Fighting for justice

Studies estimate that between 2% and 7% of all people incarcerated in the U.S. are innocent and that 1 in 25 people on death row is innocent. For context, if just 1% of all people incarcerated are innocent, that would mean that more than 20,000 innocent people are in prison.

Here are some of their stories:

Antoine Young

Antoine Young

  • Convicted of:First degree murder
  • Sentence:Life without parole
  • Years Served:11+
Lamar Johnson

Lamar Johnson

  • Convicted of:Capital murder
  • Sentence:Life without parole
  • Years Served:23+
Michael Politte

Michael Politte

  • Convicted of:Second degree murder
  • Sentence:Life
  • Years Served:17+

The causes of
wrongful convictions

As the number of DNA exonerations has grown across the country in recent years, wrongful convictions have revealed disturbing fissures and trends in our criminal justice system. Together, these cases show us how the criminal justice system is broken and how urgently it needs to be fixed. In each case where DNA has proven innocence beyond doubt, an overlapping array of causes has emerged – from mistakes and misconduct to factors of race and class.


Eyewitness misidentification is the single greatest cause of wrongful convictions nationwide, playing a role in more than 75% of convictions overturned through DNA testing.


We have identified three disciplines that recent progress in forensic science has shown to be particularly problematic: the microscopic comparison of hairs, forensic odontology and bite mark comparisons, and fire scene or arson investigations.


In more than 25% of DNA exoneration cases, innocent defendants made incriminating statements, delivered outright confessions, or pled guilty. These cases show that confessions are not always prompted by internal knowledge or actual guilt, but are sometimes motivated by external influences.

Ways to get involved

Through your support, we can right these wrongs. You can make a difference and help bring truth to light.