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Defending False Confession Cases 

  

Confessions are often a key part of a prosecution homicide case.  Police devote a great deal of time to obtaining confessions in these cases knowing that without a confession, a jury may acquit.  Not surprisingly, confessions are powerful and persuasive evidence; the average juror often assumes that no one but a guilty person would confess to a crime they didn't commit.  However, there is a growing body of research that has demonstrated this to be wrong; in close to 25% of all DNA exonerations the wrongfully convicted person gave a false confession.   False confessions also occur when there are multiple suspects such as they did in famous cases like the Central Park 5 and Norfolk 4 and Unfortunately many criminal defense lawyers assume just because their client confessed they must be guilty.  It's incumbent upon defense lawyers to learn how and why false confessions occur, aggressively litigate suppression and educate a jury as to how an innocent client admitted to a crime they didn't commit.

Click here for an outline on defending false confession cases.

Click here for a sample motion to suppress a confession.

Click here for a reading list on false confessions