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Wrongful Conviction

Causes of Wrongful Convictions.

TermDefinition
Eyewitness Misidentification (Description) The biggest cause of wrongful convictions; often happens because of fear, the crime scene being too dark, or being too far away
Eyewitness Misidentification (Solution) Double Blind Line Up Administration (where the officer administering the line up & the witness don't know who the suspect is)
Improper Forensic Science (Description) Using techniques such as hair analysis & bite mark analysis when we don't know enough information/statistics about them (how unique they are, how reliable they are, etc).
Improper Forensic Science (Solution) Setting new standards for quality forensic science, doing more research on unreliable techniques to improve them.
False Confessions (Description) People might do this because they misunderstand, there is a threat of a harsher sentence, police coercion, intoxication. People who are young or have mental disabilities are most susceptible.
False Confessions (Solution) Recording police interrogations and allowing the judge to decide the reliability of the confession.
Government Misconduct (Description) When the police and/or prosecutor fail to turn over evidence to the defense, allow untruthful witnesses to testify, use fraudulent forensic experts, etc.
Government Misconduct (Solution) Severe consequences for those who knowingly convict the innocent, improved discovery laws.
Inadequate Defense (Description) When the defense lawyer falls asleep on the job, fails to show up for hearings, fails to consult with experts, fails to investigate alibis, or are disbarred shortly after.
Inadequate Defense (Solution) More money and access to resources for public defenders.
Incentivized Witnesses (Description) When someone gets a deal in exchange for their testimony, EX) a shorter sentence.
Incentivized Witnesses (Solution) Make sure deals aren't hidden, make sure the jury knows about the deals and that these witnesses are not always reliable.
Created by: nmorris