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  • At the age of 18, Dewey Bozella was wrongfully convicted of murdering his 92 year old neighbor in Poughkeepsie, New York. He had always dreamt of becoming a professional boxer, and trained rigorously while serving time. One day while he was locked up, he decided to cut his own hair by using a bowl to find the right shape. The top half showed some hair, while the bottom half was bald.
  • He loved the style and kept on doing his hair on his own, until he was transferred from Sing Sing to another facility. At this new location, a correctional officer told him that he would have to cut all of his hair off, and that his 'style' was a violation of prison code. He unwillingly complied.

    After serving for 26 years for a crime he did not commit, Dewey was released from prison. With the Sing Sing light heavyweight championship under his belt, he continued to train and had his debut as a professional boxer in the free world in October 2011. He won his one and only match as a pro at the age of 52. President Obama called him to congratulate him on the accomplishment. All the meanwhile, he kept his hair in the same style he had while locked up.
  • As a free man, his style was a reflection and a memory from the time he served. He has traveled all over the world speaking about the benefits of DNA testing in criminal cases, and for a more just criminal system. People now recognize him for his perseverance, strong will, and undeniably humble character. When Dewey told us the story of his hair and unique style, he mentioned that never allow anyone to tell him how to wear his hair, and his message was simple: never forget.
  • Visit Barbershop Stories for more information on upcoming shows and podcast:

    Photographs: Compliments of Dewey Bozella
    Interviwee: Dewey Bozella
    Produced by: Dawn J. Fraser
    Production Assistance: Abby Noyes, Maria Hernandez
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