Death Penalty Exoneree to Give Talk on The Innocence Project

PATCHOGUE, NY – March 28, 2011 – The Criminal Justice Club at St. Joseph’s College will host a talk on The Innocence Project with guest speaker Barry Gibbs on Thursday, March 31 at 12:40 p.m. in the Shea Conference Room on its Long Island Campus in Patchogue, NY. Gibbs, a death penalty exoneree, will discuss his wrongful conviction case and what The Innocence Project did to prove his innocence.

Wrongfully convicted of committing a crime based on misconduct by a corrupt NYPD detective, Barry Gibbs served almost two decades in prison before new evidence led to an overturned conviction and his eventual release. In 2010, New York City agreed to pay Gibbs $9.9 million, the largest personal settlement in its history.

The Innocence Project is a national litigation and public policy organization that advocates for the wrongfully accused and convicted through DNA testing and by reforming the criminal justice system to prevent future injustice. To date, the organization is responsible for the freedom of more than 250 wrongly convicted individuals.

“The obliteration of innocence is an atrocity and the case of Barry Gibbs is even more horrific in that the misconduct was a consequence of the very social control system in which the public places its trust,” said Dr. Barbara Morrell, professor of social sciences at St. Joseph’s College. “Students, and the public in general, need to become more critical and less acquiescent to the operation of the criminal justice system; it is a quality of a critical thinker.”

The Criminal Justice Club’s mission is to build friendships and network, as well as educate students and other professors on important topics relating to the justice system. The Club brings guest speakers to the College, and supports educational and career opportunities related to the criminal justice field.

This event is free and open to the public. A light lunch will be served. For more information, please contact Dr. Morrell at 631.687.4582 or visit

About St. Joseph's College

St. Joseph's College has been dedicated to providing a diverse population of students in the New York metropolitan area with an affordable education rooted in the liberal arts tradition since 1916. Independent and coeducational, the College provides a strong academic and value-oriented education at the undergraduate and graduate levels, aiming to prepare each student for a life characterized by integrity, intellectual and spiritual values, social responsibility, and service. With campuses located in the Clinton Hill area of Brooklyn and in Patchogue, Long Island, the College offers degrees in more than 29 majors, special course offerings and certificates, affiliated and pre-professional programs.

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