“Dead Man Walking!”
Yeah, I certainly was a dead man walking. I was being sent to jail for about 20 to life for a crime I didn’t commit. I was innocent. I swear to God, I was innocent. This was a case of mistaken identity. I’ve had my share of run-ins with the law but murder. I’d never do anything that crazy. Well let me back up and tell you how I got myself into this mess. My name is Karlos Hunter, I’m the twin to my brother and local city councilman Karl Hunter. It’s funny we came from the same home but ended up on two completely different paths. He ended up being a successful politician with a beautiful wife and two kids. Meanwhile, I ended up on the wrong side of the tracks you’d say I stayed in trouble. I dropped out of high school while my brother went on to graduate with honors from Michigan State University.
But this mess right here, I had no parts of doing and now I was going to possibly get sent to prison for life. I would be stripped away from my girl Shantae’ and my baby girl Mariah, whose only five years old. I continued to walk down the corridor as police officers led me to the courtroom to hear the judge’s decision. My heart was beating a mile a minute. I couldn’t believe this was becoming my life. I saw my lawyer sitting next to me. And my girl trying to hold it together while my baby slept on her lap. My lawyer snapped me back into reality as the judge started the case.
“We are here to discuss the case of Karlos G. Hunter vs Amanda McKnight. On a count of voluntary manslaughter. Mr. Hunter, you look to serve up to 20 years to life in prison. Is there anything you’d like to say in your defense?” Judge Abernathy asks me.
“Judge, I didn’t kill that girl. I don’t even know who this woman is. I don’t even know who this woman is. I was at home with my fiancé’ and child. I swear…”
“Now Mr. Hunter this isn’t your first time inside my court room. You’ve had plenty of troubles with the law and you stand here trying to tell me you didn’t do this?”
“Your honor, we honestly don’t even have any evidence that Mr. Hunter committed this offense.” My lawyer stated.
“Yes, but we do have history. We all know that there was just a matter of time before Mr. Hunter would move on to much bigger crimes.” The District Attorney added.
“Has the jury finalized their decisions? What is your decision on Hunter vs McKnight.” The judge questioned.
“We the jury have found Mr. Hunter…guilty on 2nd degree murder and voluntary manslaughter of Amanda McKnight.” A female juror said.
I couldn’t believe this shit! I was innocent I didn’t even know a damn Amanda McKnight. Now I had to spend life behind bars for a crime I didn’t event commit? What the hell was going on with our damn justice and legal system?
I turned to look at my lawyer. “I told you. I didn’t do this.”
“I. I know, I’m going to do everything that I can to see you get victory. They’re just going by circumstantial evidence. Don’t worry Mr. Hunter, I’m going to see you get justice.” My lawyer promised as two big burly prison guards started making their way over to me.
“Hey let me have a word with my brother, before you take him away.” My brother Karl said.
“Hey Karl, man. I didn’t do this man! I swear to God this is a case of mistaken identity. I told you I wasn’t going to let you down no more.” I cried.
I promised my brother I’d try to turn my life around and live straight once I became a father.
“You know, Karlos this really breaks my heart to see you like this. In an orange jumpsuit standing in handcuffs. You really disappointed me. Mom, can’t even bring herself to come down here to see you like this?”
“But I told you Karl. I didn’t do this. I’m an innocent man!”
“How many times have I heard this line before? What would Shantae think?” He said to me, before walking away to join his family. All I could do was stand there crying. My brother just wouldn’t believe me. Perhaps, this was my karma for the troubles I’ve caused the community. Before I was taken away, Shantae who also was filled with tears in her eyes, came up to me to give me a tight squeeze.
“I didn’t do this baby! I promise, ‘Tae. I’m innocent. I’d never kill anybody. I’m not that horrible of a human being.”
“I know. I know. I just can’t believe they’d pin this on you. They’re breaking up my family. What am I supposed to tell Mariah?”
“Just be strong. I promise I’ll be out of here soon.” I say to her and give her a kiss on the lips before the guards escort me out of the courthouse.
I was on my way to prison with my heart trembling in my chest. All I could see was my life flashing before my eyes. I think since I’ve told you so much. Let me tell you a little bit about my troubled past.