Man Walks Free After Nearly 22 Years in Prison

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ATLANTA (AP) - A man cleared of a rape conviction by DNA evidence after spending nearly 22 years in prison is seeing his first full day of freedom since being released.

Willie O- Williams was released from the Fulton County Jail Tuesday night.

The 44-year-old man has spent nearly half his life in a Georgia prison. He was convicted of aggravated sodomy, kidnapping and rape when the victim identified him as the perpetrator in April 1985.

Williams wrote to the Georgia Innocence Project in July 2005. The agency took up Williams' case last year.

Now, Williams is free. Fulton County sheriff's deputies went to the D- Ray James Correctional Facility in Folkston yesterday and brought him home.

He was processed through the Fulton County Jail and emerged around 10 p-m -- soft-spoken and wide-eyed at the television cameras and other attention he was getting.

He said he was looking forward to eating steak and potatoes and "just living the rest of my life."

But asked how it feels to be released after so much time in prison, Williams says he can't even begin to explain.

Williams was greeted by friends and family members cheering his release, including his mother. She held on to him as they left the jail.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)