wrongful conviction

35 petitions

Update posted 2 weeks ago

Petition to FL governor, US SUPREME COURT, Fl state senate, Rick Scott, Florida, Elizabeth Scott, Julie Jones

Help Ryan Get a Reduction of Sentence

My name is Ryan Pope. I want to tell you about my childhood and situation. I was born in Ft Hood TX because my father was stationed at the army base there. I grew up in Lake Wales FL. My last name was originally Underwood. My mother divorced my father when I was 2 or 3 and remarried a man, who adopted me and my siblings and we inherited his last name. I was the youngest. Every year for summer vacation we would go to Alabama to visit our adopted father's family. The summer of 92 we were preparing to go, but we couldn't find a topper for his new truck so we built one out of wood. We put a mattress back there to be comfortable for the ride. Once there, the family all went to the hospital to visit my Aunt having her baby, and we stayed behind. We decided to go to the store for some snacks. When we left the store, me and my sister were in the back of the truck. A cadillac hit us on the passenger side. Me and my sister were both flown from the truck, my brother was thrown through the windshield, and my mother flew out the window and was pinned and killed. My sister was in a coma for 2 months missing my moms funeral. I was only 9 years old. Shortly after, our adopted father remarried our babysitter, who had 3 daughters of her own. He used to beat us all the time and HRS (children and family services now) used to check on . She started influencing him and he started neglecting and disowning us, showing favoritism to her children. I started having suicidal thoughts at 10 years old. Me and my brother would cry about our mom and he would tell us to get over it. In the summertime she would make us leave the house while he was at work from 5 a.m. to 5 p.m. while her kids stayed there. I was always a gifted student and athlete. I was in honors classes and played sports. When my sister turned 18, me and my brother moved in with her at her house. So now, I've lost my mother and departed from my abusive adopted father with no parental guidance at all. Next thing you know I was introduced to marijuana. Then I wanted to get higher because weed wasn't enough. I ended up turning my sister's house into a party house and had all druggie friends. I started skipping school and committing crime to support my drug habit. After a few arrests I went to a level 6 program, Avon Park Youth Academy, in 2000 for a whole year. There I earned my GED, however the program didn't help me with my drug problem. I got out and went right back to drugs. I was doing every drug imaginable. In 2001 at the age of 18, I first attempted suicide. I'm one of the kindest, most humble people in the world when I'm sober. I had a 9mm pointed to my head and pulled the trigger but the firing pin broke. I was high on my drug of choice, methamphetamine. Drugs were always my downfall. I committed my first crimes as an adult in 2001, fleeing and eluding, and possession of Meth, and was sentenced to 1 year and 1 day in prison. I was released on August 27, 2002 and didn't waste any time, I only got worse. I started injecting the Meth instead of smoking it. In May 2003 I was pulled over. My license was suspended so I signed my brothers name on the tickets. The officer was familiar with me and arrested me for forgery and uttering a forged document. I was placed on community control for the charges. I reunited with my biological father and was staying with him while I was on house arrest. I started doing good, got a job, got off drugs and was reporting to my probation officer regularly. One day my father comes home and tells me he wants me out of his house. So I turned to some old friends, however it took me further away from my job and I began having problems getting to and from work. I turned to drugs and was on the run. While on the run I ended up in Polk City in a trailer park away from everybody and anybody I