Clark McMillan was convicted of raping a 16-year-old girl in Memphis in 1979, then sentenced to 119 years in prison, only to have that conviction overturned in 2002, with the help of the Innocence Project, which found that his DNA did not match the rapists. In the years since he was set free, McMillan has been trying to get access to the roughly $1 million he's entitled to as a victim of Tennessee's justice system.
That's where a Boca firm, Imperial Structured Settlements, came in.
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The company purchases the rights to cash settlements -- in McMillan's case, roughly a half-million dollars that he has struggled to get from the state, even though he won an $832,000 judgment five years ago. Until his visit to Boca, he'd only received $250,000, which was quickly swallowed by medical bills for McMillan and his wife.
A statement from an Imperial executive from Wednesday's meeting with McMillan:
"We are honored to have Mr. McMillan; not only as a customer of Imperial but that he would take the time to come tell us his story. Every customer has a story, every transaction has a life of its own and sometimes a case stands out and touches all of us," said Senior Vice President Deborah Benaim.
The full release is here. Like most of the 244 convictions overturned by the Innocence Project, McMillan's is an outrageous miscarriage of justice. As his profile page explains, McMillan had a pronounced limp, which wasn't part of the victim's original recollection. The only other witness, the victim's boyfriend, didn't pick McMillan out of a lineup but managed to pick him out at trial. Statements by McMillan's sister and girlfriend, who were with him at the time of the rape, were ignored by the jury. He spent 22 years in prison.