Monday, October 5, 2020

Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit reverses conviction because of improper comments by prosecutor

Long time readers of this blog know that I have posted many stories over the years on prosecutorial misconduct including many in which convictions have been reversed simply because of improper comments by prosecutors.  Here is another one.  

The US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit recently overturned a first-degree murder conviction the prosecutor said that the jury could dispense with notions of the presumption of innocence.  Go here for the story.

Reversal of convictions for inappropriate comments is by no means rare, so why does it keep happening?  Because other than reversing the conviction, courts usually don't impose any sanctions on the prosecutors themselves.  Maybe if there was more attention paid to sanctions, there would be less misconduct.  Isn't that the point of saying the deterrence is one of the goals of the disciplinary system?

The case is called Ford v Perry and you can read the opinion here.

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