CONVICTION INTEGRITY UNIT: A Solution for Clark County, WA

King County Prosecutor, Daniel Satterberg, who spoke at the 2015 Summit on Wrongful Conviction at Brooklyn Law School, asked and answered his own question:  "What's an acceptable error rate in our system of justice?  5%? Is it 1%?  If it's 1%, that means there's about 220,000 innocent people sitting in prison.  That seems too high"

In a Columbian news article entitled "Deal or no deal for suspects?" by Jessica Prokop (September 13, 2015) she writes, "In some cases, defendants elect to take a plea deal, despite being innocent, because they fear they could end up with more time after going to trial."  Clark County Prosecutor, Tony Golik agreed "this scenario has happened in Clark County at some point but said he thinks 'it's a very small percentage.' "

In Clark County, WA, wrongful conviction is epidemic.  According to WA Court records, there were 6 convictions reversed and remanded back to Clark County in 2016 by the Court of Appeals Division II. 

Instead of taking responsibility and addressing the issues that led to a wrongful conviction, the Clark County Prosecutor's Office continues to put hurdles to justice in the way of the wrongfully convicted through appeals, drawn out court battles, excuses, denials of responsibility, and even slanderous commentary on record in some cases. 

The 2010 video below shows the still-raw pain as Ray Spencer's family is forced to jump over one of many hurdles, in their efforts to clear up the wreckage of horrific acts against an innocent man as a result of outrageous police misconduct in Clark County, WA decades earlier. 


Seven years later, (and 38 years after the wrongful conviction) the Spencer family continues to face Clark County opposition in court as attorneys representing the County make "astonishing" and absurd statements about the acceptability of fabricating evidence for a wrongful conviction. 

The PROBLEM of wrongful conviction in Clark County has been exposed, it is time to start talking about SOLUTIONS. One promising movement originates from the Center for Prosecutor Integrity.
   
Multnomah County has 1 of 30 Conviction Integrity Units currently in operation in the United States.  It is time for Clark County to follow the lead of our neighbors to the South.

















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