knew. I was up for 2 weeks on Meth and desperate to get high again. I ended up robbing a Loves Truck Stop and was apprehended in a swamp area next to the store. They formally charged me with robbery with a deadly weapon. Waiting for trial for the robbery I pled out to open court for violating probation on the prior charges, and was sentenced to 5 years for that. I seen a psychologist prior to trial, who diagnosed me as drug dependant and recommended me for drug treatment program. When I brought that to my lawyers attention he told me not to worry about that as I was facing PRR (prison release reoffender ) and the judge would not send me to a drug treatment program anyway. The same day of trial in November 2004, prior to the trial starting my lawyer moved to suppress a statement that was allegedly made after I was arrested, in handcuffs and not read my Miranda rights. The officer that arrested me told the other officers that they needed to find the gun. He then said that I stated "I didn't have a gun, I only had knife". What I actually said as "I didn't have a gun, that would be my life". At the suppression hearing the judge denied it saying I was an excited utterance and for public safety. This is only evidence pertaining to anything regarding a weapon. The victim testified at trial that she was never threatened with a weapon, she never seen a weapon, nor was a weapon ever found or recovered. That's simply because I never had a weapon. For a robbery with a weapon conviction to stick, you have to have proof of possession of a weapon during commission of a crime. My appellant counsel filed an Anders Brief stating there wasn't anything to appeal. Not knowing at the time that I could file a 3.850 on him for not filing the insufficiency of evidence on the weapon, I filed a 3.850 on my trial counsel. One of grounds was that my trial counsel was ineffective for failing to show video of the robbery which shows I had no weapon. The judge and my counsel both conceded to this being error but said it wasn't overwhelming enough to change the outcome of the trial. I also filed my 2254 Federal Habeas Corpus which also denied. On the verdict form there was no specific finding of what the supposed weapon was. The definition of weapon they used in the jury instructions said "anything that can be used to cause death or great bodily harm". I was wrongfully convicted of robbery with a weapon. I'm only guilty of the robbery, not the weapon. The judge sentenced me to 30 years PRR (mandatory sentence), and ran it consecutive to the 5 years which gave me 35 years total. If I can get the weapon dropped, it will change it from a 1st degree, to a second degree, strong armed robbery which carries 15 years. I have over 15 years. Since I've been incarcerated I've lost both my grandparents, my father, and most recently the most devastating loss of all, my brother Eric in February of 2014 in a hit-and-run where a drunk driver struck and killed him on his bicycle. He was my best friend and it's been tremendously hard dealing with him being gone. I met my girlfriend shortly before he passed away, and she has given me all the emotional, mental, and financial support she possibly can. The loss of my brother inspired me to do better and quit drugs. after 20 years of drug use I see my life in a totally different perspective now. She has two young daughters, ages nine and eleven, that I now call and look to as my own. I enrolled in the tech support software computer class and recently graduated. I currently work in the library here at Hamilton C.I. I'm going on 2 years of being drug free without the help of any drug treatment. I am reaching out because I need help. I know that I can get out and be there for my family and be successful. I want to get out to my sister being the only immediate family member I have left. I currently have 21 years left on my sentence and would be missing all the best years of our lives. If you could help me in any way it would be greatly appreciated. Thank you for your time

