Posted: February 5, 2013 5:00 PM
Even after a judge exonerates a wrongfully convicted person on the basis of DNA and other evidence, Ohio prosecutors often appeal the ruling, which sparks concern about their commitment to justice.
That’s exactly what happened in the case of Douglas Prade, who was declared innocent by a judge and freed last week, and Joseph D’Ambrosio, who was also wrongfully convicted and freed from death row, reported the Cleveland Plain Dealer.
The cases highlight a mindset under which some prosecutors have continued their legal assaults on defendants after judges -- following thorough, articulated reviews -- attacked government attorneys as lacking even the basics needed to take their cases to trial.
It has raised a growing concern about whether prosecutors are out to seek justice, as they are sworn to do, or to win cases at all costs.
Whatever the reason for appeal, the process can delay or prevent the exonerated from receiving compensation. It’s too soon to know how the appeal in Prade’s case will turn out, and D’Ambrosio has been battling appeals since a federal judge overturned his conviction in 2006, ruling that prosecutors withheld evidence that might have exonerated him at 1989 trial. Four years later, the presiding judge barred prosecutors from trying him again because they failed to disclose the death of a key witness, reported the Plain Dealer.
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