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review 2016-05-10 02:54
First Offense
First Offense (Innocent Prisoners Project) - Marti Green
Innocent Prisoners Project #4
ISBN: 9781503934702
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer
Publication Date: 5/10/2016
Format: Other
My Rating: 4 Stars

A special thank you to Thomas & Mercer and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

Marti Green returns following The Price of Justice (2015), with FIRST OFFENSE (#4), a continuation of her riveting series, (HIPP) Help Innocent Prisoners Project—highly charged topics, of abuse, corruption, bribery, racketeering, and extortion of the private juvenile justice system—and those caught in the crossfires of an unjust system. Haunting and terrifying for parents, as well as the young adult victims.

Frankie Bishop, age twelve, idolized his father, Alex. When he was deployed, (army) Frankie seemed lost without him. An interracial family, now they were living off-base for the first time in years in a new city, new school and new challenges. His mother Jessica was afraid his father may not come home this time around. She decided to move them to Key Vista Florida, on the Gulf Coast, near her mother. Alex is MIA.

Frankie, becomes angry, at his father being MIA, at his mother for moving them to a new town, and at his brother, Bobby for leaving them the previous month to join the Marines. He was an outsider at his school. Four moves in seven years since he was old enough to start kindergarten.

He was a model straight A student and wants to be a doctor. However, due to wanting to fit in and peer pressure, there was drugs, the police were called. He could not tell the police where he found the marijuana. His brother Bobby would be kicked out of the service. Bobby had always been in trouble and never Frankie. He just wanted to be accepted. He did not use drugs, nor would he sell it.

He was sent to a detention center. He needs an attorney. The mother calls Bruce Kantor (at HIPP), her brother-in-law, and he was too close to the situation--they needed a good attorney who’s was in the juvenile court all the time. Frankie had brought marijuana to school in hopes of winning a friend. Bruce turns to his associate Dani for help.

Dani Trumball, HIPP lawyer, wife, and mom, has her own problems. She is concerned she is pregnant. She and Doug had Jonah fourteen years earlier. He was diagnosed with Williams syndrome, a disorder that caused cognitive difficulties, and they had decided they need to focus on him. She had recently gone back to work while Jonah was in school. Like many children with this syndrome, he had demonstrated very early extraordinary musical talent. A baby—not what they planned at age forty-five and husband forty-seven. She had struggled in the past with her conflict between working and being a mother. Yet he still managed to thrive. She knows she wants to do it again.

She is on the case to help her associate, and a family devastated—a son sentenced to juvenile detention at Eldridge Academy. Dani and her favorite investigator at HIPP, Tommy Noorland—fly to Tampa and drove to Key Visa, a small community near the Gulf where Jessica and her son lived. What she found astounded her. Why would a first offender, be sent to a detention center?

Something seems off. After further investigation, there were all sorts of horrific abusive behavior to these boys from the guards. They were threatened and beaten, and one boy was found dead. Things were serious. If a guard would commit murder, how could they protect this boy? A juvenile prison, with a name making it sound like an elite private school. Why were hundreds of boys sentenced to this facility, when it did not warrant the seriousness of the crime.

They track down leads. However, now he is gone. No one has any answers. What had they done to him? They began checking hospitals. They tracked him down at a nearby hospital—internal bleeding and a ruptured spleen, broken ribs and bruising. He had been at Eldridge Academy for two months. He had seen plenty, punched, kicked, handcuffed, beaten, they all made sure it was done out of sight of the security cameras.

Frankie is torn. He knew he could not go back. He could not return to his mother—that would be the first place they would look. His only hope was getting to his brother somehow at Camp Lejeune, in Jacksonville, North Carolina---his brother Bobby would know what to do. He leaves and is on the run. He knows he cannot go back to prison, they will kill him due to telling about the death of the boy.

He meets a nice couple in Savannah, and there is a plan. If he had followed their plan to the letter, he would have made it to his brother. However, he then meets another man, along his journey, who steers him wrong. A man sees a boy traveling alone. Frankie trusts the wrong person. Now he finds himself in even more trouble than ever before. How will he escape this time? Bigger trouble than he’d ever face. A betrayal. Little does he know the man is part of an illegal sex-trafficking ring.

Jessica, the mom is frantic. If Frankie ran from the hospital, it had to be because he didn’t believe they would protect him from another beating or worse. No one was protecting Frankie and these boys.

Dani and Jessica are both afraid—the thoughts of children sent to juvenile facilities in order to help them, to provide services to turn their lives around and once there, cruelty, heartlessly abused. There has to be some sort of conspiracy between the warden, owners of the facility and the legal system. Why, and the motive?

Who was protecting them and where was the community outrage? Where were the government overseers? Frankie’s mom nor she would accept it. The kids are threatened if they report the incidents, and she has to keep digging. Nothing more she can do until she finds Frankie.

