Rectify: A Story of Healing and Redemption After Wrongful Conviction.
In the courtroom, there are always—and only— two irreconcilable sides of the same story. Black/white. Right/wrong. Feller/fallen. When the wrong story prevails, justice is perverted and an innocent person is condemned. When there is an exoneration, we want to believe the terrible story has a happy ending. But an exoneration is not a happy ending. An exoneration is an earthquake that leaves behind upheaval and ruin. Is there a way forward out of the brokenness?
Restorative justice, a centuries-old practice of bringing together victims, offenders, and their families to address the harm inflicted by a crime, offers hope by focusing on healing and reparations, not punishment and blame. The kind of suffering experienced by those involved in a wrongful conviction case varies greatly, but arises from a shared traumatic experience. This shared suffering means that people who once faced each other down from opposite sides of the courtroom can unite in a common cause. And they are uniting: restoring their lives and making their own justice. In voices too raw and powerful to ignore, they are joining together to advocate for reform. My book, Rectify: A Story of Healing and Redemption After Wrongful Conviction, tells their stories. Rectify will be published in October of 2018.