Ed Ryder and Reverend James McCloskey The story of one man's fight for freedom. Three days after Ryder arrived at Holmesburg prison to do time for theft, he was accused of murdering a prisoner in his cell block. For twenty years, Ryder fought to prove his innocence... the city of Philadelphia rallying behind him. Reverend James McCloskey, who helps prisoners he believes are unjustly convicted get pardons, spearheaded the efforts for Ryder's release. Now Ryder is a free man.
James McCloskey, founder of Centurion Ministries, Inc., which was organized to free innocent men and women from prison. Terry last talked to him in March after he helped free two prisoners from a California prison who were both serving life sentences. But yesterday, McCloskey lost a battle with the execution of Roger Keith Coleman. Coleman was convicted of raping and killing his sister-in-law in 1981, but always maintained his innocence. He was put to death in a Virginia prison. (Interview by Marty Moss-Coane)
James McCloskey, founder of Centurion Ministries, Inc., which was organized to free innocent men and women from prison. Since McCloskey began his work in 1980 at least ten innocent prisoners have been freed. Just this week Clarence Chance, 42, and Benjamin Powell, 44 were freed after serving 17 and 1/2 years of life sentences. They were wrongly accused of murdering a sheriff's deputy. Witnesses who initially implicated them later told officials that they were pressured to lie.