Benjamin Franklin once said, “it is better to have one hundred guilty persons escape conviction than allow one innocent person to be wrongfully convicted.” Unfortunately, in New York and across the country, there are many individuals who have spent years – sometimes decades – falsely imprisoned for crimes that they never committed. These convictions derail the lives of those involved. The wrongfully accused is convicted for a crime that they never committed and forced to spend years behind bars, their freedom having been robbed from them. Meanwhile, their families are forced to be without them, parents are left without children, and children are left without parents.
In addition, even if they are lucky enough to be later exonerated, they are unable to regain the time that they have lost are set free unto a world that they no longer know, having to put the pieces of their lives back together on their own. In addition, these wrongful convictions erode confidence in the criminal justice system, which many believe has protections in place to prevent such egregious injustices.