The Innocence Clinic is dedicated to identifying and correcting wrongful convictions and is committed to exonerating innocent individuals and combating injustice. The clinic handles cases involving innocent individuals incarcerated for a minimum of 10 years who have new evidence ranging from recanting witnesses to new witnesses discovered by students to prosecutorial misconduct and ineffective assistance of counsel.
The clinic also accepts cases involving DNA evidence. The majority of the cases handled by the clinic involve serious offenses such as rape and murder and the majority of our clients are serving life sentences.
In this hands-on project, law students have the opportunity for live client representation and the responsibility of:
- Investigating innocence claims and litigating post-conviction motions when appropriate
- Reexamining cases in their entirety and providing post-conviction representation to defendants with compelling claims to innocence
- Contributing to the project through fact investigation, interviewing defendants and witnesses, and legal research and analysis
In addition, students may also have the opportunity to research, draft, and file motions for post-conviction relief, and appear in court on behalf of those wrongfully convicted. Project responsibilities include detailed knowledge of the project's procedures and thorough documentation of actions taken on cases through memo writing. The entire project is paperless and requires extensive emailing and software involvement. Investigation of innocence claims includes case screening, witness and client interviews, motion writing, and research. Students may have the opportunity to litigate motions for post-conviction relief.
FRAUD ALERT – It has come to the clinic’s attention that there are people who fraudulently represent themselves as working for the Innocence Project, promising legal representation in exchange for money. These people do not work for the Innocence Project. The Innocence Project provides all legal representation for free. While the project relies on charitable donations to support our work, the project never solicits money for services from clients.