The North Carolina and Pitt County NAACP chapters held a press to give an update on Dontae Sharpe’s wrongful conviction case.

Sharpe is serving a life sentence behind bars.

He’s accused of murdering Gregory Ratcliff in February of 1994.

Sharpe has maintained his innocence since he was arrested at the age of 19.

On Friday, members of the Greenville community, Sharpe’s family and friends came out to the Pitt County NAACP office to hear an update to the case.

Optimism filled the room at the Gold Post Cafe.

A packed room filled by Sharpe’s family and friends in support of what they say is his innocence. 

Local Pitt County NAACP president Calvin Henderson states his optimism for May 17. 

That’s the date for Dontae’s next court hearing. 

Dontae’s mother Sarah Blakely only share a few words but says she’s hopeful.

“We’re grateful hopefully that may the 17th will bring justice that is the only thing I really really have to say,” said Blakely.

The family chanted free Dontae after the press conference and repeated how they are now hopeful justice will be served now that there is a new D.A. looking at Dontae’s case.

The president of the NAACP North Carolina State Conference Dr. T. Anthony Spearman said this will be the 25th Mother’s Day Sarah will be spending without Dontae and that it is time for him to see his family again.