The Alaska Innocence Project
invited New York area exoneree Steven Barnes
to speak at its recent fundraiser about his story of wrongful conviction. Barnes was busy while in Alaska — he also spoke to students at the University of Alaska-Anchorage, to three high school audiences and to inmates at a juvenile detention center.
Barnes’ shared the story of his 1989 wrongful conviction for murder and spoke about the shortcomings in the criminal justice system. He was exonerated by DNA testing with the help of the Innocence Project in January 2009 after 20 years in prison. In addition to his advocacy and public speaking work, Barnes is a youth counselor in Oneida County, New York.