Tara G
256 supporters
Update posted 4 weeks ago

Petition to Josh Shapiro

Exonerate John D. Brookins -Innocent Man Serving Life Sentence!

Dear Josh Shapiro, Attorney General of Pennsylvania; Please end the sentence of John David Brookins. This man was wrongfully accused and sentenced to prison 20+ years ago. Months following the murder of Sheila Ginsberg, After walking in on the murder, (and being the only eyewitness), John was accosted by 3-4 officers. They attempted to kill him but were interrupted by a family member. He was then "arrested". When these corrupt police officers could not successfully kill him, they tried to coerce him into a false statement. After that failed, John suffered police brutality. He was struck several times and was threatened not to tell or his family would be in danger. Subsequently, he was charged and wrongfully sentenced to life. To date, John has lost over half of his life while the the known perpetrator resides in Florida. Today, John's life is spent behind the walls of Graterford Prison. He has sought help from the Innocence Project and many other organizations in the past,on these long lists he still waits. Former attorneys also threatened witnesses, waived his issues and abandoned him in the courtroom, after agreeing to handle his case.  I beg on his behalf for help! Please end this tortureous History! This man is innocent and many from Bucks County, Pennsylvania know that he is. Six months after the murder, a group of corrupt police officers (who were later found to be a part of a drug and prostitution ring) framed him in order to cover up the murder at the hands of one of their prostitutes (Sharon Ginsberg), Sharon is also an "informant" with a past and recent criminal history of violence, prostitution, and drug abuse!  DNA evidence that would have exonerated John was purposely witheld and mispresented at John's trial. That DNA will exonerate him and prove the identity of the actual murderer.  Those who gave statements,  advised the police that the perpetrator (Sharon Ginsberg-Jones) admitted several times that she killed (her mother), Sheila Ginsberg. The murderer ( Sharon), currently resides in Florida. John relyed on the system to be fair and after being appointed a lawyer of Bucks county... he was lead to believe that he would have "his day in court" to speak in front of the jury and face his accusers. That did not occur!  Threats continued against his family and he was told to follow what the attorney said.  During the last day of trial the lawyer announced that JOHN would not be taking the stand!  The jury never heard the facts! Never heard what John witnessed!  Never heard of what John had endured to date as a result!   Following John's incarceration, the former Bristol Twp. detective, Al Eastlack, was exposed for his part in the prostitution and drug ring. Eastlack, and at least one of the other detectives from John's case, were being investigated for their part in local drug and prostitution trafficking! They took early retirement and relocated to Florida while John remains locked up in Graterford Prison for life. He's an innocent man who was framed for murder and is a victim of wrongful imprisonment. John was never given the opportunity to tell the truth.  What he witnessed on that fateful day, the jury never heard the full story and the prosecution fabricated facts (that can be proven) to coerce the jury to chose guilty!   Facts of the prior acts of violence between Sharon and Sheila Ginsberg were hidden from the jury! JOHN was told by his attorney that the witnesses would be able to testify and his name cleared... that did not happen!  It was later learned that the appointed attorney was a former Police Solicitor  (who's motivation was to protect the police). Truth is and always was: JOHN did not murder Sheila Ginsberg!  Sharon Ginsberg did!  An investigation by your Prosecution Integrity Team would clearly see how "one sided" the fabricated circumstantial evidence and facts do not add up!   Start with the probable cause...Mr. Brookins was NOT found with the instrument of crime!  It was embedded in the chest of the victim by Sharon Ginsberg in a fit of rage!  A Proper Handeling and DNA analysis during protection of the crime scene would have shown Sharons DNA on the scissors! Check into her criminal history and complaints filed by both Sharon and her mother of their violent domestic history (towards each other), and Sharon's threats to others of violence, prostitution and drug use!  She had an ongoing intimate relationship with Detective Eastlack (he relocated to Florida also) after the discovery of his Indescretions.  Please look into the true facts and "unlawful acts" of violence, threats, fabrication and omitted evidence and documents (statements) that would have proven Johns innocence!  Please sir, check the credentials of these Bristol Township officers, their testing scores, etc and confirm their abilities and proper appointments of Detectives! Bristol Township Detectives Alfred H. Eastlack, Thomas Mills, Rudolph "Rudy" Heierling, Bucks County Detective Robert C. Potts, Detective Lindenmuth,  and Former District Attorney, Diane E. Gibbons (who is now a judge).  During your "swearing in Ceremony" you made the statement: "This Office has seen turmoil and now it will be rooted in integrity"!  When I heard those words from you, I realized that you recognized what many of us have over the years!  Those words offers such hope for Bucks County and especially John!  Please Sir, I beg of you to meet with John and become familiar with what he has experienced and continues to experience at the hands of Former members of our Justice System! On a lighter note I want to say: "even though John is behind bars, it has not broken his spirit. He is still the same soft spoken and caring person he was since his childhood. He has excelled in education and is a health, wellness and fitness, yoga and meditation instructor.   By designing Health, Wellness, Sports Conditioning, and Power Yoga Classes, John continues to help fellow inmates and others on the outside.  He also continues to seek higher education and stays busy with writing poetry and learning to write music and play the keyboards". He has maintained his beautiful heart and disposition. Once you meet this man or speak to his friends and family, including those at Graterford, you will be certain that your decision will not be in vain. Now at the age of 50 plus, John maintains a high level of positivity and the expectation to be free again. He has the love and support of many friends and family, all of which have suffered right along with him. We are all praying for his long overdue return to freedom. Upon his release; John has secured a place to live and full time employment. With his skills, proven tenacity, love and compassion for others, John will definitely be an asset to society.  Please release him.  John was born and raised in the state of Pennsylvania. He has a right to ensure that He is protected from further unjust persecution!  The system has grossly failed him! On behalf of John and his family, I'm asking you Sir, please do all you can to rectify this wrong, and show the world (and the true perpetrator), that justice prevails! It is time for the Bucks County Judicial System to discuss the "Elephant in the Room". The one that has been walked around for 20 plus years!  This could be the first step towards correcting the broken and unjust system that has existed here for way too long!  John stands ready and waiting for the opportunity to speak with you! Thank you in advance for your service to the great State of Pennsylvania and for all that you represent. Prayerfully submitted,Friends of John D. Brookins John D BrookinsBW7444P.O. Box 244Graterford, PA 19426-0244 For More Facts Go To:

