"If it could happen to me, it could happen to anybody." Kirk Bloodsworth, an innocent man
My name is Kirk Bloodsworth of Cambridge, Maryland. I am the Advocacy Director for Witness to Innocence, but I also have another distinction. I was the first death row inmate exonerated by DNA for a crime I did not commit.
I am one of 142 people nationally who have faced execution and were later proven innocent, and there are likely more like me out there who haven’t been so lucky. I am living proof that states with the death penalty are taking unacceptable risks with human lives.
This year we have an unprecedented opportunity to make sure this nightmare never happens to anyone else in Maryland. Governor Martin O'Malley has thrown his weight behind making Maryland the 18th state in the U.S. to ban capital punishment. But as death penalty repeal works its way through Maryland's legislature, I need your help - and now's the moment for action.
We've had some good news - just yesterday, death penalty repeal passed the Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee! This means that in just a few days, the entire Maryland Senate will have a chance to vote to abolish Maryland's death penalty.
Trust me, this is BIG - death penalty repeal has never made it this far through the Maryland legislature before. Now's our best chance to make repeal happen – but I need you to speak out and push us over the top.
This Senate vote will be very close. I need you to act NOW.
Maryland may not be your home state, but your voice has influence. Maryland’s legislature needs to know the world is watching.
I know better than anyone about second chances - but we might never have another chance like this to end the death penalty in Maryland. Join me and make sure this is the year - the year that Maryland does the right thing for both victims and the wrongly convicted.
Advocacy Director, Witness to Innocence
Born and Raised in Cambridge, Maryland