What happens when an innocent person is wrongly accused of a crime?
More times than we would like to think, innocent people find themselves behind bars. The loss that these individuals have experienced is hard to wrap one’s mind around. Sadly, the punishment does not end once out of prison.
The Innocent Project describes it this way:
“The agony of prison life and the complete loss of freedom are only compounded by the feelings of what might have been, but for the wrongful conviction. Deprived for years of family and friends and the ability to establish oneself professionally, the nightmare does not end upon release. With no money, housing, transportation, health services or insurance, and a criminal record that is rarely cleared despite innocence, the punishment lingers long after innocence has been proven.”
It’s hard to put a price tag to the cost that one pays when they were convicted of a crime they did not commit. However, the State of Michigan has passed legislation that acknowledges the need to compensate the wrongly convicted.
According to a national registry maintained by the University of Michigan, Michigan has had 66 exonerations since 1991. Under the new legislation that took 12 years to put together, around 33 of those exonerated would qualify for compensation.
Compensating The Wrongly Convicted
In the United States, there are 32 states that have compensation statues at some level. In December of 2016, the State of Michigan approved a plan to compensate those individuals that were wrongly accused. Individuals are payed $50,000 for each year they spent behind bars.
According to the Detroit News, Senator Steve Bieda said, “It’s a very important statement to make as a state and it’s just a fair thing to do. This is a justice issue, and we have to give justice to these individuals who were denied their freedom.”
What Went Wrong
There are a number of reasons that can cause a person to be convicted of a crime they didn’t commit. Eyewitness misidentification, junk science, false confessions, government misconduct, and snitches are a few that were named by The University of Michigan Law School. While each case is unique, an inadequate defense can often be blamed.
Preventing a Wrongful Conviction
Thankfully, the State of Michigan has been moving in the direction to help compensate for the wrongly accused. However, no one wants to find themselves in that position in the first place. The best way to prevent a wrongful conviction is to make sure you have the best defense attorney representing your case. Having a strong defense will ensure that those causes named will not happen.
Have You Been Wrongly Accused?
At The David J. Kramer Law Firm, PLLC, we have made it our highest priority to make sure not a single one of our clients have to pay for a crime they did not commit. Creating a strong defense in your name is what we strive to accomplish in each case. If you or a loved one is facing a crime, especially one they did not commit, contact us today. The innocent should never have to spend a single day in prison.
Let’s start fighting for your freedom