Free John David Brookins
389 supporters
Update posted 1 month ago

Petition to Mary Fallin, Oklahoma Lieutenant Governor Todd Lamb, Oklahoma Former Governor Brad Henry, The Oklahoman, Tulsa World, KFOR-TV Channel 4, KOCO-TV Channel 5

Free Daniel Holtzclaw, an innocent man wrongfully convicted!

On Jan. 21, 2016, our son, brother, and friend Daniel Holtzclaw, an Oklahoma City police officer, was sentenced to 263 years in prison after a jury wrongfully convicted him of sexually assaulting seven women and one teenager, despite the fact that no physical evidence of crime was found, patrol car Automatic Vehicle Location (AVL) data failed to match crucial accusations, numerous discrepancies occurred in the accusers' testimony, and detectives gathered almost all of the accusers (ten out of thirteen) by selectively seeking out and questioning only African American women with histories of prostitution or drug use with whom Daniel had interacted during his routine police duties. Daniel Holtzclaw is innocent and was wrongfully convicted of crimes he never committed. Daniel put his life on the line daily as a police officer for the justice he served and also deserved in his trial but was denied. Please sign our petition to urge Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin, Lieutenant Governor Todd Lamb, former Governor Brad Henry, and Oklahoma news media to investigate the police misconduct and mishandling of Daniel's case that led to his convictions for multiple sexual assaults he did not commit, and to respectfully request that Governor Fallin grant clemency by exonerating Daniel because he is innocent.  You can learn more about who Daniel Holtzclaw is by visiting The evidence supports Daniel's innocence. The only forensic finding linking Daniel to any accuser in the entire trial was DNA from a 17-year-old teenager who said the officer searched her purse, pat searched her, then raped her, yet the prosecution's own DNA analyst acknowledged the evidence was consistent with non-intimate, indirect transfer of skin cell DNA, such as from the purse to the officer's hands, then to his uniform pants while using the restroom. The State's forensic analyst failed to disclose during the trial that all four DNA samples from the fly of the uniform pants also included DNA from at least one male, which supports the non-intimate transfer explanation. The DNA did NOT derive from semen.  No DNA matching any other accuser besides the 17-year-old girl was found on the fly of Daniel's uniform pants, which police detectives took on June 18, 2014, along with his belt as their only evidence from Daniel. This was just hours after Daniel's night shift during which detectives eventually claimed he sexually assaulted not just the teenager through the fly of the uniform pants, but also two other individuals including Jannie Ligons, whose unsubstantiated accusations sparked the investigation targeting Daniel. No vaginal fluid was seen on the fly of Daniel's uniform pants by the State's forensic analyst, who used a very bright light and a magnifying glass. Only the fly area of Daniel's uniform pants was tested for DNA, and the uniform pants were NOT tested for saliva, semen, or vaginal fluid to determine the source of the DNA, even though “in legal proceedings, a proper and reliable determination of the source of isolated DNA is essential and an error in identification may result in grave legal consequences” (Jakubowska et al. (2011) Problems of Forensic Sciences, 87: 204-215).  Despite these facts, Prosecutor Gayland Gieger claimed falsely during his closing argument that it was a "fact" that DNA from the walls of the teenager's vagina "was transferred in vaginal fluids" (Transcript p. 4307). Prosecutor Gieger also claimed falsely after the trial that "the skin cells were transferred through the body fluids of a 17-year-old girl after he raped her. That's what the evidence was, that's what the jury heard, and certainly that's what they convicted him of. They [the defense] tried to explain DNA from a 17-year-old girl that ends up inside his pants at the areas where his privates are. Quite frankly, their explanation was not believable because you can't explain that" (Erielle Reshef, KOKO 5 News, "Prosecutors who helped convict Daniel Holtzclaw speak,” Feb. 5, 2016). In reality, article after article has shown that skin cell DNA can transfer indirectly ("secondary" or "tertiary" transfer) from a person, via intermediaries, to an object without any direct contact. If DNA on the fly of your pants were evidence of a crime, then every one of us could be convicted. As early as 2010, forensic researchers reported their discovery that DNA can transfer from a woman through non-intimate social contact to a man's hands, and then to his underpants and even genitals during urination, such that her DNA will be found on a penile swab (Hulme, J. (2010) Science and Justice, 50: 