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SBI agrees to pay $4.6M to exonerated Durham man

Posted August 12, 2013
Updated August 13, 2013

— An exonerated Durham man said Monday that the State Bureau of Investigation has agreed to pay him $4.6 million after he was wrongfully convicted of murder and spent 17 years behind bars.

Greg Taylor sued the agency after an independent review found questionable practices at its state crime lab. Taylor's conviction was bolstered in part by blood evidence analysis from the lab that has since been discredited.

Taylor said the settlement was reached through mediation and that it officially ends his legal battles with the state.

"I am just glad it's over," he said. "If I never see another courtroom, I will be happy."

Since his exoneration in 2010, Taylor is doing things he never thought possible. He celebrated his mother's birthday this past weekend and has plans to visit friends on the West Coast soon, but there are also daily reminders of what he went through.

"Not a day goes by when I don't think about prison," he said.

He had hoped to have a job by now, possibly in telecommunications – the industry he worked in before his incarceration. Greg Taylor State to pay Greg Taylor $4.6M for wrongful imprisonment

"When I got out of prison, I had never spoken on a cellphone, so a lot of that has passed me by," Taylor said. "Mainly I am just happy to be around my family and friends and enjoy a free life."

When Gov. Bev Perdue pardoned Taylor in May 2010, he received $750,000 in compensation to be paid to him at $50,000 a year.

The state also settled a lawsuit filed by Floyd Brown, of Anson County, who was locked up at Dorothea Dix hospital for 14 years awaiting trial on a murder charge. Brown will receive $7.85 million.


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  • disgusted2010 Aug 13, 2013

    Hopefully one day the truth will come out and these murderers will be back in jail.

  • welfarequeen Aug 13, 2013

    “Was he a strong family man, there for her upbringing, before he was arrested?” swst04

    I don't care if he killed kittens as a hobby! HE WAS FALSLY INCARCERATED for almost TWO DECADES! I don't care if he beat his wife with a wooden spoon, or drank milk right from the jug He was INNOCENT of the crime they sentenced him for.

  • hollylama Aug 13, 2013

    Why is WRAL not reporting on the other man that received 7+ million?

  • rachel Aug 13, 2013

    For those saying there is not enough money to make up for 17 lost years- I agree we you, so why is money the only thing we throw at the situation?(I am sure his lawyer suggested this-his cut is large) Why do we continue to treat this man as "poor, poor, pitiful him"?-Why doesn't our state government step up and offer this guy four years fully paid to attend a state university in the major of his choice? With a state job when he gets done? With a low or no rate mortgage on a house supplied by the State employees credit union? My point being to help get this guy up on his feet, not comfy in his easy chair. We don't do anyone any favors by removing their reasons to try and strive for something-its what makes people stronger-this guy deserves a clear path and every support to get to a normal life-don't remove the barriers, give him the means to get through them on his own-then he will have his "spirit" back.

  • lifeq Aug 13, 2013

    I am glad we now have a system(innocence) to appeal.

    Note Taylor's family went through so much trying to appeal at every high court in NC. Finally appealing to the Top court in NC "Supreme Court" which refused to reopen the case, stating the old Judgement is correct and DNA Evidence does not matter.....

    He is very lucky the system did not put him on Death Row.

  • caseofthefoo Aug 13, 2013

    For those of you crying "my hard earned tax dollars blah, blah", this will probably cost you about fifty cents. You don't have a problem sucking down $5.00 coffee drinks and super value meals every day and paying crazy money for internet and cable service every month though do you? If someone asked me for a dollar to help this guy get his life back after what he was put through, I wouldn't hesitate to donate.

  • HANS FOR PRESIDENT!!!!! JK Aug 13, 2013

    Was he a strong family man, there for her upbringing, before he was arrested?


    Moot point. He may have been arrested and convicted of a crime 10 minutes after this woman was killed. Or he may have found whatever and turned his life around. Just because he was a drug addict or a poor father doesn't mean he deserved to spend a third of his life for a crime he didn't commit and lose all that went along with it. The fact that he didn't get the chance is the point, not what he "likely" would have done with that chance. It matters not what he may have made working if not in jail. Another moot point. Seventeen years of his life is gone, never to return. He and no one he knows will ever be the same nor forget any of this. And for anyone that says "I still think he's guilty, prove it." And don't tell me/us to. Burden of proof lies with the prosecution, and they fell waaaay short

  • North Carolina Cutie Aug 13, 2013

    He did not kill anyone he was wrongfully acused.

  • Bartmeister Aug 13, 2013

    I don't care how much he gets, it's not worth it. 17 years missed? No thank you.

  • arljsl Aug 13, 2013

    Amen Pepe Silvia...you hit the nail on the head with that one...I think that the 4.6mil should be w/o taxes taken out also...