Expungement Crisis: The Long Wait to Restore ‘Ruined Lives’

Troy Burner, a D.C. native released from prison in 2018 and cleared of all the charges against him, has still not received his certificate of innocence, which would seal his records and allow him to sue for a wrongful conviction. There are many more like him: A recent study found that only 6.5 percent of those legally eligible for expungement obtain it within five years.


How a Case of Mistaken Identity Led to a Life Term for Murder

Thomas Raynard James is serving a life sentence in a Florida prison for a murder he says was committed by someone who happened to have the same name as his. Thirty years later, a GQ journalist found the man who may be the real killer. “The police,” he acknowledged, “were looking for me.”


The Uncomfortable Truth About Wrongful Convictions

A New York Times journalist’s account of how she helped free a wrongfully convicted individual shines a spotlight on why so many innocent people still languish in a system that is incapable of discovering and rectifying errors, writes TCR’s legal affairs columnist.


Why Did It Take 47 Years to Prove Anthony Mazza was Innocent?

The 73-year-old Mazza was America’s longest-serving exoneree when he was freed from prison last June, after serving nearly five decades for a murder he didn’t commit. His story underlines how difficult it is for the majority of innocent defendants to find justice, write the co-founder of the National Registry of Exonerations and a researcher. 

justice scales

Exonerated Defendants Lost 25,000 Years to Wrongful Imprisonment

State and municipal governments paid over $2.9 billion in compensation to exonerees, according to the latest report from The National Registry of Exonerations. The amount “is nothing close to adequate compensation for the suffering these exonerees endured,” the NRE said, noting that 55 percent weren’t paid anything.