Jennifer Thompson Speaks Out Against Expediting Execution Process

05.18.17 By Innocence Staff

Jennifer Thompson Speaks Out Against Expediting Execution Process

Jennifer Thompson, founder of Healing Justice and co-author of Picking Cotton, is urging Alabama legislators to oppose a bill that would give wrongfully convicted people on death row less time to prove their innocence.

Senate Bill 187 would speed up the administration of the death penalty, allowing innocent people on the state’s death row less time to file for post-conviction relief.

Thompson points out that, if SB 187 was law, Anthony Ray Hinton would have been unable to prove his innocence of the 1985 murder for which he was wrongfully convicted and sentenced to death.

“Mr. Hinton’s is not an isolated case,” Thompson continued. “In Alabama and elsewhere across the country, DNA and other evidence have proven that innocent people have been sent to death row. In each of those cases, an innocent person and their family woke up each day facing the prospect of execution. In each of those cases, victims and survivors woke up every day believing that the perpetrator would face justice. In each of those cases, the actual perpetrator woke up every day with knowledge that an innocent person was paying for their crime.”

Thompson was the victim of a rape for which Ronald Cotton was wrongfully convicted. Cotton served over a decade in prison before DNA testing excluded him as the perpetrator and matched to a serial rapist. Thompson and Cotton have since partnered together to raise awareness about eyewitness misidentification and wrongful convictions.

Read the full op-ed here.

Leave a Reply

Thank you for visiting us. You can learn more about how we consider cases here. Please avoid sharing any personal information in the comments below and join us in making this a hate-speech free and safe space for everyone.

This field is required.
This field is required.
This field is required.

Linda Anderson May 20, 2017 at 3:51 pm Reply   

Our penal system is barbaric, especially the death penalty. It should remain life in prison.

We've helped free more than 240 innocent people from prison. Support our work to strengthen and advance the innocence movement.