28 December 2010

against the odds: jailhouse lawyer argues his way out of prison

now this is a great story!

wall street journal excerpt:


Each morning for 5,546 days, Jabbar Collins knew exactly what he'd wear when he awoke: a dark-green shirt with matching dark-green pants.

The prison greenies of a convicted murderer, he says, were "overly starched in the beginning, but as time wore on, and after repeated washes, they were worn and dull, like so many other things on the inside."

For most of those 15 years, Mr. Collins, who maintained his innocence, knew the only way his wardrobe would change was if he did something that's indescribably rare. He'd have to lawyer himself out of jail.

There was no crusading journalist, no nonprofit group taking up his cause, just Inmate 95A2646, a high-school dropout from Brooklyn, alone in a computerless prison law library. ~ read more