Central Park Conservancy unveils The Gate of the Exonerated in honor of the Exonerated Five and other wrongly convicted

Photos credit: Bill Moore

On April 20, 1989, the lives of five Black and Latino teenagers, Kevin Richardson, Antron McCray, Raymond Santana, Korey Wise, and Yusef Salaam, took an unexpected turn when they were arrested by the NYPD and questioned for long hours without their parents or attorney. What came of it were confessions of a crime they never committed that led to a conviction in 1990 for the rape and assault of Patricia Ellen Meili, also known as the Central Park Jogger.

Their conviction was overturned on December 19, 2002, after the actual perpetrator Matias Reyes confessed to the crime.

To celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Exonerated Five’s vacated convictions and commemorate the struggle of individuals wrongfully convicted and the Exonerated Five’s story, the Central Park Conservancy unveiled the Gate of the Exonerated on December 19, 2022.

The Gate of the Exonerated, located on 110th Street between Malcolm X Boulevard and Fifth Avenue, is the first entrance to be named since 1862.

The unveiling was organized in partnership with the City of New York, NYC Parks, and Manhattan Community Board 10.