Posts Tagged ‘Wisconsin Innocence Project’


Wrongfully Convicted Man Released after 24 Years in Prison

Alejandra de la Fuente — October 06, 2016 @ 3:16 PM — Comments (0)

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Daryl Holloway, 48, has been released from Green Bay Correctional Facility on October 5th, 2016.

Holloway was convicted in 1993 on two counts of sexual assault and two counts of armed burglary. Now, new DNA testing shows that there were errors in previous DNA testing used during the case “that raised a question whether the results they were getting were reliable,” said Keith Findley, co-director of the Wisconsin Innocence Project to Fox 11 News.  Therefore, Milwaukee County Judge Thomas McAdams signed the court order vacating both the conviction and the sentence on Tuesday.

“This has been a long thing. I lost family members and different things. I’m trying to rebuild my life now. I came in mid-twenties. Man, I’m almost 50 now. My whole life has changed,” said Holloway after he was released. Despite the uphill battle, Holloway is positive about the road ahead and says his long-term plans might involve studying law.

For now, he encourages victims of wrongful conviction to keep pushing forward. “Keep fighting,” he said. “Don’t give up. It’s like my mama told me. If you’re right, stand up. If you’re wrong, lay down.”

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Wisconsin Innocence Project Creates Program to Help Exonerate Latinos

Kate Mathis — July 27, 2016 @ 1:00 PM — Comments (0)

With a $633,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Justice, the Wisconsin Innocence Project is starting the Latino Exoneration Initiative. The department’s two-year federal grant will fund part of the director of the initiative’s salary, an intake worker, and a staff attorney. The program is intended to help exonerate wrongfully convicted Latinos in cases where DNA testing could prove innocence.

Latinos comprise 22 percent of inmates nationally, but represent less than 12 percent of individuals who have been exonerated with help from innocence organizations. Furthermore, in a state where the Latino population continues to grow, less than ten percent of Wisconsin exonerees have been Latino. The Latino Exoneration Initiative addresses that disparity and will study and attempt to determine the causes of it.

Cristina Bordé, the director of the initiative, believes that the low number of Latino inmates helped by innocence organizations may be due to a lack of bilingual and culturally competent attorneys and staff members. She went on to say that some Latinos might not know that programs such as the Wisconsin Innocence Project exist because of a lack of fluency in English.

As for why some Latinos are wrongfully convicted, Bordé cited immigration status and language and interpretation problems. She stated that while their cases may involve factors such as eyewitness misidentification that are present in most other wrongful conviction cases, Latinos may also experience unique problems including the use of uncertified translators, a defendant implicating himself by confessing or testifying in English although he is not fluent, or witnesses refusing to testify because they did not enter this country legally.

The Latino Exoneration Initiative plans to spread the word about their new program and reach out to prospective clients in the Latino community through Spanish language media and prison visits.

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Today in Wrongful Conviction History: July 27

Kate Mathis — July 27, 2016 @ 10:00 AM — Comments (2)

Happy exoneration anniversary Robert Lee Stinson, Reginald Connor, and Everton Wagstaffe!

Robert was exonerated in Wisconsin in 2009 with help from the Wisconsin Innocence Project.

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Reginald and Everton were convicted of the same crime in New York and were exonerated last year with help from the Innocence Project.

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Innocence Project Hires Exoneree

Kate Mathis — July 22, 2016 @ 1:00 PM — Comments (0)

Jarrett Adams has not let his wrongful conviction stop him from being successful. Despite insisting that sex he and two others had with a woman in a college dormitory was consensual, he was sentenced to 28 years in prison for rape when he was 17 years old. After spending almost eight years behind bars, Adams was exonerated in January 2007 after the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals determined that he had received ineffective counsel because his trial attorney neglected to call a witness who had seen the woman smoking cigarettes with the three men in a dorm common area after the encounter. Following his release, unlike many individuals who struggle to readjust to life outside of prison, Adams did just the opposite by joining the other side of the criminal justice system.

After the Wisconsin Innocence Project helped exonerate him, Adams attended Loyola University Law School. Following his graduation last year, he worked for 7th Circuit Judge Ann Claire Williams and U.S. District Judge Deborah Batts of the Southern District of New York in a dual clerkship. Now, Adams is formally joining the innocence movement that helped set him free by working for the organization that many would argue initiated the fight for justice for the wrongfully convicted.

