Last month, Frank Sterling was exonerated by DNA evidence after being incarcerated 18 years for a crime he did not commit. Sterling was wrongfully convicted of murdering an elderly woman in Rochester, New York in 1988. His conviction was based entirely on a false confession. In the meantime the actual killer remained free, and six years later he murdered four-year-old Kali Poulton. This tragedy leaves no question that addressing the flaws in our criminal justice system that lead to wrongful convictions is a public safety imperative.
|By: John Terzano Wednesday May 19, 2010 11:44 am|
|By: John Terzano Thursday March 4, 2010 12:51 pm|
After seventeen years, Gregory Taylor was finally freed on February 17th when the three judge panel of the North Carolina Innocence Inquiry Commission unanimously ruled to exonerate him. North Carolina created the commission to investigate and evaluate post-conviction claims of innocence in 2006 and is the first of its kind in the United States. Taylor, wrongfully convicted of first degree murder in 1993, is the first person to be exonerated by the commission.
|By: John Terzano Monday October 12, 2009 12:00 pm|
Two more innocent men have been freed from death row. Just last week, Yancy Douglas and Paris Powell became the 137th and 138th people to be exonerated from death row. The two men were convicted of a drive-by shooting in 1993 based on the testimony of an in-custody informant who had been offered leniency from the prosecution. These exonerations highlight the power prosecutors have in securing convictions by utilizing in-custody informant testimony, even when no physical evidence links a defendant to the crime.
|By: John Terzano Tuesday June 9, 2009 6:28 am|
The continued lack of standard policies in the states for post-conviction DNA testing is troubling. With so many exonerations across the country proving that our criminal justice system is broken, post-conviction DNA testing offers the unique opportunity to correct mistakes and help make our criminal justice system more fair and reliable. Yet, few states have adopted standards and prosecutors often fight to deny access to such testing.
|By: John Terzano Wednesday March 25, 2009 9:30 am|
The Justice Project has published a new report on Texas wrongful convictions exposed by DNA evidence. Convicting the Innocent: Texas Justice Derailed presents the cases of thirty-nine innocent men who served over 500 years in prison for crimes they did not commit. The report also highlights key reforms Texas must implement to address the flawed evidence and systemic problems that led to these mistakes.