Wrongful convictions

Waco Murders Collage
The Murders at the Lake

Jul 13, 2016 By Michael Hall

In 1982 three teenagers were killed near the shores of Lake Waco in a seemingly inexplicable crime. More than three decades later, the tragic and disturbing case still casts a long, dark shadow.

True Grits

Jul 23, 2015 By Michael Hall

Innocence Project of Texas executive director Scott Henson says his organization is about more than DNA evidence.

Richard LaFuente Is Finally Free!

Jun 9, 2014 By Michael Hall

For 28 years, parole officials tried to get him to confess to a crime he didn’t commit. He refused—and never wavered. This is why he is the bravest man I know.

Wrongfully Convicted Grandma Freed

Nov 27, 2013 By Michael Hall

After Fran Keller spent 21 years in prison based on allegations by children who said they were sexually abused in a satanic ritual at her and her husband's day care, she was finally released.

Critical Evidence

Mar 20, 2013 By Pamela Colloff

DNA testing of a blue bandana exonerated Michael Morton. Could the small square of cloth also be the linchpin that seals Mark Alan Norwood's fate?

The Innocent Man, Part One

Jan 21, 2013 By Pamela Colloff

The National Magazine Award–winning story about Michael Morton, a man who came home from work one day in 1986 to find that his wife had been brutally murdered. What happened next was one of the most profound miscarriages of justice in Texas history.

Fed Up!

Jan 21, 2013 By Michael Hall

Sure, Texas’s criminal justice system is tough. But as Fort Worth inmate Richard LaFuente could tell you, the federal criminal system is even tougher.

Another Tale of Wrongful Conviction?

Jan 21, 2013 By Michael Hall

Richard LaFuente, who was convicted of murder in 1986, has steadfastly proclaimed his innocence for more than twenty years. Now he has some unlikely support in one person—the victim's own sister.

The Scales of Injustice

Jan 21, 2013 By Jake Silverstein

About a year ago, it was reported that Randall Dale Adams had died, bringing to a close one of the more tragic stories in recent Texas history. A construction worker from Ohio, Adams (pictured here, in 1989) was convicted and sentenced to die in 1977 for the murder of Dallas…

Hannah’s Prayer

Jan 21, 2013 By Pamela Colloff

Five years ago, Hannah Overton, a church-going Corpus Christi mother of five, was convicted of murdering her soon-to-be adoptive child and sentenced to life in prison. In April, she returned to  court—and watched her lawyers put the prosecution on defense.

Trials and Errors

Jan 21, 2013 By Michael Hall and Jake Silverstein

Over the past two decades Texas has exonerated more than eighty wrongfully convicted prisoners. How does this happen? Can anything be done to stop it? We assembled a group of experts (a police chief, a state senator, a judge, a prosecutor, a district attorney, and an exoneree) to find out.

Innocence Found

Jan 20, 2013 By Pamela Colloff

Anthony Graves had been behind bars for eighteen years when the prosecutors in his case abruptly dropped all charges and set him free. How did it happen? What happens next?

Innocence Lost

Jan 20, 2013 By Pamela Colloff

Anthony Graves has spent the past eighteen years behind bars—twelve of them on death row—for a grisly 1992 murder. There was no plausible motive nor any physical evidence to connect him to the crime, and the only witness against him repeatedly recanted his testimony. Yet he remains locked up. Did the system fail?

Free at Last

Jan 20, 2013 By Pamela Colloff

For eighteen years Anthony Graves insisted that he had nothing to do with the gruesome murder of a family in Somerville. That’s exactly how long it took for justice to finally be served.

Searching for Truth

Jan 20, 2013 By Texas Monthly

Pamela Colloff talks about reporting on an eighteen-year-old murder case and interviewing Anthony Graves, who was sent to death row for the crime.

Tenacious P

Jan 20, 2013 By Jake Silverstein

If it’s something you’d just as soon not think about, chances are Pamela Colloff has written about it for TEXAS MONTHLY. Here is a partial list of the subjects she’s covered since coming to work at the magazine thirteen years ago: murder, arson, abortion, heroin addiction, hate crimes, illegal immigration,…

Justice in Time

Mar 31, 2012 By Michael Hall

Fifteen years after being released from death row, Kerry Max Cook is still looking for freedom.

Hannah and Andrew

Jan 1, 2012 By Pamela Colloff

On October 3, 2006, a four-year-old boy named Andrew Burd died in a Corpus Christi hospital. The cause of death was determined to be salt poisoning, an extremely unusual occurrence. Even more shocking was what happened next: his foster mother, Hannah Overton, was found guilty of killing him. But could she really have done what the prosecutors say?

Craig’s List

Aug 31, 2007 By Michael Hall

Of the many things the first black district attorney of Dallas County is doing, none is more important than rethinking the concept of guilt and innocence.