Should prosecutors face consequences when innocent people go to jail?

  • The criminal justice system is flawed!

    It is said that it is better for 10 guilty to go free than one innocent be convicted. This holds true especially when a horrible crime has been committed. Not only is the wrong person convicted but the real perpetrator is still out there. Prosecutors should be held accountable when they knowingly allow perjured testimony from police and witnesses or suppress evidence. They should go to prison.

  • Greedy Prosecutors should be punished.

    Prosecutors are power driven for themselves and don't think about families or the morality of their case. They are heartless and ruthless. They should be punished if they convict innocent people. Most prosecutors do anything to provide trumped up charges to prove someone's guilt. That is not moral or just.

  • Yes they should

    Prosecutors are very career oriented and they don't think about a person's innocense. They will try to convict by any means necessary. They are not moral nor ethical when it comes to a person's life. Prosecutors also create trumped up charges on individuals who they think are guilty with discriminatory acts.

  • If malice involved

    Too much power with minimal accountability undermines individual's rights. At times when too much emphasis is on conviction rates, injustice is bound to happen. No one is saint. Individuals must certainly have a recourse coupled with boundaries for prosecutors. A malicious assault in the name of justice is on the contrary injustice. It's our right to have safeguards regarding such assaults.

  • The prosecutor lied

    A dear friend's son was just convicted of manslaughter because he was charged with being the driver in a car when the driver was killed and they were both drunk. The driver who died was friends with the fire department and police in this city lied about who was driving.

  • Prosecutors should face consequences when innocent people go to jail, especially if they withhold evidence that could prove innocence.

    Prosecutors should face consequences, especially when the prosecutors withhold evidence that can prove the defendant's innocence. I think most court convictions in our legal system arrive more so on assumptions instead of facts. I also think that any witness that testify should have to reveal any hidden agendas and motives for testifying. So many convictions also arrive when witnesses are willing to testify on behalf of their own pending case that isn't even related to the case they are to testify for. If prosecutors have the power to paint assumptions in jurors' minds I feel that defense attorneys should be able to reveal the hidden agendas and dismissal deals between prosecutors, witnesses, and law-enforcement.

  • Justice is justice

    You'd see how fast prosecutes made sure they did their jobs right! This is a serious matter, not just a job. People are innocent until proven guilty. America is the leader in putting its citizens in jail. Way too many innocent people are in jail. If it can be proven that there was exculpatory evidence that was purposely ignored of if there was any other abuse or misconduct, the prosecutor should be held accountable. Absolute power corrupts absolutely.

  • Accountability to due process and investigation

    As public servants and enforcers of the Law, society entrusts prosecutors to dutifully investigate criminal incidents where the Law has been broken. But as all peoples suspected of committing a crime are innocent until proven guilty, the burden of proof lies with the prosecutor to convince either a Judge or a jury that the individual charged with committing a crime did so beyond shadow of doubt.

    When innocent people are convicted of crimes they did not commit, their lives are nevertheless irreparably tarnished. Time spent incarcerated is time wasted away in our already short lives. Relationships with family and friends become broken and misshapen. I can think of nothing more terrifying in a peaceful nation than to be tried, convicted and sentenced for a crime I did not commit.

    If after the trial has ended, it is determined through private investigation that there was negligence in part of the prosecutor in the handling of the case, they must be held accountable. Their inability to perform the task assigned to them--their betrayal of the public trust--should be addressed and consequences demanded.

  • Only criminals should face consequences.

    And if that criminal is a prosecutor then they should face the consequences. But, no, a prosecutor should be punished for prosecuting a a case where the criminal pleads guilty or is found guilty by a jury unless that prosecutor acted criminally (or perhaps unethically & then should be disbarred). Someone who is innocent can be convicted for many reasons; they confess to cover up for someone; an eye-witness who the prosecutor has no reason to believe is lying identifies the person - neither of these have anything to do with a prosecutor. If the prosecutor in these cases face consequences, then so should the judge and jury because they have as much to do with it as the prosecutor.

  • No, it is the defense's job to prove innocence.

    If anything it should be the defense attorney who should face consequences. A prosecutor's job is to prove a person guilty, and unless there has been tampering of evidence or other wrong doing on his part he has simply done his job. If an innocent person goes to jail, then perhaps the defense attorney has not done his job adequately.

  • No, there should be no consequences for prosectors when innocent people go to jail.

    I believe that prosecutors should not face any consequences when innocent people go to jail. It is very rare that innocent people go to jail. Prosecutors do their job and do the best they can to convict people who think believe are guilty. It's part of a legal system that has worked for years and no changes are needed.

