8th New York Inmate in 13 Mos. Freed by DNA

The Innocence Project reports that Roy Brown, the 8th New York prisoner in 13 months, will be freed from prison today because DNA testing has established his innocence.

Roy Brown solved the case from his jail cell.

“This is unlike any case we’ve ever seen. Roy Brown broke the case from his prison cell and confronted the actual perpetrator, who in turn killed himself. The true perpetrator’s courageous daughter then volunteered her own DNA sample, only to have the judge who oversaw Roy’s trial refuse to release him – saying that he had more confidence in the highly questionable practice of ‘bite-mark’ analysis than in the hard science of DNA.

Only after the true perpetrator’s body was exhumed and subjected to DNA testing did prosecutors accept the truth,” said Peter Neufeld, Co-Director of the Innocence Project. “Today, exactly 15 years after he was convicted, the truth has finally set Roy Brown free.

This is just more evidence that New York needs to establish an Innocence Commission:

Noting that Brown is the eighth person in New York State proven innocent through DNA in just 13 months - and the fourth in eight months whose case involved police or prosecutorial misconduct - the Innocence Project said New York needs an Innocence Commission to examine wrongful convictions, learn what caused them and recommend steps the state can take to prevent them in the future. Similar commissions, comprised of experts from across the criminal justice community, have been formed in North Carolina, Pennsylvania, California and other states.

"How many more wrongful convictions will it take for New York to begin addressing the systemic problems that lead to such miscarriages of justice? It's particularly troubling that several recent cases from all corners of New York State involve police or prosecutorial misconduct," Neufeld said. Brown's case raises key issues that a commission could address - including reliance on unvalidated scientific analysis, the use of jailhouse informants, and prosecutorial misconduct.

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    Gotta say (none / 0) (#1)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Tue Jan 23, 2007 at 01:16:38 PM EST
    This line from the article just kills me:
    a clerk sent Brown a list of all other police statements in his case - a list that included 11 affidavits that Brown and his trial attorneys had never seen.

    it sounds like it's ripe for more than just (none / 0) (#2)
    by cpinva on Tue Jan 23, 2007 at 10:45:42 PM EST
    an innocence commission. how about a federal investigation, into the whole law enforcement/judicial system instead?

    ok, you might want to wait until we have a real DOJ again, after the 2008 elections, but still........................