The cases of 208 people exonerated by DNA evidence in the United States have inspired sweeping reforms to law enforcement and legal procedures in dozens of states. These reforms – from eyewitness identification procedures to recording of interrogations to DNA testing access – have helped to prevent wrongful convictions and exonerate the innocent.
A New York Times article today reviews recently passed legislation in several states and previews pending reforms in others.
Advocates of efforts to use DNA to exonerate those wrongfully convicted say the changes in the state laws are welcome and long overdue.
“The legislative reform movement as a result of these DNA exonerations is probably the single greatest criminal justice reform effort in the last 40 years,” said Peter J. Neufeld, co-director of the Innocence Project.
Read the full story here
. (New York Times, 10/01/07)