Skip to content

Help us exonerate the innocent and prevent wrongful convictions!

The Montana Innocence Project has freed seven people since 2008. Collectively, they spent more than 100 years wrongfully incarcerated, costing Montana taxpayers more than 2.7 million dollars.

What Are Innocence Programs

Innocence programs give pro bono representation to people with claims of innocence. Innocence programs are independent of The Innocence Project, but they all share the common goal of ending wrongful convictions.

Who We Are

The Montana Innocence Project is a non-profit organization that works to exonerate the innocent and prevent wrongful convictions. Founded in 2008 and based in the Alexander Blewett III School of Law at the University of Montana, the project achieves its mission through a combination of free legal assistance and policy work.

MTIP Impact

  • Freed seven people who spent more than 100 years combined in prison for crimes they did not commit, costing the State of Montana $2,719,819 (in 2015 dollars) for the cost of incarceration alone
  • Reviewed over 850 innocence claims
  • Litigated a case that created 9th Circuit precedent recognizing new forms of testing DNA as newly discovered evidence (U.S. v. Watson)
  • Litigated a case that recognizes witness recantation as a valid claim for individuals seeking post-conviction relief in Montana state courts (Marble v. State)
  • Led the effort to create one of the strongest post-conviction DNA testing laws in the country
  • Led the effort to require police statewide to electronically record custodial interrogations in felony criminal cases
  • Led the effort to create an interim study on appropriate compensation for wrongfully convicted individuals
  • Sponsored CLEs and other seminars on wrongful convictions,¬†Brady¬†violations, mistaken eyewitness evidence, DNA evidence, and other innocence issues

MTIP COVID-19 Announcement

Due to COVID-19, our offices are temporarily closed. Staff are working remotely, and our volunteer program is temporarily suspended. The current restrictions may cause delays in processing requests for legal assistance.  Thank you for your patience and understanding. If you are nearing a deadline or otherwise require immediate representation, we urge you to seek those services through another provider. We appreciate your support during these difficult times. We will post service updates to our website as circumstances evolve. Thank you.