New partnership for KU program to help prisoners who otherwise might not receive legal representation
"According to national statistics 2 to 5 percent of innocent people can be incarcerated. This week a University of Kansas program announced a partnership with the Midwest Innocence Project, to help those people in jail and shouldn't be, get out.
Former University of Kansas Law Professor Paul E. Wilson founded the Defender Project in 1965, bringing students and staff together to help prisoners who otherwise might not receive legal representation.
'Individuals who had been convicted could seek our assistance to review their conviction, determine whether or not they received a fair trial, if there is something we can do to obtain a new trial for that individual, or sometimes a new sentencing for that individual,' said Jean Phillips, Director of the Paul E. Wilson Project for Innocence & Post-Conviction Remedies at the University of Kansas.
Through the years the program has evolved, changed names, and now the Paul E. Wilson Project for Innocence & Post-Conviction Remedies has joined together with the Midwest Innocence Project.
'It allows us to do more actual innocence work so that even if we can't go back and establish the trial was unfair, perhaps we can go back and establish the individual was innocent,' said Phillips."