October 27, 2015
CONTACT: Vanessa Akins, Communications Coordinator
512-441-1808 (office); 979-481-2709 (cell)
Death Row Exonoree Anthony Graves to Visit Austin
Special event taking place at critical time in state’s experience with the death penalty
Austin, Texas – Anthony Graves, who survived the ultimate nightmare – 18 years in prison as an innocent man – will visit Austin this week as part of a special event hosted by the Texas Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty. “An Evening with Anthony Graves” will take place on Thursday, October 29thth from 6:00 to 7:30 PM at the Millennium Youth Entertainment Complex (1156 Hargrave, Austin, Texas 78702).
On October 27, 2010, Graves walked out of the Burleson County Jail after spending 18 years in prison, including 12 years on Texas’ death row, as an innocent man. During his time on death row, he faced two execution dates. Prosecutors dropped all charges against Graves and declared him innocent after conducting their own investigation of the crime for which he was wrongfully convicted. He is one of 13 people in Texas and 156 individuals nationwide to be released from death row.
Since his exoneration four years ago, Graves has spoken about his experience with the Texas death penalty system to audiences throughout the United States and around the world. He is the founder of the Anthony Graves Foundation, a nonprofit dedicated to aiding children who are affected by the criminal justice system. He recently was appointed to the board of the Houston Forensic Science Commission.
Graves is visiting Austin at a critical time, as use of the death penalty declines nationally and in Texas. To date this year, juries have rejected the death penalty as frequently as they have imposed it in Texas cases. A growing chorus of voices is raising concerns about the death penalty, including former prosecutors and judges; victims’ family members; conservatives; and religious leaders. Just last week, the National Association of Evangelicals changed the position it adopted in 1973, which was solidly in support of the death penalty, to a position that recognizes diverse viewpoints on this issue and calls for criminal justice reform.
WHAT: “An Evening with Anthony Graves”
WHEN: Thursday, October 29, 2015, 6:00 to 7:30 PM
WHERE: Millennium Youth Entertainment Complex (1156 Hargrave, Austin, Texas 78702) The event is free and open to the public.
WHO: Sponsored by the Texas Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty, Lifespark, and Anthony Believes, LLC.
More information about Anthony Graves is available at https://tcadp.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/01/Anthony-Graves-Fact-Sheet.pdf.
For more information, please contact Vanessa Akins, TCADP Communications Coordinator, at 512-441-1808 (office), 979-481-2709 (cell) or Vanessa@tcadp.org.
To arrange an interview by phone or in person with Anthony Graves, please contact Vanessa Akins.