Innocence Project

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Innocence Project Research Paper Since 1992 The Innocence Project has exonerated 289 people in the United States. To be exonerated of a crime means that a person is acquitted for their crime and released back into society. These wrongful convictions are due to unvalidated or improper forensic science, eyewitness misidentification, and false confessions. In this paper I am going to tell the story of Clarence Elkins and why wrongfully convicting a person is a problem in the United States.
It all started on June 6th, 1998 in Summit County, Ohio. Clarence Elkins’ niece was sleeping over at her grandmother’s house, only to be woken in the middle of the night to hearing her grandmother screaming. So his niece ran into the kitchen to see her grandmother being beaten by a man. She ran back into her bedroom to be followed by this man. The niece was sexually assaulted by him. Her next memory was waking up to see her grandmother dead in the kitchen. She then proceeded to run to her neighbor’s house to call the cops. While the cops were on the way the niece proceeded to tell her neighbors that the man she saw last night looked like her uncle Clarence Elkins. Elkins was immediately brought in for questioning and he was the police’s number one suspect. Biological evidence, including hairs, was found at the crime scene and from the victim’s body. Mitochondrial DNA testing was done on pubic hairs from the victim’s bodies. This testing excluded Elkins as a possible contributor of the hairs. The only piece of evidence that was presented to the jury was the testimony of Elkin’s niece. The niece had only seen the attacker for a short period of time and it was in bad lighting. The state of Ohio admitted that there was no physical evidence connecting Elkins to this crime. Elkins presented an alibi to the court but that didn’t work. Elkins was convicted of murder,…...

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