Skip to Content

Get Your FREE Consultation


New York Times Reports on Difficulties Exonerees Face

March 21, 2013

The New York Times published a story last week highlighting the difficulties many exonerees face. The Times article focuses on Robert Dewey, a Colorado resident who spent 18 years in prison for a murder he did not commit. With the help of the Innocence Project and DNA testing that organization procured, Dewey was exonerated and released from prison. However, Dewey, now 52, encountered a world much-changed from what he knew when he was sentenced to life in prison nearly 20 years ago.

Because Dewey was sentenced to life in prison, he never learned about computers or took vocational classes while in prison. When released, he had no job skills that would help him adjust to life on the outside and no way to make ends meet. To make matters worse, Colorado is one of 23 states that have no system to compensate individuals who were wrongfully convicted. Many states have a system in place which will provide lost wages for each year of wrongful incarceration. For instance, in North Carolina, a wrongfully convicted individual receives an award of $50,000 per year of wrongful incarceration up to a maximum of $750,000. Such awards are administered by the North Carolina Industrial Commission and are intended to compensate an individual for wages he would have earned but for his wrongful incarceration. A similar bill is under consideration in Colorado that would provide exonerees such as Dewey $70,000 for each year of wrongful imprisonment, plus tuition waivers at state colleges.

The story of Robert Dewey highlights the difficult time many exonerees experience when released from prison. Yes, they have their freedom, but often are ill-prepared to face life outside of prison. That situation is even worse when the exoneree has no source of income or funds with which to restart his life post-exoneration.

No Win, No Fee

Review Us

Martin & Jones, PLLC logo

“Forest, once again, my family and I thank you for obtaining another settlement on behalf of my Father. It’s almost uncanny that these checks seem to come at very opportune times. This one comes as we are expecting our fourth grandchild. It will provide her some sound footing towards her future college education, plus help Mom and Dad with the medical expenses. Sometimes, I think my Dad is helping you guys with this. Maybe so. Anyway, thank you again for your hard work.”

Contact Our North Carolina Personal Injury Law Firm

for a Consultation for Your Accident or Medical Malpractice Claim

Call us at 800-662-1234
No Win, No Fee

The law firm you choose makes a difference. If you are the victim of an accident or an illness that someone else caused, the North Carolina personal injury law firm of Martin & Jones has the depth of experience, skills and sensitivity to make your road to recovery as smooth as possible. Whether you have experience with the legal system or have never hired a medical malpractice or personal injury lawyer before, our attorneys and staff will do our best to answer your questions, provide clear advice and prepare you and your family for what to expect. If you would like more information or to meet with one of our attorneys, please fill out the form below or call us at 800.662.1234.