Monday, March 9, 2009

Bill Dillon speaks publicly in Melbourne, Florida

On Saturday night, William Dillon spoke to a crowd at the Space Coast Progressive Alliance's "Audacity of Hope" event at the Florida Institution of Technology. Florida Today covered the event.

"Many years, I waited for something to happen," he said. "I wrote anyone I could; anybody that I thought would listen, and I got no replies. Nobody was listening."

He cited the manipulation of witnesses, the lack of DNA testing at the time and unreliable sources for his conviction and credited the Innocence Project of Florida for his freedom.
You can read about William Dillon's case on our website here.

The Innocence Project of Florida's Assistant Director, Toni Shrewsbury (right) was in attendance.

Update: Some coverage in the blog of John Simpson, an attendant at the Progressive Celebration event:
[Bill Dillon is] tall, maybe six-two, and speaks clearly and plainly in a laconic voice of his experiences behind bars and in the courtroom, of his life in general. His speech is marked by candor, not rancor. He does not appear to be bitter. He’s adapted readily to the use of cell phones, devices which didn’t exist (except in crazy inventors’ feverish imaginations) when he went in. At a restaurant or among a crowd of people, he’s always looking around, alert, amazed. That he can find his way around Brevard County, where he still lives, is another source of constant surprise: whole neighborhoods have sprung up in his absence; new shopping malls exist where, a quarter-century ago, the wind blew across empty fields and marshes.

What he’s been through (and how well he went through it) boggles the mind. That he’s nowhere near the first — and certainly not the last — to have gone through it feels, well, impossible.
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