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117-year-old Texas man released after completing 99-year-long jail term in horse theft case

Henry William Borne’s father and seven others were sentenced to death and hanged in 1920

The Hush Post: In perhaps the first instance of serving the longest imprisonment, a 117-year-old man in Texas was released this week after completing a 99-year-long jail term, thus becoming first such prisoner in the United States’ history.

117-year-old Texas man released after completing 99-year-long jail term in horse theft case

The 117-year-old man Henry William Borne -Photo courtesy

The 117-year-old man Henry William Borne –who was the grandson of one the most famous horse thief in the American history– had been arrested by the Texas Rangers in 1919 for being part of in an important horse-stealing ring, a report said.

Henry William Borne, along with his father and seven other accomplices, was charged with stealing over 7,000 horses and mules, including a lot of 1,735 horses destined to the American military effort in the First World War, the report said.

Hang execution

Henry William Borne’s father, Henry Borne Jr., was hanged in Fort Worth alongside one of their accomplices, Mark Thompson, on March 16, 1920. -Photo courtesy

While the eight others were sentenced to death and hanged in 1920, Henry William Borne, who was underage that time, was sentenced to 99 years in prison. Surprisingly, Henry William Borne, a native of Amarillo, unexpectedly, actually survived the 99-year-long imprisonment, which was spent in a total of 11 different detention centers, the report said.

Henry William Borne was released from the Central Unit Prison early this week, in Sugar Land, after spending almost an entire century behind bars. A Visibly emotional, Henry William Borne expressed his worries about adapting to life in the 21st Century, it was reported.

“I saw a few cars once as a kid when I went to Dallas. I’ve been watching TV and I know they’re now everywhere, but I’ll have to get used to it,” Borne was quoted as saying in the report.

Despite his long incarceration, the 117-year old man also fears he could have difficulty adapting to a life without crime.

“All I’ve ever been outside prison is a horse thief. That’s the only thing I was good at. I bet I’d still be better than most of today’s horse thieves, even at my age,” Borne was further quoted.

Despite his fears, the Texas Department of Criminal Justice considers there is a “very low risk” that he will resume his life of crime.

In fact, the number of horse theft has constantly dropped over the last century and the use of identification microchips over recent years has made such crimes much easier to solve, it was reported.

Punishment for horse theft can still be severe, as one woman in Arkansas was sentenced to 60 years in prison for the 2011 theft of five horses, the report said.

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