Posts Tagged ‘not guilty’

wrongly convictedAre there innocent people in our prisons? Yes, there are. And there are a lot of guilty people, who do not hesitate to tell you that they are guilty.

But an innocent man doing time for a crime he didn’t commit – that bothers me. Here in British Columbia, Canada, there is a man in prison for murder who has served nine years of a life sentence, while always maintaining his innocence. Two DNA experts have analyzed blood from the crime scene and have excluded this man. Videotape from an area camera confirmed that the man was an hour’s drive away when the crime was committed.

How can this happen in our society? The man has appealed his conviction to the different levels of courts and the same verdict comes back, guilty.

Impossible, you say. Our justice system works. But sometimes it doesn’t, as several famous cases have shown.

Affirming that you are innocent is a hard thing to do in prison. Prison officials like a man who humbly admits his guilt and willingly takes all the programs the officials line up for him. But if a man says, “I didn’t do it,” how can the instructors claim success?

When a crime is committed, society puts pressure on the police. “Solve this problem. We don’t want any killers running free in our city.” Most times the police and the prosecutors are fair, but sometimes they give in to pressure and send an innocent man to prison. It’s happened before.

Another problem is that the legal profession is a network of judges and lawyers. No one likes to overturn the work of a colleague. As the saying goes, it’s a good old boy network. Does that mean that a man must suffer imprisonment so as not to disturb the network?justice

What can the average person do? Certainly I can’t sit back and say, “Oh, well. That’s life.” But what can I do? I don’t know. Do you?

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