Lift Connecticut’s Blindfold on Justice

Photo by Sammy Westfall, The Politic.

In Connecticut, people charged with crimes are often left “blindfolded” — unaware of the state’s evidence against them — as they prepare for trial or make life-altering decisions to plead guilty. The lack of transparency played a role in  65% of wrongful convictions in the state, which cost taxpayers over $54 million in state compensation and civil lawsuits.

For example, Scott Lewis spent 25 years in prison for a 1990 double-homicide in New Haven that he did not commit. The prosecution failed to turn over key evidence that pointed to Lewis’s innocence, including statements from a police officer that the state’s key witness was coerced, and that a different person had confessed to the crime. 

Connecticut should remove the blindfold to prevent wrongful convictions like Scott’s. Open-file discovery practices would ensure that evidence is disclosed promptly and completely to the accused before trial or entering a plea agreement. More transparency will help jurors deliver accurate verdicts and prevent wrongful convictions of the innocent.

Sign up to support open-file discovery to protect the innocent in Connecticut. 

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