Elmer Geronimo Pratt dies

June 4th, 2011 - 1:59 am ICT by Aishwarya Bhatt  

Los Angeles, June 3 (THAINDIAN NEWS) Elmer G. “Geronimo” Pratt has died at the age of 63. Elmer became famous in the 1970s when his imprisonment for murder was seen as racially motivated. He was the leader of the Los Angeles Black Panther Party and he spent 27 years behind bars after being convicted of murder.

Elmer’s conviction was overturned when the San Francisco attorney Stuart Hanlon picked up his case. Hanlon who announced the death of Elmer told reporters that his former client died at his home in Tanzania. Elmer’s sister was the person who told Hanlon about Elmer’s death.

Elmer’s case gained prominence at the era where racism was very much part of the US fabric. After his trial, Elmer was sentenced in 1972 for fatally shooting Caroline Olsen and critically wounding Kenneth her husband. The incident happened when armed robbers attacked the two and managed to escape with $18.

Elmer’s conviction was overturned in 1997 by the Orange County Superior Court. The judge who acquitted Elmer ruled that the prosecutors withheld vital evidence that could have resulted in the acquittal of Elmer during the trial.

Elmer moved to his home country of Tanzania where he lived till he died.

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