Update: 3 days after this exclusive broadcast Jonathan Fleming was exonerated after serving 25 years for a crime he did not commit.
A wrongful conviction and lengthy prison sentence is one of the worst travesties of the justice system. With the inception of The Innocence Project, founded in 1992 by Attorneys Barry Scheck and Peter Neufeld in conjunction with the Cardoza School of Law at Yeshiva University in New York City, the wrongfully incarcerated are finding there is someone on their side.
The convicted person may not have been the most upstanding citizen at the time of the trial and sentencing, but, it’s judicially wrong to convict based on past history or character. In many cases the evidence may have been circumstantial, or not able to be put through technology that exists today, thus the backlog of cases sitting on the desks of District Attorneys across the country.
One particular DA in Brooklyn, NY has inherited a mounting cluster of cases for review. Taking his political stand against wrongful convictions, Brooklyn DA Kenneth Thompson is facing a huge uphill battle and pressure to get answers to those outstanding appeals. Once such case is Jonathan Fleming, still awaiting a ruling.
Management Resources LTD of NY principles, Bob Rahn and Kim Anklin, join Shattered Lives Radio to discuss wrongful convictions as an issue with an emphasis on what’s happening in Brooklyn. They are working with the defense attorney for Jonathan Fleming, and feel they have uncovered enough evidence to prove that Mr. Fleming has been unjustly incarcerated for over 20 years.
What happens when someone is imprisoned for over 20 years and suddenly finds themselves free? Are they compensated financially for the lost wages? Is there always a happy reunion with family and friends? From The Innocence Project:
Many exonerees are released from their cells without fanfare, apologies or anywhere to go. In some states, more services are available to parolees than to exonerees. During long years in prison, families and friends have disappeared. Any money in the bank before conviction has probably been spent on legal fees. Most exonerees struggle immediately to find housing and work and many bear the weight of a conviction on their record for years before they are officially cleared.
The stories of seven wrongly convicted men and their adjustment to freedom are told in the recently released documentary, After Innocence. Click here to learn more about the movie and to watch a trailer.
We, as a country, and a judicial system, have a long way to go to insure the least amount of wrongful convictions possible, as well as create resources for those exonerated to once again enjoy the life that was taken from them.
Management Resources LTD of NY has been in investigations and executive protection for over 20 years. Both Bob Rahn and Kim Anklin bring years of knowledge and experience to each case and client who contract with them. For details on their scope of services please visit the website: http://nysleuth.com and read their blog, The Memobook.