Unfortunately, some prosecutors hold a “convict at any cost” mentality which causes them to aggressively push for a conviction even when the evidence doesn’t support their case. This causes innocent people to be charged and convicted of crimes they did not commit. This problem is magnified by the fact that there is lack of oversight and transparency and prosecutors use this to their advantage and hide evidence that could support an acquittal.
Take for instance the case of Michael Morton who was convicted for the brutal murder of his wife and spent 25 years in prison before he was exonerated by DNA testing. In this case, prosecutors and investigators hid at least six pieces of evidence that could have lead to Morton’s acquittal in the first trial:
Morrison also said there were six instances where prosecutors and investigators hid non-DNA evidence that could have exonerated Morton from his defense attorney during the original trial.
Morton said the intruder stole his wife’s purse, and Barry Sheck, co-founder of the Innocence Project, said the evidence not turned over to Morton’s original lawyer included information that one of his wife’s credit cards was used two days after her slaying and one of her checks was cashed nine days later.
“I want to know how a dead woman uses a credit card and cashes a check,” he said.
The prosecutors in this case held back crucial evidence and because of they face no consequences. Prosecutors enjoy “sovereign immunity” which is a legal doctrine that means that the State is protected from criminal and civil liabilities, even in the event of gross misconduct. Without any liability, prosecutors have a free hand to engage in corrupt activities and hide evidence. The result is innocent people are behind bars because of this corruption.
This is more reason why you need a strong and experienced trial lawyer to defend your case. If you feel you are being wrongly charged with a crime, please call 1-866-MCSHANE for a free case consultation.
For more on this issue, watch this video from The Innocence Project: