Black Youth Whom Court Ruled Was Subjected to “Cruel and Unusual Punishment” Now Enrolled at Morehouse College

In 2003 Genarlow Wilson, a 17-year-old black youth from Douglasville, Georgia, was arrested for having consensual oral sex with a 15-year-old black teenage girl at a New Year’s Eve party. The act was captured on videotape and used as evidence. Wilson was charged with the felony of aggravated child molestation. The minimum sentence for persons convicted of this crime is 10 years in prison.

This past October, the Georgia Supreme Court ruled that Wilson’s sentence was cruel and unusual punishment. He was ordered released from jail after serving two years of his 10-year sentence.

Now, through the help of the Tom Joyner Foundation, Wilson is going to college. He is enrolled for the spring semester at Morehouse College, the prestigious liberal arts institution for black men in Atlanta. The foundation is paying for his full tuition, room and board, and books. Wilson hopes to join the Morehouse College football team this coming fall.

Wilson told the Atlanta Journal and Constitution, “I’m not mad about anything that happened. It helped me grow as a person, made me stronger, made me more ambitious. I was at the lowest point in life. Now everything I wanted to do can finally happen.”

Morehouse College president Robert M. Franklin stated, “We are delighted to now welcome into the fold a very promising young brother who had a very difficult start, but we expect to have a terrific finish.”