Can Wrongful Convictions be Predicted and Prevented?
Date:  03-12-2013

Several facts are indicators that a wrongful conviction may be in the works
>The National Institute of Justice announced the release of a new study that sheds light on the factors that can lead to a wrongful conviction. According to the NIJ, the study Predicting Erroneous Convictions: A Social Science Approach to Miscarriages of Justice, “ compared cases where innocent defendants were wrongfully convicted to "near misses" – cases in which an innocent defendant was acquitted or had charges dismissed before trial.” The study determined that the following facts were deemed to play a critical role in wrongful convictions.

  • A younger defendant

  • A defendant with a criminal history

  • A weak prosecution case

  • Prosecution withheld evidence

  • Lying by a non-eyewitness

  • Unintentional witness misidentification

  • Misinterpreting forensic evidence at trial

  • A weak defense

  • Defendant offered a family witness
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