Exoneree Alan Newton earns college degree tomorrow


After serving 21 years in prison for a rape he didn’t commit, Alan Newton was ready to start his new life on the day he was released – July 6, 2006. Repeatedly requesting DNA testing since he first learned of the technology in 1994, Newton was told over and over that evidence collected at the crime scene had been lost or destroyed by the New York Police Department. In 2005, the Innocence Project asked property clerks at the NYPD storage facility to conduct one final search before Alan’s case was closed. They found the evidence – in the exact spot marked on the evidence report all along. The rest is history – evidence was tested and it proved that Newton didn’t commit the 1984 rape for which he was behind bars.

Almost immediately after his release, Newton began taking classes at Medgar Evers College in Brooklyn, with the help of the Thurgood Marshall Scholarship Fund and supporters at the college and at Moët Hennessy USA. Tomorrow, he graduates with honors and a bachelor’s degree in business. But he’s not done. Now, he plans to attend law school.

Moët Hennessy CEO Mark Cornell is throwing Newton a party in the company’s New York headquarters June 9.

Cornell said he was proud to honor Newton:

"Alan Newton is an inspiration to all America. He has overcome enormous obstacles by focusing on the positives rather than allowing himself to think like a victim. A lesser man might have succumbed to the negative forces of anger and bitterness – but not Alan. We are proud to honor this brave man and celebrate his achievements."

Read more

. (Moët Hennessy press release)

Watch a four-minute video interview with Alan here


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