News 02.20.09

Friday Roundup: Freedom and Compensation

News in the world of wrongful convictions this week was dominated by the release of a watershed report by the National Academy of Sciences, but there was plenty going on elsewhere, too. Here’s a roundup of the week’s news that we didn’t get to on the Innocence Blog:

Innocence Project Policy Analyst Rebecca Brown

testified before a Nebraska legislative committee

about the importance of compensation laws for the wrongfully convicted. Also testifying were Joseph White and JoAnn Taylor, two defendants from the “Beatrice Six” case who spent two decades behind bars for a murder and rape they didn’t commit before DNA freed them last year. 

Jonathan Kezer was freed Wednesday after serving 16 years in Missouri prison for a murder he has always said he didn’t commit.

An investigation led by the local sheriff uncovered the evidence that cleared Kezer

.

Buffalo News columnist Rod Watson this week pondered the fate of detective Dennis Delano, whose cold case investigations helped clear two people – Anthony Capozzi and Lynn DeJac – after serving they had served years in prison.

Delano is currently suspended from the department and faces disciplinary action for allegedly breaking department rules and sharing confidential information with the media

.

Georgia exoneree Calvin Johnson

will speak on Sunday

at a special event hosted by the Georgia Innocence Project. Johnson served more than 15 years in prison for a rape he didn’t commit before DNA testing proved his innocence in 1999.

And a California student newspaper

profiled Northern California Innocence Project Director Cookie Ridolfi

. "It's very frustrating when you know that you have a case where something very unfair happened and you can't right that wrong," she said. "It's very common. But when you can change somebody's life, it makes it all worthwhile."

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