Texas Innocence Network

Texas Innocence Network The Texas Innocence Network is a non-profit legal organization which works on post-conviction actual innocence claims and appellate death penalty cases.
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Created in 2000, the Texas Innocence Network, based at the University of Houston Law Center, is Texas’ oldest innocence network. Capital Division The Capital Division represents death-sentenced inmates in their state and federal habeas appeals. TIN attorneys rely largely on student interns to conduct the exhaustive investigations necessary to develop the claims raised in these proceedings. The Capital Division also responds to requests from inmates who have been denied relief in their habeas proceedings and for whom an execution date is imminent. In these “crisis cases,” TIN attorneys and interns work tirelessly to identify and develop potential claims in an attempt to stop the execution. The Capital Division also provides research and investigative support for other attorneys representing Texas death row inmates. Non-Capital Division The Non-Capital Division works to exonerate inmates who did not commit the crimes for which they were wrongfully-convicted. In order to fulfill its mission, the Non-Capital Division evaluates, investigates, and litigates claims of actual innocence. Letters from inmates and their agents are initially reviewed to ascertain whether an actual innocence claim that falls within project parameters has been presented. If so, the Non-Capital Division requests additional information to provide a better understanding of the inmate’s case and claim. Upon receipt of this information, the Non-Capital Division reviews the case file to determine whether there is any evidence that indicate that the inmate was wrongfully convicted, then attempts to locate the exonerating evidence. Once evidence of actual innocence has been established, the Non-Capital Division provides post-conviction legal assistance to wrongfully-convicted inmates by filing petitions for a writ of habeas corpus, clemency applications, or both. Student interns from the University of Houston Law Center (UHLC) are integral to this process. The Non-Capital Division was founded by UHLC Distinguished University Professor David R. Dow in 2000. It started as a student volunteer organization and quickly evolved into a class offered year-round. Consequently, UHLC students constantly work on the literally hundreds of investigations that are open and ongoing at any given time. UHLC students provide invaluable assistance and support, in order to free innocent men and women who are incarcerated for crimes they did not commit.

Operating as usual

“But perhaps there is something more. If the State of Texas holds that it’s impossible to properly vet and train spiritu...
10/19/2020
Opinion | A Question of Life and Death Looms for Amy Coney Barrett

“But perhaps there is something more. If the State of Texas holds that it’s impossible to properly vet and train spiritual representatives of the myriad faiths represented among its condemned, and it violates a person’s religious liberty to be refused a spiritual adviser at the moment of death, then the simplest resolution is that no person ought ever to be executed in Texas again.”

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/10/19/opinion/amy-coney-barrett-death-penalty-catholic.html

If confirmed, she may soon have to reconcile her Catholic morality and the law over a death penalty case.

University of Houston Law Center
07/29/2020

University of Houston Law Center

Do you know about our Texas Innocence Network? TIN, established at the Law Center in 2000, is the oldest innocence program in Texas, and has two divisions. The Capital Division represents death-sentenced inmates at every stage of their state and federal habeas appeals. The Non-Capital Division works to exonerate inmates who did not commit the crimes for which they were wrongfully-convicted.

Want to know more? http://www.law.uh.edu/tin/homepage.asp

https://www.facebook.com/texasinnocencenetwork

http://twitter.com/TexasInnocence/

#weareHoustonLaw #HoustonLaw #lawschool #lawcenter

Honey Brown Hope Foundation
06/20/2020

Honey Brown Hope Foundation

PRAISE REPORT 🤗

Last year, the Honey Brown Hope Foundation honored Fort Bend ISD Thurgood Marshall senior with the "Peacekeeper Award" for her courage and activism.

She was suspended from Thurgood Marshall High School after trying to verbally deescalate a fight between fellow students. Founder Tammie Lang Campbell and Attorney Christine Beeler of Juvenile and Children's Advocacy Project stepped in to address that the suspension was rooted in FBISD's pattern of unjustly penalizing Black students.

As a result of Campbell's and Beeler's advocacy, FBISD issued a formal apology and removed the three-day suspension from her record.

Fast forward to now, and she has graduated Magna Cum Laude! Congratulations, young lady 🎓🙌🎉!

“There is nothing merciful about asking someone to plead guilty to a crime the evidence clearly shows they didn’t commit...
02/23/2020
A 42-year inmate’s choice: Exoneration fight or ‘deal with the devil’ for freedom

“There is nothing merciful about asking someone to plead guilty to a crime the evidence clearly shows they didn’t commit,” she shot back. “It’s coercive, and to call it anything else is laughable.”

https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/a-42-year-inmates-choice-exoneration-fight-or-deal-with-the-devil-for-freedom/2020/02/19/47564e50-4e84-11ea-bf44-f5043eb3918a_story.html

Though New Orleans prosecutors suppressed key evidence at his trial, Brooks was offered a plea deal instead of exoneration. He’s not alone.

http://www.aulawreview.org/dead-wrong-texas-tests-the-free-exercise-clause-and-the-religious-land-use-and-institutionali...
02/12/2020
American University Law Review | Dead Wrong: Texas Tests the Free Exercise Clause and the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act by Banning Spiritual Advisors from Execution Chambers

http://www.aulawreview.org/dead-wrong-texas-tests-the-free-exercise-clause-and-the-religious-land-use-and-institutionalized-persons-act-by-banning-spiritual-advisors-from-execution-chambers/

American University Law Review Forum Comment Volume 69 Forum Dead Wrong: Texas Tests the Free Exercise Clause and the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act by Banning Spiritual Advisors from Execution Chambers February 8, 2020 by Caroline Koch* 69 Am. U. L. Rev. F. 125 (2020). * Junio...

