Contact: Lara Zarowsky
(206) 850-4333
zarowsky@uw.edu

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

May 9, 2013

Governor Signs Bill Compensating the Wrongly Convicted

Washington’s wrongly convicted will now get an opportunity to rebuild their lives after Governor Jay Inslee signed the Bill to Compensate the Wrongly Convicted into law on Wednesday, May 8, 2013.

This new law, championed by Representative Tina Orwall and the Innocence Project Northwest Legislative Advocacy Clinic will provide the wrongly convicted with $50,000 for each year of wrongful incarceration in addition to other benefits. After a three-year legislative effort, the law passed through the House and Senate with bipartisan and nearly unanimous support.

This law remedies the opportunities lost due to wrongful conviction—the chance to raise a family, to buy a home, or to start a small business, among many others. When the wrongly convicted are released from prison their freedom is restored, but these opportunities are not.

Four Innocence Project Northwest clients stand to benefit from this law. Ted Bradford was wrongly incarcerated for 10 years and denied the opportunity to watch his children grow up. Larry Davis and Alan Northrop were wrongly imprisoned for 17 years, taking away their opportunity to build careers and raise and support their families. On top of losing the opportunity to raise his children, Alan was hit with a six-figure child support bill upon release that accrued during his incarceration. James Anderson was extradited from his home in California and incarcerated for 4 years in Washington before he was able to return on Christmas Eve 2011.

The law provides wrongly convicted persons who can prove actual innocence in court with $50,000 per year of wrongful incarceration and $25,000 per year spent wrongfully on parole, in community custody, or as a registered sex offender. It also includes payment of child support accrued during wrongful incarceration and provides the wrongly convicted with re-entry services and tuition waivers to state universities and colleges.

Finally, this law provides a legal determination of actual innocence in recognition of the deep wrongs suffered by the wrongly convicted.

If you would like more information or to schedule an interview, please contact Lara Zarowsky at (206) 850-4333, zarowsky@uw.edu.