The Tragedy of False Confessions

There are enough injustices in our society without innocent people being convicted of heinous crimes. Yet, it turns out that happens with far greater frequency than we ever imagined. DNA testing, a relatively new phenomenon, has already exonerated 175 people convicted of crimes.

Then the more amazing part: one fifth of them had confessed to the crime! And when it comes to false confessions, this is only the tip of the iceberg. One study by two law professors documented 125 proven false confessions — these include people exonerated before or during trial. And these are only the cases we know about.

Why would anyone confess to a crime he didn’t commit? A new website/blog devoted to false confessions (www.truthaboutfalseconfessions.com is a good place to start.

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