BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Our volunteer Board of Directors includes four former law enforcement officers, two of whom are exonerees who each spent more than 20 years wrongfully imprisoned, an attorney with exoneration experience, a psychologist dedicated to truth and justice, and a biologist with a background as a genetics researcher and victim’s advocate.
Michael M. Danovich
Mike is a former Law Enforcement Officer from Oregon. Although he was a “late-bloomer” in the field, Mike loved police work and valued his time in the field. He received many promotions and was assigned to many specialty units during his tenure. He received the Top Shooter award for his department and prided himself in working hard for all his community and fellow officers. At the time he left law enforcement, Mike was their Union Vice-President, working for his fellow officers’ rights. After leaving the department, Mike moved with his family to Arizona and proceeded to fulfill his next dream, becoming an entrepreneur. Mike always had the desire to help the less fortunate and saw first-hand how in a political climate, officers can be hung out to dry by their departments in trying times. So, with the help of the others on the board, Mike worked diligently to create UNCUFF. With the success that UNCUFF has seen, Mike and the board decided it’s only right to open the non-profit up to ANYONE that has been unjustly convicted or accused of a crime.
Brian E. Franklin
Brian Franklin is a former Fort Worth, Texas police officer. He was an officer for over 10 years, which included being a training officer. He was wrongfully convicted of rape in February 1995, and spent over 21 years wrongfully incarcerated in prison. His first habeas corpus application was denied by the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals in April 2002, even though after a several day hearing the trial court determined that Brian was actually innocent in February 2000, and again in November 2001. Brian's conviction was reversed and he was released in May 2016. He was retried and acquitted by a jury in December 2016. Brian currently works as a nursing assistant in a State mental hospital in Texas. Brian is actively seeking wrongful imprisonment compensation from the State of Texas.
Erica B. Fuchs
Secretary & Treasurer
Erica Fuchs is a scientist from Iowa with a B.A. in Biology from Harvard University and an M.S. in Botany from Iowa State University, with a minor in Biochemistry. She has performed DNA cloning, sequencing, and genetic engineering in a university biotechnology lab. Erica has advocated for survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence while volunteering and working at assault care centers in the past, and she currently volunteers her time to help wrongfully convicted individuals.
Oscar Michelen graduated magna cum laude from New York Law School in 1985 and clerked for the Hon Vincent L. Broderick in the Southern District of New York. He was the Senior Trial Specialist in the NYC Corporation Counsel’s Office handling the highest exposure and most high-profile cases brought against the City of New York, many of which dealt with police shootings; police chases; and wrongful death. He left the office in1990 to start a career in private practice. Since 2010, he is a partner in Cuomo LLC, a litigation firm in Manhattan and Mineola, NY, specializing in commercial litigation; municipal defense; and intellectual property. He taught as an Adjunct Professor of Law at New York Law School from 2006-2011 and as an Adjunct Professor of Law at Touro Law School from 2017-2019. He has been retained as an expert witness in a variety of areas related to legal practice in court cases throughout the State of New York.
In addition to his practice, he works on wrongful conviction cases and has exonerated seven men in six cases over the past fourteen years. His wrongful conviction work is covered in the YouTube movie Fight for Justice: David & Me and on the podcast Empire on Blood.
Mr. Michelen was born in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic and resides on Long Island with his wife Christine. He is the current Vice President of the Long Island Hispanic Bar Association and a member of the Judicial Screening Committee for the Nassau County Bar Association.
Rebecca J. Mock, Ph.D.
Dr. Rebecca J. Mock holds a Ph.D. in Industrial and Organizational Psychology, with her research focusing on Theistic Spirituality and Workplace Deviance. Dr. Rebecca Mock also possesses an M.S. in Industrial and Organizational Psychology and a B.S. in Communication and Sociology/Anthropology. Her initial interest in our justice system and law enforcement began in 2009 when she returned to college and included a year of criminal justice courses in her program. Her professional background includes over 20 years of administrative and human resources management experience. Dr. Mock has always desired to make a positive difference within the criminal justice system and believes in a system that equally protects the rights of the victim and the accused and is resolute in finding the truth so the innocent are not wrongfully convicted.
John Paolucci is a retired Detective Sergeant from NYPD who worked his last eight years in the Forensic Investigations Division, four of them as a Crime Scene Unit supervisor. He was the first ever to command the Office of Chief Medical Examiner (OCME) Liaison Unit where he managed all DNA evidence in NYC and trained thousands of state, local, and federal investigators in DNA evidence collection and documentation. He developed a strong alliance between the Office of Chief Medical Examiner Forensic Biology Department and NYPD. He also worked as a Narcotics Undercover and Patrol Officer in the Housing Projects of the South Bronx. He is currently the president of Forensics 4 Real Inc., where he provides forensic support to international and domestic investigations and expert analysis of crime scenes, specializing in Bloodstain Pattern Analysis and shooting incident reconstruction. He trains students and law enforcement in forensic evidence and crime scene investigations at various venues including the Henry Lee Academy and has worked on real crime shows, appearing on both the ID Channel and A& E Network as well as numerous radio and print venues. John is also an adjunct Professor at Mercy College in the Bronx, teaching students about Crime Scene Investigations and Criminalistics www.forensics4real.com.
Dr. Ray Spencer, Ph.D.
Dr. Ray Spencer has a Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Justice and Master’s and Doctorate Degrees in Psychology. Dr. Spencer was a U. S. Air Force Air Traffic Controller. Upon being honorably discharged, he was hired by the U.S. Marshal’s Service as one of the original Federal Air Marshals. He later transferred into federal narcotics. He was based out of Los Angeles but worked up and down the west coast in an undercover marine detail interdicting major loads of narcotics coming into the country by boats. He eventually left federal law enforcement and became a police officer in Vancouver, Washington. In 1985 he was set up and sent to prison with a sentence of 212 years. It took 25 years to finally clear his name and have all charges dropped.