A dominating middleweight in the 1960's, Rubin "Hurricane" Carter spent 19 years in prison for three murders in a tavern in Paterson, New Jersey, in 1966. Carter and friend John Artis were convicted in 1967 and again in a new trial in 1976.
Carter was freed in November of 1985 when his convictions were set aside after years of appeals. It was ultimately decided that racism, more than common sense and using legal judgment, were the determining factor in the convictions. His plight was immortalized in song by Bob Dylan and in the movies after his release- where Denzel Washington was nominated for an Academy Award for his role in "Hurricane."
Carter went 27-12-1 with 19 knockouts in his career, His two most memorable bouts were a first-round win over Emile Griffith in 1963 and losing a title fight in 1964 to Joey Giardello.
Here's part 1 of the CBC's "Fifth Estate" program on Carter:
Carter died in his adopted home town of Toronto of prostate cancer at the age of 76 with Artis at his side, who moved to Toronto to be Carter's care-giver in his later years.