ABOUT US

Why innocence projects are needed

The extraordinary number — not to overlook the shocking stories — of exonerations throughout the United States have proven that our criminal justice system is systemically flawed and that reform is needed to help prevent future wrongful convictions. 

Why Oregon

Oregon is not exempt from error. Oregon, like every other state, is susceptible to the same causes of wrongful convictions, such as mistaken eyewitness identification, false confessions, and invalidated or improper forensic science. According to the National Registry of Exonerations, there have been 16 exonerations in Oregon. Without a program in Oregon that focuses solely on wrongful convictions, there would be no certain way to know whether any of the people currently incarcerated here should in fact be freed.

The Hidden "O" Logo: The columns and bars represent the DNA testing form grid and the “O” letter form is constructed with the negative space between the "I" and "P": the "I" and "P" also represent prison bars and the hidden "O" represents those Oregonians wrongfully incarcerated in our prisons and whose voices have been unheard until now.

The Hidden "O" Logo: The columns and bars represent the DNA testing form grid and the “O” letter form is constructed with the negative space between the "I" and "P": the "I" and "P" also represent prison bars and the hidden "O" represents those Oregonians wrongfully incarcerated in our prisons and whose voices have been unheard until now.

Our Mission

We launched Oregon Innocence Project (OIP) in 2014 with a mission to exonerate the wrongfully convicted, train law students, and promote legal reforms aimed at preventing wrongful convictions. 

What we do

OIP is the only project of its kind in Oregon whose sole mission is to actively track inmates' claims of innocence, investigate those claims, test DNA and other scientific evidence, and litigate where appropriate. As well as securing the release of people who have been wrongfully convicted, we provide an outstanding educational experience for students who work with us.

We collaborate with all stakeholders (district attorneys, the defense bar, policymakers, police, victims' rights groups, forensic scientists, laboratory managers, and other practitioners working in the criminal justice system). Our goal is to build support for comprehensive criminal justice reform to improve eyewitness identification, interrogation practices, discovery practices, and other policies that do not serve to protect the innocent or punish the guilty.

Thanks to all the supporters of Oregon Innocence Project. A list of our major supporters is available here.

Oregon Innocence Project is administered by the Oregon Justice Resource Center, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization located in Portland, Oregon. Learn more about OJRC by visiting their website.