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New York Daily News: N.Y.’s wrongfully convicted need a true path to justice

May 9, 2022

The first time our criminal legal system failed me was in 1996. At the age of 26, I had recently moved into a friend’s home after living in the Wards Island shelter. I barely had time to get settled when I was arrested on a robbery charge for allegedly stealing VHS tapes and $10. When I spoke with my attorney, she tried to coerce me into taking a guilty plea of three years. Unlike most, I refused to take the plea deal in the face of my innocence. As a result of exercising my right to trial, I was found guilty by a jury and the three years that I was previously offered turned into five to 10 years.

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