Milestone: Exonerated Defendants Spent 20,000 Years in Prison - 10 September 2018In August 2018, the National Registry of Exonerations passed a milestone: The number of “years lost” that exonerated defendants spent in prison for crimes they did not commit exceeded 20,000. This short report examines years lost by race and crime, and also whether exonerees were compensated for those years. Read more.
The National Registry of Exonerations is a project of the Newkirk Center for Science & Society at University of California Irvine, the University of Michigan Law School and Michigan State University College of Law. It was founded in 2012 in conjunction with the Center on Wrongful Convictions at Northwestern University School of Law. The Registry provides detailed information about every known exoneration in the United States since 1989—cases in which a person was wrongly convicted of a crime and later cleared of all the charges based on new evidence of innocence. The Registry also maintains a more limited database of known exonerations prior to 1989.
We welcome new information from any source about exonerations already on our list and about cases not in the Registry that might be exonerations.