100-109). This research was recently corroborated by Jones et al. (2016) DNA transfer through nonintimate social contact, Science and Justice, 56: 90-95. Prosecutor Gieger not only misrepresented the DNA evidence from the 17-year-old girl, but also did not fully inform the jury about exculpatory evidence that challenged her credibility. Just months after the teenager accused Daniel of sexually assaulting her, this same young woman, A.G., was arrested for using a machete to attack a man on June 10, 2015, after she claimed to police that the man had used the weapon to assault her but “police were not convinced she was telling the truth since she did not appear to have any injuries” (Dallas Franklin,, “Man allegedly attacked at home, 2 arrested,” June 11, 2015). A.G., who similarly accused Daniel of a heinous crime, was booked for assault with a deadly weapon, and on April 18, 2016, she pleaded guilty to two other violent crimes, including domestic assault and battery (Muskogee OK - Case CM-2015-00199 and Case CF-2016-00031). None of the accusations against Daniel Holtzclaw were supported by any solid evidence of crime. No evidence, for example, supported the first accusation targeting Daniel, which occurred on June 18, 2014, when Daniel performed an off-duty traffic stop of the swerving car with tinted windows that prevented him from seeing the occupant at 2 a.m. that morning. The driver, Jannie Ligons, had lacked a valid license for more than 30 years and later admitted to police that, before driving, she had taken sleep-inducing PM medication and smoked marijuana, which can cause paranoia and hallucinations. She said she placed her hands on the hood of the patrol car while Daniel pat searched her, then she sat in the backseat of the patrol car. Here, she said, Daniel procured lewd exhibition and orally sodomized her through the fly of his pants, with his hands on the car's roof. She also said that Daniel touched her phone. The SANE exam of Jannie Ligons came back negative. No DNA, sperm, or seminal fluid from Daniel was found in or around Ms. Ligons' mouth. Ms. Ligons' DNA was not found on the fly of his uniform pants. No fingerprints or DNA from Ms. Ligons or Daniel were found on the patrol car's hood or roof to corroborate her claims. No DNA from Daniel was found on her phone, but the DNA from Ms. Ligons and some unknown individual was, showing that DNA does indeed transfer from people to things they touch. No pubic hair or DNA from Daniel was found inside the patrol car, and the surveillance video of the traffic stop, which was too far away to display fine details, showed no wrongdoing. Although the police detectives were investigating a sexual assault, the only evidence they took from Daniel was his uniform pants and belt. Detectives did not even take Daniel's underwear, and they never issued a search warrant for his home, personal car, or phone to obtain evidence which could have been used to help support Daniel's innocence. What the male detective did do is put his bare hand in the evidence bag, which can lead to DNA contamination. Daniel answered all the detectives' questions and asked them to analyze his DNA as quickly as possible so that he could clear his name. Daniel also agreed to take a polygraph test, an offer that the jury was never allowed to hear. Daniel Holtzclaw has maintained his innocence since the very beginning, June 18, 2014, when police detectives first questioned Daniel and claimed, untruthfully, that they had found pubic hairs in his patrol car and had incriminating surveillance video of the traffic stop Daniel performed that morning at the end of his shift. Despite the lack of evidence, and even though Ms. Ligons had no history of criminal convictions or warrants for her arrest and the traffic stop of her car with dark-tinted windows at night could not have resulted from any knowledge that the occupant was African American, police detectives concocted a theory that Daniel targeted African American women with histories of prostitution and drugs such that they would be too afraid to report alleged sexual crimes for fear of not being believed. Police detectives then searched for more accusers by selectively contacting over 40 African American females with histories of prostitution or drug arrests with whom Daniel had interacted during his routine police duties, which often involved intervening in cases of drug use and prostitution in the lower income neighborhood he patrolled.  Any black woman who had been stopped by Daniel because of her drug use or prostitution would have a chance to make allegations against the young police officer who had tried to halt her criminal activities.  