Apr 7, 2014

Milwaukee, Philly and Baltimore to Review Criminal-justice Wrongful Convictions

Professor of Law Mark Godsey reports, "(a)ccording to The Crime Report, the major criminal-justice players in Philadelphia, Milwaukee and Baltimore have agreed to develop a system to review (criminal-justice) cases that went wrong or almost went wrong in an attempt to keep similar mistakes from happening again."

The project is supported in part by the National Institute of Justice, Godsey reports.

Stephen Handelman at The Crime Report writes:
A collaborative approach —in which prosecutors, police, public defenders, pretrial agencies and even public health services recognize they have common goals in ensuring that justice is applied fairly and equitably—can restore public faith and trust.

"Without that,” said [Milwaukee County District Attorney John] Chisholm, "the system cannot work."
That's a fact not acknowledged by anyone running for District Attorney or Attorney General, save Ismael Ozanne who responded to a question at this site, writing in part: "The ultimate goal of the system is not simply to secure convictions, it is to do justice."

Handleman notes, "According to the National Registry of Exonerations, by the end of 2013, 1,272 individuals were freed from prison after being found innocent of the crimes for which they were convicted."

Scott Walker is not troubled by such wrongful convictions, saying last year, "If you pick one [to be pardoned] there's thousands of other examples out there of people who may not have the media or other outlets behind them, who would be in an equal position who probably have a compelling case to be made that we don't yet know about." (WKOW TV (Madison)

This is great news, but the putative nature of American society, and the careerism and go-along nature of criminal justice needs to change systemically.

One hopes this first step can stop America's shame of mass incarceration, often accomplished by deceitful prosecutors.

As the Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit's Richard Posner said of prosecutors who violate defendants' rights: Prosecutorial misconduct is a "breathtaking injustice."

No comments:

Post a Comment