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Elmer “Geronimo” Pratt Dead at 63

Elmer “Geronimo” Pratt
FILE – In this April 6, 2005 file photo, Elmer “Geronimo” Pratt speaks during funeral services for attorney Johnnie L. Cochran Jr. at the West Angeles Cathedral in Los Angeles. Cochran in 1997 won freedom for Pratt, a former Black Panther who spent 27 years in prison for a murder he didn’t commit. Pratt, a former Black Panther Party leader who spent 27 years in prison on a murder conviction that was later overturned, died Thursday June 2, 2011 according to attorney Stuart Hanlon. He was 63. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes, File)
Obit Pratt Mian
FILE - In this April 6, 2005 file photo, Elmer "Geronimo" Pratt speaks during funeral services for attorney Johnnie L. Cochran Jr. at the West Angeles Cathedral in Los Angeles. Cochran in 1997 won freedom for Pratt, a former Black Panther who spent 27 years in prison for a murder he didn't commit. Pratt, a former Black Panther Party leader who spent 27 years in prison on a murder conviction that was later overturned, died Thursday June 2, 2011 according to attorney Stuart Hanlon. He was 63. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes, File)

Former Black Panther leader Elmer “Geronimo” Pratt, who was imprisoned for 27 years, has died, according to multiple reports.

He was 63.

His lawyer told the Associated Press that the former leader of the Panthers died at his home in Tanzania—where he lived for nearly 10 years.

The cause of death is unknown, according to his attorney.

Pratt’s murder conviction was overturned after a 27-year prison term, for a murder that he said he didn’t commit.

He was convicted in 1972 for robbing and fatally shooting Caroline Olsen on a tennis court in Santa Monica, Calif.

The conviction was overturned in 1997 after a judge ruled that the prosecution had concealed evidence.

After his conviction, civil rights groups rallied behind Pratt and claimed he had been framed because of his strong activism during the 1960’s.

“He had no anger, he had no bitterness, he had no desire for revenge. He wanted to resume his life and have children,” his lawyer told the Associated Press. “He would never look back.”

Pratt—who grew up in the segregated south—joined the army and served in Vietnam prior to joining the Black Panthers.

According to the Associated Press, Pratt said he was in Oakland for a Black Panther meeting on the day of the shooting.

The former Black Panther also had strong legal advice, with defense attorney Johnnie Cochran—who famously defended O.J. Simpson—at his side.

After his conviction Pratt said, “I feel relieved that the L.A. DA’s office has finally come to their senses in this respect,” according to the Associated Press.

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