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Wrongfully Banishing Professor David Protess

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Protess "is in the hall of fame of investigative journalists in the 20th century. Using cheap (very willing) student labor, he has targeted a very specific issue. That work has reopened cases, changed laws, and saved lives."

Protess said Dean Lavine initially supported him, but now knows it was a charade, saying:

It was "an attempt to seem as if he were fighting for the First Amendment when, in fact, he was undermining the Innocence Project at every turn," no doubt for an ulterior motive perhaps benefitting himself at the expense of truth, justice and integrity.

On May 11, Daily Northwestern writer Brian Rosenthal headlined, "In Focus: 'Dismantling of a legacy:' The rise and fall of David Protess," saying:

Barely a decade after founding the Medill Innocence Project, he's now "barred from teaching his trademark class, publicly vilified by his dean," and forced to "take a 'leave of absence' that few realistically think will ever end." He's also "reportedly (barred from) enter(ing) the building."

Medill Professor Michele Weldon said:

"I think everything about the situation is tragic. It is tragic for David, the students, the faculty, the schools, the alums, all the people who are affected by the Innocence Project and individuals who hope to be recipients of the work" it performs.

As a result, he made enemies in high places, especially state and local prosecutors, unhappy to have their wrongful convictions exposed and overturned. 

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