'Karma': Exonerated Central Park 5 Member On Trump's Indictment

HARLEM, NY — Yusef Salaam, a candidate for Harlem City Council and a member of the Exonerated Central Park 5, had just one word for his response to former President Donald Trump’s indictment.


Salaam, along with the rest of the “Central Park Five,” — who were all Black and Latino minors — was wrongly convicted in 1990 for the rape of a white jogger in the famous Manhattan park.

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A year earlier, Trump took our full page advertisements in papers across the city for New York State to adopt the death penalty after the attack on a jogger in Central Park.

Salaam would go on to serve almost seven years in prison before he was exonerated. In 2014, the group received a $41 million payout from the city, of which more than $7 million went to Salaam.

Find out what's happening in Harlemwith free, real-time updates from Patch.

Trump was indicted on Thursday on criminal charges stemming from accusations he funded hush-money payments to a porn star, according to prosecutors and reports.

Salaam sent out his statement shortly after the indictment was announced, which went viral on Twitter and other social media platforms.

“Trump has never apologized for taking out a full page ad calling for the death penalty for the Central Park,” the email before Salaam’s statement reads. “New York City Council candidate and Exonerated 5 member Yusef Salaam issued the following statement following the indictment of Donald Trump by the Manhattan District Attorney.”


Salaam expanded on his statement Friday morning during a news conference outside of the 2, 3 station at West 116th Street and Malcolm X. Boulevard.

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“I put out a statement last night about the indictment of Donald Trump, and that statement was ‘Karma,'” he said while speaking in Harlem. “The wills of justice take a long time, but the great part about it is that justice is always right on time.”

When asked about if he would accept an apology from Trump, the answer was yes.

“At the end of the day we always accept apologies, because when apologizing when you are still alive is one of the most human things you can do,” he said.

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