False Confessions Essay

Decent Essays
False confessions have been a leading factor in destroying the lives of many innocent people. Since the advances of technology, victims of false confessions have been exonerated from the charges previously placed on them while others are still fighting for innocence or died a criminal. One technological advance that has exonerated many individuals is DNA testing. According to Randy James, DNA testing was discovered in 1985 and was first used in court to convict Tommie Lee Andrews (Time, 2009). Today many Americans are convicted because of false confessions that have not yet been overturned with new evidence (Kassin, 2014). Although DNA testing has led to freedom for many innocent Americans, there are still many innocent people who are locked…show more content…
On the night of April 19th, 1989 in New York City’s Central Park there were a number of assaults and attacks happening. Trisha went out for her routine jog through Central Park. She did not make it home and was found by a police officer in a wooded area beaten almost to death (Innocent Project, 2016). There were about 30 teenagers out that night causing chaos in Central Park. The police had picked up Raymond Santana and many others that night from the streets. Raymond Santana was one of the five young men who later would falsely confess to the assault and rape of Trisha Meilli (Innocence Project, 2016). According to the Innocence Project (2016), Santana also gave a videotaped confession along with four of the other suspects. The other young men were Yusef Salaam, Kevin Richardson, Antron McCray, and Korey Wise. All of these men, including Santana, were convicted of the attacks (Innocence Project, 2016). However, Santana was a juvenile at the time and was sentenced to five to ten years. Then, in 2002 Matias Reyes, confessed to the attack on the Central Park jogger and admitted that he was alone in the act. DNA from Reyes was cross matched with DNA from the rape kit and the hairs found on the victim (Innocence Project, 2016). The five young men’s convictions were then overturned. Santana spent five years in prison for a crime that he falsely confessed
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