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Prosecutorial Misconduct

Finally, a Prosecutor Goes to Jail for Evidence Tampering

David A. Love | Posted 01.23.2014 | Crime
David A. Love

It was a long time coming, but finally America has reached a milestone in the area of criminal justice. In Texas, a former D.A. has made history by becoming the first prosecutor in U.S. to suffer criminal punishment for failing to turn over exculpatory evidence.

For the First Time Ever, a Prosecutor Will Go to Jail for Wrongfully Convicting an Innocent Man

Mark Godsey | Posted 11.08.2013 | Crime
Mark Godsey

Today in Texas, former prosecutor and judge Ken Anderson pled guilty to intentionally failing to disclose evidence in a case that sent an innocent man, Michael Morton, to prison for the murder of his wife.

Missouri's Culture Of Conviction

Radley Balko | Posted 11.08.2013 | Politics

This week, a state appeals court in Missouri vacated the conviction of 29-year-old Ryan Ferguson. In 2005, Ferguson was convicted for the murder of Ke...

Radley Balko

Appeals Courts Give Misbehaving Prosecutors Privilege Of Anonymity | Radley Balko | Posted 10.07.2013 | Politics

Last month, a three-judge panel from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruled that a prosecutor in San Mateo County, Calif., committed "t...

Jimmy Dennis and Pennsylvania's Grave Miscarriage of Justice

David A. Love | Posted 01.23.2014 | Crime
David A. Love

The stakes are so high -- literally life and death -- and yet the error rate is so high as well. Certainly a factory would be shut down if every ninth or 10th product coming off the assembly line was defective.

Danziger Bridge and the State of Prosecutorial Accountability

Deborah Jane Cooper | Posted 12.01.2013 | Crime
Deborah Jane Cooper

The Danziger Bridge case, in part no doubt because of its high-profile nature, is to be the rare example where prosecutors face real professional consequences for violating their ethical and professional responsibilities.

An Update In The Story Of Ann Colomb

Radley Balko | Posted 09.04.2013 | Politics

Back in 2008, I wrote a long piece for Reason magazine about the Colombs, a black, working class family in Church Point, Louisiana. The Colombs' story...

Radley Balko

The Untouchables: America's Misbehaving Prosecutors, And The System That Protects Them | Radley Balko | Posted 08.05.2013 | Politics

NEW ORLEANS -- Some questions seem particularly prone to set John Thompson off. Here's one he gets a lot: Have the prosecutors who sent him to death r...

Judge and Prosecutor Secretly Texting During Murder Trial

Spencer Aronfeld | Posted 08.23.2013 | Crime
Spencer Aronfeld

When a Broward jury convicted Omar Loureiro for murder and his judge sentenced him to death; neither he, his defense lawyers, nor the jury knew that the prosecutor and judge were secretly chatting and texting hundreds of times throughout the course of the trial.

Putting the Brakes on Philly's Death Penalty

David A. Love | Posted 07.14.2013 | Black Voices
David A. Love

The followings are remarks I gave on May 4 at the kickoff rally of the Philadelphia Moratorium Campaign at the First United Methodist Church of German...

Radley Balko

Landmark Case Turns 50 -- But Defense Attorneys Aren't Celebrating | Radley Balko | Posted 05.13.2013 | Politics

One of the Supreme Court's most celebrated criminal procedure decisions turns 50 years old Monday. By a 7-2 vote, the Court ruled in the 1963 case Bra...

Why Is Don Siegelman Still in Jail?

Bennett L. Gershman | Posted 06.17.2013 | Politics
Bennett L. Gershman

Despite all this, President Obama, apparently on advice from his "Pardon Attorneys," has refused to grant Siegelman a pardon or commute his seven-year sentence. Why?

Professional Discipline of Federal Prosecutors Reaches a New Low

Bennett L. Gershman | Posted 06.09.2013 | Crime
Bennett L. Gershman

An administrative judge has vacated suspensions of two federal prosecutors who were disciplined by the Justice Department for their flagrant misconduct in prosecuting and convicting the late Senator Ted Stevens.

Athletes Cheat and Get Punished, But Prosecutors Cheat and Get Promoted

Bennett L. Gershman | Posted 06.04.2013 | Crime
Bennett L. Gershman

Given that prosecutors occupy a special "quasi-judicial" function, it would seem that a special disciplinary body should be created to investigate misconduct by prosecutors similar to the special disciplinary bodies that investigate the misconduct of judges.

ProPublica On Prosecutor Accountability In New York City

Radley Balko | Posted 06.03.2013 | Politics

The investigative journalism outfit finds . . . that there is none. The report starts with anecdote about Claude Stuart, a city prosecutor who lost...

Zach Carter

Aaron Swartz Prosecutor Sanctioned For Aggressive Tactic | Zach Carter | Posted 03.25.2013 | Politics

WASHINGTON -- U.S. Attorney Carmen Ortiz, under fire over her office's aggressive prosecution of Internet activist Aaron Swartz, was admonished by a f...

Appeals to Racial Prejudice by Prosecutors

Bennett L. Gershman | Posted 04.30.2013 | Crime
Bennett L. Gershman

Appeals to racial prejudice by prosecutors occur much less frequently today, and when they do, a conviction usually is reversed. But not always.

Prosecutor Shaming: Berkshire, Massachusetts Second Assistant District Attorney Robert W. Kinzer III

Radley Balko | Posted 04.30.2013 | Politics

Mr. Kinzer thinks we must protect sexting teenagers from ruining their lives . . . by ruining their lives. As the head of the DA's computer cri...

Shaming Bad Prosecutors

Radley Balko | Posted 04.27.2013 | Politics

This morning, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor scolded a federal prosecutor for a racist comment he made during a drug trial. While question...

The Power Of The Prosecutor

Radley Balko | Posted 03.18.2013 | Politics

The death of Internet activist Aaron Swartz has generated a lot of discussion about the power of prosecutors -- particularly federal prosecutors. This...

Spouse Of Aaron Swartz's Prosecutor Defends Her On Twitter

The Huffington Post | Posted 01.15.2013 | Technology

When Internet activist Aaron Swartz was found dead in his Brooklyn apartment on Friday after an apparent suicide, friends, family and those who never ...

Alaska Militia Mole Raises New, Troublesome Questions About FBI Intrusion in State Politics

Alaska Dispatch News | Posted 03.16.2013 | Politics
Alaska Dispatch News

The rogue security agent whose actions helped spark the downfall of 2010 U.S. Senate candidate Joe Miller, a Fairbanks Republican, has finally reveale...

Zach Carter

Prosecutors Under Fire In Tragic Death Of Internet Pioneer Aaron Swartz | Zach Carter | Posted 01.14.2013 | Politics

WASHINGTON -- A petition urging President Barack Obama to fire U.S. Attorney Carmen Ortiz for prosecutorial overreach in her office's case against Aar...

The Most Read Agitator Posts of 2012

Radley Balko | Posted 02.19.2013 | Politics
Radley Balko

Here are the 10 posts from The Agitator that generated the most pageviews in 2012. -- Puppycide in New Mexico. -- But for Audio. (Florida woman's ce...

"Maybe the Press Failed Then": An Interview With Ken Burns and Raymond Santana

Rick Ayers | Posted 01.29.2013 | Crime
Rick Ayers

The actual assailant, who confessed years later and whose DNA confirmed his story, was never in the sights of the police and prosecutors. Sadly, people remember the hysteria of the conviction campaign and often don't even realize that the lynch-mob mentality got the wrong guys.