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Dean Gillispie

Blind Injustice: How ‘Tunnel Vision’ Convicts the Innocent

Roger Dean Gillispie was found guilty of rape, even though he didn’t match eyewitness descriptions, and the evidence made clear he was nowhere near the scene of the crime. He spent more than 20 years behind bars until the Ohio Supreme Court this year gave him back his freedom. The director of the Ohio Innocence Project, who worked on his case, tells the story.

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gavel

How Appeals Courts ‘Rubber Stamp’ Injustice

Although appellate courts can’t know whether a defendant is actually innocent, they can—or should—know when a trial is unfair. Unfortunately, says a New York attorney who writes under the pseudonym “Appellate Squawk,” most are simply rubber stamps for miscarriages of justice in lower courts.

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When New Research Proves Courtroom ‘Experts’ Wrong

Many wrongful convictions are based on forensic testimony and science later exposed as flawed. A California statute this year laid out the terms for granting relief to defendants challenging ‘expert’ evidence—but striking the right balance between evolving scientific research and trial pressures remains a challenge, says a UC law professor.

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When Prosecutors Ignore the Constitution

Judges in New York have been urged to formally remind prosecutors of their obligation to turn over evidence that might exonerate defendants before a trial— or face contempt charges. It’s a step long advocated by reform advocates like the Innocence Project—will other states follow suit?

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A Life (Without Parole) Story

How much punishment does an offender deserve? The Crime Report’s David J. Krajicek takes a deep look at America’s ‘lifers’–­the neglected leftovers of mass incarceration.

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How Police Can Reduce Wrongful Convictions

Recent high-profile exonerations have highlighted systemic failures and cognitive biases that may be fixed through a system-wide approach to learning from wrongful convictions, according to a new paper released by the National Institute of Justice. Anthony Batts, commissioner of the Baltimore Police Department, Darrel Stephens, executive director of the Major Cities Chiefs Association and Madeline deLeone, executive director of the Innocence Project, examine several exonerations and discuss in the paper what investigations of errors in other fields, such as medicine, […]

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The Eyewitness Con Game: Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell

A current debate over the handling of eyewitness evidence illuminates the influence that a “downstream” inspection screen (here, the prosecutors) can exercise over “upstream” practices (here, police evidence evaluation).