The FBI is called in, and a race against time. Each time they think they have a lead, Frankie is being shifted to another person or place—which looks like sex slavery and sex trafficking. Predators and monsters who broker innocent children for money.

Dani is outraged --how many children languish in prison where the profit motive outweighed compassion. She had encountered many awful people in her years, both as a prosecutor and a HIPP attorney, but never had she been as disgusted as she was by this sad excuse for a man….one who saw children only as dollar signs, a means to personal wealth, due to greed. Big business- goal was making money, not rehabilitating kids. Will they find the answers in time to save Frankie and the others?

A great exploration, research, and insights into the private, for profit juvenile prisons—from the reported abuses, the disturbing motives, sex trafficking, and the operators, even though fictional—based on real cases which have occurred in the juvenile prisons throughout the US.

Having read all the books in the HIPP series (highly recommend), always enjoy the challenges of the legal system, as well as Dani, Bruce, and the team—tenacious, protecting those who cannot help themselves. Each case brings on new controversial topics, timely and even though fictional, they could be ripped from today’s headlines. A nice balance of personal and professional.

I enjoy the Florida settings, as well as the legal expertise of the author’s which makes for an absorbing and engaging read. Those enjoying good legal suspense and crime cop procedures will be glued to the pages. Fans of Sylvie Fox's Casey Cort legal series will relate to the similar topics.

Highly recommend this series!
 
 
Help Innocent Prisoner's Project 
 
Source: www.judithdcollinsconsulting.com/#!First-Offense/cmoa/56e86e590cf290399f455ac9
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review 2015-07-09 06:01
The Price of Justice
The Price of Justice - Marti Green
ISBN: 9781503945036
Series:  Innocent Prisoners Project
Publisher:  Thomas & Mercer
Pulication Date:  7/21/2015 
Format: Other 
My Rating:  4.5 Stars 
 
A special thank you to Thomas & Mercer and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review. 

Marti Green returns with popular Help Innocent Prisoners Project, (HIPP) with her third and most riveting installment in the series--THE PRICE OF JUSTICE, when justice comes with a hefty price; sacrifices made, and a race against time with an execution countdown, in this complex multi-layered suspense legal crime thriller.

Having read the two other books in the series, was so excited to discover what case Dani Trumball, and the HIPP team in New York would be involved in this time around. This is the most complex case yet, which will keep you on the edge of your seat guessing, as to the identity of the real killer.

This request for legal representation is quite different than their normal cases at HIPP. Since the organization is a non-profit, helping innocent prisoners, normally their clients have no other financial means for legal counsel. Their mission is to help free as many innocent men and women as they can. However, without funds they will have to let go of staff and that will dramatically reduce the number of people they can help.

When Amelia Melton, one of the richest and most power grandmother, matriarch comes flying in their humble office, the elderly woman wants Dani to save her grandson, who is serving on death row and days from execution. She can afford the best attorneys money can buy. However, she has long given up on them, and aware HIPP operates on donations.

Her proposal is for Dani to take her grandson, Winston’s case and she will donate $500,000 to the organization. Win it, and she will donate an additional $500,000, plus expenses. She wants an answer in two days, as there is no time to spare.

Ms. Melton is doing the bidding, and taking control. The parents fell apart when their son was first arrested, and they believe in him; however, they are worn down. It is up to the grandmother to take charge of his future. Dani's first reaction is to say no; however, there are many innocent impoverished men and women they can help with this money. Bruce and the board agree, they have to help.

However, first Dani wants to visit Winston, and ensure he is really innocent. That is all they need, to help a guilty man go free, no matter who his family is. Of course, with state and federal budget cuts, grants, and contributions which have recently been cut in half and the economy, organizations such as theirs are suffering.

The attorneys handling the original rape case, say Winston was an arrogant, cocky rich kid and the judges and system wanted to make an example of this family. How would it look if the courts showed favoritism to a rich and connected family?

The Meltons are wealthy with a home in Manhattan, and a winter home in Palm Beach. The rape occurred years ago with a high school student and the body was found behind Palm Beach High School. Melton at the time was a freshman at Princeton University and was at his family’s home visiting for semester break. He girl had been raped and killed and the cause of death was strangulation. No DNA was recovered from her body, but a strand of hair identified as belonging to the defendant was discovered near the body. They had dated prior to this and he had broken off the relationship prior to college.

When they visit Winston in prison, he appears to be innocent and very humble. His grandmother will stop at nothing to free her grandson. Then only days before another execution of a criminal, another death row prisoner confesses to the rape. He knows too many details. But why is he confessing now? Has the grandmother paid someone to take the fall, which will be executed in a few days regardless?

They have to find out if this guy’s family has received any large sums of money? Was the other guy the real killer, and if not, who is the real killer? He could still be out there? In the meantime, could Winston really be guilty and fooling everyone?

