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-   -   Innocent people on death row (http://www.physicsforums.com/showthread.php?t=77335)

Pengwuino May30-05 01:13 AM

"innocent people on death row"
 
I constantly hear that the greatest argument against capital punishment is "there are people on death row right now who are innocent". Now what is the proof/de-bunking proof to this statement and idea?

JamesU May30-05 01:15 AM

There is no proof. people sau that in certain cases there wasn't enough evidence. so when they go on death row they think they're innocent

I don't even agree that we should have a death row

Pengwuino May30-05 01:16 AM

Hey that was a quick response for this forum lol.

JamesU May30-05 01:18 AM

I used the quick response box below :tongue:

Pengwuino May30-05 01:19 AM

lol still, usually takes an hour or 30 minutes or so to get some responses D:

JamesU May30-05 01:21 AM

really? I always get responses within five minutes. cough-they-cough-li-achm!-ke-me-cough!-better

Ivan Seeking May30-05 01:28 AM

Actually, many death sentences that predate DNA technology have been overturned where DNA evidence was later still available for testing. IIRC, one noted study estimated that approximately 1:6 convicts on death row are innocent. It was because of this new information that one of the last acts of the outgoing Governor of Illinois was to revoke all standing death sentences in the state.

Pengwuino May30-05 01:29 AM

1 in 6 current inmates or historic though. The claim is that people currently on death row are innocent.

Ivan Seeking May30-05 01:31 AM

I edited late. ...people on death row now [or a few years ago anyway].

Ivan Seeking May30-05 01:32 AM

Keep in mind that in many older cases, and even many new ones, no DNA evidence is available.

Pengwuino May30-05 01:42 AM

Well if theres evidence these people are truely innocent, this begs the question as to why there still in prison. I wouldn't think theres many judges out there who see truely conclusive evidence and just throw it aside.

Art May30-05 12:57 PM

Perhaps they have the same attitude as Britain's former top judge Lord Demming who stated that it was better for innocent people to remain in prison than to bring the judicial system into question

selfAdjoint May30-05 01:20 PM

Quote:

Quote by Pengwuino
Well if theres evidence these people are truely innocent, this begs the question as to why there still in prison. I wouldn't think theres many judges out there who see truely conclusive evidence and just throw it aside.


Poor people can't get the expensive lawyers that rich people use to get off. Criminal trials are decided by juries, unless the defendent waives that, and juries are swayed by clever lawyers, including politially ambitious public prosecutors. When the DNA evidence started freeing prisoners in Illinois, a smelly political mess was uncovered. Innocent defendents were railroaded to get an unbroken string of convictions for various prosecuters to further their political careers.

hitssquad May30-05 01:44 PM

Prosecutors exploiting, or DPIC exploiting, or both
 
Quote:

Quote by selfAdjoint
Innocent defendents were railroaded to get an unbroken string of convictions for various prosecuters to further their political careers.

Convicted by way of an expedient legal strategy, and later released on technical reexamination of that strategy, does not imply one is innocent of a crime. It merely means that that once-expedient legal strategy is no longer sustainable in court. If DNA fingerprinting had been foreseen, perhaps different prosecution strategies would have been pursued and some or all of those convicts would not have been released.



Quote:

to further their political careers
Social-justice corporations have impetus to further their careers, as well.

Pengwuino May30-05 02:56 PM

Quote:

Quote by selfAdjoint
Poor people can't get the expensive lawyers that rich people use to get off. Criminal trials are decided by juries, unless the defendent waives that, and juries are swayed by clever lawyers, including politially ambitious public prosecutors.

That still doesnt get to the point. If the evidence is there, no matter how expensive or cheap the lawyer is, the evidence still should get to the judge.

Art May30-05 03:18 PM

Quote:

Quote by Pengwuino
That still doesnt get to the point. If the evidence is there, no matter how expensive or cheap the lawyer is, the evidence still should get to the judge.

Yes, and there shouldn't be any crime so there should be no need for police, courts or prisons. But this is the real world where because something should be doesn't make it so.

Pengwuino May30-05 05:21 PM

Quote:

Quote by Art
Yes, and there shouldn't be any crime so there should be no need for police, courts or prisons. But this is the real world where because something should be doesn't make it so.

Well what your basically saying is that since 1 part of the system might be corrupt/inefficient/badly structured, any decision that passes through that system must be null and void? Might as well get rid of all police departments then.

Art May30-05 05:42 PM

Quote:

Quote by Pengwuino
Well what your basically saying is that since 1 part of the system might be corrupt/inefficient/badly structured, any decision that passes through that system must be null and void? Might as well get rid of all police departments then.

Nope, that is not what I am basically saying - Your extrapolation bears no resemblance to my comment! It's a bit like me saying somebody died in a car crash today which you interpret as a call from me to ban all motorised transport lol

To clarify I was merely pointing out that there was a certain naievete about your post.


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