We often hear the death penalty is needed to punish a small handful of the “worst of the worst” criminals. However, research shows the death penalty in North Carolina is used broadly and indiscriminately, with little regard for the strength of the evidence against defendants — a practice that puts innocent people in danger of being executed. This is an ongoing project tracking cases where people are charged or prosecuted capitally, despite evidence too weak to prove their guilt. Read more…
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Did You Know?
- An average of two people a year are wrongfully charged with capital murder.
- The state has spent at least $2.4 million to pursue capital cases too weak for conviction. That money could have been spent securing the convictions of truly guilty people.
- Innocent defendants spend an average of two years in jail before being acquitted or having charges dismissed.