The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Dallas County district attorney speaks on Innocence Project

Craig+Watkins
Craig Watkins

The Innocence Project is a group that works toward freeing those wrongly convicted, and one of its most powerful partners will speak about it on South Campus.

Dallas County District Attorney Craig Watkins will present a seminar on the project 12:30-2 p.m. Feb. 17 in the Recital Hall. Watkins is the first African-American elected to the position of district attorney in Texas.

Craig Watkins

The Innocence Project works to secure freedom for people who have been wrongfully convicted of crimes. Junk science, faulty autopsies, dog scent lineups and false identifications have claimed the freedom of numerous citizens, but many have died awaiting a chance for exoneration, according to www.innocenceproject.org.

During Watkins’ tenure, 21 convicts have been exonerated after DNA evidence cleared them. Because of the project’s work, the first posthumous pardon in Texas was given to Timothy Cole by Gov. Rick Perry last year. Cole, a young veteran, was falsely accused as the “Tech Rapist.” The victim pointed Cole out as her attacker, and he was convicted on her testimony. Cole died in 1999 after serving 13 years of a 25-year sentence for a crime he did not commit and for which he was later exonerated.

Although Innocence Project members consist of private investigators, lawyers, paralegals and law students, some are ordinary citizens committed to improving Texas’s criminal justice system under the leadership and supervision of the organization’s board of directors, according to the project’s website.

Admission is free and open to the public. A reception will take place from 12:30-1 p.m.

— Angel Carr


Donate to The Collegian

Your donation will support the student journalists of Tarrant County College. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to The Collegian