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Talk examines what happens to the wrongfully convicted after exoneration

Once exonerated, wrongfully imprisoned people are often celebrated in the media and become subjects of keen political and social fascination. But what happens when the camera eye closes and life for the innocent resumes anew?

March 30 from 5:30 to 7 p.m., in the Harper Center Auditorium, Creighton University will host lawyer and humanitarian Laura Caldwell and Kristine Bunch, a woman who spent 17 years in prison for a crime she did not commit, for a talk on what happens next in the lives of wrongfully convicted and imprisoned people.

Caldwell, a professor at Loyola University Chicago School of Law and a former civil trial attorney, leads Life After Innocence, an organization dedicated to providing wrongfully imprisoned people with housing, education, employment and legal assistance in helping restore their names and reputations. She is also the author of 15 books.

Caldwell founded Life After Innocence at Loyola when she witnessed the barriers one of her own exonerated clients faced in the wake of being freed from prison. She remains the organization’s director, helping coordinate its programs and also pushing for legislation to assist exonerated individuals.

A statement from Life After Innocence explains the heart of the group’s work this way: “Culturally, we are much more aware today that wrongful convictions happen somewhat frequently. Yet very few understand how wrongful convictions happen, why they happen or how some could have endured the experience.”

This event is hosted by the Social Work Program in the Department of Cultural and Social Studies at Creighton and is co-sponsored by the Nebraska Innocence Project.

The event is free and open to the public, but registration is requested. Click here to register on Eventbrite.

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