This week, The New York Times published an article about Kirk Bloodsworth, a man who spent a decade on death row for a crime he did not commit. Kirk was charged for the murder and rape of a 9 year old girl and was sentenced to death. Throughout his trial and imprisonment, Kirk maintained his innocence. After spending 9 years in prison, he became the first person in the country to be exonerated through DNA evidence.
His story is a critical and haunting reminder that innocent people are all too often sentenced to death through state executions. Since 1973, 142 people have been released from death row after evidence of their innocence was uncovered. This means that for every nine people executed in this country, one innocent person has been exonerated. “If it could happen to me, it could happen to anybody” Kirk said.
The risk of executing innocent people is just one of many reasons why Kirk, alongside other repeal activists, is working to repeal the death penalty both in Maryland and here in Delaware. In a unique way, he understands the huge flaws and inequities that can exist within our justice system. Death is final, and with such a high rate of exoneration, we cannot continue to take the risk of executing innocent men like Kirk Bloodsworth.
To take action against this unjust practice, take one moment to sign our petition.