Noted Attorney, Author Raises Funds for Wrongfully Convicted Felons
By Dave Jordan, NEWS 9
OKLAHOMA CITY -- Noted attorney-turned-author John Grisham is in Oklahoma raising money for Innocence Project, an organization that works to free wrongfully convicted felons.
Grisham gained worldwide recognition for his legal thrillers, but three years ago he released his first non-fiction book called An Innocent Man.
That story was based on the wrongful conviction of Oklahomans Ron Williamson and Dennis Fritz back in the 80s for the murder of a waitress. Fritz was sentenced life in prison and Williamson was on death row before DNA evidence cleared both men in 1999.
Both were freed with help from the Innocence Project. Now Grisham is helping to raise money to get the program off the ground in Oklahoma.
"This is not some left wing liberal cause. We believe guilty people should go to prison and innocent people should get out of prison, and I tell people all the time, you send an innocent man to prison you've just increased the crime rate," Grisham said.
The Oklahoma City University School of Law said it would take about $2 million to get a local chapter of the Innocence Project off the ground.