The Justice Review Project run by the Colorado Attorney General’s Office is being shutdown after just one exoneration, Robert Dewey.  The program was started in 2010 to review hundreds of old cases throughout Colorado to ensure justice was truly done.  The program’s $2.6 million funding from the National Institute of Justice is now gone.  A.G. spokeswoman Carolyn Tyler said that there were no more recommendations for additional evidence testing.

Colorado’s project had strict requirements to qualify, inmates had to be convicted at trial or by guilty plea in a violent felony (murder, kidnapping, sexual assault, etc.).  The identity of the perpetrator had to be an issue and physical evidence that could be tested for DNA had to be available.

“Most of the applications did not qualify for DNA testing as they were not identity cases in which DNA testing would reveal the identity of the true culprit,” Tyler said.

First Assistant Attorney General Julie Selsberg said last year that more than 2,000 Colorado inmates had expressed interest.  At that time, there were almost 8,000 people serving sentences for violent crimes.  A final report on the project is due out this year.

It was Selsberg’s assistants who recommended DNA testing after Dewey’s 1996 conviction was reviewed.  Dewey had been convicted of murdering Jacie Taylor.  The results backed Dewey and indicated someone else committed the crime.  Dewey was exonerated in 2012 after serving 17 years in prison.  Dewey was awarded $1.2 million as the first Colorado citizen to be compensated for wrongful imprisonment.

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Comments
  1. Reblogged this on Wobbly Warrior's Blog and commented:
    Conviction Integrity Units – by any name – haven’t proven to be affordable or productive. What stands in the way is civil immunities for deliberate misconduct, especially those by prosecutors and their supervisors (D.A.’s, S.A.’s, A.G.’s), as well as missing-in-action Congressional Oversight of Intelligence Agencies that allows those agencies to participate in conviction corruption, rather than investigate it. If you’d like a specific person to get angry at for this state of affairs, I highly recommend former Florida legislator/governor/U.S. Senator Bob Graham (please use the search window on my blog to find out why). There is a quick fix that would painful to all the right people … the IRS Oversight Board could comply with my requests and retroactively yank the American Bar Association’s tax exemption for its patently false claim of equally protect the public and its members … ignoring its SCOTUS-delegated responsibility to address prosecutorial misconduct has ruined and/or ended the lives of innocents while leaving killers on the streets, and would be the sole focus of the Congressional investigation of the IRS if they really were investigating the IRS.

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