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The Problem of Wrongful Conviction

Event Date: 
Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Richard A. Leo, Professor, University of San Francisco School of Law. 5:30-7:00 p.m.; SBSG 1517.  Graduate students are invited to meet with Professor Leo from 3-4pm in SBSG 5544.

Co-sponsored by the Newkirk Center for Science & Society; Center for Psychology & Law; and Center in Law, Society & Culture

*Abstract*  In this talk, I will first discuss the history of the study of wrongful conviction in America, and generally what we know and do not know about miscarriages of justice.  I will also discuss methodological, epistemological and conceptual problems that beset the study of wrongful conviction, and some implications of the shift from the study of actual innocence to the study of exonerations (which may or may not involve actual innocence) in recent years.  I will then turn my focus to the problem of interrogation-induced false confessions and discuss recent research on its causes and consequences. Finally, I will discuss some policy reforms that seek to reduce both false confessions and, more generally, the problem of wrongful conviction.

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