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Co-founder of Innocence Project Barry Scheck to speak to students, alumni at Charlotte Center on Wednesday, April 17

CHARLOTTE — The Wake Forest University School of Law will host Barry Scheck, co-founder and co-director of the national Innocence Project, at a reception beginning at 5 p.m. on Wednesday, April 17, at the WFU Charlotte Center. Scheck will speak to students, faculty and alumni about the latest developments in the “innocence movement” followed by a question-and-answer session.

The Innocence Project has worked for more than two decades to exonerate those wrongfully convicted by employing advanced DNA testing to prove clients’ innocence as well as to advocate reform to prevent future injustice. To date, the Innocence Project has achieved more than 305 exonerations nationwide.

One of those exonerations includes Darryl Hunt, for whom Wake Forest Law Innocence and Justice Clinic Director Mark Rabil worked on behalf of for more than two decades with Scheck’s assistance.

The Wake Forest Innocence and Justice Clinic began operation in the spring of 2009. Since then, more than 80 students have participated in the clinic reviewing claims of innocence, studying the causes of wrongful convictions and promoting public awareness of the issues. A number of the clinic’s graduates now work as both prosecutors and defense attorneys, according to Rabil.

Scheck co-founded the Innocence Project in 1992 with fellow attorney Peter Neufeld. Neufeld was co-counsel along with Scheck on the defense team of the famed O.J. Simpson murder trial, a case for which Scheck first began to garner national attention. He also served as lead counsel in the 1997 murder trial of British au pair Louise Woodard as well as the attorney for wrongfully accused Duke Lacrosse player Reade Seligmann.

Scheck is a professor at the Yeshiva University Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, where he originally founded the Innocence Project. He is also the director of Clinical Education of the Trial Advocacy Program and the Center for the Study of Law and Ethics.  Scheck has received the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers’ Robert C. Heeney award, the organization’s most prestigious award.