ACLU and Louisiana Repeal team to call for death row repeal

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(WWL.com) - Lawmakers will once again consider repealing Louisiana’s death penalty. The effort is being backed by the ACLU of Louisiana and LA Repeal. Shareef Cousin spent three years on death row in Louisiana for a crime that occurred in the 90’s before having his name cleared. Cousin says his message for lawmakers is simple.

“If I was there child at sixteen and one of there children was actually framed and sentenced to death for a crime they didn’t commit, how would they feel?  What would they think?  Would they still believe in a system that is flawed?” said Cousin.

Cousin said he is just one of many who has been released from death row and says even all these years later, his time in prison still haunts him.

“We’re talking about 150 individuals have ultimately been exonerated from death row, I was right down the middle.  It still feels like yesterday.  I suffer from a lot of mental health disorders,” said Cousin.

President of the ACLU of Louisiana Alanah Odoms Hebert believes the support for the repeal is becoming stronger.

“When we have the human costs for a person like Shareef and eleven other exonerees that are exactly like him, similarly situated, we have a real problem and we have to address it and so I think there is gaining support in our legislature and in our state for repeal,” said Hebert.