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Poster of the Week – Wrongfully Imprisoned for 26 Years

Updated: Nov 11, 2021



Kenji Howard, after hours of pressure and deception, gave a false confession to murder in 1995 when he was 16 years old. Neither his lawyer nor his mother were notified before he was interrogated. In 2007, the murderer, Edward Powell, confessed that he was the shooter, and that Kenji was innocent. Powell later confessed to a private investigator and signed two written confessions. After the California Supreme Court granted review in Kenji’s habeas case, an evidentiary hearing was held before Judge William C. Ryan who made a finding that Powell’s confession was credible. That leads to the inescapable conclusion that Kenji’s confession was false. Judge Ryan also made a finding that Powell’s confession is corroborated by the firearms evidence. Gunshot residue was found inside Powell’s car which is consistent with Powell’s guilt and would not have been possible under Kenji’s false confession. The ejection pattern of the casings and the trajectory of the bullets also corroborate Powell’s confession and undermine Kenji’s false confession. Judge Ryan noted that “it would be all but impossible” for Kenji to be the shooter given his position in Powell’s car; and that “the only piece of evidence that contradicts Powell’s confession is Petitioner’s own confession.” Judge Ryan recalled Kenji’s sentence and vacated his conviction on July 16, 2021. Today Deputy District Attorney, Michael Mallano, wants to re-charge Kenji Howard, but now with a double homicide and take him back to juvenile court after 26 years of being incarcerated for a crime already proven that he did not commit. Please sign a petition—link below—asking District Attorney George Gascòn to intervene by requiring Deputy District Attorney Mallano to drop the charges. Please help free an innocent man from custody today.

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