This article by Gregory Kane stands without comment.
DNA proves court right to suspect eyewitnesses Gregory Kane
Jerry Miller reached a milestone this week, but I'm willing to bet it's one he'd prefer didn't involve him at all.
Miller was arrested as a suspect in the kidnapping, rape and robbery of a Chicago woman in 1981. He was convicted in 1982, sentenced to 45 years and paroled in 2006 as a registered sex offender. Miller had to wear an electronic monitoring device, couldn't answer his door for Halloween trick-or-treaters or leave his job when he took a lunch break.
Then DNA testing intervened. Semen on the victim's clothing was tested for DNA, and it wasn't Miller's. On Monday, Miller became, according to the Innocence Project, the 200th person in the country to be exonerated as a result of DNA testing.
"The Cook County state's attorney's office joined us in asking the court to vacate [Miller's] conviction," said Eric Ferrero, a spokesman for the Innocence Project, a 15-year-old organization founded to help prisoners who could be exonerated through DNA testing. But how was Miller convicted in the first place? It wasn't from physical evidence. It was from that old reliable prosecutorial standby eyewitness identification, which is frequently proving to be highly unreliable.
"Seventy-seven percent of the 200 exonerations involved erroneous eyewitness identification," Ferrero said.
You read that correctly. Ferrero didn't say "7 percent." He said "77 percent." As in 154 people being wrongfully convicted because jurors gave far more weight to eyewitness identification than is warranted by the facts.
I changed my mind. I have to make a comment.
I have this question: do the police and prosecutors, who know about eyewitness accounts, use techniques to plant information into the minds of victims?