Curtis Flowers will be going home to his family today after spending 23 years behind bars.
Attorneys for Flowers successfully argued for his release on bond Monday in a hearing in Winona, Miss. Judge Joseph Loper set his bond at $250,000. He will be electronically monitored and only allowed to leave home for medical treatment or meetings with his attorney.
“Flowers was calm and showed no visible reaction as the decision was announced, but his sister and daughter, who were in the courtroom, were clearly emotional,” reported the Clarion Ledger.
Prosecutor Doug Evans did not show up at today’s hearing, although the court clearly expected him to be there.
“I want to caution the prosecution that if it continues its dilatory conduct, and/or if it continues to ignore orders issued by this court, the State of Mississippi will reap the whirlwind,” Loper said in a statement.
Flowers’ attorney Robert McDuff said he will seek dismissal of the charges against him after today’s hearing.
Flowers was first arrested in 1996 for the murder of four people at the Hardy Furniture store in Winona. He has been tried six times for the same crime by the same prosecutor, and has been in prison for 23 years, nearly half his life. More than 20 years of that time has been on death row at the Mississippi State Penitentiary at Parchman.
In two of his trials, juries could not agree on a verdict, causing mistrials. In the other four trials, Evans got guilty verdicts; however, all four were reversed on appeal due to prosecutorial misconduct, three by the Mississippi Supreme Court and one by the U.S. Supreme Court.
Since the U.S. Supreme Court overturned his last conviction in June, Flowers was being held at the Winston-Chickasaw Regional Correctional Facility awaiting word on whether Evans will try him a seventh time.
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