Statement from Pedro Hernandez on release from Rikers Island

I want to express my deep gratitude to everyone who stood up and spoke out for me over the past year, especially to Investigator Gomez, Shaun King, NBC 4 and reporter Sarah Wallace, and Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights. I found so much strength in the support of people I have never met. Their support gave me the courage to continue defending my innocence.

Incarceration at Rikers has been incredibly difficult for me, but it was my family who truly suffered. Being back with them is the greatest gift. There are too many more like me who are still inside Rikers just because they can't afford to pay bail. I hope my experience elevates their struggle and causes all of us to rethink how we treat those who are least able to purchase their freedom.


(From Left) Jessica Perez, mother of Pedro Hernandez; Sierra Ewert, Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights; Wade McMullen, Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights; Pedro Hernandez