The National Registry of Exonerations released a report this month entitled: Government Misconduct and Convicting the Innocence.

Download the full report here: Government Misconduct & Convicting the Innocent.

Key findings:

  1. Official misconduct contributed to the false convictions of 54% of defendants who were later exonerated. In general, the rate of misconduct is higher in more severe crimes.
  2. Concealing exculpatory evidence—the most common type of misconduct—occurred in 44% of exonerations.
  3. Black exonerees were slightly more likely than whites to have been victims of misconduct (57% to 52%), but this gap is much larger among exonerations for murder (78% to 64%)—especially those with death sentences (87% to 68%)—and for drug crimes (47% to 22%). 
  4. Police officers committed misconduct in 35% of cases. They were responsible for most of the witness tampering, misconduct in interrogation, and fabricating evidence—and a great deal of concealing exculpatory evidence and perjury at trial.
  5. Prosecutors committed misconduct in 30% of the cases. Prosecutors were responsible for most of the concealing of exculpatory evidence and misconduct at trial, and a substantial amount of witness tampering.

Systemic Failures Have Wrongly
Imprisoned Thousands of
Innocent Texans.

The Generosity of Their Fellow Citizens Can Provide Them
The Freedom They Deserve.

Innocence Project of Texas grey star icon