Today is historic and cause for major celebration. Because, today, former sailor, Mr. Keith Harward will be released and go home! Yesterday, 4/7, Keith was read the writ of actual innocence by the VA. Supreme Court and released from prison. Keith's freedom is due in large part by the assistance of the team at the INNOCENCE PROJECT in NYC. They took on his case and won!
Tragically, he was wrongly imprisoned for 33 years for the 1982 slaying of a Newport News, VA man and the rape of his wife. Fortunately, recent DNA testing by the Virginia Department of Forensic Science identified not Keith, but another sailor by the name of Jerry L. Crotty who was a shipmate of Harward's on the USS Carl Vinson at the time of the crime.
It is so fitting that Keith is now free as the birds he drew. Keith is an artist who loves birds, and it is through purchasing a beautiful pastel drawing of a Goldfinch atop thistle and clover that I acquired through the Fifth Annual Inmate Art Auction sponsored by the Fortune Society in NYC in 20015, that I first "met" Keith. To find out more, read this article.
More to come re: a possible fundraising effort for Keith. So, stayed tune.
Blessings, Leslie, Director