Concealing evidence: prosecutors gone wild

“Given the Supreme Court’s repeated endorsement of professional discipline as the appropriate vehicle for addressing allegations of prosecutorial misconduct, one might suppose that state bar agencies frequently sanction prosecutors. In fact, prosecutors are rarely held accountable for violating ethics rules. A Chicago Tribune study identified 381 homicide cases nationally in which Brady Violations (withholding evidence) produced conviction reversals. Yet prosecutors faced disciplinary action in only forty-four of those cases, and seven of these actions were eventually dismissed.“

The journal went on to conclude: “As these studies indicate, infrequent punishment of prosecutors cannot be blamed on a paucity of discoverable violations. Even when judicial findings of misconduct result in the conviction reversals, disciplinary sanctions are almost never imposed against the offending prosecutor.”


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