Here's wishing a Happy New Year to all innocent men and women who remain in prison as a result of false confessions or who have yet to be exonerated. May 2014 bring you the justice you so richly deserve.
More Americans are coming to learn -- as Europeans have known for quite some time -- that the death penalty is a fundamental violation of human rights. Capital punishment deprives human beings of their dignity and perpetuates a vicious cycle of societal violence.
When an innocent person is exonerated and walks out of prison, it's always a big news story. What we don't see are the thousands of people who will never go home, not because they are any less innocent, but because there is some legal procedural bar stopping their case.
Delbert Tibbs was sentenced to death in Florida for the murder of Terry Milroy and the rape of his companion, Cynthia Nadeau. He was innocent. Delbert Tibbs was once quoted as saying 'God sent me to death row so I could be a witness.'
Nothing is more compelling than an eyewitness who says in court, "that's him" and points at the defendant. But a growing body of evidence now shows the unreliability of eyewitness testimony -- and the horrendously wrong jury verdicts that eyewitnesses produce.
Is this long overdue pardon the final word in one of the most sordid parts of our nation's history? The troubling perceptions linking people of color, particularly African Americans and more particularly black males, to criminality have persisted.
In Cook County's juvenile false confession cases, police officers and prosecutors have taken confession contamination to a new level. Not only did they feed facts to suspects, they scripted entire narratives for them.
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.