Innocence and Justice Clinic Sponsors ‘An Intimate Look at Life on Death Row’ on Tuesday, Oct. 16

Two-time Nobel Peace Prize nominee Joseph Ingle will discuss his new book, “Inferno: A Southern Morality Tale,” at 7 p.m.  on Tuesday, Oct. 16, at the Wake Forest University School of Law’s Innocence and Justice Clinic, 2596 Reynolda Road (at the intersection of Polo Road).

The event, which is sponsored by the clinic, is free and open to the public.  During his 45-minute presentation, Ingle will offer a reading from The Inferno followed by a Q&A session. Seating is limited. Copies of The Inferno will be available for purchase at the event.

The Inferno chronicles the 25-year journey of death-row prisoner Philip Workman, and Workman’s multiple dates with the electric chair and lethal injection as well as the blatant injustice of his conviction despite ample evidence that he did not murder the police officer whom he was convicted of killing. Ingle was Workman’s spiritual adviser and knew him for 15 years prior to Workman’s execution in Tennessee in 2007.

According to Sister Helen Prejean, author of “Dead Man Walking:” “A memoir such as this is wrenching for it raises fundamental questions about our moral fabric as a nation. What does it mean to kill people, in our names, who do not kill people and are not eligible for the death penalty? These and other questions are addressed in the book as the reader descends with Philip Workman into the Inferno. It is a journey, like Dante’s in the original Inferno, that will leave your soul transformed.”

Ingle founded the Southern Coalition on Jails and Prisons in 1974. Before it closed in the early 1990s, Ingle visited every death row in the South and counseled 200 of the 1,200 condemned inmates in the region. A United Church of Christ Minister, Ingle also is the former director of the Neighborhood Justice Center, a victim-offender mediation group that operated in Nashville for 13 years.

The WFU law school’s Innocence and Justice Clinic provides students with the unique opportunity to learn about the various causes of wrongful convictions – mistaken eyewitness identification, invalid or improper forensic science evidence, jailhouse informants, false confessions, ineffective assistance of counsel, police and prosecutorial misconduct – while giving them the opportunity to apply this knowledge to the investigation of cases where newly discovered evidence can prove a client’s innocence. The clinic works in close cooperation with The Darryl Hunt Project for Freedom and Justice and The North Carolina Innocence Inquiry Commission.