US Exonerations at a Record High; Cost of one wrongful conviction from 1992 is $4.75 million while others go without

The continuing end game for the people erroneously convicted (usually for homicide) and released after decades in prison continues to be clouded.

One man in New York gets $4.75 million.  NYC paid another man $10 million in April, 2014.

US exonerations at a record high level.

California rejects its own laws in refusing to compensate its exonerees. This resistance parallels the state’s governor, Jerry Brown, being mute regarding 12 prisoners the California Innocence project is representing the gov for clemency as being factually innocent. One was recently released pending a DA decision on a possible trial. Similar clemency petitions are happening in Illinois. 

As glimpse of the nationwide taxpayers costs can be seen in Illinois. from 2011.  I have not been able to discover any national surveys dealing with what all 50 states have spent in compensation.

FOOTNOTE: Innocence Projects in the US have 30% of their DNA exonerations ending up identifying the real perps. 50% of these cases contained faulty forensic science. Prosecutorial misconduct rate is almost the same.

The need for LEGITIMATE Forensic science reform is obvious. What else is obvious is that the panel of bitemark experts empaneled by  AAFS/NIST  reform effort is largely illegitimate. 

Meet the 325th exonoree in the US. Three victim witnesess ID’d him. 31 years in prison. He refused a plea deal of 5 years in 1980. DNA wasn’t his.



About csidds

Dr. Michael Bowers is a long time forensic consultant in the US and international court systems.
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