Johnny Gates, who served more than 26 years on death row and 43 years in prison, for a 1977 Muscogee County murder, was released from prison today. Mr. Gates always maintained his innocence for the crime. In March, the Georgia Supreme Court affirmed the reversal of Mr. Gates’s conviction so that he could conduct DNA testing that was not previously available to him. The Court was also asked to consider the Muscogee County District Attorney’s Office’s pattern of discriminating against Black jurors, which led to many Black men, including Mr. Gates, to be tried by all-white juries. The Court did not reach the issue, but noted the “very troubling findings” regarding the prosecutors’ history in that circuit of discrimination in jury selection.