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Free Kenny Collins Campaign Fund

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Kenny Collins is an innocent man who has been in prison in Maryland for over 33 years, including 17 years on death row. The facts in his case are shocking and make it clear an injustice was done that must be righted.  The facts about the case are below.

We are organizing a clemency campaign for Kenny and need funds for legal and campaign expenses.  

Kenny's health is deteriorating in prison, and we want him to be free as soon as possible.   Please feel free to donate whatever amount you can - any donation will be appreciated!

These are the facts in Kenny's case.

1. No physical evidence, impartial eyewitness testimony, or confession links Kenny Collins to the crime. 

2. Kenny's conviction depended entirely upon the testimony of three unreliable prosecution witnesses, all three of whom had drug charges dropped in exchange for their testimony against Kenny. One of the witnesses has since recanted. 

3. Like many defendants without financial resources, Kenny received horrible representation at trial.
Kenny's lawyer did not call a single witness or introduce a single piece of evidence on Kenny's behalf, including during the sentencing hearing where Kenny was sentenced to death.
Kenny's lawyer was found by a judge to have been mentally incompetent during the period he was representing Kenny.
Kenny's lawyer also referred to Kenny as "an animal" to the jury.

4. The jury that convicted Kenny of capital murder never heard vital evidence that could have proven Kenny's innocence.
The jury never hear about the deals made to the witnesses for their testimony, or other witnesses' testimony that these witnesses were "unreliable" and "habitual liars." 
The jury never read the trial transcript of a key witness, Tony Michie, who was involved in the crime. His testimony in his own trial contradicted his testimony in Kenny's trial in several key ways, including his testimony that he had the murder weapon, not Kenny. Kenny was not even mentioned in his first trial, nor even a suspect until 6 months after the crime.
The jury never heard that there was another suspect whose participation Michie described to a jailhouse informant. This suspect lied to the police about his identity, fit an eyewitness's description more closely than Kenny, and was a close friend of Michie's.

5. The judge in Kenny's case undermined the constitutional standard of "beyond a reasonable doubt" by twice instructing the jury to find Kenny guilty if they are "reasonably certain" he committed the crime, implying that they should convict even with doubts.

6. Kenny's case reflects the racial and geographical disparities in Maryland death cases. 
While Maryland had the death penalty, death sentences were disproportionately imposed on Black defendants and almost exclusively in cases where the victim was white, even though 77% of murder victims in Maryland are Black and Blacks murdering whites accounts for only 3% of murders in Maryland.

7. Kenny's case was used by the media and by lawmakers opposing the death penalty as an example of the problems with the death penalty. 

8. Kenny is an amazing activist and a wonderful person loved and supported by many family, friends, and fellow activists. 
Kenny fights tirelessly for justice for all prisoners. He has supporters all over the country and state because he is a kind and remarkable person who deserves to be free


Laura Lising
College Park, MD

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