Jurors swayed by racism in Texas death penalty case?
02/06/2020
Jurors swayed by racism in Texas death penalty case?

Jurors swayed by racism in Texas death penalty case?

NEW ORLEANS — Andre Thomas is blind because he gouged out his own eyes and ate one of them.He is incarcerated because he stabbed his white wife,

Race Looms Ever Larger as Death Sentences Decline
12/04/2019
Race Looms Ever Larger as Death Sentences Decline

Race Looms Ever Larger as Death Sentences Decline

The Supreme Court restarted the death penalty in 1976 after ruling it unconstitutional. Our numbers show that race remains an overwhelming factor.

11/15/2019

Rodney Reed just got a stay from the CCA. Tremendous work by his team.

Juvenile and Children's Advocacy Project
11/13/2019
Juvenile and Children's Advocacy Project

Juvenile and Children's Advocacy Project

We recently created an online school discipline guide in partnership with Texas Appleseed, Disability Rights Texas, and the Earl Carl Institute for Legal and Social Policy, Inc. If you want to learn more about school discipline in Texas or have questions about specific school discipline issues, check it out!

Our client Patrick Murphy will not be executed tonight. This will allow proceedings to determine what right he has to be...
11/13/2019
Texas Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty - TCADP

Our client Patrick Murphy will not be executed tonight. This will allow proceedings to determine what right he has to be accompanied by a Buddhist reverend during the moments before he is executed to continue in the district court.

The US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit has upheld the stay of execution granted to Patrick Murphy by a federal district judge last week. The state will not appeal, which means Murphy will not be put to death tonight as scheduled. It’s the second time this year his execution has been halted.

https://www.texastribune.org/2019/11/07/texas-execution-halted-patrick-murphy-buddhist/

Our capital division interns (5 of 7 of whom are pictured below) have done some really terrific work this summer.
08/01/2019

Our capital division interns (5 of 7 of whom are pictured below) have done some really terrific work this summer.

Texas Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty - TCADP
05/31/2019
Texas Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty - TCADP

Texas Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty - TCADP

Attention Houston supporters! Join TCADP, the European Union, the Consul of Greece in Houston, and the University of Houston-Downtown for a special screening of Lindy Lou: Juror Number 2 on Wednesday, June 12 at 6:00 PM. RSVP today!

Lindy Lou: Juror Number 2 is a documentary from filmmaker Florent Vassault that tells the story of Lindy Lou Isonhood, who served on a capital jury in Mississippi 20 years ago. The jury’s decision to sentence the defendant to death had a profound impact on her. In the film, she attempts to track down other jurors to discuss their experience in the aftermath of the trial.

Following the film, we will have a discussion with experts on the front lines of the criminal justice system. This event is a collaboration with POV, PBS’ award-winning nonfiction film series: http://www.pbs.org/pov/.

Appetizers and drinks to follow the film screening and panel discussion.

https://www.chron.com/news/houston-texas/houston/article/Worst-decision-I-ve-ever-made-Juror-from-13674892.php
03/09/2019
‘Worst decision I’ve ever made’: Juror from Alfred Brown case finds relief in innocence finding

https://www.chron.com/news/houston-texas/houston/article/Worst-decision-I-ve-ever-made-Juror-from-13674892.php

Every day for 14 years, Anne O'Donnell prayed for Alfred Brown. It seemed like the least she could do for the man she'd helped send to death row. A juror in the Harris County man's capital murder trial, O'Donnell had doubts from the start. As she remembers it, she was the last of the 12 who could be...

Juvenile and Children's Advocacy Project
12/22/2018
Juvenile and Children's Advocacy Project

Juvenile and Children's Advocacy Project

We have a new website! Check it out and share it with your friends and networks!

Especially notable is our form to submit for legal assistance through our new School Discipline program. If a student in middle school or high school in a public school in the Houston area is facing suspension, expulsion, or removal to a district alternative education program or a juvenile justice alternative education program, please refer them to our free program to see if our team can help.

Texas Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty - TCADP
10/22/2018
Texas Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty - TCADP

Texas Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty - TCADP

"For the second time this month, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals has halted an execution days before it was set to proceed.

Kwame Rockwell, 42, was set for execution Wednesday, Oct. 24. In a late appeal, his lawyers asked the high court to stop his execution, claiming he was incompetent for the punishment due to his schizophrenia. To be executed, an inmate must be able to understand his death is imminent and link it to the murder in which he was convicted."

10/19/2018

Shortly before 5:00 today, the CCA reversed the trial court and stayed Kwame Rockwell's (our client) execution, which had been set for October 24!

The Marshall Project
08/02/2018
The Marshall Project

The Marshall Project

Pope Francis has declared the death penalty inadmissible in all cases “because it is an attack on the inviolability and dignity of the person.”

Our capital division interns have done some really terrific work this summer.
07/24/2018

Our capital division interns have done some really terrific work this summer.

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4604 Calhoun Road
Houston, TX
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