Eyewitness Identification Reform

State statute requires that all law enforcement agencies implement scientifically-supported eyewitness identification protocols that contain: blind administration, proper instructions; proper fillers, and confidence statements. Effective: 2014.

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Recording of Interrogations

Vermont state statute mandates the audio or audio and visual electronic recording of interrogations of a person suspected of a felony violation of homicide or sexual assault. If law enforcement fails to record the custodial interrogation, the prosecution must prove by a preponderance of the evidence that one of the exceptions identified in the statute applies. If the prosecution does not meet the burden of proof, the evidence is still admissible, but the Court shall provide cautionary instructions to the jury regarding the failure to record the interrogation. Effective: 2015.

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Post Conviction DNA Testing

State statute allows people convicted of certain offenses to petition courts for DNA testing. Effective 2007.

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Evidence Preservation

Vermont has no law requiring preservation of evidence.

Exoneree Compensation

An exonerated person is entitled to file a claim in civil court up to three years after the exoneration. The court can award damages between $30,000 and $60,000 per year the person was incarcerated. The exoneree is also eligible for up to 10 years of state health care, economic damages (which may include lost wages), reimbursement for attorney fees, as well as reasonable reintegrative services and mental and physical health care costs incurred by the claimant for the time period between his or her release and the date of award. The judgment amount is not subject to state income taxes. Effective: 2007; Amended most recently: 2014.

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The Innocence Network is a group of organizations who work to exonerate innocent individuals, and reform unjust policies.

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