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NIU Law hosts Innocence Panel April 3

April 2, 2012

Photo of folded hands inside a jail cell doorThe NIU College of Law’s Criminal Law Society will host an Innocence Panel at 3 p.m. Tuesday, April 3, in the Francis X. Riley Courtroom of Swen Parson Hall inside the NIU College of Law.

Panelists will discuss the case of Juan Rivera, who spent nearly 20 years in the Illinois Department of Corrections wrongfully convicted for the rape and murder of an 11-year-old girl.

Rivera was convicted in three separate jury trials.

With the aid of the Center on Wrongful Convictions at Northwestern University, however, his conviction was overturned in December 2011 by the Illinois Appellate Court for the Second District. The decision was based on crime scene evidence and proof that DNA recovered during the investigation did not match Rivera.

The panel will include Juan A. Rivera Jr.; Jane Raley, senior staff attorney for Northwestern’s Center on Wrongful Convictions; the Honorable Justice Susan F. Hutchinson of the Illinois Appellate Court, Second District; and NIU Law alumna Stacey Mandell (’96), senior law clerk to Justice Hutchinson.

A reception will follow the event in the Thurgood Marshall Gallery. The event is free and open to the public.

For more information, email [email protected].