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Our job is to keep the innocent out of prison. If mistakes are made, they need to be corrected quickly.
Justice can only be served by a genuine search for the truth, and wrongful convictions only occur when there is a failure to discover, follow and honor the truth. Innocence Matters protects the innocent and prevents wrongful convictions by identifying and rectifying systemic practices that impede our search for truth. Because the disenfranchised are particularly vulnerable to systemic indifference, our work is focused on developing education, prevention and reform measures that will protect those most at risk and that will encourage the legal community to more quickly acknowledge and correct errors.
Innocence Matters provides direct representation for indigent people with compelling claims of innocence in Los Angeles County, who could not get the attention of the existing innocence groups. We have had two exonerations--John Edward Smith and Susan Suzy Mellen, and we are on the verge o securing our third.
Each of those clients, and all those waiting for our assistance, have this in common: a number of lawyers and investigators spanning over a decade vailed to conduct a logical investigation into their clients' claim of innocence.
Innocence Matters is always looking for innovative ways to "raise the bar" for indigent defense, prevent wrongful convictions, educate the public, and encourage criminal justice reform.
This year, we are using the insights from our client's cases to develop an online course that will teach future and current lawyers and investigators how to properly investigate claims of innocence.
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