THE IMPRISONED INNOCENT USING DNA TESTING AND ANALYSIS
THE PUBLIC ABOUT THE PROBLEM OF WRONGFUL CONVICTIONS
PRACTICES TO PREVENT OTHERS FROM SUFFERING THE SAME FATE
THE EXONERATED WITH RESOURCES TO HELP REBUILD THEIR LIVES
WE ARE A VOICE FOR THE IMPRISONED INNOCENT
Studies estimate that an astounding 4-6% of men and women in prison are innocent of the crimes for which they are imprisoned. In Georgia alone, that means at least 2,100 number of people are currently incarcerated in prison for crimes they did not commit. Many factors contribute to these wrongful convictions, including eyewitness misidentification, official misconduct, misapplied forensic science, incentivized witnesses, and false confessions. Less quantifiable, but overlaying many wrongful convictions, are human factors and systems such as cognitive bias, racial bias and discrimination, inadequate public defense, and mass incarceration.
Georgia Innocence Project (GIP) is an independent nonprofit organization that works to correct and prevent wrongful convictions in Georgia. Collaborating with a network of pro bono lawyers, volunteers, and students, GIP attorneys and staff conduct investigations into criminal convictions where modern DNA testing was not available at the time of trial. We do not charge for our services, and we have very strict case acceptance criteria. We have accepted only a very small fraction of the more than 7,600 requests for help that we have received. If there is a compelling claim of actual innocence, and DNA or other new evidence exists to prove that innocence, GIP litigates cases to secure release. GIP has exonerated eight men who were wrongfully imprisoned for a combined total of 139 years.
GIP helps prevent future wrongful convictions by raising awareness through education and by advocating for policy and legislative reform. By remedying the causes of wrongful conviction, the criminal legal system is improved for everyone.
GIP also works with exonerees to connect them with resources to reintegrate into society and to create a supportive community. Exonerees and those who have been freed from wrongful imprisonment are our inspiration. Through their stories, we can all learn about the many causes and consequences of wrongful conviction, and about the enduring nature of the human spirit.