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The conviction of innocent individuals is an issue continuing to receive increased attention as our nation looks more closely at our criminal legal system. While there are a number of ways individuals can be wrongly convicted, successfully reversing a conviction is incredibly difficult. This is an area where skilled legal representation can make a big difference and where there are myriad opportunities for lawyers interested in providing pro bono legal services. Many of the recent DNA and non-DNA exonerations have occurred as a result of work from innocence organizations in collaboration with pro bono partners.
Scheduled for October 2, 2023 to coincide with Wrongful Conviction Day, an international day to raise awareness of the causes and impacts of wrongful conviction, this program offers the perspective of experienced practitioners who litigate and advocate on behalf of the innocent.
This program will provide a deeper focus into issues such as the following:
• Manner-of-death testimony
• Admissibility and reliability of evidence issues
• Medical determinations of child abuse and child death causes
• Medical and forensic records and diagrams
Note: sensitive topics including alleged sexual assault and violence will be discussed and content will include graphic images.
What You Will Learn
After completing this program, participants will be better able to:
• Understand advancements in DNA testing that can be used to help develop evidence of a wrongly accused or convicted person’s innocence
• Focus on the role of forensic pathology and faulty medical evidence in wrongful convictions
• Understand the many ways in which race contributes to wrongful convictions
Program Level: Overview
Advanced Prep: None
Interested in learning more? As a teenager, Mark Purnell was convicted of a murder he didn’t commit. After years of self-advocacy, his case caught the attention of pro bono counsel. Hear about their dramatic fight for his exoneration in these episodes of PLI’s podcast Pursuing Justice: The Pro Bono Files.