By Reg Chapman

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Attorneys for Myon Burrell are thinking about their next move now that he has been released from prison after spending 18 years behind bars.

Burrell walked out of Stillwater Prison around 7 p.m. Tuesday and into the arms of his family. Burrell was 16 when he was convicted in the murder of 11-year-old Tyesha Edwards in 2002.

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The Parole Board commuted his life sentence to 20 years and he will serve his final two years on supervised release.

It’s a scene attorney Dan Guerrero has waited years to see — his client walking out of prison and falling into the arms of his loved ones. Guerrero says this has been a tough but satisfying journey for Burrell, but it’s not over.

“We still have hard work to do to get that exoneration, and that’s what Myon wants, and that’s what I want,” Guerrero said.

Guerrero says he will file a post-conviction petition in district court with new evidence he believes strongly supports his client’s innocence.

“Asking for a hearing so that we can present witnesses that we have secured via affidavit at this point that we believe undermines his conviction,” Guerrero said.

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He also hopes to take the invitation from Attorney General Keith Ellison to have the case considered by the new conviction integrity unit that could provide never-before-seen information from Hennepin County Attorney files.

For now he wants Burrell to enjoy this moment. He says he recently spoke with the 34-year-old who has never been free for his entire adult life until now.

“I think he wants to lay low for a little bit,” Guerrero said. “This is all very new to him. He wants to spend time with his family and loved ones.”

Guerrero says he believes what is happening to his client gives parents of other teens convicted of serious crimes hope that they too may be able to make a commutation request.

“Because the science does show that … juveniles should not be treated the same as adults, even in the most serious of crimes,” he said.

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Jimmy Edwards, the father of the 11-year-old victim, does not support the shortened sentence for Burrell or his release from prison.

Reg Chapman