Jurich: Justice for Danny Brown — still waitingWritten by Stacy Jurich | | firstname.lastname@example.org
I am really glad to be writing a column for Toledo Free Press again. It’s been over a year and a half since I last appeared in these pages, and a lot has happened during that time.
Shortly after writing my last column, my boyfriend and I drove around the country together for three months. We had so many beautiful experiences as well as intense fights while trapped inside of our car, so I could tell those tales of adventures and love.
I could also write about how I was bullied out of organizing the Maumee Bay River Festival for its third year, an event I founded in 2012 and, as many of you know, was very passionate about.
I could write about the Lake Erie algae crisis, and how we have given our right to clean water to politicians and corporations. I have plenty of stories to tell about spending time with my beautiful 2-year-old niece. I would be proud to tell readers about the new business I have started in Toledo, producing and bottling kombucha, a fermented probiotic tea.
Instead I want to tell readers again about my friend Danny Brown. For too many years people have turned their ears, unwilling to take in the story, unwilling to feel his reality, unwilling to accept that our legal system and those elected to uphold it with honor and justice are not perfect, and that people are still receiving unethical treatment and are wrongfully incarcerated to this day.
On March 4, Brown’s lawyer filed a wrongful imprisonment suit against the State of Ohio. Brown has been fighting to declare his innocence since 1981, when he walked into a police station after hearing he was a suspect for the rape and murder of Bobbie Russell, knowing that he had nothing to hide.
Imagine spending almost 7,000 days as an innocent man in prison, every waking moment feeling heartbroken and wronged to a degree that hurts you and your family to the core.
Brown was finally released from prison in 2001 after DNA evidence cleared him of the crime and instead linked it to serial killer Sherman Preston. After his release, however, the story in the court “conveniently” changed from there being one person at the crime (whom they had wrongfully identified as Brown), to there being two people at the crime; now Brown is considered suspect as an accomplice. Not only has this case not been resolved, Brown is also being held as a captive of the court until they exonerate him or reopen the case.
It is my hope that this lawsuit will bring justice once and for all not only to Danny Brown, but to those that fall into the same situation, like Joel Coleman, and all of the family members involved in the injustices brought forward in this case by the Lucas County Prosecutor’s Office.
Stacy Jurich can be reached at email@example.com.