Anatomy of Innocence: Exoneree Stories Told by Prominent Authors

03.30.17 By Innocence Staff

Anatomy of Innocence: Exoneree Stories Told by Prominent Authors

An anthology of stories of the wrongfully convicted, with a foreword by Innocence Project Co-Founder Barry Scheck, was released Tuesday by Liveright Publishing Corporation.

Anatomy of Innocence, edited by Laura Caldwell and Leslie S. Klinger, features exoneree stories told by high-profile fiction authors such as Lee Child, Sara Paretsky and Laurie King.

The collection also includes an essay written by Arthur Miller in 2002 in support of the Center on Wrongful Convictions’ campaign to abolish the death penalty in Illinois. Miller tells the story of Peter Reilly, who was wrongfully convicted of killing his own mother in 1974. The essay was republished in the New York Times on Tuesday.

Reilly was 18 years old when he falsely confessed to his mother’s murder after a 25-hour interrogation during which he was denied food and legal counsel. Convinced of his innocence, his Connecticut community helped raise money to get his case back into court. Testimony from an alibi witness was discovered in 1976 and the charges against him were dropped.

Miller notes that, if Reilly was convicted in a death penalty state, he may well have been executed for a crime he did not commit.

“The nation’s conscience forbids the state to kill innocent people,” Miller wrote. “The death penalty makes the presumption that there are never going to be corrupt, ambitious, cowardly prosecutors and police who, afraid to admit they were wrong in arresting a suspect, go down to the end insisting on his guilt; that there are never honest mistakes in judgment, never any visual misidentifications, but that in each and every prosecution the guilty verdict is invariably deserved.”

Proceeds from Anatomy of Innocence will benefit After Innocence, a nonprofit organization that provides re-entry assistance and advocacy for wrongfully convicted individuals. Purchase your copy here.

Related: Q & A with Reuven Fenton, Author of New Collection of Exoneree Profiles

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Diane E. Perkins August 16, 2017 at 6:52 pm Reply   

Where do you turn, when the accused is vindicated in the municipal courts system, and the ‘simple assault’ case ‘nolle prossed’, but an overzealous state prosecutor wanted to pursue a 2nd degree felony charge for domestic assault.
Without any ‘new evidence’ or complaints, had the suspect re-arrested and detained, (illegally), until a trial was held, and evidence shows on the record an ‘entry of not guilty’.
Abandoned by the public defender and was not available to timely file post conviction appeals remedies; (but the judge ordered the ‘filing of a petition for a writ of habeas corpus according to ‘Heck v Humphrey”….only to deny it.
In so doing, and as it turns out, evidence was fabricated, court records were altered, judges signatures were forged, the warrant is ‘facially invalid….and forged’, and the lists goes on and on. The ‘victim’ files, (pro se), a civil Complaint Against Civil Rights Violations, Intentional Tort, Personal Injury case, only to have the court delay, deny, distract, dismiss and issue a “failure to prosecute” dismissal without prejudice ruling; Case Nos. 11-CV-1312-NKL & 11-1313-CV-W-BP-P; to which we are still seeking justice for.
Thank you for your time and attention to this matter.
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