  • No but the innocent should be compensated.

    It is not necessarily on purpose when prosecutors prosecute innocent people. But, if innocent people are put in jail, then they should be compensated based on the penalties that they faced. The jury should be fined as well as the judge. Putting innocent people away is intolerable but it is not always up to the prosecutor.

  • Men and women in the law shouldn't be held in contempt of the law.

    Why should able bodied men and women who prosecute for their profession be held accountable for the decision made by juries and or judges? These lawyers are merely undertaking their job which they wanted to undertake after joining the Crown Prosecution service, (in England) and acting in court as a result of the evidence they received from the authorities. Furthermore, what would be the consequences of such a result? Would prosecutors themselves be prosecuted? In which case prison cells will be filled by innocent men and women of the law, in turn wasting Government money in order to construct new prisons. Generally I believe it to be the fault of the Defense Counsel if an innocent defendant is convicted and sent to jail. This is because the Defense counsel should have proved their client's actions were in no way related to the crime they were indicted for.

  • Prosecutorial Misconduct? Yes. In all instances? No.

    I believe that prosecutors should face consequences if a prosecutor does not act in a manner that another reasonable prosecutor would face. But, we already have those laws on the books now. A prosecutor can be sued for prosecutorial misconduct, and a prosecutor can be sued for malicious prosecution. Both of these types of torts can carry both financial and criminal consequences to a wayward prosecutor.

    However, in criminal cases, the defendant is found guilty by a jury of his or her peers and not by a prosecutor. And, the jailtime is determined by the judge and/or by law.

    So if an innocent person goes to jail and it's not because of prosecutorial misconduct or malicious prosecution, then you'll have to assign blame to the jury that gave the guilty verdict or the judge and/or state legislature that gave the punishment.

  • The jury decides guilty or innocence verdicts--not prosecutors.

    Prosecutors should not face consequences when innocent people go to jail because prosecutors don't decide whether the defendant is innocent or guilty. That verdict is decided by the jury therefore the jurors, if any, should be the ones who face consequences. The judge is the court referee who can determine if the prosecutor is overstepping his authority in a specific case so there are limits to prosecutions.

  • What sane person would accept the job of a prosecutor?

    This notion is absurd nonsense; that's the only answer the question deserves. It's the prosecutor's job to argue for whatever side the DA tells him to. Placing legal consequences on the prosecutor would be attacking the messenger, and a futile effort at maximization of justice. NO sane person would ever become a prosecutor if it meant they'd face legal consequences whenever they were told to argue one side and it was wrong.

  • Prosecutors are just doing their jobs.

    They aren't getting paid to figure out the truth of the situation, and that isn't their role. They are in place to provide for the legal framework to let a jury make a decision. If we want to punish people for the innocent going to jail, we'll also have to go after judges, and juries.

  • Are you kidding me?

    First off, the due process system in the United States is an attempt to prevent trials with insufficient evidence. Second, it's the prosecutor's job to prove beyond a reasonable doubt the defendant is guilty. If there is doubt, the defendant will be found "not guilty." Should prosecutors be given consequences when the jury doesn't see enough evidence to convict a person who actually committed a crime? It's the same train of thought. The state prosecution is there to find and convict people they believe are guilty of breaking federal laws. They go with the facts. Burdening them with the thought that if they're wrong they'll be punished only makes the process more convoluted and corrupt. The burden of proof in the American criminal justice system is heavy for the prosecution. The very idea that prosecutors should be punished for showing the evidence is insane. Jurors are probably more responsible for a defendant's false conviction than the prosecution. With the same logic, jurors should be punished for doing their civil duty. The defendant's attorney is also at fault. If they were truly innocent, they should have been able to find flaws in the prosecution's case; not to mention the state only gets one shot. Someone found guilty has the ability to appeal the decision; the state cannot according to the fifth amendment (unless new significant evidence is found). People need to stop scapegoating the prosecution when an innocent person goes to prison for a crime. They are no more at fault than the jury, the defense, the judge, the witnesses, the forensic scientists, or the psychologists in the case of an insanity plea.

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Anonymous says2013-03-01T11:52:21.730
Yes, because India is a poor country. If a false criminal case is imposed on an innocent/s , & he/they is/are convicted, their life is ruined for ever. They don't have money or enough money to engage a proffessional Senior Lawer , he/they hv to take help of Govt. Defence Advocate/s. In India, since British Raj, three vacations in Courts, although Criminal Trials do goes on during Vacation Period. Even cas