I stand with the Innocence Project in combatting prosecutorial misconduct

I stand with the Innocence Project in combatting prosecutorial misconduct

A Win in New York

Thanks to supporters like you and countless allies, we are celebrating a big win in New York that has been years in the making. New York Governor Andrew Cuomo just signed new legislation into law that would create the nation’s first independent state-wide commission to address prosecutorial misconduct. The law will serve as a model for other states on how to address the lack of accountability for prosecutorial misconduct that too often results in innocent people being wrongly convicted for crimes they didn’t commit.

The Problem

While most prosecutors respect their ethical obligations, far too many innocent people have been wrongly convicted as a result of prosecutorial misconduct.

A survey conducted by the Innocence Project and the Veritas Initiative looked at five diverse states over a five-year period (2004-2008) and identified 660 cases in which courts found prosecutors committed misconduct. Of these, only one prosecutor was disciplined. There were 148 court findings of misconduct in New York during this 5-year period and none of the prosecutors were disciplined. Without oversight and accountability for prosecutors, more innocent people could potentially be wrongfully convicted.

How You Can Help in Your State

The next step is to pass laws similar to New York’s throughout the country, to prevent innocent people from being wrongfully prosecuted or convicted and to ensure that prosecutors who break the law are held accountable. Let’s work to create commissions in other states that would receive complaints, initiate its own investigations into possible misconduct, and have the authority to issue warnings, recommend sanctions and, where appropriate, recommend removal of prosecutors who commit intentional and serious misconduct.

Sign up in the field above to voice your support for prosecutorial accountability in your state. 


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