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courtroom

Can We Learn from Prosecutor Misconduct?

At least one federal judge has argued that violations of the Brady v. Maryland rule requiring prosecutors to disclose evidence favorable to the defense are “epidemic.”  But we should be thinking about how to prevent such miscarriages of justice, rather than just punishing them, writes TCR’s legal columnist.

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Florida’s Conviction Integrity Unit Scores First Win; Can It Keep Working?

A murder conviction that sent two Florida men to prison for 43 years was reversed last month. The victory illustrates why more prosecutors—and legislators—need to support the still-fragile efforts of conviction integrity units to bring justice to the wrongfully accused, writes a former prosecutor.   

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justice

Can Prosecutors and Public Defenders Team Up to Produce Fairer Justice?

Prosecutors’ pursuit of convictions at any cost and public defenders’ insufficient resources have too often combined to thwart defendants’ chances of a fair trial. Here’s an alternative approach proposed by Miami’s public defender and a former deputy assistant attorney general.

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gavel

Wrongful Convictions: What Really Matters?

As a debate about the number of wrongful convictions, sparked by Prof. Paul Cassell of Utah, quietly percolates among U.S. scholars, a TCR columnist suggests the argument misses the point entirely: the numbers are less important than making sure they don’t happen.

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courtroom

A ‘Holistic’ Approach to Wrongful Convictions

The “piecemeal” approach by state and federal court approach to addressing trial-level errors fails to account for the complex ways that seemingly independent errors interact with one another, writes a professor at the Northeastern University School of Law.

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courtroom

Wrongful Misdemeanor Convictions: Who’s Counting?

In most jurisdictions, drug arrests are based on cheap, error-prone field tests, and should the defendant plead guilty to the charge, no further testing occurs, writes the director of the National Registry of Exonerations. As a result, there is no telling how many people live with the consequences of conviction for a crime they never committed.

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prison

Not Guilty—But Not Free 

When exonerated individuals finally leave prison, they are often free in name only. For many of them, the struggle to find employment, housing and mental health treatment is the “stuff of nightmares,” writes a former Baltimore public defender.

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