'White Boy' Rick Wershe discusses first things he'll do if granted parole after 29 years

Parole board to vote on Wershe's release after his nearly 30 years behind bars

Prosecutors fought to keep Wershe behind bars.
Prosecutors fought to keep Wershe behind bars.

DETROIT – Many people don't like to wait a few extra hours when a flight is delayed, or an entire week for the next episode of their favorite television show. But Richard Wershe has had to wait nearly 30 years for a chance to get out of prison and spend the rest of his life doing what he wants.

So what would he do first?

"The first thing, one of the first things I want to do, is I want to go visit my grandmother and grandfather's grave," Wershe said. "I'll tell them that I made it out of here, and, you know, then I want to go visit my buddy Steve's grave and leave him something on his grave."

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He said he wants to try to get back to whatever normalcy he can in his life.

"I'd be elated to get what's left of my life back and be able to go and spend time with my family and friends," Wershe said.

Commonly known as "White Boy" Rick, Wershe was thrown behind bars after he was caught May 22, 1987, with 8 kilos of cocaine and a bag of cash. He was pulled over by police and ran into his grandmother's house.

Police said Wershe was carrying two bags, one filled with money, one filled with drugs. He was arrested and sentenced to life in prison.

On June 8, Wershe was granted a parole board hearing for the first time since 2003, when he was denied parole despite helping the FBI arrest several corrupt police officers.

He came away from the latest hearing feeling "cautiously optimistic" about his chances of release.

Wershe needs six of the 10 parole board members to vote in his favor in order to secure his release. If the vote goes his way, he could be freed as early as August.

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"Keep in mind that I've been in here so long that I have a great-niece that I've never met," Wershe said. "I have five grandkids that I've never met. I'll be overwhelmed with joy."

If the parole board votes to release Wershe, he still has a legal battle with Florida ahead. He is facing 22 months in prison for a crime he committed behind bars. His attorney is asking Florida officials to change the sentence to concurrent instead of consecutive, which would mean his time in Michigan prison would count for the time owed in Florida.

"I don't want to be in prison any longer," Wershe said. "I've been in here more than enough time, but if Florida wants me, I've got to man up, and I'll go."

The parole board will announce its decision sometime Friday. Stay with Local 4 News and ClickOnDetroit.com for all the breaking updates.