Bill Rancic Defends His Wife Giuliana After Fashion Police Controversy: 'I Tried to Get Them to Release the Footage' 41 years, 2,187 covers and 55,435 stories from PEOPLE magazine's history for you to enjoy
- Angelina Jolie Pitt on Humanitarian Trip to Myanmar: 'The Lack of Medicine and Healthcare Is a Top Priority'
- The Style Top 5: Reese Witherspoon Channels Elle Woods,
Steal the Styles from Wet Hot American Summer and More
- Brooke Shields Honors The Blue Lagoon in Fun Instagram Photo
- Former Boxer Survives Shark Attack by Punching Great White Repeatedly
- James Taylor Performs 'Shed a Little Light' with Charleston Choir in South Carolina (VIDEO)
On Newsstands Now
- Matthew McConaughey: In His Own Words
- Jessa Duggar's Wedding Album
- Brittany Maynard's Final Days
Pick up your copy on newsstands
Click here for instant access to the Digital Magazine
People Top 5
LAST UPDATE: Tuesday February 10, 2015 01:10PM EST
PEOPLE Top 5 are the most-viewed stories on the site over the past three days, updated every 60 minutes
- March 25, 2013
- Vol. 79
- No. 12
They Were All Wrongly Convicted: They Were All Freed with This Man's Help
For Three Decades, Jim Mccloskey and His Investigators Have Fought to Exonerate the Falsely Accused, Freeing 50 and Counting ...
That insatiable belief that the truth will set the innocent free has been a driving force for McCloskey, 70, a self-taught sleuth whose team recently helped release its 50th inmate since his first case in 1980. Run solely on donations (investigations can cost a half million dollars), Centurion's staff of seven, none of whom have police training, can spend years re-interviewing witnesses, poring over documents and tracking down sources police never talked to. "Centurion is a ray of hope for the innocent languishing behind bars," says Steven Drizin, a Northwestern University law professor. "They're a lifeline."
For Clarence Brandley, a custodian accused of raping and killing a Texas high school student, McCloskey was a life-saver: He helped stop the 1987 execution of Brandley just eight days before his lethal injection. "He's an angel," says Brandley, who walked off death row three years later with McCloskey behind him. "The guards and inmates were cheering," he recalls. "They shut the prison down for me."
Raised in suburban Philadelphia, McCloskey, a lifelong bachelor, left a lucrative corporate executive job at age 37 for Princeton Theological Seminary in search of purpose. During his second year he served as a student chaplain at the New Jersey State Prison, where he met Jorge De Los Santos, a heroin addict accused of murder. "He challenged me to free him," says McCloskey, who succeeded three years later. "Jorge gave me a mission in life."
Although the inmates they've helped free have collectively served 972 years, most have not been compensated, and only one real killer has been brought to justice. "There's a lot of heartache in this work," says McCloskey, "but to have a mother thank us for bringing her son or daughter home, that's all the reward we need."
Treat Yourself! 4 Preview Issues
The most buzzed about stars this minute!