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After 3 Years in Prison, Morris Gets New Trial

March 07, 1986

Mercury Morris, star running back for the 1972 NFL champion Miami Dolphins, was granted a new trial Thursday by the Florida Supreme Court after spending three years in prison on cocaine charges.

Attorneys for Morris immediately began working for his release from Dade Correctional Institution, where Morris began a 20-year sentence on March 15, 1983. He also served a year in the county jail.

"It wasn't jubilation, it was more like relief," Morris said when asked his reaction to the ruling.

Morris, 39, said he was entrapped in 1982 and that his side was not allowed to be presented properly during the trial.

Morris argued in his first trial that that he was entrapped by police and Fred Donaldson, a friend who said he was angry that Morris had not paid him for gardening work he performed.

Morris pleaded innocent to charges of conspiracy to traffic in cocaine, two counts of sale or delivery of cocaine and two counts of possession of cocaine.

He was found guilty of all but the two counts of sale or delivery of cocaine.

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