Archive for September, 2011

Freed Virginia Man Works to Clear his Name

In 1984 18-year-old Thomas Haynesworth went to the grocery store to pick up a few things for his mother. He never made it home. He was arrested by police on suspicion of committing five different rapes in the area after one of the victims identified him as the perpetrator. Haynesworth was convicted and sentenced to …

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Troy Davis Debate Highlights Importance of Eyewitness Identification Reform

The debate over the death penalty in the United States was brought to the forefront last week with the execution of Troy Anthony Davis. A secondary issue to emerge from the debate is the need for eyewitness identification reform in police stations and courtrooms across the country. Media reports confirmed that seven of the nine …

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NC Innocence Investigation Leads to the Release of Two Men

Last Thursday, two North Carolina men walked out of prison for the first time in a decade. Kenneth Kagonyera and Robert Wilcoxson pled guilty to the murder of Walter Bowman in 2000 despite maintaining their innocence. Attorneys for the two men argue that Kagonyera and Wilcoxson pled guilty to avoid life sentences; they were sentenced …

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New Study Validates Revised Photo Lineup Procedures

On Monday, September 19, the AJS Center for Forensic Science and Public Policy, in collaboration with the Innocence Project, the Police Foundation, and the Center for Problem-Oriented Policing, released a study conducted over the past three years examining eyewitness identification procedures. The study analyzed over 850 lineups in four different police departments: Austin, TX; Charlotte-Mecklenburg, …

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Troy Anthony Davis Denied Clemency

In an article published today by Slate, Universtiy of Virginia Law Professor and author Brandon Garrett details the eyewitness identification procedures used when investigating the Troy Anthony Davis case. Garrett explains how the lineups were not double-blind and were suggestive to the witnesses. Furthermore, Garrett states that the photo lineups were not conducted until at …

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Ohio Man Exonerated After Ten Years in Prison

David Ayers was released from prison Monday after spending over ten years behind bars for a murder he did not commit. Ayers has been in jail since 2000 for the robbery and murder of 76 year old Dorothy Brown. At the time of the murder, Ayers was a resident and security guard in Ms. Brown’s …

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Harry Miller Found Factually Innocent Under Utah’s New Exoneration Statute

On Sept 12, 2011, a Utah judge issued an order of factual innocence for Harry Miller, the second person exonerated under Utah’s exoneration statute, passed in 2009. Miller was convicted in 2003 of a robbery that had been committed three years earlier. At the time of the robbery, the victim stated that her attacker was …

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Troy Davis’ Fourth Execution Date Set for September 21st

Troy Davis, a Georgia man convicted of the 1989 murder of a police officer, is scheduled to be executed nine days from today. His conviction rests entirely on the testimony of nine witnesses, seven of whom have since recanted, claiming they were coerced by the police. Of the two holdout witnesses, one, Sylvester “Redd” Coles, …

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NEIP Exoneree Dennis Maher Profiled by the Boston Globe

On Sunday, September 4, 2011, the Boston Globe profiled NEIP exoneree Dennis Maher. Maher was convicted of two separate attacks on women in Lowell, Massachusetts in 1984 and another in Ayer, Massachusetts. He received a life sentence for the attacks and was convinced he would …

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© 2011 New England Innocence Project