Exonerated Dallas man finally says goodbye to mother

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by DEBBIE DENMON

WFAA

Posted on February 16, 2011 at 12:25 PM

Updated Wednesday, Feb 16 at 12:31 PM

Larry Sims has been a free man for twenty days. He was cleared by DNA test after spending 24 years behind bars for a rape case that showed it was another man's D-N-A.

One thing that still haunts him is the fact that he never got to say good bye to his mother who died three years into his sentence.

On Tuesday the 61-year-old man got a chance to visit her unmarked grave at Lincoln Memorial cemetery that took him back down memory lane.

Larry Sims recalled his mom's bubbly spirit. Pictures are all he has left.

When she died in 1989, a part of him did too. Prison officials refused to allow Sims to go to the funeral.

"It made me feel pretty bad, because I was what they call a trustee at the time you know. I didn't see no reason why they wouldn't let me go," said Larry Sims, released from prison early.

Others who have been exonerated gave Sims his one wish. They joined him for a memorial service with song and sermon.

A tough moment of silence reminded Sims of what his mother told him years ago.

"You have faith in the Lord and everything will be alright," Sims said.

Sims said his mother gave him the strength to keep fighting.

His attorney hated the fact that Mrs. Dorothy Sims didn't live to see what she already knew.

"His mother believed in him so much and constantly told him that and told him she knew he was innocent and he so wanted to share that news with her," said Michelle Moore, Sims’ attorney.

That is what he officially did Tuesday afternoon.

"I know she's resting in peace," Sims said. "I finally proved my innocence."

A criminal appeals court will have to officially exonerate Sims. It is a decision expected in the next few months.

Email: ddenmon@wfaa.com

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