Jim McCloskey is the founder of Centurion Ministries, an organization devoted to exonerating wrongfully convicted prisoners who are serving life or death sentences. To date, the organization has freed 64 innocent people. His new book is titled: When Truth Is All You Have: A Memoir of Faith, Justice, and Freedom for The Wrongly Convicted.
Some interesting insights from this episode:
- Today there are dozens of innocence organizations but Centurion Ministries was the first one. Jim was the father of the entire innocence movement.
- He learned first-hand early on the unreliability of eyewitness testimony.
- He was able to leverage his consulting background piecing together market research to figure out how to solve these wrongful convictions.
- Building a relationship and rapport with key witnesses was just as vital to proving these cases and Jim had a natural ability in that regard.
- Not every case would work out. He sometimes had false positives – clients he was trying to help who he later learned were actually guilty. When that happens, it’s important to just admit the mistake and move on.
- “This is a story of how I learned what a cruel, mindless, mean machine the justice system can be. How, in trying to combat evil in the world, the system can become just as evil – more so, because it is evil done in the name of all of us.”
- To date, Centurion Ministries has freed 64 innocent men and women who collectively had spent 1,350 years behind bars.
- “Excellence is doing what you feel is right for you given your personality and makeup.”
Organization: Centurion Ministries