Exonoree turned Esquire:
The compelling story of Texas Exoneree Anthony Robinson’s
wrongful conviction and his journey to becoming a successful attorney. UDC-David A. Clarke School of Law,
Innocence Project Student Association (IPSA) 2nd Annual
ANTHONY ROBINSON, KEYNOTE SPEAKER & TEXAS EXONEREE
PROFESSOR JOHN C. BRITTAIN, UDC-DCSL PROFESSOR ANDREW FERGUSON, UDC-DCSL, IPSA
When: April 5, 2012
Time: 5-7 PM
Where: UDC, David A. Clarke School of Law, Room 214 Food
& Refreshments will be served.
Cost is FREE!!
RSVP at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
From the Innocence Project’s Website:
In 1987, Anthony Robinson was picking up a car for a friend at the
University of Houston when university police blocked the parking lot, pulled
him out of the car, and arrested him. The police said that Robinson matched the
description that a rape victim had given of her attacker: a black man wearing a
plaid shirt. The victim also claimed that her attacker had a mustache, which
Robinson did not. Robinson was not a student at the University, which he
believes encouraged the police to link him to the crime.
At trial, the prosecution relied heavily on the victim's identification of
Robinson from a lineup. At the time of Robinson's conviction in 1987, DNA
testing was not yet admitted as evidence in Harris County (TX) courts. Robinson
had told police he was innocent and had offered to provide the police with a
blood sample to prove his innocence. Serology testing was conducted, and
an analyst testified that the victim and Robinson had similar blood group
markers, which were consistent with evidence from the crime scene. The analyst
testified incorrectly that 60% of possible perpetrators could be excluded. When
the evidence being tested is a mixed stain of semen from the perpetrator and
vaginal secretions from the victim – and testing does not detect blood group
substance or enzymes foreign to the victim – no potential semen donor can be
excluded because the victim’s blood group markers could be "masking” the
perpetrator’s. Under such circumstances, the failure to inform the jury that
100% of the male population could be included and that none can be excluded is
Robinson was sentenced to twenty-seven years and he was paroled in 1997.
Once paroled, Robinson was able to raise his own funds to pay for the DNA test
by working as an order clerk at a local oilfield supply company. Robinson hired
Randy Schaffer to clear his record. The DNA testing proved his innocence, which
then led the state to conduct its own test, confirming the exculpatory results.
On November 7, 2000, the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles voted unanimously
to recommend Robinson's pardon.
Mr. Robinson then went and graduated from law school.