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Exonerated Man Wrongfully Imprisoned InFlorida For 16 Years Slain By Georgia Officer During A Traffic Stop

After his 2020 acquittal, the Broward County State Attorney’s Office said Leonard Cure was working in security, planning to attend college, and buying his first home.

Leonard Cure, 53, served almost a decade in jail for his 2003 Florida armed robbery conviction, according to the Broward County State Attorney’s Office. He was the first state attorney’s Conviction Review Unit exoneree in 2020 after a reinvestigation found him innocent.

Cure was buying his first home, working in security, and planned to study broadcast radio production, according to the State Attorney’s Office.

Three years after his release, a Camden County officer shot Cure dead Monday morning during a traffic check on Interstate 95 Northbound, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation said.

Cure left the car at the deputy’s request and followed orders “until learning that he was under arrest,” the GBI said.

He refused to comply after that, so the officer Tased him. Cure “assaulted the deputy,” prompting the officer to deploy the Taser and baton again, but “Cure still did not comply,” police said.

The deputy shot cure. EMS treated him, but he died, GBI said.What precipitated the traffic stop and Cure’s arrest is unclear.

The GBI will independently examine the deputy-involved shooting death. The Brunswick Judicial Circuit District Attorney’s Office will then evaluate the case.

The Innocence Project of Florida, which reinvestigated his case, said Cure was killed on his way home from visiting his mother in Florida to his suburban Georgia home.

“Lenny was a great person who wrongfully served 16 years in prison. Now this. His family deserved more. Life was important to Lenny. The organization expressed sadness on its website.

Tuesday, Broward State Attorney Harold F. Pryor mourned his death.

Pryor remarked, “The Leonard we knew was smart, funny, and kind.” After his release, he got training to help prosecutors “do their jobs most fairly and thoroughly possible,” he said.

“He would frequently call to check in on Assistant State Attorney Arielle Demby Berger, the head of the Conviction Review Unit, and encourage our team to continue the important work of justice,” Pryor added.

Cure was “excited” the Florida Legislature and governor “recently approved his claims bill,” Pryor said.

In June, Florida granted him $817,000 for his unfair conviction and detention.

The Florida Innocence Project helped Cure petition the Conviction Examiner Unit to review his imprisonment in December 2019.

The State Attorney’s Office released Cure on April 14, 2020, citing “serious concerns” about his guilt and detention.

The Conviction Review Unit found an ATM ticket showing Cure was “miles away from the crime scene at the time of the robbery,” according to The Innocence Project of Florida. One victim received “multiple photos” of Cure, which “was therefore an unreliable, suggestive identification procedure.”

Attorneys told the Independent Review Panel of his case. In December 2020, this panel and the State Attorney’s Office acquitted Cure.

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Written by Anthony Peters