MANHATTAN - A Westchester man who spent almost half his life behind bars has received his master's degree.

Jeffery Deskovic received a master's degree in criminology from John Jay College of Criminal Justice. Deskovic was incarcerated for the death of a Peekskill High School classmate.

Deskovic said he confessed as a teenager because he was under duress. He was eventually freed in 2006 after receiving help from the Innocence Project.

Deskovic has started his own foundation to help others who have been wrongly accused. He says he will return to the classroom soon to earn a law degree.