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The Innocence Project
Larry Golden, a member of MCA, is involved with the Innocence Project. In fact, since 1989, 2805 wrongfully convicted defendants have been exonerated (proved to have been actually innocent) and released from prison. Of that number, 132 had been on death row when exonerated.
Two such persons who were on death row were Sonia "Sunny" Jacobs and Peter Pringle.
Sunny and her husband Jesse were convicted in 1976 of murdering two police officers in the state of Florida. Both were initially sentenced to be executed and Jesse was executed. Sunny's sentence was later commuted to life without the right of parole. In 1992, Sunny was released from prison after the Circuit Court of Appeals determined, based upon new evidence, including a confession by the actual killer, that she and Jesse were actually innocent. Sunny’s story was featured in the off Broadway show and HBO documentary “The Exonerated”, in which Sunny was played by Susan Sarandon.
Peter Pringle was wrongfully convicted in Ireland in 1980 of murdering two police officers during a robbery and sentenced to be hanged. Days before his scheduled execution, his sentence was commuted to life without the right of parole. He was later exonerated when it was conclusively determined that he had not been involved in the murders.
Sunny and Peter later met each other in Ireland at an Amnesty International conference opposing the death penalty. They later fell in love were married, and now live in Ireland. For the past 9 years, they have provided support for exonerates upon their release from prison, welcoming exonerees into their home and their adjustment to their new-found freedom. Significantly, in 2018 they opened The Sunny Living Center, a housing complex in Tampa FL, for exonerees.
This Zoom program will include both Sunny and Peter, in which they will tell their fascinating stories, and then answer questions. Of significance to MCA, Sunny Jacobs is Jewish. She noted that this would give her an opportunity to talk about the Jewish aspects of her story, something she rarely has had a chance to talk about in the virtually hundreds of programs she has done around the world.
Information about the Sunny Center and the exoneree support work of Sunny and Peter can be found at SunnyCenter.org
MCA of Greater Naples, 2500 Vanderbilt Beach Road, Suite 2201, Naples, FL 34109