Six Major Causes Of Wrongful Conviction

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Part1: Six Major Causes of Wrongful Conviction
The most vicious cause of wrongful conviction is eyewitness misidentification. According to the Innocence Project, 72% of overturned wrongful convictions through DNA testing were due to eyewitness misidentification1. As this statistics implies, eyewitness identification (Eye-ID) is untrustworthy information. The main reason why Eye-ID lacks accuracy is due to malleability of memories. The Innocence Project asserts there are two variables greatly influence memory and also Eye-ID. One type of variables is “estimator variables” which are incontrollable factors by the criminal justice system. Examples of estimator variables are environmental factors (e.g., lighting and distance) when the crime occurred, racial factors, and psychological factors (e.g., severity of trauma)1. The other type of variable is “system variables” which is controllable by the criminal justice system. These variables are within the procedure of attaining evidences. For instance, post-identification feedback (e.g., confirming feedback that an eyewitness receives), biased lineup/ photo array composition, biased administrators of lineup can negatively influences Eye-ID.
The second primary cause of wrongful conviction is due to unreliable or improper forensic science and forensic misconduct. The Innocence Project asserts that most forensic science (e.g., analysis of hair, bite marks, fire arms, and tool marks) has not been thoroughly and scientifically evaluated
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