ALMOST 98% OF THE INDIVIDUALS QUESTIONED BY DETECTIVES WERE AFRICAN AMERICAN FEMALES, showing that detectives, not Daniel, were the ones who targeted black females with criminal histories of prostitution or drug use. Detectives solicited testimony by telling these women that police had received a “tip” that the women “may have been sexually assaulted by a police officer,” which was blatant leading of potential witnesses. In one case, the police detective actually called the officer a "very bad guy" with "lots of victims" before a woman identified him after she first denied seven times that any officer had treated her inappropriately, and she stated, "There's only one officer that I know a few years back: he was a black cop, he used to come around here, and he exposed his self to me." The police department and news media at this time were also broadcasting information about Daniel as a suspect, including showing his face, such that the people in the neighborhood he had patrolled knew he was under suspicion.  In this wrongful manner that encouraged false allegations, the police thus found 10 individuals, including the 17-year-old A.G., who made accusations that were used to charge Daniel with sexual assault.  This gave a total of 13 accusers including the three black women who reported a crime on their own:  the initial female driver (Jannie Ligons, whose allegations were never substantiated), another woman who came forward to claim the officer had sexually assaulted her in the hospital room after she overdosed on PCP (Daniel was found not guilty of her accusations), and a third woman who reported that she had been sexually assaulted but could not positively identify the officer (Daniel was also found not guilty of her accusations).  Seven other individuals, including one man, claimed the officer had sexually assaulted them, but their allegations were deemed too absurd or simply impossible (such as not matching Daniel's work schedule) to result in charges, and they recanted when confronted with evidence that they were lying. One of those individuals, Shaneice Barksdale, admitted in a videotaped police interview that she had made up her allegations to try to help the case and was convicted of falsely reporting a crime (State of Oklahoma v. Shaneice Barksdale, Case No. CM-2015-1413). Research by acclaimed eyewitness expert, Dr. Gary L. Wells, has shown that eyewitnesses' memories of events can be altered by suggestion and positive feedback, often leading to wrongful convictions. The validity of accusers' testimony in Daniel's trial should not have been accepted as fact, not only because of the leading, suggestive manner in which police detectives found accusers until they had a total of thirteen, but also because at least five of the accusers knew each other, and many of the women were using hallucinogenic drugs (cocaine, crack, PCP, marijuana) at the time they alleged Daniel assaulted them, which could cause them to accuse an innocent man of actions he did not commit. Major inconsistencies existed in the accusers' testimony that ruled Daniel out as a suspect. For example, one woman, S.E., stated that her assailant was a short black man who stopped his patrol car in a public park/abandoned school yard, and then raped her for 5-10 minutes. Yet Daniel Holtzclaw is a tall, light-skinned, Japanese American man, and, significantly, the AVL/GPS evidence from Daniel's patrol car shows that it could only have been motionless in the school yard for less than 4 minutes, simply not enough time to do as was alleged. Nevertheless, Daniel was found guilty of her accusations. Another woman, R.G., with multiple felony convictions, said that the officer orally sodomized her on a day when she was getting high off of crack cocaine, and she said she wiped Daniel's alleged secretions from the oral sodomy onto her chair, yet Daniel's DNA was not found on the woman's chair, while the DNA from two other men was. Despite this lack of evidence, Daniel was found guilty of forcible oral sodomy.  We believe the legal system has failed Daniel miserably and a travesty of justice has occurred. You can learn more about the injustices in Daniel's trial by visiting, a website created by former defense private investigator, Brian Bates, who is now posting online the facts presented in open court that the media did not report. Daniel's sister, Jenny Holtzclaw, has also created a webpage where donations for Daniel's appeal are gratefully being accepted as well as at Please sign our petition urging Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin, Lt. Gov. Todd Lamb, former Gov. Brad Henry, and Oklahoma news media to investigate the police misconduct and mishandling of Daniel's case that led to his convictions for multiple sexual assaults he did not commit, and respectfully requesting that Governor Fallin grant clemency by exonerating Daniel because he is innocent. Daniel belongs with his family, not in prison for crimes he never committed. Please help right this wrong by signing our petition to free Daniel Holtzclaw. Sincerely and with our deepest gratitude, Daniel's family and friends