Dani and her team will need to work quickly, as the death warrant has already been signed, HIPP has less than six months to try and clear him. Their whole purpose is representing inmates they believe have been unfairly convicted. They do not take cases unless they believe the person isn’t guilty. Unlike other attorneys it is not always of importance. Of course someone else confessed, but what if they investigate and he didn't do it? Does the board expect them to represent him, anyway? What about double jeopardy for Winston--if he gets free, he cannot be tried again for the same crime?

Not only do they have to try and reverse the decision, they also have to begin their own investigation to clear their own suspicions, and look at anyone else who may be connected to the crime. From Winston’s friends, ex-girlfriends, and the victim’s friends, from back seven years earlier.

The suspense builds, when you suspect the grandmother buying off everyone, then is Winston really innocent, what about the person who confessed—how did he know details? Then there is another big twist which will leave your head spinning until it comes down to the wire.

Love Florida authors, and really enjoy them if they write legal thrillers. Green does an excellent job, with her legal facts, practicing attorney and residing in Central Florida. The interesting twist was the obstacle with Florida law. It’s the only state in which only seven of twelve jurors need to agree to impose the death penalty, instead of unanimous.

In summary, thanks Marti, for featuring Palm Beach County, my home for the last eight years! As always, another terrific suspense in this awesome series. Love the characters, and always a different case with new twists. Cannot wait to see what is next in the series. Keep them coming!

A huge fan of legal series, and even more so when combined with the personal lives, strong women, and those who enjoy helping those in need. Each can be read as a standalone; however, would recommend reading them all!

Unintended Consequences #1
Presumption of Guilt #2

If you enjoy this type of legal suspense crime thriller—helping the underdog and the innocent; also highly recommend, Sylvie Fox's A Casey Cort Series. The author is a former trial attorney, and she is full of wit! Both these series are top notch, and feature some strong intelligent women attorneys, fighting for justice to defend the less fortunate.
Qualified Immunity #1 Under Color of Law #2
Source: www.judithdcollinsconsulting.com/#!The-Price-of-Justice/cmoa/558dce420cf20d45521f2098
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review 2014-11-05 18:15
Unintended Consequences
Unintended Consequences (Help Innocent Prisoners Project) - Marti Green,Tanya Eby


Series:  Help Innocent Prisoners Project #1

By: Marti Green

ISBN: 1480585203

Publisher: Brillance Audio 

Publication Date:  01/28/2014 

Format: Audio

My Rating:  4 Stars

 

Marti Green’s UNITENDED CONSEQUENCES (Help Innocent Prisoners Project #1), a riveting and emotional journey of one man’s sacrifice to save his daughter, and a flawed criminal justice system, of murder, and corruption for page-turner legal crime thriller.

 

Attorney Dani Trumball, is an Ivy League trained lawyer devoted both to seeking justice for the wrongly convicted and to her husband and son. A driven attorney defending the wrongfully imprisoned at the non-profit Help Innocent Prisoners Project (HIPP)— Dani is one tough cookie, fighting to help those who cannot help themselves, with tenacity and determination, overcoming insurmountable obstacles in a world of poor health care, legal injustice, corruption, greed, and politics.

 

Dani feels compelled to take on a case of a man on death row, nearing execution, and after receiving a note requesting help—she thinks he may be innocent and is in a race against time to overturn the sentence.

 

George Calhoun claims he did not kill his four year old daughter, Angelina and has been in prison serving his sentence for over nineteen years, within six weeks of his execution. The body of a young girl was found burned beyond recognition and buried in the woods. 

 

Even though there was no evidence, his wife testified against him at the trial and was convicted. Many questions surface as to why does he now want to clear his name after nineteen years? Why did the wife testify against him and how does he know this is not his daughter; if not, whose body was buried and where is his daughter?

 

What happens next is a complicated and complex web of deceit and lies with two different stories connecting for an explosive conclusion. (Nothing is as it appears). Green delivers a heart-pounding page turner, leaving you glued to the pages, as you learn the fate and motives of all the characters involved in this heartfelt saga.

 

Those who enjoy courtroom drama, tough challenges and obstacles as one strong female attorney fights the system against all odds, in order to deliver justice. I listened to the audio book narrated by Tanya Eby for a suspenseful performance.

 

Green keeps you guessing the identity of the killer for a suspenseful and intriguing drama. Would recommend reading her latest book, Presumption of Guilt (11/4/2014for a continuation of tenacious Dani Trumball with book two in the Help Innocent Prisoners Project (HIPP) as she battles legal injustice and corruption, coming to the defense of the innocent.

