Michigan News Articles

FREED MAN TO GET $3.7 MILLION - November 29, 2005 - Detroit Free Press - He was wrongly convicted of rape.  In America, our Constitution and Bill of Rights, in theory at least, guarantee each of us a fair trial should we be charged with a criminal offense.  They guarantee that we are innocent until proven guilty.  They gaurantee an appeal process.  They guarantee a trial by a jury of our peers.  I believe in this with all my being.  However, the fact is that these guarantees really guarantee nothing.  It is my humble opinion that you will only obtain these rights if you have a competent team of professionals fighting for you in an effort to ensure that these guarantees are administered fairly and equally.  If you don't, say goodbye, because you are on your way to your own special version of hell. -- Paul J. Ciolino, IN THE COMPANY OF GIANTS

Supporters of Maurice Carter seek justice even after his death - October 26, 2004 - "I don't believe I ever saw him get discouraged. I know bitterness and anger are not a part of Maurice, so I'm trying not to feel that way. But the State of Michigan is at fault here."

INMATES MAY HAVE IT RIGHT - PRISONS ALL ABOUT JOBS - August 18, 2005 -  Many prison inmates swear the building boom in the penal system is a master plan to make money off them and create jobs, especially in the rural, mostly white areas where most prisons are. Plenty of inmates have told me this over the years.  If this prison-industrial complex sounds like a whack conspiracy theory, listen to Michigan state legislators. Republicans and Democrats have been beefing over whether to close a youth prison in Baldwin or the Newberry Correctional Facility in the Upper Peninsula. The debate isn't about which institution is best for rehabilitation, restitution or public safety -- it's about jobs. When the fight's over, legislators might stick the state with an $18-million-a-year tab for a prison it doesn't need.

Nonprofit helps friends, families of wrongfully convicted - April 24, 2005 - Tjapkes, 68, a broadcast journalist who once owned a Grand Haven radio station and most recently sold church organs, formed Innocent four years ago to provide support and encouragement to families, friends and supporters of people they claim have been wrongfully convicted and imprisoned for crimes they didn't commit.

POLICE BLASTED IN RAPE CASE - MICHIGAN - March 4, 2005 - Judge says Clinton Twp. officers' mistakes led to the conviction of an innocent man. In a ruling one expert predicted portends a multimillion-dollar settlement, a federal judge sharply criticized Clinton Township police for a series of mistakes in a rape case that led to the conviction of an innocent man who served nine years in prison. 

Infections in Newly Released Inmates are Rising Concern - January 27, 2003 - It was not until Mr. Vallad was sent back to prison in 2001 for a parole violation that he was accidentally shown his Michigan Department of Corrections medical records. They reported that Mr. Vallad had tested positive for hepatitis C, a blood-borne virus that can cause potentially fatal liver disease, when he was first admitted to prison years before. 

Michigan to Drop Minimum Sentence Rules for Drug Crimes - December 26, 2002 - Economic difficulties may ultimately have led to the decision to eliminate mandatory minimum sentences for drug crimes.
LANSING, Mich. - Governor John Engler ended Michigan's failed experiment with mandatory minimum drug sentences when he signed historic legislation repealing the laws on December 25.