This week, Roqayah and Kumars are joined by two advocates with the campaign to free Melvin Ortiz, Victoria Blanco and Ismary Guardarrama. Victoria Blanco has worked with the criminal legal reform group It Could Happen To You, which brings attention to Pennsylvania's hornet's nest of wrongful convictions. Ismary is a recent graduate from Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service.
Victoria, Melvin’s fiancee, and Ismary, who helped revive the push to exonerate Melvin as an undergraduate, share the story of his ordeal, sentenced to life in prison as a teenager for a crime everyone in Reading, PA knew he did not commit. Victoria and Ismary explain how the conspiracy to frame Melvin goes from the racism of a small town in the 1990s right to the top of corrupt state and local politics.
To learn more about Melvin Ortiz and the Free Melvin Ortiz team visit freemelvinortiz.org.
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