(CBS DETROIT)- The pandemic has forced us to stay in our homes, and many have described the on again off again government shut down as being in prison, but for 38 year old Kevin Harrington incarceration was a reality for over 17 years, and during this pandemic he’s regained his freedom.

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Kevin Harrington pictured with his mother and sister while in prison.

“I served 17 years 6 months two days and 35 minutes of fighting for my freedom.”

After proving he was wrongfully convicted of a 2002 murder in Inkster he was granted that freedom. Facing life in prison Harrington was exonerated and walked out the Macomb County Correctional Facility in April, and since he’s been home, he says he’s been busy helping those in need.

“So ever since I’ve been home, I’ve been doing stuff such as this.” Said Harrington, describing how he’s been giving back to his community.

While incarcerated Harrington made a vow that once his was released he would give back to his community, and now his first Christmas home in nearly two decades, he’s doing just that.

“All things I thought about in a prison cell, fighting for my freedom saying ok I have faith that my day will come, so what am I going to do then.”

A couple of weeks ago with help from the community Harrington organized a coat drive where over 1000 coats were donated to those in need in his native Inkster. Now a Christmas toy drive at the Inkster recreation center had cars lined up for about a mile down Middlebelt road. Harrington says over 1,500 Inkster families signed up.

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“3,000 kids should get at least one toy”

Harrington says he isn’t angry about having nearly 18 years of his life taken away, he’s just grateful to be home and be able to give back to a community that he’s truly missed.

“It’s just a beautiful time, to think 7 months ago I was in a jail cell essentially on death row, look now. These little kids, these boys and girls out here, give them something they want, my joy came by being free.”

 

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