There was a short “news” piece one of the national news “shows” several evenings ago about an individual asking for a DNA test to be completed on himself so he could be exonerated and finally be released from prison.
So, I was curious to find out about exonerations, and the following are some things I discovered.
A study was done dealing with exonerations in the United States covering 1989 through 2003. This study found 340 individuals had been exonerated. Four of these exonerations were issued posthumously. These 4 people died in prison, or were executed, and didn’t even get a chance to learn they were innocent. “One hundred and forty-four of the 340 were cleared by DNA tests and 196 by other means.” One of the 196 was cleared after it was proved a policeman and some witnesses perjured themselves. How many years have people spent in prisons because the police and the prosecutors were more interested in winning, than finding the truth? How many innocent people are on death row, now? How many innocent individuals have been executed? Those are some very unsettling questions.
Even in full view of DNA or other ironclad proof of innocence, the police and prosecutors, in most cases and without regret, still claimed the exonerations were wrong. This attitude is repulsive, appalling and frightening. There have been a few apologies for these failures, but they are rare, extremely rare.
If your son or daughter, a brother, your mother or father, or yourself are innocent, but imprisoned; what would you be doing right now?
One avenue is to get help from the INNOCENCE PROJECT. They have helped many get their exoneration. Their contact information is:
40 Worth St., Suite 701
New York, NY 10013
And, here is a link to get detailed contact information:
With all this in mind, and make no mistake about it, I want to be in the United States if I ever have to go to court to prove I’m innocent. I don’t want to be anywhere else!
For your information, the above statistics and information came from the following source document, via GOOGLE:
0091-4169/05/9502-0523 THE JOURNAL OF CRIMINAL LAW & CRIMINOLOGY Vol. 95, No.2 Copyright © 2005 by Northwestern University, School of Law Printed in U.S.A.
EXONERATIONS IN THE UNITED STATES 1989 THROUGH 2003
SAMUEL R. GROSS,* KRISTEN JACOBY,** DANIEL J. MATHESON,*** NICHOLAS MONTGOMERY†† & SUJATA PATIL†††