A Mother’s Day Letter from Daughter to Mom in Arkansas Prison
By Bridgette Jones
Bridgette Jones is the daughter of our client Belynda Goff who was convicted of murdering her husband in 1997. Goff, who steadfastly maintains her innocence, has been in prison for more than 20 years and has to spend yet another Mother’s Day in prison without her loved ones.
I want to wish you a happy Mother’s Day. Every time this holiday comes around I cannot help but think of you and how much you mean to me, to all of us. My brothers and I are who we are today because of you.
You have been a pillar of strength for us during this nightmare. This tragic injustice has affected us all. Every holiday ripped away, every moment we long to share with you we cannot because you were wrongfully stolen from our lives and forced to endure a punishment for a crime you did not commit.
Hold your head high this Mother’s Day and know that you are loved.
Though we cannot always be physically close, I depend on our frequent phone calls to hear you laugh, to guide me, and just so I can tell you we are all here for you! We are working and striving toward the day when you will be freed. When it is publicly acknowledged that there is absolutely no evidence tying you to this crime. That your trial was a travesty from the get-go. That the DNA evidence that could have led to your freedom suspiciously disappeared while in the custody of the police
Your integrity has never wavered. You are a woman of character and strength that I admire in every possible way. I realize this holiday is difficult for you but know that we are celebrating you! My hope is that other mothers who may be facing similar circumstances have the strength to persevere, to fight the good fight, and know there are virtuous people out there that are taking a stand against wrongful convictions.
Hold your head high this Mother’s Day and know that you are loved. Know that you are not alone. Know that I will spend my last breath fighting until you are free.
A new Broadway play, Lobby Hero, puts the tensions of our injustice American criminal justice system front and center. Read a compelling review of the play by guest blogger Innocence Project Staff Attorney Dana Delger.
“It makes you really wonder what would the feelings on exoneration be, and how many would we see, if there were more of these organizations,” said Barbara O’Brien, a law professor at Michigan State University and the editor of the registry.