Government's Role In Wrongful Convictions In Research

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Government Misconduct and Preventative Measures Wrongful convictions happen for a number of reasons. Some of the reasons individuals get wrongfully convicted include: witness identification errors, false confessions, unreliable informants, errors in forensic evidence and testing, and useless defense assistance. There are many ways the government plays a role in wrongful convictions also. Jon B. Gould (2008) states, “As these innocent men and women have walked out of prison, some of them even having been released from death row, a new wave of research has arisen into the sources of wrongful convictions.” Government misconduct, which includes both law enforcement officials and prosecutors, is a major contributing factor in wrongful convictions…show more content…
Law enforcement officials can mislead the jury by lying about their observations or the events that they witnessed. Although withholding justifiable evidence is illegal (Brady violation), if the law enforcement officials believe that the suspect is guilty, they will neglect to turn in justifiable evidence to support the defense. By providing incentives, such as getting paid to testify or a release from prison for testifying, many unreliable informants provide untrue information to law enforcement officials. Fabricated evidence also plays a role in the conviction of innocent individuals. Law Info (1995-2014) states that law enforcement officials are responsible for preserving, gathering, and documenting evidence. If a police officer makes a mistake during their investigation or believes the suspect is guilty, they can fabricate the evidence to cover up the mistake or make the suspect seem…show more content…
Identifying eyewitness with more advanced lineup methods, extra research of the eyewitness, and a higher quality of training for police could prevent many wrongful convictions. Many states have started recording all interrogations to ensure that the wrongfully accused do not get forced to falsely confess. Stopping investigative prejudice is another measure that could be taken. DNA testing methods are advancing, which will reduce the amount of wrongful convictions. Many states are also investing in advanced technology and evaluating the present procedures that are used. When new evidence is found, officials can review closed cases to ensure that the guilty party is in fact guilty. By keeping all evidence is a safe place, it will ensure that no evidence gets destroyed in case there is new development in that case. Putting a stop to “tunnel vision” can ensure a suspect is innocent until proven guilty. Gould, Carrano, Leo, & Hail-Jares (2014) also state that creating an alibi checklist and creating a mentoring program for new prosecutors, directed by experienced prosecutors, could help the new prosecutors reduce the risk of

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