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Washington University Law Review Slip Opinions

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DNA evidence has freed at least 209 convicted people. Sometimes DNA evidence exonerates a person. Other times, it does not. When it does not exonerate, a prosecutor must decide whether to persist in further prosecution of the defendant. I propose a fresh, but simple, solution for prosecutors who face such choices. To protect the interests of defendants and victims, and to assuage society’s need for fair and accurate outcomes, prosecutors should represent these cases to a grand jury. The grand jury is an easily convened neutral party that can dispassionately evaluate the evidence, old and new, and determine whether a new trial is warranted.



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