Family and Friends of Daniel Holtzclaw
5,768 supporters
This petition won 3 months ago

Petition to Melinda N Coonrod, Richard D. Davison, Commissioner David A. Wyant

Urgent! Please don't let Nick die in prison!

Nicholas Lucanegro Y19020 is receiving palliative care at the Florida Department of Corrections Reception and Medical Center in Lake Butler, Florida.  Nick had a biopsy in November 2012 and never received the results of that biopsy. The lesion from that biopsy never healed. He kept bringing his condition to the attention of the prison medical and dental providers but his condition was not taken seriously. Finally a second biopsy was taken and on November 21, 2016 he was diagnosed with squamous cell (carcinoma) of the tongue. In January 2017 his weight had dropped to 147. As of May 20, 2017 he weighs only 110 pounds. Since April 1st he’s had two rounds of chemotherapy that caused his white blood count to drop dramatically. He was put in isolation but still ended up with an infection. For this reason he was transported a Jacksonville hospital ICU for sepsis. He is now back at Lake Butler and is suffering badly. We are petitioning the Commission on Offender Review to approve a conditional medical release so that we can get him out of prison and into a private home cared for by loving family and friends. His care would be provided by a top notch palliative care/hospice facility. Nick does not deserve to die in prison. The facts of his case are staggering.  To review his whole story please go to The only one who benefited from Nick’s incarceration is the prosecutor who offered Nick a shorter sentence if he pleaded guilty. Because Nick was innocent he wouldn’t plead guilty … in any case that is the past. During the sentencing phase of Nick’s trial even Judge Porter stated: “It’s my interpretation of the law that I don’t have discretion, that I must sentence the 20 years; and I’ll go on record that based on this Defendant’s background, that it is a very harsh sentence.” The present and the future are bleak to say the least. We need to get him out of prison, to live the rest of his days with quality care and to eventually die with dignity. Please sign the petition to set Nick free to go home to his family.

MaryEllen Digiacomo
391 supporters