 

Presumption of Guilt  11/4/2014 

Help Innocent Prisoners Project #2

 

 

 

Source: www.goodreads.com/review/show/1095310354
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review 2014-11-05 16:27
Presumption of Guilt
Presumption of Guilt (Help Innocent Prisoners Project) - Marti Green,Tanya Eby

By: Marti Green

Series: Help Innocent Prisoners Project #2
ISBN: 1491548401
Publisher: Brillance Audio
Publication Date: 11/04/2014
Format: Audio
My Rating: 4 Stars

 

PRESUMPTION OF GUILT (Help Innocent Prisoners Project #2) by Marti Green, a compelling novel of injustice and murder. A legal suspense thriller, of a flawed criminal justice system, greed, and a young innocent girl caught in the cross fire.

 

Attorney Dani Trumball, is an Ivy League trained lawyer devoted both to seeking justice for the wrongly convicted and to her husband and son. She returns from Book One, Unintended Consequences, a driven attorney defending the wrongfully imprisoned at the non-profit Help Innocent Prisoners Project. Dani is one tough cookie, fighting to help those who cannot help themselves, with tenacity and determination, overcoming insurmountable obstacles in a world of corruption, greed, and politics.

 

Molly Singer was convicted for the murder of her parents over twelve years ago, being separated from her newborn daughter, a scared young woman with a bright future, forced to question the events of the night of the tragedy which would forever change her life.

 

As she is facing two life sentences in prison, new evidence is brought to light which may prove her innocence; however, there are those who need to keep the conspiracy and the real killer a secret and will stop at nothing to keep the blame on an innocent young woman.

 

My first book by Green was Unintended Consequences—highly impressed with her well-written and masterfully developed characters. A huge fan of courtroom drama, legal, and crime thrillers as well as injustice and fighting for those less fortunate; Green hooks you from page one until the end for a riveting fast paced drama of false convictions, deceit, and a flawed criminal justice system which will leave your head spinning, with a tenacious, highly respected and lovable strong protagonist.

 

Green sets the stage with details and an account so realistic, you find yourself thinking this could happen to anyone –wrong place, wrong time, offering new meaning to innocent until proven guilty. I listened to the audiobook narrated by Tanya Eby for a suspenseful and intense performance, hard to put down.

 

Recommend both books in the series, and especially to readers enjoying crime and legal thrillers, social issues, with strong human dynamics and courtroom drama. Fans of Michael Connelly and John Grisham (I am), will enjoy. Green is an author to follow and would encourage you to visit her website to learn more about her passion for law and inspiration. Green's detail-rich fiction is filled with authority stemming from her professional background in law and psychology.  Looking forward to the next in the series! (yeah, another Floridian)! 

 

Unintended Consequences  1/28/2014 

Book #1 Help Innocent Prisoners Project

 

Source: www.goodreads.com/review/show/1064775977
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review 2013-02-07 04:24
Down To The Wire Thriller
Unintended Consequences - Marti Green

Dani Trumball is married to Doug a legal professor at a local university and
mother to Jonah a special needs chold diagnosed with Williams Syndrome. Dani
works for the Help Innocent Prisoners Project. Usually she writes the final
legal appeals and such after fellow coworkers have proven a prisoner was wrongly
convicted. But a letter from convicted child killer George Calhoun has her
investigating his claim that the body they found was not his daughter
Angelina.

George and Sallie Calhoun loved their beautiful daughter
Angelina but she is fighting for her life with a reoccurance of Leukemia that
has spread. Already in debt from their first battle the doctor is willing to
waive his fee but the Calhoun's already owe so much the hospital wont budge.
Without treatment Angelina will surely die. George and Sallie make the toughest
decision in their lives. One that winds them in prison, Sallie gets life in
prison while George gets the death sentence.

19 years later and 6 weeks
before he is to walk that final walk to his death sentence, all appeals
exhausted he still maintains the burned body of that little girl was not his
daughter, not his beautiful Angelina so in one last ditch effort and with the
prodding of the warden he writes to HIPP and his letter winds up on the desk of
Dani Ttumbal. Now its up to her take the case or turn it down.

Dani takes
the case and brings in Tommy Norland former FBI and office flirt but hes the
best investigator and he doesnt believe George is innocent so he will be a great
balancing board. And Melonie Quinn assistant editor of the law review has a
passion for setting things right just like Dani the perfect fit for this
case.

Their investigation leads them down many twists and turns. After
Dani meets with George she truly believes the body they found was not the
daughter of George and Sallie, even though Sallie who hates George swears that
was their daughter. Dani and Melonie fight and lose many different appeals.
Tommy recieves a threat. People are being killed. And Dani is begining to lose
hope.

But then a small thread and the more they pull it the moe the truth
unravels. Could George be telling the truth, could that burned body be that of
another missing girl? Could Angelina still be alive. Its down to the wire and
Dani is fighting for an innocent mans life.

This is a great legal
thriller well written I felt drawn in from the start and was on the edge of my
seat wondering is he telling the truth.

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