Hero of the Week: December 5, 2022: Maurice Hastings

“I prayed for many years that this day would come. I am not pointing fingers; I am not standing up here a bitter man, but I just want to enjoy my life now while I have it.”

~ Maurice Hastings

These are the words of a man who was wrongly convicted for murder and spent 38 years of his life behind bars in a California prison. Maurice Hastings, who had consistently proclaimed innocence over the years, was released in October of this year after decades of confinement. A DNA sample could have proven him not guilty over 20 years ago, but instead, Hastings was denied the request of DNA testing and was sentenced to life in prison without possibility of parole after prosecuters had even sought the death penalty.

Hastings, who is now 69, finally was discharged when the Los Angeles Innocence Project was able to present the results of a DNA sample that pointed to another suspect whose name was not published and who died in 2020.

Maurice Hastings is a true hero of life, a man with the higher ability to maintain humanity, forgiveness, and a purity of mind despite being wronged and experiencing decades of injustice. He refuses to be bitter.

As Catherine says: “If he was bitter, the people who mistreated him would steal the rest of his life. Now the rest of his life instead belongs to him; he does not have to drag them with him. What would make this story a truly happy ending would be if any of the people who broke the law to railroad Hastings were held accountable under the law for their crimes.”

Well done, Maurice Hastings! May the Giver of Life reward you in manifold ways.

Related:

CBS News: California man who spent 38 years in prison for murder is freed after DNA evidence points to different person