On January 10, 2015, Sharrif Wilson died at Mt. Sinai hospital in Manhattan. Sharrif’s passing comes almost a year after his exoneration and release from prison where he spent almost 23 years for three murders he did not commit.
Over the past few years, we have been fortunate to spend time with Sharrif and get to know him. The transition back into civilian life was a difficult one, especially given health issues caused by his years of wrongful incarceration. Nevertheless, Sharrif approached every challenge in his life with a shake of his head, followed by a laugh and a smile. We always looked forward to Sharrif’s presence in our office. His sense of humor, his perspective, and his refusal to dwell in the past gave us all insight into our own lives.
At age 15, he was intimidated, coerced, and manipulated by police and then spent over 22 years in prison for a triple homicide he did not commit. Still, he emerged without an ounce of malice in his heart.
We are devastated by the tragedy of Sharrif’s untimely passing. It is a tremendous loss not only to those who loved him, but to everyone who could learn from his example.