In 1997, Eric Glisson was convicted of murder. On Friday, he was one step closer to being released from prison for a murder he says he didn't commit. NY1's Courtney Gross filed the following report.
It was a moment Eric Glisson has been thinking about for 17 years.
The Bronx District Attorney's office and attorneys for Glisson and Cathy Watkins reached an agreement on Friday to conditionally vacate their murder convictions.
"We will investigate the claim that two individuals, not Mr. Glisson and Ms. Watkins, were actually the people that committed the murders of which they are convicted," said Nicole Keary of the Bronx District Attorney's Office.
"Eric is a very strong person," said Peter Cross, an attorney for Glisson. "He has had his ups and downs in this case but he has never lost faith. He has always believed, and he said it many times, that justice will prevail."
The agreement comes after new evidence was uncovered, which may prove they had nothing to do with the murder of a livery driver in 1995. They both have spent the last 17 years in prison.
"He needs to come out and live a productive life," said Paul Aromi, a family friend. "He'll be able to adjust. It is going to take a while but he'll be able to adjust well."
Both Glisson and Watkins were expected to be released on Friday but monitoring bracelets they have to wear as part of their release weren't ready. So instead, they were led out of court in handcuffs.
Glisson was on his way to Rikers Island.
"I just don't understand why the bracelets are not being made available and why it's not being done now and instead, he still continues to be treated like a criminal," Cross said.
The clothes family members brought for Glisson were taken back home.
"I thought he was coming home today," said Clarence Glisson, Eric's uncle. "That's why I brought everything that he needed."
Eric Glisson's 17-year-old daughter, Cynthia Morales, was just two weeks old when he was convicted.
"Going to school and hear all the other girls talk about their fathers and the times they enjoyed, it was hard for me," she said.
She went home disappointed on Friday.
Both Watkins and Eric Glisson are expected back in court on Wednesday, when they are expected to get their monitoring bracelets and be officially released.