Legislators are again calling for the creation of a panel in Texas to study the problem of wrongful convictions and consider reforms proven to prevent injustice. In Texas, 29 wrongful convictions have been overturned by DNA testing – more than any other state – but a proposed Innocence Commission did not pass the legislature this year.
State Sen. Rodney Ellis, the chairman of the Innocence Project Board of Directors, introduced the 2007 bill and plans to renew his efforts in 2008. He has been speaking with Senate colleagues about the proposed bill and asked Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst to order an interim study on the commission.
"I think the exonerations are clear and convincing evidence that the system is broken," said Ellis, a Houston Democrat. "In no other sphere of public policy would rational people see this many exonerations and not be willing to be able to pull together a panel of experts to ask what went wrong and what can be learned from those cases."
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. (Fort Worth Star-Telegram, 09/30/07)
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of the six states that have already created innocence commissions.