Monday, March 30, 2009

Innocence Project of Florida helps free 7 wrongly convicted men

Allow us to give ourselves a pat on the back this morning as we received some coverage in the Orlando Sentinel this morning, a paper with a hefty circulation of 230,000 people. The article is located here.

"Depending on whether you talk to people who are prosecution-oriented or defense-oriented, you're going to get widely divergent numbers," said Michael Seigel, a University of Florida law professor. "The criminal justice system does a pretty good job; there isn't widespread error. But there is error ... one person who is innocent and is in jail is one too many."

That's where the Innocence Project of Florida comes in. Since its creation, it has helped exonerate seven men who, among them, were incarcerated for 144 years.
And a good quote from our Executive Director, who points out a mistake in a common way of understanding our place in the process:
"When we exonerate someone, people say the system worked. The system did not work; the system failed," said Seth Miller, who directs the Innocence Project from Tallahassee. "These folks have been exonerated not because of the system but in spite of the system."
If "the system worked," we wouldn't have a reason for being. We exist to right the wrongs that get committed by the system – even when they are no one's fault – and to help to fix the system to prevent wrongful convictions from taking place.

Visit IPF's Website by clicking here; sign up to volunteer by clicking here; contribute to our work by clicking here.

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