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Aug 14, 2018

Wrongful Conviction Day – October 2nd, 2018

statue of justice

25 Years

21 Exonerations

 5th Annual Wrongful Conviction Day

Innocence Canada recognizing milestone anniversaries

On October 3, 2018, Innocence Canada will be celebrating its 25th Anniversary and the 5th Anniversary of International Wrongful Conviction Day (WCD) at a reception at the Law Society of Upper Canada, 130 Queen Street, West, Toronto.

Wrongful Conviction Day has provided a rich opportunity for individuals and organizations around the world who are committed to the battle against wrongful convictions, to organize programs aimed at drawing attention to injustices, rallying support against them and providing public education.

The evening’s programme will be opened and closed by exonerees.

Innocence Canada will be presenting the 4th annual Rubin Hurricane Carter Champion of Justice Award and the 4th annual Tracey Tyler Award but in addition to these two prestigious awards will be the presentation of the first Donald Marshall Junior Award.  This award will be given to an exoneree who has through their courage, determination, tenacity and unwillingness to give up or give in been able to go the distance in proving their innocence.

One of Innocence Canada’s founding members and criminal defence lawyer James Lockyer will reflect on the past 25 years of the organization’s important work on behalf of the wrongly convicted.  Also speaking will be criminal defence lawyer, humanitarian and former Innocence Canada Director, Marlys Edwardh.

Innocence Canada once again will be joining an increasing number of innocence organizations from around the world as well as individuals, businesses, schools, and other members of the public to recognize the 5th Anniversary of WCD which was launched by Innocence Canada on October 2, 2014. 

Cities from across Canada have been signing proclamations in support of WCD and landmarks around the world will be illuminated in recognition of the wrongly convicted and their battle for freedom and exoneration

WCD is designed to encourage the participation of the public and organizations. Faith communities, representatives of all levels of government and educational institutes will set aside time to focus on the causes and remedies concerning wrongful convictions, an issue that affects and devastates individuals and societies worldwide. This can be achieved through media releases, book signings, magazine articles, opinion pieces for daily newspapers, interviews, phone-in talk shows, educational forums, presentations by exonerees, faith community services, vigils, film festivals, Twitter, Facebook and You Tube videos.

Frank and open discussion about the causes of wrongful convictions can lead to positive change in our criminal justice systems and help reduce future wrongful convictions.

Background on Innocence Movement

Since its inception in 1993, Innocence Canada has helped in the exonerations of 21 Canadians.  These innocent individuals combined spent more than 190 years in prison.  Innocence Canada has 81 cases currently under review and is undertaking a major project over the coming year to cut into this backlog.

In the United States, the National Registry of Exonerations recorded 139 exonerations in 2017.  Spending a combined total of 1,473 years in prison. The National Registry has recorded 2,161 known exonerations since 1989. Exonerations in 2017 set record numbers of the most murder exonerations with official misconduct and false confessions as the primary reasons for their wrongful convictions.

For more information and interview requests for exonerees and Innocence Canada representatives please contact:

Win Wahrer

  • Innocence Canada
  • Toll free: 1-800-249-1329 x 227
  • In Toronto: 416-504-7500 x 227
  • Cell: 416-459-2065

WCD is supported and sponsored by the Criminal Lawyers Association, the Law Society of Upper Canada, the Law Foundation of Ontario, Legal Aid Ontario, educational institutions, law offices and many others.

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