Edward Lai Harner, Edward Harner
Andrea Harner
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July 7, 2008

The Innocent Man: Murder and Injustice in a Small Town By John Grisham

This book was a heart-wrenching and eye-opening read. Grisham tells the story of Ron Williamson and makes you realize how colossally human we are: Our actions are mostly fueled by good yet our pathologies intervene. Also, we harbor the capacity to commit cruel acts solely for ego survival as painfully portrayed by the Ada, Oklahoma police department. While it was certainly troubling to read the process of how such an atrocity happened, the book is also, as the best investigative journalistic works are, thoughtful, illuminating and gripping. Grisham's first foray into non-fiction proves that his storytelling skills are sharpest in this genre!


* Thanks to my dad for the recommendation - Of course I already had it ready and waiting on my bookshelf!


I heard that the local prosecutor there is suing Grisham for some of the allegations in the book. The sad thing is that stories like the one in Grisham's book are played out everyday in various localities in our country. Where I live, Illinois, over 20 people have been freed from death row in the last 5 years alone due to prosecutorial shenannigans, crappy witnesses, bogus confessions, etc. It would be nice if prosecutors had equal zeal for justice as they do for getting re-elected and seeking higher office. We almost elected a candidate for governor who made no apologies for putting 2 men on death row who didn't belong there. Support The Innocence Project!!!

AH.com: Well-said and afreed!

Posted by: JohnfromDowntown at July 8, 2008 12:54 PM


Wrongful convictions are something I'm really troubled by. Recently I've been supporting preparation for the appeal of Paul V. Cortez. He was convicted of 2nd degree murder in 2007 for the murder of an aspiring dancer on the UES. The trial was botched at best-there was forensic evidence that was never thoroughly tested (hair in the victims hand that did not match the convicted, and a media circus that tainted the jury pool) Check out his defense fund website to get details about the case.


This guy desperately needs help - even 1 day is too long to be in prison for a crime you didn't committ, Paul has already spent nearly 3 years behind bars-wrongful convictions happen way more than we realize!

Posted by: Tiffany at July 9, 2008 2:36 PM

I did check out the Paul Cortez site and also am troubled by the staggering estimates on wrongful convictions. I can't imagine why it takes so many years and so much money to prove one's innocence. Why wouldn't that hair have been tested? It is really strange that the concentration was on circumstantial evidence rather than something as definitive as DNA. Amazing how there is never accountability being required of our lawyers or judges and what they allow to masquerade as justice.

Posted by: John at July 17, 2008 11:47 AM
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