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Wrongful Convictions Archives

Legislation seeks to help those wrongfully convicted because of false confessions

Earlier this week, we told you about how, under certain circumstances, victims of wrongful convictions may not be able to seek damages for their wrongful incarceration if they falsely confessed to the crime or pled guilty in order to avoid a harsher sentence.

Should victims of wrongful convictions be denied damages simply because of a false confession?

In New York, victims of wrongful convictions may be able to seek damages from the state if they serve time in prison for a crime they did not commit. However, it is important to remember that there are several limitations that apply.

Court finds man's sex abuse charges entirely based on fabrication

The Ninth Circuit court of appeals has reinstated a $9-million jury award in the case of a man who was falsely accused of molesting his children. The case against him appears to have been entirely fabricated by a Sheriff's deputy. She repeatedly contradicted the alleged victims' actual statements in her reports and even made up quotes and attributed it to them. It was a frame-up.

SCOTUS: Exonerees don't have to prove selves for return of funds

The U.S. Supreme Court has just ruled that exonerees are entitled to the return of conviction-related costs and any restitution they've paid, and that they don't have to affirmatively prove their innocence in order to qualify. This is not a case involving monetary compensation for the undue hardship an innocent person endures in prison -- here, the money the exonerees are seeking is the money they were charged in court costs and fees, or that they have paid in restitution to someone else's victim.

Are changes coming to New York's wrongful conviction recovery statute?

Earlier this week, we told you about Section 8-b of the New York Court of Claims Act, which is the provision that permits those who have been wrongfully convicted, imprisoned and subsequently exonerated to file a claim against the state for damages.

Lab scandal likely to void 20,000 wrongful convictions

The admitted evidence tampering and forgery by a single Massachusetts lab worker has led to the likely dismissal of more than 20,000 wrongful drug convictions, which is possibly the largest mass-dismissal of criminal convictions in U.S. history.

Does video-recording interrogations help prevent wrongful convictions?

Given that some police interrogations have led to false confessions and wrongful convictions in the past, it probably comes as no surprise that several New York lawmakers are now attempting to make the interrogation process more transparent by requiring law enforcement officers to video-record all custodial interrogations involving major offenses.

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