But Dieter knows very well that simply by calling it the "innocence list" he leads people to believe it is a list of people who actually did not commit the crime and that it is cited for that proposition by the anti side in nearly every debate on the death penalty. Even though DPIC itself hedges on what it means by "innocence," the list is used to mislead people and distort the debate, and that is its very purpose.
In an interview, Mr. Scheidegger said that the Hennis case showed the stark difference between a jury's not finding guilt beyond a reasonable doubt and actual proof of innocence. In the Hennis case, he said, "we have proof that he was a guilty murderer who got away with it, and yet he was on the innocence list."
Richard C. Dieter, the executive director of the Death Penalty Information Center, said in an interview that Mr. Hennis's name would be removed from the innocence list. But Mr. Dieter defended the list and its name.
Being found "not guilty" is not innocence in the sense of "innocent as a newborn babe," he said, and "we've never said that's what the innocence list is about."
NYT on the Hennis Case
John Schwartz has this story on the Hennis case in the NYT.