The Hawaii Innocence Project (HIP) is a non-profit legal organization that works to free prisoners who have been wrongfully convicted and advocates for preventing future injustices in the state of Hawaii. Kenneth Lawson, of the Hawaii Innocence Project, stated that exoneration cases take an average of 10 to 15 years before an innocent person is finally released. HIP accepts requests from anyone who has been found guilty of a crime committed in Hawaii and who is in fact innocent of that crime. The mission of the Hawaii Innocence Project is to seek justice for those who have been wrongfully convicted and to reform the judicial system to prevent innocent people from being convicted of crimes they did not commit. Valuable community and taxpayer resources are wasted when an innocent person is convicted and kept in prison.
The organization works to not only exonerate the innocent, but also to ensure that victims receive justice and that their true perpetrators are held accountable. When I joined the Hawaii Innocence Project years ago, I knew it wouldn't be your typical nine-to-five job. The Hawaii Innocence Project fights for those who cannot fight for themselves—that is a noble vocation—and, in the legal sphere, fighting for those who are truly innocent and have been unjustly convicted has been called doing God's work. Although there aren't many wrongful convictions in Hawaii, Lawson said people shouldn't have to wait in prison if they're innocent. For example, Dana was visiting the Big Island from Virginia, her home state, and had been biking from her parents' rental home to a friend's house for dinner on Christmas Eve when she was wrongfully convicted. By making a donation to the Hawaii Innocence Project, you help us meet the unique needs of the Hawaiian justice system and you also contribute to justice efforts at the national level. The fight for justice is an ongoing battle and your support can make a difference.