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Representation of wrongfully convicted inmates in postconviction claims of innocence.

Award Information

Award #
Congressional District
Funding First Awarded
Total funding (to date)

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2013, $240,700)

The purpose of the Wrongful Conviction Review Program is to provide high quality and efficient representation for potentially wrongfully convicted defendants in post-conviction claims of innocence. This program is funded under the FY13 (BJA - Wrongful Conviction Review) Pub. L. No. 113-6, 127 Stat. 198, 253. Post-conviction innocence claims are likely to include complex challenges to the reliability or accuracy of evidence presented at trial which fall mainly into three categories: eyewitness identification evidence; confession evidence; and forensic evidence. The goals of this initiative are to: provide quality representation to those who may have been wrongfully convicted; alleviate burdens placed on the criminal justice system through costly and prolonged post-conviction litigation; and identify, whenever possible, the actual perpetrator of the crime.

The California Western School of Law, in conjunction with the California Innocence Project, will use its FY 2013 Wrongful Conviction grant award to provide high-quality legal representation to inmates in southern California claiming factual innocence, increase the number of investigations in cases, and reduce backlog of cases by increasing the number of writ of habeas corpus petitions. The grantee will use the award to hire a full-time attorney experienced in writing habeas corpus petitions, add a full-time legal director to oversee the active caseload, and fund expert consultant, training, and evidence collection and testing costs.


Date Created: August 21, 2013