----- Original Message ----- 
From: Nancy Oppenhuizen 
To: patrickcrusade@yahoogroups.com 
Sent: Monday, March 14, 2005 6:40 PM
Subject: [patrickcrusade] re: Hi! I'm new :)

Hi, I am new to the forum.  I write to a bunch of prisoners all over the USA.  I have one friend who asked me to post his story every where I can so he can get the
legal counsel he needs.  Thank you.  If I have posted in error, please let me know. 

shalom, nana

On behalf of my friend, Harold Upton, who is incarcerated in the Cummins Unit, I am forwarding his story for you to read.  He has requested that I get his
information out to as many people as I can, hoping that someone will listen and be willing to be of assistance to his case.  Thank you for your time and concern in this

Nancy L Oppenhuizen
Grand Rapids, Michigan

Harold Upton  #065180

PO Box 500

Grady  Arkansas  71644-0500


     My name is Harold Sherman Upton.   My story begins in Plockerman Parish, Lousiana on October 23, 1937 when I was born to Marie Isabo Upton.   Some of
my growing up years we moved around a bit, but I owe my stability to my granny who had the biggest part in raising me, taking me into her home.   I attended New
Orleans High School and the Assembly of God Church.

     I pretty much had to work early on in life and struck out on my own taking up as a trade worker on shrimp boats and tug boats.  In 1971 I met my girlfriend,
Laurie Knight, who was to become my accomplice in a crime that ended up in the murder of a man.

    On December 27, 1971 Lauri and I committed a robbery - I was at the wheel of my 1965 Oldsmobile - she had the shotgun, when she entered a company in
El-Dorado Arkansas.  Things went terribly wrong.  Wilson De Free was dead.

     For pulling the trigger, Laurie Knight was sentenced to 21 years for the 2nd degree murder of which she only served 3 years and 6 months.  I received a life term
in the Department of Corrections in which I have now served 33 calendar years in the Cummins Unit, Grady Arkansas.  I have also earned 20 years good time,
have been made a trustee, and have model inmate status level which I have maintained for several years.

     After spending 33 years of a life debt believing that penal rehabilitation is possible - I believe that I am rehabilitated.  Aside from that, there is nothing I can do to
change the course of events all those years ago.  What happened at that time is engraved on my heart and in my mind forever - just as it is in the minds and hearts of
Wilson De Free's family.

     I am sixty seven years old now, and have been able to see how a person's life can change in a heartbeat and how one person can make a difference in another's
life.  I offer my heart to anyone who wishes to share in my true life experience.  With gratitude I look back on my life thankful for those people who have been
involved in my life and have left footprints touching  me in many ways.  Every letter I receive does the same and all the heartfelt prayers on my behalf are welcomed
and appreciated.

     The Lord has truly been there for me throughout all of these years of changes and growth.  He knows the tenderness and care I have in my heart and soul,
knowing I am no threat to anyone.  This is confirmed in the people who have taken but a moment to share in my life.

      I have applied for Executive Clemency twice in the past 4 years, but with my lack of legal knowledge, it has been to no avail as  I have not been able to obtain
my release and the answers I have been given are worded sparingly.  I have a good stable home to go to in another state, a good solid religious group for support,
and am a moral and stable man.   I have no bitterness and desire to show the system that I am an exception to the rule.  This is why I am so grateful for all the
prayers.   Any legal advice would be truly welcome and appreciated as well - even if it's in the form of donations to fund my legal battle for freedom.

     I would love to learn and share in your life experiences and truly look forward to any and all letters that are sent to me.  Thank you for taking the time to listen to
my story. May the Lord shine in your lives as He has in mine.


Harold Upton 

Case Information: 

Arkansas Supreme Court

255 ARK, 1071, 502, S.W. 2d 454, (1973) ARK

Lexis 1455

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