Stevens Urges Congress to Crack Down on Prosecutorial Misconduct
By Jess Bravin

Retired Justice John Paul Stevens said Supreme Court decisions have given local prosecutors impunity for violating constitutional rights, and urged Congress to respond by authorizing victims of misconduct to sue.

In a speech Monday night to the Equal Justice Initiative, which advocates for indigent defendants, Justice Stevens criticized the court’s March decision overturning a jury’s $14 million award to an innocent man who spent 14 years on death row after prosecutors concealed evidence that could have cleared him. (Click here to see the full text of Stevens’ speech.)

The case of Connick v. Thompson saw the court split 5-4 along its conservative-liberal divide. Writing for the majority, Justice Clarence Thomas rejected the freed man’s theory that the New Orleans district attorney’s office was negligent for failing to train its staff to comply with longstanding precedents requiring prosecutors to disclose exculpatory evidence to defendants.

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One Comment to “Congress must crack down on prosecutors run amok, says John Paul Stevens”

  • About a year ago police officers lied in a deposition resulting in the loss of a home soon after my wife died. I questioned my court appointed attorney about it but he didn’t think there’s anything that could be done. I no longer believe in any rule of law. But have come to understand that gangs of police of Saint Louis Park & Hennepin County Court are simply equal to any other thugs. Along with their bigotry they have trashed the Constitution of the United States particularly the Fourth Amendment. But though I’m broken it could be worse, I could be dead. Oh, by the way I received a multi-ticket for following the ambulance to thr hospital which saved my wife’s life. While most humans might send accolades Minnesota sends hate. ” Minnesota nice” yeah, really nice!

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