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Texas Senate Formally Apologizes to Michael Morton

Wrongfully convicted, exonerated Texan Michael Morton.
Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon, KUT News
Wrongfully convicted, exonerated Texan Michael Morton.

Two years ago he was in prison serving a life sentence for murdering his wife. Today, Michael Morton received an apology for that wrongful conviction on the floor of the Texas Senate.

“I want to take this opportunity to give you a collective apology from the members sitting before you today,” said state Sen. John Whitmire, D-Houston, the Senate Criminal Justice Committee. “The system failed you. We apologize and we thank you for being here and watching you for the remainder of your life make such a difference in others lives.”

The Texas Senate adopted a resolution by Sen. Rodney Ellis, D-Houston, that praised Morton for his “indomitable spirit and constructive outlook.”

Morton was exonerated in 2011 after spending 25 years behind bars.

Meanwhile, the man who now stands accused of killing Morton’s wife was denied new lawyers today. The Texas Tribune reports that Mark Norwood appeared sickly and disheveled as he sat in a wheelchair and asked a judge to replace his court-appointed attorney. But the judge refused the request, saying Russell Hunt Jr. was working in Norwood’s best interests. Norwood’s capital murder trial is scheduled to begin Monday in San Angelo.

Nathan Bernier is the transportation reporter at KUT. He covers the big projects that are reshaping how we get around Austin, like the I-35 overhaul, the airport's rapid growth and the multibillion dollar transit expansion Project Connect. He also focuses on the daily changes that affect how we walk, bike and drive around the city. Got a tip? Email him at Follow him on Twitter @KUTnathan.
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