Friday, July 2, 2010

Ohio Implements Major Criminal Justice Reforms

There are three major criminal justice reforms set to take effect this month in the state of Ohio. Professor Mark Godsey of the University of Cincinnati told the Cincinnati Enquirer, "This is the biggest year for criminal justice reform in the state of Ohio in a long time and possibly forever." Godsey spearheaded the reforms as director of Ohio Innocence Project.

The reform package includes:

1. Open-discovery, that requires prosecutors to share more information up front than in the past, including police reports, witness statements and expert witness reports.

2. A new procedure for police to use when interacting with eye witnesses. Enhanced use of video-taping when eliciting confessions and a law requiring preservation of homicide and sexual assault evidence for 30 years.

3. Collection of DNA samples from all offenders convicted of a felony.

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