incarcerated Kansas City native is working hard to free other wrongfully convicted prisoners through his nonprofit organization the Miracle of Innocence.

McIntyre was exonerated and released in October 2017 after serving 8,583 days in jail for the murders of Donald Ewing and Doniel Quinn. He was just 17-years-old when he was officially convicted. While he was excited to be free and reunited with his family, the social justice advocate knew he had to do something to help fix glaring disparities within the justice system’s inherently unjust code of practice.

“I’m not angry,” McIntyre told CNN affiliate KMBC during an interview in 2019. “I’m frustrated because I don’t like to see this kind of injustice happen to nobody. We want to help innocent people come home, but we also want to make sure they’re on solid ground once they get here,” he said.

The Miracle of Innocence provides wrongfully convicted individuals with legal aid and crucial social services upon their re-entry into society. “It’s more than just clothes and shoes,” McIntyre added. “I’m talking about counseling, license, car, job skills, learning how to fill out a resume. Most of these things he didn’t have access to when he was in prison.”

McIntyre played a vital role in helping to pass Kansas’ first compensation law for wrongfully convicted prisoners. Enacted in 2018, the law allows victims to seek monetary damages for their wrongful convictions. The freedom fighter’s case also pushed the Kansas City Police Department to create a Conviction Integrity Unit, which reviews past convictions for evidence of actual innocence. Now, McIntyre is the proud owner of several businesses including The Top Barbershop KC, Olympus Property Management LLC, and McIntyre’s Property Group.

However, the fight for justice continues for the 45-year-old. Back in 2018, McIntyre and his mother Rose filed a lawsuit against the Unified Government of Wyandotte County and Kansas City citing their responsibility for the actions of police detective Roger Golubski, who was one of the key officials involved in his prosecution. McIntyre’s mother claimed that detective Golubski coerced her into having sex then framed McIntyre for the homicide that stripped him away from his family in 1994. Rosie is seeking $30 million in damages while her son is requesting $93 million. They also allege that Golubski abused black women for years during his time with the department from 1975 through 2010, AP News reported.  73 women are listed in the pretrial order.

McIntyre, who now lives in Arizona, has been diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder. His lawyers claimed that he was “exposed to stark and horrific conditions”  while in prison.

“As a result of depression and anxiety, Lamonte has problems sleeping,”  court filings revealed, according to KCUR. “He experiences nightmares. During the day, he is also hypervigilant and anxious.” His mother also has been diagnosed with PTSD and has sought psychological treatment for 17 years, the lawsuit stated.

McIntyre and his mother’s civil case has now been set for Nov. 7, 2022.

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This content was originally published here.

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