Timothy McKinney released from prison after more than 15 years - Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

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Timothy McKinney released from prison after more than 15 years

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MEMPHIS, TN -

(WMC-TV) - The man who pleaded guilty to killing a police officer walked out of jail a free man Wednesday afternoon.

Action News 5's Nick Kenney was there as Timothy McKinney was released.

"First, I just want to go home and enjoy being with my family," he said as he walked out of jail with a smile on his face.

Kenney asked, "What does this fresh air feel like?"

In which McKinney answered, "Trying to take it up now. Trying to take it up now. Trying to feel it."

McKinney was accused of shooting and killing Memphis Police Officer Don Williams outside a comedy club on December 26, 1997.

The jury deadlocked during his first trial. A second jury found him guilty two years later, but that verdict was overturned on an appeal.

He went to trial again in April 2013, but that retrial ended in another hung jury and was declared a mistrial.

McKinney will now avoid a fourth trial due to the plea deal. He says he pleaded guilty to second degree murder only as a way to get out of jail on time served.

"My sympathy goes out to their family, but I want them to know from the beginning that I still maintain my innocence," said McKinney after his release.

He says he looks forward to a promising life -- soon.

"First, I want to go home and enjoy being with my family. First," he said. "Be able to enjoy my freedom and be with my family."

For the first time for Timothy McKinney, home is somewhere other than a jail cell.

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