Innocence Project®

The Duke Law Innocence Project® is a volunteer student organization that works to exonerate victims of wrongful convictions by investigating claims of actual innocence. After completing a careful review according to set criteria and guidelines, the various student teams present their conclusions to the Project leadership and faculty advisers.

The Duke Law Innocence Project looks at wrongful convictions not only on an individual case-by-case basis, but also engages in policy reforms, and outreach to the community in education.  The organization also helps its exonerees in their reintegration to society.

For more information, please email or contact Duke Law Innocence Project Executive Director Nicolas Rodriguez. 


Our Teams

Active Investigations

This section is composed of five active investigations of claims of innocence. Teams meet approximately once every two weeks, as necessary. Students may have the opportunity to review case files, write chronologies and memos, interview witnesses, and visit prison to meet the individual who is making the claim of innocence.

Community Outreach Team

This team is in charge of planning events for the Innocence Project.  In the fall, the team is planning an speaker event for Wrongful Convictions Day and a Thanksgiving event where we invite all of the exonerees to the Law School.  This team also coordinates volunteer opportunities in the Durham community.


Communications Team

This team is in charge of all of the Innocence Project's social media, fundraising, petitioning, and sorting the Jail Mail.  Follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook!

Litigating Innocence Team

This team will work on a research project involving reading and analyzing all of the exoneration cases in North Carolina.  The team will look at how the court deals with issues related to  innocence and will have the opportunity to work closely with Professor Jim Coleman.