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Stories from the Innocence Project

Updated on October 27, 2011

Innocence Project- Many of you will have heard about the Innocence Project. Many of you haven't. The Innocence Project is about getting people that have been wrongly imprisoned released and exonerated. The project has been so successful in its roll out in the United States it is now formed a similar project here at Griffith University in Queensland Australia. Did you know DNA testing has exonerated 266 innocent people in the United States, including 17 who were on death row.

Law lecturer and Innocence Project at Griffith Unversity Brisbane director Lynne Weathered will represent the Australian legal community in the USA at the first major international conference on wrongful convictions, to be held April 7-11.

Nobody knows how many more innocent people remain behind bars in so many countries, or how many people were convicted this week, this month or this year of crimes they didn't commit based on unreliable forensic science or eyewitness mis-identification.

The Innocence Project provides pro-bono post-conviction legal assistance to individuals that are seeking to prove their innocence with DNA testing and works to enact the reforms needed to protect innocent Americans from wrongful prosecution and incarceration.

With your support, the Innocence Project is fighting to overturn wrongful convictions and enacting reforms across the country based on the lessons of their work.

Last month a Texas man was declared innocent after spending 30 years behind bars. Cornelius Dupree was exonerated after serving most of his life in prison for a 1979 rape and robbery he did not commit. DNA testing obtained by a group called the Innocence Project proved he was innocent.

I recently made a commitment to help raise money for the Innocence Project to help exonerate wrongfully convicted individuals like Cornelius. My goal is to raise $1000 by June 2011 and I hope you will consider donating through my page HERE to help this incredible organization.

The Innocence Project helps people like Marvin Anderson--an innocent man who served 15 years in prison in Virginia for a crime he did not commit.

The Innocence Project is a national non-profit organization that uses DNA to help free innocent people from prison. To date, 266 people in the United States have been exonerated by DNA testing, including 17 who served time on death row. These people served an average of 13 years in prison before exoneration and release.

In a comprehensive study of capital cases conducted. b asks whether the mistakes and miscarriages of justice known to have been made in individual capital case are isolated, or common? The answer provided by our study of 5,760 capital sentences and 4,578 appeals is that serious error—error substantially undermining the reliability of capital verdicts— has reached epidemic proportions throughout our death penalty system. More than two out of every three capital judgments reviewed by the courts during the 23-year study period were found to be seriously flawed.

"Freedom is something that can be taken for granted. Until it is taken away".

- Rubin 'Hurricane' Carter


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    • barryrutherford profile imageAUTHOR

      Barry Rutherford 

      7 years ago from Queensland Australia

      dags the drover. Thanks for your comment. So far I havent raised a dime

    • dags the drover profile image

      dags the drover 

      7 years ago from still lost in Western Australia

      HI Barry, Just wondering how you went with your attempt to raise the $1000 by end of June 2011. I also had not heard of the Innocence Project. thanks for bringing this to "our" attention. Cheers Dags the Drover

    • barryrutherford profile imageAUTHOR

      Barry Rutherford 

      7 years ago from Queensland Australia

      Thanks Denise Handlon, Earth Angel & GPSWorldtraveler for your comments.

    • GPSWorldTraveler profile image


      7 years ago from Washington State, USA

      Thank you for writing about this topic. I had no knowledge of it... what a blessing for those innocent people. Good job.

    • Earth Angel profile image

      Earth Angel 

      7 years ago

      Dearest Barry,

      It is appalling and "unthinkable" here in the U.S. that we convict so may innocent people without simple DNA testing! Worse yet is how many we have already executed - murdered - in the "name of justice!"

      One of the problems is how "unthinkable" a subject this is! We delude ourselves into thinking our justice system works, is fair and that the truth will ultimately prevail!

      This must happen all around the world! Glad to hear Queensland is being proactive as well!

      The underlying assumption is that independent, logical and critical "thinking" is taking place! What often trumps this crucial piece of the equation is a pre-determined mind-set! One incorrect "eye witness" can influence a host of others and turn the tide toward guilty!

      Thank you for bringing this really important, life and death important, topic to the forefront! And for helping raise money for the Innocent Project!

      Blessings to you! EarthAngel!

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 

      7 years ago from North Carolina

      Very important subject. So glad that you've brought this into the awareness of the community.


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