Adams’ wife accepted a job in New York City, and after passing the New York Bar exam in February, he too found a job in the Big Apple where he will now serve as a post-conviction litigation fellow for the Innocence Project. Law practice is something he has been passionate about for some time, as Adams said that he was moved from a Wisconsin maximum-security prison to a supermax facility with fewer privileges because he was considered a security threat since he had become such an effective jailhouse lawyer by helping other inmates while he was in prison.

Adams credited his success to his faith and hard work, and hopes that he will be an example for others facing obstacles.

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Today in Wrongful Conviction History: July 12

Kate Mathis — July 12, 2016 @ 10:00 AM — Comments (0)

Happy exoneration anniversary Lafonso Rollins and Joseph Frey!

Lafonso was exonerated in Illinois in 2004.

Joseph was exonerated in Wisconsin in 2013 with help from the Wisconsin Innocence Project.

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Today in Wrongful Conviction History: February 12

Kate Mathis — February 12, 2016 @ 10:00 AM — Comments (0)

Several exonerees celebration their exoneration anniversaries today.

Rodney Roberts was exonerated in New Jersey in 2014.

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Daniel Bolstad was exonerated in Wisconsin last year with help from the Wisconsin Innocence Project.

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LaShawn Johnson was exonerated of federal charges in Montana last year.

Devron Hodges was exonerated in Texas last year.

Happy exoneration anniversary Rodney, Daniel, LaShawn, and Devron!

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Today in Wrongful Conviction History: February 11

Kate Mathis — February 11, 2016 @ 10:00 AM — Comments (0)

Happy exoneration anniversary Ted Bradford, Christopher Abernathy, and Mario Vasquez!

Ted was exonerated in Washington state in 2010 with help from the Innocence Project Northwest.

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Christopher was exonerated in Illinois last year with help from the Illinois Innocence Project.

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Mario was exonerated in Wisconsin last year with help from the Wisconsin Innocence Project.

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Today in Wrongful Conviction History: February 9

Kate Mathis — February 09, 2016 @ 10:00 AM — Comments (0)

Several exonerees celebrate their exoneration anniversaries today.

Lesly Jean was exonerated in North Carolina in 2001.

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Donte Booker was exonerated in Ohio in 2005.

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Jarrett Adams was exonerated in Wisconsin in 2007 with help from the Wisconsin Innocence Project.

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Tyrone Hood was exonerated in Illinois last year with help from the Exoneration Project.

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Happy exoneration anniversary Lesly, Donte, Jarrett, and Tyrone!

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Today in Wrongful Conviction History: February 6

Kate Mathis — February 06, 2016 @ 10:00 AM — Comments (0)

http://innocence-clinic.law.wfu.edu/Several exonerees celebrate their exoneration anniversaries today.

Happy exoneration anniversary Antonio Yarbough, Travis Mccabe, Darryl Hunt, Christopher Ochoa, and Richard Danziger!

Antonio was exonerated in New York in 2014.

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Travis was exonerated of federal charges in Louisiana in 2014.

Darryl was exonerated in North Carolina in 2004, with the help of the Wake Forest School of Law Innocence and Justice Clinic.

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Christopher and Richard were both convicted for the same crime and exonerated in 2002 after Christopher sought assistance from the Wisconsin Innocence Project.

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Wisconsin Man Receives Maximum Compensation, But Is It Enough?

Hannah Beery — April 17, 2014 @ 9:57 AM — Comments (0)

Joseph Frey, a Wisconsin man, served eight years in prison for crimes he did not commit.  Thankfully, this past Tuesday the State confirmed that Frey would receive $25,000 compensation for his eight years behind bars.The law in Wisconsin states that any person wrongfully imprisoned will receive $5,000 a year, up to $25,000.

Seriously, just$5,000 per year with a $25,000 max?

Frank Sterling, a New York exoneree, spent 20 years behind bars for a murder that he did not commit. Sterling also may be receiving a $7 million settlement for his time behind bars, a total that comes to about $35,000 a year. This amount per year is $10,000 more than the limit any person wrongfully convicted in Wisconsin can receive. While it is obvious that Sterling should receive a larger settlement than Joseph Frey, as he spent more time behind bars, the difference between settlements between states is simply outrageous.

Wisconsin Innocence Project co-director Keith Finley has said, “Twenty-five thousand dollars comes nowhere close to correcting the injustice done to Mr. Frey, or to fulfilling our community’s obligation to help him get his life started again.” This past year, Wisconsin worked to pass bills that boost compensation, doubling the limit to $50,000. However, these bills never advanced to a vote. Wisconsin is not the only state with a small compensation limit.

View the whole list by state here.

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