Texas

Innocence Project of Texas Bigwig Resigns By Sending Dramatic Letter

In a kiss-off letter dripping with bitterness, criminal defense attorney Jeff Blackburn has quit his gig as chief counsel for the Innocence Project of Texas.

"What was once a movement has now become a business," Blackburn wrote the New York-based Innocence Project in a May 13 letter. The Innocence Project of Texas is one of many groups across the country affiliated with the Innocence Project of New York, but Blackburn seems to think the East Coast carpetbaggers want control of the "movement."

Blackburn, who lives in Amarillo, criticized the group for its dependence on contributions from the "ultra-rich," saying the group was "full of Wall Street types and celebrities." He also wrote that the Innocence Project is "even honoring a potentate from Goldman Sachs at an exclusive gathering in New York."

As Texas Lawyer, which first reported the existence of this awesome letter, pointed out, Blackburn has had fingers pointed at him as well. In 2009, an exonerated prisoner "accused the former chief counsel of improperly receiving a cut of a $4 million state compensation payment for the time the ex-prisoner  spent behind bars — allegations Blackburn denied." 
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Contributor Craig Malisow covers crooks, quacks, animal abusers, elected officials, and other assorted people for the Houston Press.
Contact: Craig Malisow