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The Habeas Citebook Ineffective Counsel

Articles by Edward Lyon

Advanced DNA Technology Helps Free Innocent Georgia Man After Nearly 18 Years in Prison

On January 8, 2020, Kerry Robinson began the New Year and a new life as he left Georgia’s Coffee Correctional Facility a free man. He had spent nearly 18 years in prison for a brutal group rape he had nothing to do with.

As science in general and DNA scientific techniques in particular advance, so have avenues available to innocence projects across the nation to exonerate wrongfully convicted citizens. The latest scientific advance called probabilistic genotyping was championed by the Georgia and Idaho Innocence Projects to secure exoneration and release from prison for Robinson.

Sometime prior to 1993, the law-abiding teen Robinson reported Tyrone White to police for an alleged crime. On February 3, 1993, White and two teenage accomplices broke into a 42-year-old woman’s home and raped her. A sexual assault kit (“SAK”) was assembled at the hospital, and the victim gave a detailed comprehensive statement. DNA testing was performed on the fluids found in the SAK. Prominently identified was White’s and the victim’s DNA with the remaining mixture showing two more donors, but with the technology available at the time, those two were not able to be identified to a certainty.

The victim positively identified ...

Sex Offenders Go to W.A.R.

by Ed Lyon 

Seventy-two-year-old grandmother Vicki Henry has a mission in life. Because of what she perceives as injustices affecting her son, who is serving a 25-year sentence on child pornography convictions, she aims to do away with all public sex-offender registries. She heads a small group of like-minded ...

Court Rulings Condemning Cash Bail Systems Increasing

by Ed Lyon

A historically overlooked, or at least minimized, constitutional guarantee is that excessive bail amounts must not be imposed upon citizens accused of crimes. Cash bails routinely far exceed not only most people’s ability to pay but are usually far in excess of the severity of the crime ...

For the Mentally Ill, Calling 911 Could Prove Deadly

by Ed Lyon

Police responding to 911 calls that involve individuals in a mental health crisis might resort to deadly force rather than exercise restraint and give support, according to a trend identified by The Intercept’s Shaun King. And, in areas such as New York City, the vast majority of ...

Oklahoma: Cocaine Bust Was Really Only Powdered Milk

by Ed Lyon

Cody Gregg of Oklahoma is a member of a growing segment of America’s population—he is a homeless person and also receives food from a community pantry. On August 12, 2019, Gregg was doing a probated sentence for a drug conviction. He had been to a food pantry ...

Court Rulings Condemning Cash Bail Systems Increasing

by Ed Lyon

A historically overlooked, or at least minimized, constitutional guarantee is that excessive bail amounts must not be imposed upon citizens accused of crimes. Cash bails routinely far exceed not only most people’s ability to pay but are usually far in excess of the severity of the crime ...

New York Criminal Record-Sealing Program Revisited

by Ed Lyon

Criminal Legal News first reported on a 2017 law passed by the New York State Legislature that allows citizens to have certain criminal records sealed in its January 2019 issue (p.38-39).

Former prisoners could have up to two misdemeanors or one nonviolent felony and one misdemeanor conviction ...

To Compute, or Not to Compute: Algorithm-Driven AI in the Criminal Justice System

by Ed Lyon

A computer-era dictum states, “To err is human but to really foul things up requires a computer.” There is no place like the criminal injustice system and its growing dependence on AI and algorithms where that folksy axiom runs so true.

Not all algorithm-driven artificial intelligence (“AI”) ...

Hundreds of Cop Shootings Yearly in Arizona

by Ed Lyon

Arizona is known for the antics of former Maricopa County Sheriff Joseph Arpaio. A hard-liner on crime, Arpaio was constantly harsh on prisoners, often to an unconstitutional extent. An alarming, statistically backed report compiled by the Arizona Republic newspaper covering 2011 to 2018 shows that state to ...

Asset Forfeiture Not So Helpful to Crime-Fighting

by Ed Lyon

The two supreme governmental systems in the U.S. are the overall federal government and the lesser, yet still quite powerful 50 state governments. The federal Constitution and its amendments delineate certain powers exclusive to the federal government while limiting some of its powers and ceding all other ...

 

 

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