Man freed after nearly 30 years on death row could return to prison

A man who spent nearly 30 years on death row was freed in 2021.

Crosley Green was convicted of murder back in the 1980s and spent the last three decades fighting that conviction which was eventually overturned.

Crosley Green's lawyers say he still reports to a probation officer and wears an ankle monitor while they appeal his case. When Green was about to step up to the microphone at Titusville’s Bethlehem Missionary Baptist Church, he was overcome with emotion. 

"What has happened to me, could happen to you, and you, and you, and you," he said. "Yes, it's very true, it can happen to anyone."

Green was convicted and sent to death row for a 1989 murder in Brevard County. A federal district judge reversed that murder conviction in 2018. Green was released from prison last year, while the case was waiting for the appeals court to take it up. Last month, a three-judge panel reversed the 2018 ruling overturning the conviction, meaning Green could be sent back to prison.

Wednesday, Green's lawyers said they are appealing that ruling to the full Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals. 


"Prosecutors have a duty to play by the rules. That didn't happen here," said defense attorney Jeane Thomas, "the district court said it didn't happen, and the evidence that was suppressed went to the heart of the defense's theory that someone else committed this crime."

Lawyers say the full Eleventh Circuit decision on the latest appeal ruling should come in late May. For now, Green remains out of prison and with his loved ones.

Green's lawyers said if the appeal doesn't go his way, they will continue to appeal to U.S. Supreme Court. They'll also ask Gov. DeSantis for a pardon. 

"Right now, all of us here today for justice, for support for my brother, Crosley Green. That they will let him stay out and not send him back to prison again," said Shirley White, Green's sister.