When a Missouri judge informed Cornealious “Mike” Anderson that he was a free man on Monday after an ordeal that has hung over his life for the past 14 years, he reunited with his family and spent the whole night wide awake.
“I didn’t sleep at all,” Anderson told Savannah Guthrie on TODAY Tuesday. “I watched my family, watched them sleeping. I just wanted to make sure I didn’t wake up from a dream.”
Anderson had been in prison since July of 2013 after Missouri authorities discovered that, due to a clerical error, authorities never brought him in to serve a 13-year sentence for armed robbery originally handed down in 2000. On Monday, Missouri judge Terry Brown spared the father of four from having to serve the full sentence, saying he had rehabilitated himself and turned his life around, becoming a master carpenter. Brown gave him credit for time served, so he won’t have to report to a parole officer and for the first time in 14 years, he can live life without having to look over his shoulder.
“I didn’t have words; just overwhelmed. I couldn’t say anything. I was just thankful. Just thanked God, thanked my family and everyone that’s been supporting us.”
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